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A Brewer, A Blogger and A Beer at Dry Dock Brewing. Part 2 – The Future.

A brewer, a blogger and a bottle of 6-year old Dry Dock Framboise.  Where could this be headed? Well, when the brewer is Kevin DeLange, founder and owner of Dry Dock Brewing in Aurora, CO, good things are bound to happen.  Join us as we talk brews, brewers and breweries and share some tasty brews along the way. (That’s a lot of brew talk and that’s how I like it!)  In Part 1, we discussed Dry Dock’s Past and Present, going all the way back to their opening in 2005 and working up to the release of Bligh’s Barleywine later this year.  In Part 2, we’ll discuss the Future of Dry Dock Brewing into 2013 and beyond.  Grab a beer, err brew and join us!

Going Big, Staying Local.

Looking back over the past 7 years, a move, multiple expansions and two brew systems later, Dry Dock Brewing has reached capacity at their current location at the intersection of Hampden and Chambers in Aurora, CO.  Head Brewer Doug Hyndman and his team of brewers are currently working around the clock just to keep the tap lines flowing in the Tasting Room.  Owners Kevin and Michelle DeLange knew something had to be done if they were going to meet the ever-growing demand for their beer.

Rather than pick up the brewery and move, they made the decision to add a Production Facility to supplement their current 7 BBL operation in the Tasting Room.  Kevin DeLange said they wanted to keep the brewery local, so this past Summer, they purchased a 30,000 square foot location near I-70 and Tower Road to call home for the new Production Facility.

The additional location will be equipped with a larger brew system and a more efficient bottling line to expand their current lineup of 22oz. bombers.  The 40 BBL (1 BBL = 31 gallons) brewhouse, scheduled for delivery during the week of Thanksgiving, will greatly reduce the pressure currently being put on their 7 BBL system in the Tasting Room.

Doug checking out his new toy before it gets shipped to the brewery.

To put things into perspective, Dry Dock brewed roughly 200 BBL’s during their first year of business in 2005.  In 2012, they’re projected to brew 3,200 BBL’s, which will push their current system to the limits and still not meet consumer demand.  With the addition of their 40 BBL brew system, they plan to produce nearly 15,000 BBL’s in 2013.  The brand new brewhouse will allow Dry Dock to brew a 40 BBL batch (1,240 gallons) every 4 hours, while giving them the potential to pump out more than 100,000 BBL’s of beer a year!  They’re hoping to begin brewing on the new system by the end of 2012.

In addition to the new brewhouse, the Production Facility will also feature a canning line that will initially introduce 4 offerings into the Colorado market beginning in early 2013.  Consumers should keep an eye out for 6-packs, plus a mixed 12-pack of Hefeweizen, Hop Abomination, Apricot Blonde and Amber in January 2013.  The “Booty Box” will offer 3 cans of each of the 4 different beers.  The cans will be dated so beer lovers will know they’re getting the freshest beer money can buy.

Roll Out The Barrels!

For the funky, sour beer fans, a 63 BBL Oak Foeder has been acquired from a California Winery, with the specific goal of producing sour and wild beers.  And YES, they have plans to eventually bottle their sours!  WooHoo!  DeLange crunched some numbers and projects that a full batch in the foeder will produce “somewhere around 900 cases of 750 mL bottles”.  Keep in mind, it’s still a long ways away, largely due to the lengthy process and unpredictability of working with wild yeasts, but it IS coming!

While the 40 BBL Production Facility will focus on canning, bottling and kegging their Flagship Beers (Hefeweizen, Double IPA, Vanilla Porter, etc…), the 7 BBL system at the south-Aurora Tasting Room will be utilized for experiments for Tasting Room visitors.  Head Brewer Doug Hyndman and his team of brewers will have the chance to come up with new recipes, including small batch one-offs, lagers, stouts and sours and allow them the opportunity to get creative and try new things.  The 7 BBL system will offer the team a chance to experiment and deviate a bit from Dry Dock’s Flagship lineup.

Some of the beers brewed on the 7 BBL system will be used to expand the Dry Dock Barrel-Aging Program.  The current program consists of more than 50 barrels from a variety of wineries and distilleries.  Some of Dry Dock’s most popular beers such as Bligh’s Barleywine, Shotgun Russian Imperial Stout and The Ambassador Sour, spent time aging and absorbing the characteristics found in the different barrels. The Barrel-Aged brews can spend months and sometimes even years inside the barrels until they are ready to be kegged, bottled or blended together for the final product.

DeLange will have the luxury of moving extra brewing ingredients and tasting room supplies out of the Tasting Room and up to the Production Facility.  By doing so, he’ll free up quite a bit more room in the Tasting Room, which will ultimately allow Dry Dock to grow the barrel room and create even more unique beers in the process.

Collaborations with other breweries is an option DeLange may decide to explore in the near future. He said there’s been “some talk with Troy (Casey) over at AC Golden”.  Despite being owned by MillerCoors, Casey and his Hidden Barrel Project at AC Golden are steadily gaining recognition and respect from craft beer enthusiasts for their complex, barrel-aged sour ales and stouts.  Casey’s first round of bottled sours, was released earlier this year and sold out within minutes.  Just last month at the Great American Beer Festival, AC Golden hauled in a medal for their Barrel Aged Russian Imperial Stout.  While Dry Dock’s focus is clearly on getting their new location up and running, the possibilities certainly seem endless for DeLange and his Dry Dock Team.

A Beer Garden and New Tasting Room in 2014.

Right about now, you’re probably asking yourself “Yeah, but when can I stop by the Production Facility for a beer???”  The north-Aurora Production Facility rests on a 6-acre plot that will be transformed into a Beer Garden sometime in 2014.  The current plans for the project include a dog park, horseshoe pits and even a pond.  The proposed tasting room, also slated to open in 2014, will overlook the brewhouse and production floor, giving beer drinkers a chance to sit back and watch the magic happen while sipping on their favorite pint.  Once the Beer Garden and Tap Room are completed, Delange plans to work with the Colorado Brewers Guild to host and bring a beer festival to Aurora.

When I asked DeLange about his fondest Dry Dock memory, he shared a story about his first trip to the World Beer Cup (WBC) in 2006.  At the time, Dry Dock had only been open for a few months and he decided to enter just two beers for judging in the International Competition.  He assumed that his start-up brewery didn’t stand much of a chance at winning an award at the prestigious competition. So, rather than attend the Brewers Dinner and Awards Ceremony, he decided to sample beers in the lobby and watch the ceremony from a TV outside.  When he heard his H.M.S. Victory ESB announced as a Gold Medal Winner, his initial reaction was “Who stole our name?”.

Within his first year of opening Dry Dock, DeLange had landed a medal at what is essentially the “Super Bowl” of brewery competition and beer judging.  He’d accomplished a feat that some brewers spend a lifetime trying to achieve.  This was just the beginning of what has since become a long list of medals awarded to the brewery and their beers.

In under a decade DeLange has taken Dry Dock from a tiny nano-brewery located behind a homebrew shop and transformed it into one of the nation’s top breweries.  There are great things happening every day at Dry Dock and looking into the future, they show no signs of slowing down. Stop by the Tasting Room this weekend for their Anniversary Party and help them celebrate 7 Years of Great Beers!

Cheers!


A Brewer, A Blogger, and A Beer at Dry Dock Brewing. Part 1 – The First 7 Years.

A brewer, a blogger and a bottle of 6-year old Dry Dock Framboise.  Where could this be headed? Well, when the brewer is Kevin DeLange, founder and owner of Dry Dock Brewing in Aurora, CO, good things are bound to happen.  Join us as we talk brews, brewers and breweries and share some tasty brews along the way. (That’s a lot of brew talk and that’s how I like it!)  In Part 1, we’ll discuss Dry Dock’s Past and Present, going all the way back to their opening in 2005 and working up to the release of Bligh’s Barleywine later this year.  In Part 2, we’ll discuss the Future of Dry Dock Brewing into 2013 and beyond.  Grab a beer, err brew and join us!  

Humble Beginnings

Where, oh where does the time go?  It seems like the older I get, the quicker the time passes me by. I noticed it the other day as I was preparing for the upcoming Weekend Beer Buzz.  On my calendar, I had written down the Dry Dock Anniversary Party coming up on November 10th.  When I realized it was their 7th Anniversary, I scratched my head in disbelief.  7 years?!?!  Has it really been 7 years?

My wife and I discovered Dry Dock Brewing in Aurora within the first few months of their opening in 2005 and it didn’t take us long to become adopted as “regulars”.  I can still remember sitting in the original, tiny tasting room, behind The Brew Hut homebrew supply shop, sipping on their small batches of hand-crafted brews.  The Dry Dock of 2005 and 2006 was a family.  A pretty goofy one for sure, but a family nonetheless.  Everyone knew each other and we looked out for one another. Dry Dock came along and filled Aurora’s craft beer void and began producing great beers in the process.

While the small, 800 square foot tasting room, with its’ maximum capacity of 24 people (this may or may not have been exceeded on occasion…) might be extinct, Dry Dock and their beers have risen and gone on to rank among some of the finest in the land.  Walking into Dry Dock these days, one can’t help but notice the wall of awards in the Brewery located at the corner of Hampden and Chambers.

A ton of medals decorate the brewery, coming from a variety of sources, including the Colorado State Fair, Great American Beer Festival and the World Beer Cup.

Let’s not forget they were crowned U.S. Small Brewery of the Year in 2009.  This all happened in less than 4 years!

Dry Dock Brewing 2.0

By 2009, Dry Dock had outgrown their humble home behind The Brew Hut and were forced to expand further down in the Aurora strip mall they called home.   They upgraded to a 7 BBL brewhouse and jumped into their current 9,000 square foot location, which gave beer drinkers plenty of space to spread out and enjoy themselves.

Dry Dock brought The Brew Hut with them, which has evolved into the area’s leading retailer for supplies, ingredients and know-how with regards to homebrewing, wine making, cheese making and more.  The new location has also played host to many popular events like the annual Docktoberfest and the Ho Ho Ho Slapdown.

Over the years, owners Kevin and Michelle DeLange have recruited a team of world-class brewers that bring a variety of different beer backgrounds and resumes into the brewhouse.  The Dry Dock brewers keep things interesting for even the most adventurous of beer geeks with an ever rotating selection of seasonals, one-offs, firkins and barrel-aged rarities that supplement their award-winning Flagship lineup of beers.

The team is led by Head Brewer Doug Hyndman, who has previously brewed at Ska and Green Flash.  Hyndman took the reigns at Dry Dock when former Head Brewer Bill Eye departed to open Prost Brewing in Denver earlier this year.  Hyndman has already begun to make a name for himself, by bringing the West Coast to Colorado, with his big, citrusy, hop-centric Double IPA’s.  The delicious flavor of his Hop Abomination (a favorite of mine!), will be squeezed into cans for the first time early next year.  (More on Dry Dock’s entrance into the canning business in Part 2).

For Dry Dock’s weekly Firkin Friday releases, Brewer / Firkin Master Walt Chleva has been given carte blanche to come up with new and interesting batches of beers for the Friday afternoon tappings.  He tries to pair his releases with the seasons and looks to “use local ingredients as much as possible”.

Many of the beers don’t make it past the first hour of getting tapped on Friday evenings.  Not much of a surprise considering he’s created beers like Peanut Butter Cup Porter, Double Dry-Hopped Double IPA and his personal favorite, Toasted Coconut Porter.  In the Toasted Coconut Porter, Chleva says he “uses a pound of hand toasted coconut for each firkin”, which he’s happy to point out, “makes my house smell great!”.

Although not every beer is a sure-fire winner, (Wasabi Rice Pale anyone?) and he’s still fine tuning his Maple Bacon Amber Ale recipe, but the majority of his Firkins leave Dry Dock customers thirsting for more.  In the past month alone, he’s released a Boysenberry Sour, Madagascar Vanilla Bean Porter and a Cherry Belgian Blonde.  He’s already looking towards next Summer, when he’s hoping to “make a Palisade Peach Ale and maybe a Fresh Hop Firkin”.

Do yourself a favor and get over to Dry Dock on a Friday to see what he’s brewed for the week.  Keep up to date with what Chleva has planned by checking our Weekend Beer Buzz.  Firkin Friday Tappings occur at 3 PM and 7 PM.  Don’t be late or you might get stuck listening to your friends tell you about the one that got away.

Going Big With Bligh’s

Dry Dock’s flagship lineup, which consists of USS Enterprise IPA, Apricot Blonde, HMS Victory Amber, Breakwater Pale Ale, Vanilla Porter, Double IPA and Hefeweizen, continue to draw in appreciative craft beer drinkers and regularly introducing new palates to Colorado’s craft beer movement.  Dry Dock also continues to deliver the goods with their big, experimental, boundary pushing, world-class releases.

Take for example, last year’s inaugural release of Bligh’s Barleywine, an English Barleywine, aged in Stranahan Whiskey Barrels.  Bligh’s was so well received by craft beer aficionados that it catapulted the beer onto the “Top 100 Beers on Planet Earth” as ranked by BeerAdvocate.com.

Later this year, Dry Dock will release a new batch of Bligh’s Barleywine in 22oz. bombers.  This highly anticipated, 10% ABV English Barleywine has spent the past year in Colorado Whiskey Barrels, absorbing notes of vanilla, oak and caramel along the way.  DeLange was kind enough to pull a nail from one of the many barrels housing Bligh’s and share a sample of this year’s batch.  You’re not going to want to miss this one!

With a target release date of 12/15/12, it’s the perfect beer to warm up with at the end of a cold, winter day.  In addition to 22oz. bombers, Bligh’s will also be pouring in the Tap Room for a limited time. Sorry, but NO Growler fills, in order to allow as many people as possible to try this extremely popular beer.

From There to Here, But Now Where?

In 7 years, Dry Dock has gone from a nano-brewery in the back of a homebrew supply shop to one of the top breweries in the nation.  But what’s next for Kevin and Michelle DeLange and their team of skilled brewers and dedicated employees?  Check back soon for Part 2 as we continue our chat with Kevin DeLange and talk about what lies ahead for the Aurora-based brewery.  This is BIG!  Trust me, you won’t want to miss this!

Cheers!


Weekend Beer Buzz 10/25/2012

It looks like Mother Nature has dished out a bit of snow and cold weather to us.  Don’t fret, there’s still plenty of good beer to make you feel all warm and fuzzy inside again. It’s time for the weekend people.  You ready?

Fire it up right now, by making a trip over to Crooked Stave.  Just look at this lineup.

Not only are there amazing brews on draft, but they’ve got both Oculus and the GABF-medal winning Sentience in bottles to go.  Don’t forget to sign up for Crooked Stave’s Cellar Reserve while you’re at it.  You won’t regret it.  Crooked Stave is located at: 1441 W 46th Ave, Unit 19, Denver, CO 80211.

Over at the Yak & Yeti is their Oaked IPA.  This is their Himalayan IPA aged in a Leopold Bros. Rye Whiskey Barrel.  Brewer Adam Draeger teased this recently on our behind the scenes tour of the brewery and I’d love to taste how this turned out.

They’re also pouring Blueberry Tart, which is a slightly tart, blueberry brown ale and a Milk Stout, which will only be pouring for the colder months.  Stay tuned for a series of Porters that will head into territories never before visited by previous Porters.  More details in the coming weeks.  Check out Yak & Yeti at: 7803 Ralston Rd, Arvada, CO 80002 and 8665 N Sheridan Blvd, Westminster, CO 80003.

Friday, October, 26th, 2012.

So the Jellyman down at Rockyard is up to his usually playfulness again this week.  This time, he’s releasing “Wonder Twin Powers…Activate!”  Best beer name I’ve heard in a long time.  He’s taken an IPA and filled it with antioxidant goodness from the very special and tasty Açaí berry.  Well, lots of Açaí berries actually.

Guaranteed to be way better than a flu shot, stop by at 4 PM to get your fix.  Rockyard Brewing is located at: 880 W Castleton Rd, Castle Rock, CO 80109.  303-814-9273.  And for you kids still wondering who the hell the Wonder Twins are, get learned.

This may or may not be from the original cartoon series.  You be the judge.

Before this post goes any further South, let’s just move on.

Oskar Blues Homemade Liquids & Solids is turning 3!  Stop by on Friday for this family friendly event, complete with balloon making and face painting for the little ones.

Good beer?  Are you kidding me?  These guys kill it in the beer category and will have a ton of great brews flowing.  The food menu is tough to beat too.  Man, I wish I could make this.  It’ll be an awesome time.  Oskar Blues Homemade Liquids & Solids is located at: 1555 S Hover St, Longmont, CO 80501.  303-485-9400.

Parry’s Pizza is hosting Beer & Fear on Friday.

Scary Costumes meets Scary Beer.  Get all ghouled up and stop by for some spooky brews from Jolly Pumpkin, Lost Abbey and Shmaltz.  Costume contest from 7 PM – 8 PM.  Parry’s Pizza is located at: 9567 S. University Blvd., Highlands Ranch, CO 80126.

Dry Dock is ready for another round of Firkin Friday.  This week’s release is their Double IPA, dry-hopped with Simcoe and Amarillo hops.  Hop-heads arise!  Tappings at 3 PM and 7 PM.

Dry Dock Brewing is located at: 15120 E Hampden Ave, Aurora, CO 80014.  303-400-5606.

Saturday, October 27th, 2012.

Saturday is a solid day of beer happenings, so let’s refocus and get serious.

The Rackhouse Pub is turning 3 this weekend!  To celebrate their 3rd Anniversary, they’ll be hosting a Dry Dock Tap Takeover.

Yeah, they’ve got your Hop Abomination, GABF Gold-medal winning Apricot, Vanilla Porter and so on, but they’ll also be pouring Dry Dock’s World Beer Cup medal winning Wee Heavy, Coffee Milk Stout, Bligh’s Barleywine (yes, Bligh’s Barleywine), The Ambassador Sour (my fav!) and even a firkin of Chocolate Peanut Butter Cup Porter.  More than 20 beers will be making an appearance for this amazing event.

Do NOT miss this!  I mean it.  Aside from maybe your buddy’s beer cellar, when’s the last time you saw a bottle of Bligh’s Barleywine?  Head over to the Rackhouse and help them celebrate 3 years. There’s even a costume contest and live music later in the evening.  The Rackhouse is located at: 208 S Kalamath St, Denver, CO 80223.

Arvada Beer is also celebrating an Anniversary this weekend.

For their 1-year anniversary, they’ve been tapping great beers all week-long.  Here’s the complete list of what they’ve got planned:

  • 10/21 – Bourbon Barrel Aged Cherry Wit
  • 10/22 – Both White House Ales
  • 10/23 – Nitro Russian Imperial Stout
  • 10/24 – Cabernet Sauvignon Barrel Aged Belgian IPA
  • 10/25 – Russian Imperial Stout
  • 10/26 – Batch 100 Wheat Wine
  • 10/27 – Syrah Barrel Aged Russian Imperial Stout

There’s some amazing beers on the list for sure!  Stop by on Saturday for a Halloween costume contest, a chance to win free beer for a year! and to check out a live broadcast with the boys from the Colorado Craft Beer Show.

Turk and the Gubna will be broadcasting live from noon – 2 PM on AM 760.  Tune in or stop by to get all the latest Colorado craft beer news.  Arvada Beer is located at: 5600 Olde Wadsworth Blvd, Arvada, CO 80002.  303-467-2337.

Parry’s Pizza is inviting you out to drink beer for a good great cause on Saturday.

They’re hosting a silent auction to help raise money for little Zoe, who is battling cancer.  Stop by for a beer, a bite to eat and bid on some great merchandise for an amazing cause.  Parry’s Pizza has three locations at: 9567 S. University Blvd., Highlands Ranch, CO 80126.  12501 E. Lincoln, Englewood, CO 80112.  5650 Allen Way, Castle Rock, CO 80108.

Black Shirt Brewing’s gearing up for another party on Saturday.  While they still don’t have any permanent hours established just yet, they’ll be pouring a variety of Red Ales from 3 – 8 PM.

Stop by for a sneak-peek and try some beers from Denver’s newest brewery.  Black Shirt Brewing is located at: 3719 Walnut St, Denver, CO 80205.

This last one is for all the über beer geeks and beer traders out there.  Darkness Day at Surly Brewing in Brooklyn Center, MN is going down on Saturday!  Darkness is an amazing, amazing, amazing Imperial Stout that is delicious fresh, but also ages incredibly well.  I also think it’s kind of cool that Surly chooses a different monster / zombie / scary creature to adorn their bottle every year.

Darkness Day only happens once a year, so show up early to secure up to 6-bottles of this limited, yummy brew.  Cash only.  I’ve got a vertical running back to ’08 and if anybody happens to have an extra bottle and can grab me this year’s workshirt, you’ll be rewarded with, well, more beer. Duh! E-mail me (brewtallyinsane@yahoo.com) if you’ve got a bottle that you just need to get rid of and we’ll figure out the details.

Again, Darkness is a pretty special brew that you should go out of your way to find.  Seriously great beer.  It’s good too.  Grab your bottles, stick around for the beer (obviously!), food trucks and metal music.  It’s going to be a blast!  Surly Brewing is located at: 4811 Dusharme Dr, Brooklyn Center, MN 55429.

That’s about it y’all.  Plenty to do both near and far, far and near, amazing things are brewing everywhere.  (Sorry, my kids are all about Dr. Seuss these days.)  Get on it and have some fun this weekend.

Cheers!


Weekend Beer Buzz 08/30/2012

Man, my kids started school last week and were gracious enough to bring The Funk home with them and share it with us.  Been sick for the past few days…  Time to kick this crap and get ready for the holiday weekend!  I’m goin’ Phisin’!

Thursday, August 30th, 2012.

Parry’s Pizza has some new goodies hitting the tap lines today.  They just added kegs of Firestone Walker’s Oaktoberfest (Marzen), Fort Collins Brewing’s BamBostic! Rauchbier and Crazy Moutain’s Mountain Livin’ (Pale Ale).

They’re also pouring Stone 16th Anniversary (Lemon Double IPA), Great Divide’s ’08 Old Ruffian (Barleywine), Elevation’s Apis IV (Belgian Quad) and another 40+ tasty microbrews.  Stop by and pay them visit at: 9567 S University Blvd, Highlands Ranch, CO 80126.  303-683-0600.

Friday, August 31st, 2012.

Kick things off over at Dry Dock with their Firkin Friday.  This week is a batch of Green Chili Double IPA.

Who’s in?  Sounds delish.  Tapping’s at 3 PM.  This week, in addition to their home fleet of tasty brews, they’re also pouring Phoenix Rye IPA and Coffee Milk Stout.

Get out there and get some before they’re gone!  And by the way, who’s ready for Hop Abomination cans?!?!  I know I am! Here’s a little teaser of what’s to come.

Dry Dock Brewing is located at: 15120 E Hampden Ave, Aurora, CO 80014.  303-400-5606.

Down at the Rockyard, Jellyman has dug up a real treat this week.  On Friday, he’ll be pouring his award-winning Eisbock “Eiscavator” Eised Doppel Bock.  He describes it as having “caramel malts with faint sweet oak character” and “surprisingly smooth for 14% ABV”.  He also mentioned it was the first commercial beer he ever brewed with the Rockyard.  Pretty cool!

This bad boy gets tapped at 4 PM.  Rockyard Brewing is located at: 880 W Castleton Rd, Castle Rock, CO 80104.  303-814-9273.

Saturday, September 1st, 2012.

The 3rd Annual Boulder Brew and Music Festival is happening on Saturday at The Boulder Theater. More than 20 breweries will be pouring 60+ beers over the course of two tasting sessions.

Lots of great breweries will be in attendance including Firestone Walker, Great Divide, Avery and Odell.  3 bands will also be serving up live tunes for you.  Tickets run $40 per session and the sessions run from 1 – 5 PM and 6 – 10 PM.  More details and ticket info can be found HERE.  The Boulder Theater is located at: 2032 14th St, Boulder, CO 80302.

New Belgium’s zany Tour de Fat bike parade is coming home to Fort Collins on Saturday.

The madness starts at 10 AM and lasts all day at Civic Center Park.  Grab you costume and two-wheeled ride and head over for some fun.  Click HERE for a full schedule and registration info.

Back here in Denver, the Wynkoop will be tapping their annual batch of Belgorado on Saturday.  This wet-hopped Belgian IPA, won a Silver Medal in the Experimental Beer category at the Great American Beer Festival in 2011.

This year, the Wynkoop will feature three different batches brewed with local hops from three different hop farms.  The batch set to be released on Saturday will feature hops from Voss Farms up in Arvada.  This is a very limited, seasonal release, so don’t miss out.  Get over to the Wynkoop at: 1634 18th St, Denver, CO 80202.  303-297-2700.

Just down the street from the Wynkoop, Freshcraft is turning two and they’ve got some awesome beers ready to be tapped for the celebration.

The party starts at 11 AM, when a firkin of Upslope’s Peach Cobbler (brewed with Palisade peaches) gets tapped.  More unique and rare beers will get tapped throughout the day including New Belgium’s La Folie (sour brown), Firestone Walker’s Parabola (Barrel-Aged Russian Imperial Stout) and Oskar Blues Jim Beam Barrel-Aged Ten FIDY on nitro!  They’ll also have their full menu available and BBQ as well.  Freshcraft is located at: 1530 Blake St, Denver, CO 80202.  303-758-9608.

If you can make it out for the Freshcraft Anniversary party, say hi to The Gubna, who’ll be broadcasting live on AM 760 with the Colorado Craft Beer Show from noon – 2 PM.

Co-host Turk will be all the way out in Durango for Ska’s 17th Anniversary Party.

Ska has put together a beer fest and invited 25 of their favorite breweries to come out, pour beers and celebrate with them.  $25 gets you a commemorative glass, beer samples and live music. Turk, I’m jealous!  This sounds sick.  Have fun and congrats to Ska on 17 years!

Stay tuned for more details on Ska’s upcoming series of canned stout releases, which is set to debut next month.  Ska Brewing is located at: 225 Girard St, Durango, CO 81303.  970-247-5792.

Many breweries around town are operating on limited hours due to the holiday weekend, so be sure to call ahead and get your growlers filled early.  Nothing ruins a good cookout quicker than serving bad beer.  Just a thought.

Looking towards next weekend, don’t forget to grab your tickets for Avery’s Inaugural IPA Festival.

Don’t miss this!  Come get bitter with us up at Avery Brewing in Boulder.  Ticket details and more can be found HERE.

That’s it for this round.  Go have some fun and enjoy the holiday weekend!

Cheers!


Weekend Beer Buzz 08/16/2012

Get yer brew news!  Yep, the weekend is almost here and the forecast is perfect.  You ready?

Friday, August 17th, 2012.

Kick things off over at Dry Dock with Firkin Friday.  This week, they’ve taken Doug’s Hop Abomination VI and double dry-hopped that bad boy.

Because obviously a single dry-hopping just wasn’t enough.  Hop Abomination is a great, great beer and I can’t wait to see its’ debut in cans later this year.  In the meantime, stop by and try the latest batch.  Hop heads won’t want to miss this firkin.  The beast gets unleashed at 3 PM.  Dry Dock Brewing is located at: 15120 E Hampden Ave, Aurora, CO 80014.  303-400-5606.

Sadly, I will miss this week’s firkin, but I’ll be happily pouring beers at the Art and Ale Brew Festival at The Wildlife Experience in Parker.

This is a new one for us, but the list includes Deschutes, Avery, Elevation, Trinity, Uinta and 30+ other breweries.  There’s also several wineries, distilleries and restaurants on the list.  I’m really excited to finally attend this one.  A beer fest in a museum is an awesome idea and I can’t wait. Tickets are $35 for members of The Wildlife Experience, $40 for non-members and $25 for DD’s. More details can be found HERE.

We’ll be pouring at the Dry Dock booth, so stop by and say hi!  The Wildlife Experience is located at: 10035 Peoria St, Parker, CO 80134.  720-488-3300.

Oh, and if you’re out that way, don’t forget about Parry’s Pizza.  They’ve got a location right across the street at: 12501 Lincoln Ave, Englewood, CO 80112.

Don’t forget that Friday will be your first chance to grab tickets for Avery’s Inaugural IPA Festival. This is taking place at Avery Brewing in Boulder, CO on Saturday, September 8th from noon – 5 PM.

Saturday, August 18th, 2012.

On Saturday, head over to Stapleton for the third annual Stapleton Beer Festival.

This year, check out dozens of local breweries serving up their tasty offerings from 4 – 8 PM.  Look for Great Divide, Wit’s End, Copper Kettle, CAUTION and an additional 20+  breweries to be on-site. Two bands will perform and nearly a dozen food trucks will be there as well.

Tickets are $35 in advance and $40 at the event.  Call 303-388-0724 to purchase tickets in advance or get more information.

If you’re looking to get out-of-town, head up to Central City for the Great Central City Beer Festival. American Craft Beer Radio will be broadcasting live from the festival on 102.3 FM from noon – 1 PM on Saturday.  The Beer Festival runs from noon – 7 PM.

I got my history lesson on Central City’s rich brewing history last weekend from Dave Thomas of Dostal Alley Brewing.  Dave recently wrote a book on the history of brewing in Gilpin County and this past weekend, he was a featured guest on the Colorado Craft Beer Show.

The Great Central City Beer Festival will celebrate the rich, 150 year brewing history of Central City and will feature hayrides, live music and more than 40 beers to sample from breweries like Prost (oh yeah!!), Backcountry Brewing and Dostal Alley Brewing.  This is an all ages event and tickets are on sale for $20.  Click HERE to check out some pics from our trip to Dostal Alley Brewing earlier this summer.

And speaking of the Colorado Craft Beer Show, the guys will be hanging out at Hops & Pie this week as they broadcast from noon – 2 PM on AM760.  Head over to Hops & Pie at noon to check out the live show, as they give you all the latest and greatest brew news and take part in Denver’s Littlest Big Beer Fest.

This month’s lineup is from Elevation Brewing.  Elevation, from Poncha Springs, CO, will be bringing a bunch of tasty beers like their Apis IV Quad, Signal de Botrange Belgian Ale, several barrel-aged variations, a firkin and more!  Hops & Pie is located at: 3920 Tennyson St, Denver, CO 80212.  303-477-7000.

Don’t forget about Bull & Bush’s 41 Beer in 41 Days event that rolls on all month-long.

This weekend, they’ll be tapping their own Captain Funk, and on the guest list is J.W. Lee’s 25th Anniversary Harvest Ale and  d’Achouffe’s Biere Du Soleil.  A full list can be found HERE.  Bull & Bush Brewery is located at: 4700 Cherry Creek Drive South, Denver, CO 80246.  303-759-0092.

Sunday, August 19th, 2012.

The 2nd Annual Colorado Distillers Festival hits the Rackhouse Pub from 1 – 5 PM on Sunday.

Check out some delicious spirits from Breckenridge Distilling, Deerhammer Distilling, Peach Street Distillers and more.  Tickets are $45 in advance and $50 at the door and includes admission, a tasting glass and a tour of Stranahan’s Distillery.  More details can be found HERE.  The Rackhouse Pub is located at: 208 S Kalamath St, Denver, CO 80223.

Monday, August 20th, 2012.

Stretch your weekend clear into Monday as Euclid Hall will be hosting Tom Korder, brewer from Goose Island at 8 PM.  Yep, that would be Chicago’s Goose Island.  Goose Island recently announced they’ll be bringing their full line of beers into the Colorado market, beginning in September.  There’s talk that they may even begin brewing some of their famous recipes out this way too.  Time will tell. But, on Monday, visit Euclid Hall to try some of their Vintage Beers brought out to CO just for this event.

The chefs at Euclid Hall have created some unique dishes to be paired alongside the beers. Euclid Hall is located at: 1317 14th St, Denver, CO 80202.  303-595-4255.

I’m glad to hear that Goose Island will be expanding their distribution to include our market.  For the past few years, we’ve seen bits and pieces of the Goose Island portfolio, but it’s been pretty hit or miss and some of my favorite styles never made it out this way.  It sounds like they’re planning to bring nearly the entire lineup to us.  I had the chance to visit Goose Island last year and if you’re not familiar with them, you’re in for a treat.  They have an awesome lineup of beers and an enormous barrel-aging program that includes everything from big, bold stouts to sour, belgian-style ales.  I can’t wait to track down some more Bourbon County Brand Stout, as my supply is dwindling. For more details on Goose Island’s expansion into Colorado, check out the recent article by Jonathan Shikes over at the Westword.

If you’re just looking to hang out at home and enjoy a new beer this weekend, keep an eye out for Stone’s 16th Anniversary beer, a new batch of Cantillon (which is probably already gone by now…), The Bruery’s tasty Tart of Darkness and some interesting new Brettanomyces beers from Anchorage Brewing.

Looking into the crystal ball, Prost Brewing will officially open on Thursday, August 23rd at noon. I’m hoping to get a sneak-peek at the finished place and try the lineup on Wednesday.  Absolutely can not wait for them to open!  Prost Brewing is located at: 2540 19th St, Denver, CO 80202.

Grab your calendar and save the date of Saturday, September 29th.   That’s the big date for the upcoming Fall Beer Classic.  Turk and The Gubna from the Colorado Craft Beer Show are hosting their very own beer fest!  These boys know beer and how to have fun.  Sounds like the perfect combo for a beer fest!  Think of it as a warm-up for the Great American Beer Festival.

I’ll get you all the details in the coming weeks, but for now, be sure to “Like” them on their Facebook Page.

Hey, “Like” us too while you’re at it.  I’ve got more beer to give away, but you’ll need to follow the Facebook page if you want a chance to win.

That’s it y’all.  My fingers are done, my mind is blown, it’s time for a beer!

Have a great weekend!

Cheers!