Jamaican-Inspired Wah Gwaan Brewing Will Close January 31

Wah Gwaan took over the former Intrepid Sojourner space in 2021.
Wah Gwaan took over the former Intrepid Sojourner space in 2021. Wah Gwaan Brewing/Facebook
Wah Gwaan Brewing at 925 West Eighth Avenue, one of just a few Black-owned breweries in the state, will be closing at the end of the month after a year and a half in business. Owners Harsha Maragh and her husband, Jesse Brown, announced the news on the brewery's social media platforms on January 14, writing:
It is with the heaviest heart that we’re announcing the closure of the Wah Gwaan taproom on January 31st. While we absolutely love our community and want to keep producing island brews, there are insurmountable external obstacles that have hindered us up until this point. Inflation, rising costs and the state of the economy have put us in this difficult position and we are not able to remain open while providing the service you've come to love and expect.

For this Bronx girl born to parents that immigrated to the US from Jamaica and this West Denver native, opening a brewery in Colorado that celebrated our cultures was a dream.

Closing our Denver taproom doesn’t mean that Wah Gwaan won’t reopen someday. If you have any connections or thoughts on what a next spot could look like, we're open to hearing about them - just send us a DM.

If there’s anything we learned in this crazy process of starting and owning our own business, it’s that no matter how stressful, every little thing is gonna be alright.
Wah Gwaan, which opened in June 2021 in the former Intrepid Sojourner space, was our 2022 pick for Best Brewery Tap Room Atmosphere in 2022 thanks to its Jamaican inspiration, reggae tunes, vibrant murals and beers made with tropical ingredients.

For fans of Wah Gwaan, or those who have always wanted to visit, the brewery will be hosting a variety of events throughout the end of the month, including a beer education session on January 18, a Black People Know Things game night on January 25, and a closing party on January 28. It will also be participating in a special event at Town Hall Collaborative on February 14 called A Queer Love Letter, a collaboration with Town Hall, LaLa Queen, Queer Denver Living and Lady Justice Brewing.
KEEP WESTWORD FREE... Since we started Westword, it has been defined as the free, independent voice of Denver, and we'd like to keep it that way. With local media under siege, it's more important than ever for us to rally support behind funding our local journalism. You can help by participating in our "I Support" program, allowing us to keep offering readers access to our incisive coverage of local news, food and culture with no paywalls.
Ryan Pachmayer is a beer writer living in Arvada. He has written for publications such as Craft Beer & Brewing, Zymurgy, Porch Drinking, Homebrewing DIY and Punch. He is also the head brewer at Yak & Yeti Brewpub, marketing director at New Image Brewing and a BJCP Certified Judge.

Latest Stories