Beer Man

Peyton Manning and U.S. Rep. Ed Perlmutter both need a few craft beer pointers

Bud Light got the Denver Broncos-related headlines last weekend after Peyton Manning told reporters at a post-playoffs game press conference that the main thing "weighing on my mind is how soon I can get a Bud Light in my mouth. That's priority No. 1."

But in the week leading up to the Denver Broncos playoff victory against the San Diego Chargers, U.S. Representative Ed Perlmutter was celebrating craft beer -- or trying to -- by making a traditional elected-official-style sporting wager with Representative Scott Peters, who serves parts of San Diego County.

See also: Tom Menino, Colorado beer-hating Boston mayor, puts the "uck" in shmuck

Since both guys represent big craft beer towns, their bet "highlighted craft breweries, an industry key to local job growth in both of their districts," according to their offices.

But while Peters wagered cases of beer from Lightning Brewery based in the town of Poway, California, Perlmutter bet a "mixed case" of beer from Odyssey Beerwerks in Arvada, Ironworks Brewery in Lakewood and AC Golden in Golden.

And while AC Golden is making a name for itself among beer geeks, it is wholly owned by MillerCoors -- a big constituent of Perlmutter's, for sure (since Golden is located within his 7th District), but not exactly a craft brewery, at least according to the organization that represents the craft-brewing industry across the country.

In fact, that trade group, the Boulder-based Brewers Association, has frequently criticized Coors, Miller, Bud and others for making craft-style beers without mentioning their corporate ownership on the label.

But that wasn't the only oversight in the Perlmutter statement: His office ran down a list of other breweries in Colorado's 7th District, but left out at least three: the Yak & Yeti in Arvada, Beer by Design in Northglenn, and Caution Brewing, which just opened a beautiful new location in Lakewood and is holding a grand opening this weekend.

The Perlmutter office did, however, include Lakewood Brewing, which is nice -- except that there is no such company in Colorado. There's a Lakewood Brewing in Texas -- but the Broncos aren't playing the Dallas Cowboys or the Houston Texans next week.

They are playing the New England Patriots, however, and while no beer wagers have been announced yet between elected officials in Colorado and those in Massachusetts, hopefully Boston has learned its lesson.

Two years ago, former mayor Tom Menino pulled a Buckner over beer before another Broncos-Patriots matchup, reportedly saying, "We have the best. I mean, you know, Colorado beer? It hasn't even made it east yet. Sam Adams has made it to the west, and Harpoon has made it out there, but Colorado Rocky beer? Uck."

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Jonathan Shikes is a Denver native who writes about business and beer for Westword.
Contact: Jonathan Shikes