Beer Man

Ten Warm-Blanket Beers to Wrap Yourself In on Election Night

Yes, 4 Noses Brewing, it's about damn time.
Yes, 4 Noses Brewing, it's about damn time. 4 Noses Brewing
If you’re like me, you’ll be spending Tuesday under a pile of warm, cozy blankets, TV on mute, one eye occasionally peeking out at the brutal world. You’ll be nauseous, fearful, drunk.

The last thing you want on Election Night 2020 is something that will cause even more consternation: scratchy pajamas, for instance, harsh lighting or a weird beverage. That’s why I’ve built this list of Colorado beers that will function like warm blankets for your mouth and your soul; they are all lovely, consistent, and some of the best examples of their styles in the country — no matter what that country looks like on Wednesday.

click to enlarge UPSLOPE BREWING
Upslope Brewing
Craft Lager
Upslope Brewing

With Upslope Brewing's Craft Lager, you'll be cracking your second can before you even realize that you finished the first: It's just that easy. A silver-medal winner at the 2019 Great American Beer Festival, it's brewed with a good dose of Saaz hops and clocks in at just 4.8 percent ABV, so you can crush the entire sixer by the time those East Coast polls close. Keep ’em cold.

click to enlarge BIERSTADT LAGERHAUS
Bierstadt Lagerhaus
Bierstadt Lagerhaus
Once available only at the brewery, Bierstadt's Helles can now be found at a wide variety of liquor stores thanks to the pandemic, which forced many beer makers to seek out new ways to get suds into hands. Light but flavorful, effervescent but easy to drink, this is the beer you should start the night with. Sit down on the couch with a big mug — the bigger the better — and pour one in. Make sure it has a foamy head. Now pull your covers up to your chin. Take a long, slow pull on the beer. Okay, here we go...

click to enlarge ODELL BREWING
Odell Brewing
90 Shilling
Odell Brewing

It just doesn't get any more chill than 90 Shilling from Odell Brewing. This old-school amber ale is smooth and malty, gently pleasing the palate and the senses with a lovely balance that will keep you calm. Sip after sip after sip after — who are we kidding — chug, you'll be happy you chose 90 Shilling as your evening companion.

click to enlarge GREAT DIVIDE BREWING
Great Divide Brewing
Claymore Scotch Ale
Great Divide Brewing

On a normal day, your eyes might pass right over Claymore Scotch Ale. It's not a sexy style these days, and the beer has been around since the early days of the Obama administration. But it's good — really good — and when you need a warming brew for an icy night, this malty "Wee Heavy" will do the trick. Full of caramel and pleasant thoughts, Claymore also comes in at 7.7 percent ABV, so it will help those shoulders relax.

click to enlarge TELLURIDE BREWING
Telluride Brewing
Russell Kelly Pale Ale
Telluride Brewing

Inspired by the great Sierra Nevada Pale Ale, Russell Kelly Pale Ale took an old idea and made it new again. Brewed almost entirely with Mosaic hops, it has a smooth, easy-drinking characteristic that comes from the very low bitterness achieved through dry-hopping. Do you own a pitcher? Just pour three of them in there and pretend like you're in an alternate universe, watching the returns on TV at a packed bar.

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