It’s back. The tasty hop bomb known as Enjoy By is making a return appearance to our delicious state. The beer was loaded onto trucks last Friday and it’s hitting store shelves today. Hop heads, get out and get ya some, because it sure won’t last long. Read the press release below for more details, including tasting notes from Brewmaster Mitch Steele and suggested food pairings from Dr. Bill.
COLORADO RECEIVES LIMITED RELEASE OF STONE ENJOY BY 04.20.13 IPA
ESCONDIDO, CA (March 18, 2013) – A devastatingly fresh Stone Brewing Co. beer is on its way to Colorado. On Friday, Stone Enjoy By 04.20.13 IPA was bottled, kegged and loaded on a truck destined for The Centennial State. Brewed with 11 different hop varieties, this beer is designed to be enjoyed on or before the date printed on each bottle to fully experience the beer’s über hop-forward flavor and aroma.
Stone Brewmaster Mitch Steele implemented several techniques while brewing Stone Enjoy By 04.20.13 IPA including “hop bursting,” which adds copious amounts of hops to the end of the boil process to maximize the intense flavors and aromas of hops in the brew. Traces of resin, peaches and tropical fruit are evident in the aroma while the taste is almost entirely an onslaught of hop bitterness.
Stone fans looking to enjoy this limited release beer should visit stonebrewing.com/enjoyby/ and use the interactive map to find exactly which retailers, restaurants and bars are carrying the beer in bottles or on draft. In the unlikely event that any beer remains on the shelf on April 21, it will be immediately removed.
Stone is measuring buzz for the beer through the company’s social media platforms: Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, and the Stone Enjoy By IPA website. Beer enthusiasts may express their desire to have Stone Enjoy By IPA back in their city or state by using any or all of the aforementioned social media sites. Hopheads are encouraged to comment, tweet, post and share with fellow beer enthusiasts using the hashtags #EnjoyBy #CO. All engagements may be viewed in real time at the Stone Enjoy By IPA website,stonebrewing.com/enjoyby/.
Name: Stone Enjoy By 04.20.13 IPA
Stats: 9.4% ABV, 88 IBUs
Availability: Limited 22-ounce bottles and draft, beginning the week of March 18
Hops bill: Calypso, Super Galena, Simcoe, Delta, Target, Amarillo, Motueka, Citra, Cascade, New Zealand Nelson Sauvin, and Australian Galaxy
Tasting Notes, provided by Brewmaster Mitch Steele
Appearance: Golden with a creamy white head.
Aroma: Intense dank hoppiness, resin, peaches, and hints of tropical fruit are all evident in the aroma.
Taste: Smooth malt up front, quickly dissipating into a massive onslaught of hops. The dankness and peach notes come through strongly.
Palate: Smooth with hints of alcohol, and a perfect balance of bitterness and dryness on the back end.
Overall: We took the opportunity with this beer to use several interesting techniques we’ve learned during our many years of brewing great double IPAs. The result is an intense dry beer with very little malt sweetness, but with plenty of malt flavor to provide a background to the enormous…or shall I say “ginormous” hop character. Hopping, as might be expected, was over the top. First, the brew was mash-hopped with Calypso, a beautiful fruity hop that we also used in our Stone 16th Anniversary IPA, after which we kettle-hopped with a very small dose of Super Galena hop extract for bittering. Then, using a technique known in homebrew circles as “hop bursting,” we loaded up very heavily on the flavor hops at the end of the boil and in the whirlpool. Simcoe, Delta, Target and Amarillo were used in the late kettle hop. Motueka, Citra, and Cascade were used for the whirlpool hop. As you can clearly tell, this beer was super hoppy even before we dry-hopped it, but then we went for it…dry-hopping with one pound per barrel EACH of New Zealand Nelson Sauvin and Australian Galaxy.
Drink extra-super-dank-and-tasty Stone Enjoy By 04.20.13 IPA well before its shelf life to maximize the pungent glory that this beautiful, intense hop profile provides.
Suggested food parings, provided by “Dr.” Bill Sysak
Appetizers: Guacamole, kimchi, salt and pepper shrimp (or tofu), sausage-stuffed jalapeños
Main course: Chicken-fried steak, Merguez sausage, gumbo, chile relleno, Thai drunken noodles
Dessert: Carrot cake, peach cobbler, ginger spice cake, pumpkin cheesecake
Cheeses: Parmigiano-Reggiano, extra aged Cheddar, Rogue Creamery Caveman Blue, Mimolette
Cigars: Alec Bradley Trilogy Authentic Corojo, Altadis U.S.A Edición Limitada, Camacho Select
ABOUT STONE BREWING CO.
Twice named “All-Time Top Brewery on Planet Earth” by BeerAdvocate magazine, Stone Brewing Co. was founded in 1996 by Greg Koch and Steve Wagner and is the 11th largest craft brewer in the U.S. Headquartered in Escondido, CA, Stone owns and operates the farm-to-table restaurant Stone Brewing World Bistro & Gardens – Escondido, as well as Stone Catering, Stone Distributing Co., and Stone Farms. Other lofty ventures include construction of Stone Packaging Hall and a second restaurant with an on-site brewhouse, Stone Brewing World Bistro & Gardens – Liberty Station, both with an estimated completion of first quarter 2013, and Stone Hotel & Headquarters with an estimated completion of late 2014. For more information, please visit stonebrewing.com or on social media sites: Twitter, Facebook, Instagram, Google+, YouTube, and The Stone Blog.
New beers. We’ve got a ton. Here’s a rundown of what to expect and what to watch for over the next few months.
Wynkoop Brewing is releasing cans of their Rocky Mountain Oyster Stout today (yes, TODAY!) in unique, 2-packs.
100 cases will be available this time around and should reach several stores in their Denver-area distribution network.
Our Mutual Friend is bottling their first offering! Stop by the Denver brewery on Friday, March 22nd at 2 PM to snag one of only 100 wax-dipped, hand-numbered 22 oz. bombers. Limited to 2 / per person.
Parker’s Hall Brewing is gearing up for their next wave of bottled releases. Their Bock, Pilsner and Saison should be hitting shelves any day now.
Denver’s River North Brewery, with the help of the Mobile Canning Unit, plans to can later this year. Keep an eye out for their White and Hoppy Red to hit the metal soon.
Great Divide’s working on their 19th Anniversary Ale, which is scheduled to be released in April.
The annual release is a wood-aged IPA, brewed with birch syrup and aged on birch wood. The Anniversary Party will be at the Denver brewery this June.
New Belgium and Trinity have teamed up to brew a Berliner Weisse.
Not sure when this barrel aged beauty will debut, but with two funk masters behind it, I can’t wait.
Trinity’s also looking to release Elektrick Cukumbahh.
The world of Cucumber saisons and ales are growing on me and I’m looking forward to trying this one. Elektrick Cukumbahh is made with English Cucumbers, Grains of Paradise and fermented with Saison and Brett yeasts.
New Belgium’s working on several new Lips of Faith releases. The first is named after the Pluot, a wacky little fruit that’s a hybrid of the plum and apricot.
I like both and what’s even better, is that it’s fermented with a strain of wild Belgian yeast. Sounds delish!
Another New Belgium collaboration is underway with Utah’s Red Rock Brewery called Paardebloem. This odd little brew will feature peach juice, grains of paradise, dandelion greens and will be wood-aged with wild Belgian yeast.
If that’s not strange enough for you, New Belgium’s also got Rolle Bolle coming out this Summer, which is brewed with monk fruit and soursop. I don’t know where they find these crazy ingredients, but I’m hoping they make for a good beer.
Odell has a pair of new brews set to release this spring. One’s a low ABV session ale, while the other is an Imperial Peach IPA.
Kansas City’s Boulevard teamed up with The Roasterie to brew up a Coffee Ale, set to be released later this month.
Dogfish Head will release 61 Minute IPA into their distribution network towards the end of March. This is their 60 Minute IPA brewed with Syrah grape must.
Stone’s bringing back their Enjoy By IPA. This time it’s Enjoy By 04.20.13.
Apparently a much larger batch was made since we last received this beer in 2012. This was a really great IPA, that rivals the best of ’em, so look out hop heads.
Speaking of Stone, last month they collaborated with Two Brothers and Aleman, out of IL, to create Dayman Coffee IPA.
Citrus hops meets deep-roasted coffee in this 8.7% ABV, 42 IBU one-off. Look for bombers and kegs to start dropping on March 18th.
That’s the latest in new brews to watch for. If you’ve got something you’re excited to try or would like us to review a brew for you, let us know on our Facebook Page. Happy Hunting Friends!
We had a killer time last week on the left coast. San Diego is a great, great beer town. No, it’s not Denver, let’s not get carried away, but it’s solid and growing just as quickly as our local scene. This was our second visit in 18 months and it’s crazy to see the growth. We shared some sights and tastes from Stone Brewing World Bistro & Gardens and Port Brewing / The Lost Abbey and we’ve got more to come including the Inaugural San Diego Winter Brew Fest, Green Flash, AleSmith and more. Stay tuned!
And hey, it’s lent.
Maybe give up something a little more reasonable like eating or shaving (which I happily haven’t done since November). Do what you gotta do, but don’t give up craft beer.
In other news, the CO brewers won their fight against grocery and convenience stores selling full-strength beer. Well done boys and girls. I sincerely hope this is the last time you all have to fight that fight. Unfortunately, it seems some overpaid assbanana brings it up again year after year. Until then, Congrats on winning this battle.
And lastly, before we start our weekend run down, Cheers to Swagger, the Old English Sheepdog and CO-native that made us all proud at the Westminster Kennel Club Dog Show. The big guy placed second overall out of 2,500+ pups. Nicely done! Now maybe your owner will finally get that furry mop out of your eyes.
And now, it’s time to get serious. Focus. It’s time for your Weekend Beer Buzz.
Thursday, February 14th, 2013
The Day of Love is very near and if you love beer, then have no fear, just plant your eyes on this page right here. Many of the beery events and Valentine’s beer dinners sold out long ago, but here are a few that don’t require tickets and should have plenty of beer flowing for you and your special someone on Thursday night.
Dry Dock has a delicious pair of tappings lined up for Thursday. Stop by and revisit Rudolph’s Revenge, which you might remember as Head Brewer Doug Hyndman’s Raspberry Pomegranate Porter from the 2012 Ho Ho Ho Slapdown. Dry Dock also plans to release a firkin of Strawberry Hefeweizen, which I think at one point used to be called Heidi Klum? Am I wrong here? Either way, firkin at noon, Rudolph at 4 PM. Don’t be surprised if a few more treats pop up as well.
Dry Dock Brewing is located at: 15120 E Hampden Ave, Aurora, CO 80014. 303-400-5606.
Black Shirt Brewing is hosting a beer and desert pairing on Thursday. End your special night with a Chai Red Porter and a specially prepared desert.
This will run from 5 – 9 PM and is rumored to be your only chance to try this great brew. The BSB tasting room will now be open on Wednesday’s, with expanded hours throughout the week. Black Shirt Brewing is located at: 3719 Walnut St, Denver, CO 80205. 303-993-2799.
Scott and the Wit’s End Gang will have their 2nd Annual Valentine’s Day Beer and Chocolate Pairing from 4 PM – ? (until the chocolate’s gone!).
Cruise over to the Wit’s End Website and see what they’ve got planned for this year’s event. The Kitchen Sink Porter is paired with a chocolate-bacon bar. Need I say more? Sappy, cheese-filled music provided free of charge. Wit’s End Brewing is located at: 2505 W 2nd Ave, Unit 13, Denver, CO 80223. 303-459-4379.
Up at Yak & Yeti in Arvada, Head Brewer Adam Draeger released (Yakety Yak) Don’t Talk Bock and Cherry Porter this week. For Valentine’s Day, he’s bringing back Red Hot Wheat, which is brewed with Red Hots Candies. Draeger describes the 4.9% ABV bright red brew as a “Dentyne gum flavored dessert wine to share with the sweetheart of your life”.
Yak & Yeti is located at: 7803 Ralston Rd, Arvada, CO 80002. 303-431-9000.
Speaking of Yeti’s, there’s been reports of a sighting over at Great Divide. They’ll be tapping a Jim Beam Barrel-Aged Version of Chocolate Oak Aged Yeti at 2 PM. Wow, that sounds amazing.
Great Divide Brewing is located at: 2201 Arapahoe St, Denver, CO 80205. 303-296-9460.
Up in Longmont at Oskar Blues Homemade Liquids & Solids, they’ll have hand carved prime rib and some special Ommegang goodies on draft.
Homemade Liquids and Solids is located at: 1555 S Hover Rd, Longmont, CO 80501. 303-485-9400.
Lone Tree Brewing will tap The Princess Vidrevitz Russian Imperial Stout and Chocolate Cherry Stout at noon today. Sounds delish.
Lone Tree Brewing is located at: 8222 Park Meadows Dr, Lone Tree, CO 80124. 303-792-5822.
Here’s the latest from Crooked Stave.
Crooked Stave Artisan Beer Project is located at: 1441 W 46th Ave, Unit 19, Denver, CO 80211. 720-508-3292.
Friday, February 15th, 2013
Just in case you don’t have enough spice in your life on Valentine’s Day, Dry Dock’s tapping a Green Chili Double IPA on Firkin Friday.
Tapping at 3 PM. I don’t typically reach for chili brews, but this one’s good. Damn good. Trust me. Dry Dock Brewing is located at: 15120 E Hampden Ave, Aurora, CO 80014. 303-400-5606.
Down at Rockyard Brewing, Jellyman’s busting out “The Preacher” for this week’s Deviation. The Preacher is a Simcoe and Vanguard Pale Ale.
Tapping at 4 PM. Rockyard Brewing is located at: 880 W Castleton Rd, Castle Rock, CO 80109. 303-814-9273.
Saturday, February 16th, 2013
Congrats to River North Brewery, who’ll be celebrating their 1-year Anniversary on Saturday. Stop by and share a beer from their great lineup of Belgian-influenced ales. You’ll also have the opportunity to try their newest and biggest beer yet, a 12.5% ABV Imperial Stout that was brewed to commemorate the special occasion. 120 cases produced, so perhaps this’ll see a bit of local distribution. Keep your eyes peeled fellow beer hunters and gatherers.
River North will also be offering tours of their barrel room. The party starts at 1 PM and you won’t want to miss out. River North Brewery is located at: 2401 Blake St, Denver, CO 80205. 303-296-2617,
The Tasty Weasel is also gearing up for an Anniversary Party. The Oskar Blues Tap Room in Longmont will be celebrating 4 years with a super secret beer release, food trucks and of course skee ball. They’ll be joined by the Colorado Craft Beer Show, who’ll be kicking it off at noon on AM 760. Better yet, stop by and watch the show live.
The Tasty Weasel is located at: 1800 Pike Rd, Unit B, Longmont, CO 80501. 303-776-1914.
The 3rd Annual Winter Beer Fest is right around the corner. On Saturday, the Woodland Park Cultural Center will be turned into a beer garden as Prost Brewing, Arvada Beer Company, Trinity Brewing and others set up shop for the afternoon.
Tickets are only $15, but hurry, as they’ll jump to $30 if you wait to buy them at the door. Ticket price includes taster glass and unlimited tastings. This event runs from 2 – 6 PM. More details and ticket info can be found HERE. The Woodland Park Cultural Center is located at: 210 E Midland Ave, Woodland Park, CO 80863.
Pliny the Younger Update
The Younger kegs are slowly invading Denver.
So far, we’ve got two tapping times confirmed.
Backcountry Pizza and Tap House will tap their keg on Sunday, February 24th at noon. Tickets are $9 / 11 oz. and will be sold at 11 AM. Backcountry Pizza and Tap House is located at: 2319 Arapahoe Ave, Boulder, CO 80302. 303-449-4285.
The Cheeky Monk Belgian Beer Cafe in Denver will have TWO tappings! The first will hit tap lines on Monday, February 25th, the second will get tapped on Thursday, February 28th. Both will start pouring at 6:30 PM. $10 / glass, first come, first serve. The Cheeky Monk is located at: 534 E Colfax Ave, Denver, CO 80203. 303-861-0347.
Until next time, here’s your German lesson for the week.
Pretty sure they didn’t teach you that in High School. Prost Brewing is located at: 2540 19th St, Denver, CO 80211. 303-729-1175.
It’s been fun. Let’s do it again next weekend.
Just a short drive from our first stop at Stone Brewing World Bistro & Gardens, is Port Brewing & The Lost Abbey in San Marcos, CA. Although only separated by a few miles, the two breweries feel like they’re worlds apart. Unlike Stone, you won’t find any zen gardens, koi ponds or fancy restaurant here. Instead, you’ll find a tasting room that’s situated right next to a buzzing brewery and a row of bubbling fermenters. Here you can choose from an assortment of beers that range from hop-forward American ales to Barrel-Aged wild ales and Belgian-style masterpieces.
Port Brewing & The Lost Abbey is situated at the original location where Stone was founded back in 1996. The Port / LA crew bought the building in 2005, when Stone moved to their current location down the road in Escondido. Stone’s original brewhouse (pictured below), is still being used today by Port / LA.
The Lost Abbey portfolio consists of more than a dozen Belgian-influenced masterpieces, ranging from Saisons to Quads to Wild Ales. Sour fans can’t seem to get enough of Tomme Arthur’s Barrel-Aged goodies like Red Poppy, Framboise de Amorosa and Cuvee de Tomme.
In 2007, the brewery founded a beer club that shipped beer directly to member’s homes. Popularity grew very quickly and it was later split into two clubs. The Patron Saints club offered the year-round LA lineup, while the Patron Sinners club offered a variety of seasonals, one-offs and rarities like Duck, Duck Gooze and Isabelle Proximus. Sadly, these clubs were shut down in 2011, in order for the brewery to better focus on expanding distribution and in order to ease the stress the club placed on the brewery staff.
The Port side of the operation leans toward bold, flavorful American-style beers. Port is no stranger to hoppy Red’s, big IPA’s, high ABV stouts and other tasty brews. The brewery is currently gearing up to release “Board Meeting” (pictured below), a brown ale brewed with generous amounts of Ryan Brothers coffee beans and TCHO cocoa nibs. The result is a delicious chocolate, coffee ale that you won’t want to pass up.
No matter what styles your palate prefers, Port / LA is there to fill your needs. Grab a spot at the bar and get a feel for the working life of a brewery. Stop by on a brew day and let the aromas flood your senses. If you’re lucky, maybe the resident brew cat will even grace you with his presence.
Big Thank You to Lead Brewer Matt Webster and the rest of the gang at Port / LA for their generous hospitality. You might know Matt from his starring role in the Angel’s Share video below. We truly appreciate his willingness to give us a glimpse into the operation and share the brewery with us.
What can I say about Stone Brewing that hasn’t already been said? While I won’t bore you with facts and figures or the latest production numbers, I would like to strongly encourage every craft beer drinker out there, to at some point, make the pilgrimage to Stone Brewing World Bistro & Gardens in Escondido, CA.
The 1-acre garden is full of streams, waterfalls, bridges, stone formations, canopies and pathways, and is easily the most picturesque beer garden I’ve ever laid eyes on. To step foot inside, is to be whisked away to beer nirvana. Combine the peacefulness of the gardens, with the deliciousness of the beer and one can easily lose a day just watching the world go by.
Greg Koch and his team at Stone have gone to great lengths to make Stone a “destination” and not just another place to stop for a brewery tour. And yet, just a short distance from the peace and quiet in the gardens, sits a modern brewhouse and bottling line that’s continually pumping out beer 24 hours / day.
The world-class bistro offers the best of both worlds, with tables overlooking the gardens, plus a panorama into the brewhouse. On warm days, guests can sit at one of the stone tables on the outside patio and order from the back bar.
A seat at either the indoor or outdoor bar, will reward you with a selection of more than 30 taps and an ever-changing selection of 100+ bottles from some of the best breweries in the world. The food menu is nothing short of fantastic and ranges from stinky cheese plates to pasta to sandwiches to bone-in steaks.
During our visit, it was the annual “Stone Winter Storm”, which features 100 unique Stone kegs and bottles. This year, Stone was pouring everything from 02.02.02 Vertical Epic Ale to Special Releases, Barrel-aged variants and more. I started my visit with a pour of 2004 Old Guardian Barleywine.
If you’re lucky enough to visit during one of the many events, you might even learn a thing or two. Stone offers classes through their “Beer U” tastings, “Master Pairings with Dr. Bill” and some of the best festivals on the West Coast, including the very popular Sour Fest and the upcoming Oakquinox (a celebration of Barrel-Aged beers).
Stone Brewing World Bistro & Gardens is one of those places that needs to be on the “Bucket List” of every craft beer enthusiast. Whether you’re a fan of their beers or not, it’s just something that needs to be experienced to truly be appreciated. This wasn’t our first visit and I can assure you, it won’t be our last.
Stone Brewing World Bistro & Gardens is located at: 1999 Citracado Parkway, Escondido, CA 92029. 760-294-7866.
Where will you find us next? Stay tuned. More to come!
As we head into the winter months, breweries from all over are busy releasing a ton of great beers to keep you warm through those colder months. Trying to keep up with all the new releases these days is no easy task. So, as winter begins to settle into Colorado, here’s a rundown of some of the new beers that I’m excited about.
The Bruery, Black Tuesday
Let me start by saying that this year’s Black Tuesday is on Tuesday, October 30th. As in TOMORROW! So if you’re not a member of The Bruery’s Reserve Society, tomorrow is your one and only chance to secure a bottle. The beer is a 19.2% ABV Bourbon Barrel-Aged Imperial Stout that has notes of vanilla, oak, sherry, dark fruits and chocolate. Black Tuesday is truly an amazing beer and definitely something everyone should try at least once. It’s currently listed in the Top 50 Beers on the Planet at beeradvocate.com Click HERE to get all the details on tomorrow’s release.
Boston Beer Company, Samuel Adams Utopias 10th Anniversary
To say this beer is big, is an understatement. Released every other year, this guy typically clocks in at 25%-30% ABV. This batch is a special release to commemorate the 10th Anniversary of the beer. It’s made with a blend of beers that were aged in Buffalo Trace Bourbon barrels, Port casks and Rum barrels. Sam Adams used a bit of their original Triple Bock in the blend, which is 19 years old!
This is a monster of a beer that drinks more like a Cognac or Sherry than a beer. Be prepared to shell out $160-$180 for a single bottle of this complex, cellarable brew. 15,000 bottles were produced and our share is hitting local store shelves right now.
Stone Brewing, 12.12.12 Vertical Epic
The very last release in the Vertical Epic (VE) series. In case you haven’t heard, Stone’s VE is a yearly release that began on 02.02.02, followed up a year, a month and a day later with 03.03.03, and so and so, all the way up to the final release on 12.12.12. The idea was for beer connoisseurs to purchase a bottle (or three) each year and save them for a monstrously big tasting and opening all of the beers to sample side-by-side on 12.12.12. Each beer has been a different recipe and brewed with cellaring in mind. While beer geeks have stashed away many, many bottles of VE releases over the years, the earlier bottles can be very tough to track down. The 02.02.02 has sold for hundreds of dollars per 220z. bottle on the secondary market.
This year’s 12.12.12 is described as a Belgian-style Abbey Ale, brewed with cinnamon, ginger, allspice, orange peel, clove and rose hips. I’ve managed to cellar away bottles going back to 03.03.03 and I’m really looking forward to opening them up for a special tasting in December. Whether or not you’ve been collecting the VE series, this sounds like a tasty brew that will hit our market just before Christmas.
Trinity Brewing / Black Fox Brewing Collaboration, Le Petite Morte Trajet aka Little Death Ride
The name of this collaboration brew is a reference to the upcoming end of the Mayan calendar in December of this year. Trinity owner Jason Yesterday and Black Fox owner John Schneider developed the recipe together using all Mayan cuisine. Corn, wild cinnamon, beans, squashes, peppers, cacao nibs and more come together in this unique, red Saison. The beer was brewed at Trinity on October 8th, bottled on October 24th and will be tapped at the brewery on December 21st, which is the last day of the Mayan calendar, also believed by some to be the end of the world. No matter what your beliefs, plan on this being a good beer. These guys without a doubt, know how to make a great Saison. Look for a few kegs to hit better beer bars and 750mL bottles to be released in December.
Upslope Brewing, Christmas Ale
This is a Belgian-style ale, that was brewed with a special mix of spices created by Upslope brewer Alex Violette. Look for coriander, brown sugar and juniper berries in this one. I was really impressed by their Pumpkin Ale and look forward to this new holiday seasonal. It was canned last week in 16oz. candy cane striped cans and will be released on November 1st.
Firestone Walker Brewing Co., XVI Anniversary
This barrel-aged blend is always a highlight of the winter months. For this year’s Anniversary Ale, Firestone Walker has blended 8 different barrel-aged brews to create the 13% ABV, XVI blend. 42% of the beer is Stout consisting of Bourbon Velvet Merkin (Oatmeal Stout), Bourbon Parabola (Russian Imperial Stout) and Tequila PNC (Buckwheat Stout). The remaining mixture comes from a variety of Barleywines, Strong Ales and IPA’s. I’ve been trading for these beers for a number of years and have always been impressed by these releases. Fortunately, Firestone Walker started distributing to Colorado last year and this should be hitting our shelves sometime in November.
New Belgium Brewing, Imperial Coffee Chocolate Stout
This upcoming addition to the Lips of Faith series is a bit of a deviation from their usual Belgian-style and Sour Ales. For winter, they’ll be releasing a 10% ABV Imperial Stout, brewed with locally roasted coffee beans and chocolate. This hit the Fort Collins market this past weekend, so keep your eyes open for it.
Odell Brewing Co., Lugene Chocolate Milk Stout
Similar to the New Belgium brew above, Odell has similar plans for the winter with their upcoming Chocolate Milk Stout. This one clocks in at 8.5% ABV and is brewed with lactose and milk chocolate. The label describes it as “rich and creamy” and is compared to “a cold glass of chocolate milk”. Sounds yummy. Odell’s planning to release it in 4-packs in early-January 2013.
Ska Brewing, Vinifera Stout
This is part of Ska’s new series of canned stouts, with a new beer getting released every quarter. The 2nd release, Vinifera Stout, is an Oak-aged, Foreign-Style Stout, brewed with Malbec grapes. These beers are released on the Solstice or Equinox, depending on the time of year. Look for Vinifera to get released on December 21st, which is the Southern Solstice, and also the last day of the Mayan calendar. Fingers crossed we’re still around to try this beer.
Keep your eyes out for some great beers hitting your local liquor store over the next few weeks. Winter is truly my favorite time of year for seasonal beers, with so many big, thick and flavorful beers to be on the lookout for. What are you excited for this winter? Good luck beer hunters!
Where to go? What to do? I find myself asking the same questions every year during GABF. You’ve basically got a year’s worth of great beer events crammed into one week. So I’m going to give you my picks for some of the best events around town this week. These are the ones that aren’t already sold out like the GABF and Rare Beer Tasting IV.
Pick a day, any day, and head over to Crooked Stave. Just look at this menu and list of special tappings for this week.
Deliciouness abounds over there. Stop by Crooked Stave: 1441 W 46th Ave, Unit 19, Denver, CO 80211.
Wednesday, October 10th, 2012.
Take a side trip from all the buzz downtown and hit up Parry’s Pizza for their Great Divide Tap Takeover.
Apparently there’s been a Yeti sighting on the south side of town. Be on the lookout for Espresso Oak Aged Yeti, Chocolate Oak Aged Yeti, the new Baby Yeti and more. In addition to the family of furry beasts, they’ll be bringing out other big guns like Hercules and Hibernation. The tapping starts at 11AM and runs all day. Parry’s Pizza is located at: 9567 S University Blvd, Highlands Ranch, CO 80126.
Firestone Walker has an amazing beer dinner lined up called The Lion, The Bear & The Brewmaster.
This will feature 4 of Firestone’s previous Anniversary beers and will also be the debut for this year’s Anniversary beer XVI. Each beer is paired with a different course prepared by Chef Hosea Rosenberg.
Firestone Walker owners Adam Firestone and David Walker, along with brewmaster Matt Brynildson will be in attendance to discuss the beers and pairings between each course. This is a rare chance for you to try all of these complex and impressive beers that will never be brewed again. Tickets are $75 / each and can be purchased HERE. This event runs from 6:30 to 9:30 PM at Denver’s Mile High Station: 2027 W Colfax Ave, Denver, CO 80204.
Thursday, October 11th, 2012.
Freshcraft’s tapping some beers from the very popular Cigar City Brewery out of Tampa, FL on Thursday at 3 PM.
Get your GABF warmed up with Cinnamon Apple IPA, Guava Grove Saison, Ligero Black Lager, Hotter Than Helles and the delicious Marshal Zhukov’s Russian Imperial Stout. Freshcraft is located at: 1530 Blake St, Denver, CO 80202.
The first night of GABF wraps up with some great after parties. The World Brewers Forum, sponsored by The Keg Ran Out Club (KROC), a local homebrew club, is entering its’ 18th year.
This year, they’ll have 3 guest speakers. Mitch Steele, the brewmaster for Stone Brewing, along with Mark Irvin and John Bryant from the No-Li Brewhouse. There will be more than 20 homebrews to sample, plus a carving station with roast beef and ham. This is really a great chance to sit back, relax and catch your great after a busy opening night at GABF. There will also be drawings for prizes and a silent auction featuring glassware, t-shirts, beer, gift cards and more. I’ve never left empty-handed.
The event starts at 8PM and runs until Midnight. Best of all, it’s FREE!, but please RSVP to: WBF@kroc.org The WBF is being held at: Marriott City Center Hotel, 1701 California St, Denver, CO.
Oskar Blues is gearing up for a big party at the Blake Street Tavern called “It’s All About The Package”.
They’ve been pretty tight-lipped about this so far, but it sounds like this will commemorate the release of a new canned beer. There will be music, giveaways and even transportation from the Convention Center between 9 – 11PM. Be sure to print off a ticket HERE or have it ready to show on your phone at the door. The Blake Street Tavern is located at: 2301 Blake St, Denver, CO 80205.
Thursday is barrel day over at Star Bar.
They’ll have New Belgium’s La Folie, Tart Lychee, Clutch and Kick. Odell’s is bringing Shenanigans, Saboteur, The Meddler and Deconstruction. Other breweries and beers will be announced as the event gets closer. This fires up at noon.
Stop by later that night for some special one-offs from New Belgium’s Wood Cellar. Look for Dunkel Apple, Funky Friends and more. Live music starts at 9:30 PM. Star Bar is located at: 2137 Larimer St, Denver, CO 80205.
Just a few blocks down on Blake Street, the Falling Rock Tap House is sure to be rockin’ all week-long. On Thursday, stop by for the tapping of several beers from Sun King Brewery out of Indianapolis, IN.
Look for Osiris (Pale Ale), Cream Dream V (American IPA), Velvet Fog (Belgian Quad) and more to get tapped at 11PM. Falling Rock Tap House is located at: 1919 Blake St, Denver, CO.
Friday, October 12th, 2012.
Friday afternoon means the Annual Kill-A-Keg contest at Falling Rock at noon. Sierra Nevada’s Harvest Ale will be racing through the tap lines as owner Chris Black tries to beat last year’s record of draining a keg in just over 9 minutes. Stop by and help make this happen!
Hang out for lunch and wait for the Cigar City release at 3PM. They were able to obtain Oatmeal Raisin Cookie Brown, Humidor IPA, Apple Brandy Barrel Aged Hunahpu’s Imperial Stout and more. These are some really nice beers that won’t last long, so get over and get yours. Falling Rock Tap House is located at: 1919 Blake St, Denver, CO.
Got hops? Then get over to Rock Bottom for this year’s Alpha King Challenge!
This is an annual search for the best hop bomb out there. Beers under 60 IBU’s need not apply. Stop by and check out the competition which runs from 1 to 4PM. Rock Bottom Denver is located at: 1001 16th St #100, Denver, CO 80265.
The Rackhouse Pub is running a series of classes this year of Liquid Education that’s all about Beer.
One of the sessions that I’m pretty excited about features Andy Parker from Avery, Chad Yakobson from Crooked Stave and Troy Casey of AC Golden leading a class called Sours 101. These 3 bad asses of funky brews will be discussing all that is barrel-aging, souring, blending and more. They will also guide you through a tasting of sour beers from their breweries. Any one of these brewers would be worth the price alone, but the Rackhouse has put all three together for what is sure to be a fun, informative and tasty event. Tickets are available HERE. The Rackhouse is located at: 208 S Kalamath St, Denver, CO 80223.
Our Mutual Friend Malt & Brew is opening their doors for a soft opening this Friday and Saturday from 1-10PM.
They’ll be pouring their 5 beers for $5 / pint and $1 / taster. We met with owner Brandon Proff earlier this summer to get the low down on his new brewery and beers. Check out the post HERE. If you’re planning to attend the soft opening this weekend, and you should be, they ask that you please RSVP at this link: http://www.gabfweekend.omfmb.com/ Our Mutual Friend is located at: 2810 Larimer St, Denver, CO 80205.
For some late night, post-GABF action, head over to Freshcraft for their Oak Aged Extravaganza at 10PM.
They’ll be pouring Firestone Walker ’12 Parabola and Anniversary XIV, Odell ’11 Bourbon Barrel Stout, The Meddler and more! Freshcraft is located at: 1530 Blake St, Denver, CO 80202.
Saturday, October 13th, 2012.
You’ve got a long day ahead of you on Saturday, so make sure you start out with a good breakfast. Head to The Cheeky Monk for Breakfast With The Bruery.
The popular Belgian Beer Bar has teamed up with Bruery owner Patrick Rue to bring you a variety of special beers paired with a delicious breakfast menu. No advanced tickets required. Breakfast starts at 8AM. The Cheeky Monk is located at: 534 E Colfax Ave, Denver, CO 80203.
There’s not one, but TWO new breweries opening this weekend. Black Shirt Brewing is gearing up for their Grand Opening on Saturday.
The new Denver brewery, which will focus on a variety of Red Ales will open their doors on Saturday from 3 – 10PM. We’ve been waiting a loooooooong time for this, so get over there and show them your support.
Black Shirt Brewing is located at: 3719 Walnut St, Denver, CO 80205.
Saturday night, once the afternoon GABF session wraps up, I usually grab dinner, catch my breath, regroup and get ready for Dr. Bill’s Annual GABF Beer Tasting at Falling Rock. Dr. Bill is the Beverage Coordinator for Stone Brewing and has one of the largest and most extensive beer cellars in the world. He knows his stuff and can put on one hell of a party.
He takes over the Falling Rock basement each year after GABF to share some amazing beers with all the beer nerds in town. Last year he brought some great stuff including Cantillon’s Lou Pepe Gueuze, The Bruery’s Black Tuesday, Three Floyd’s Dark Lord and so much more! He’s back again this year and armed with 100 beers! Come at 8PM when the corks start getting popped and the caps start flying. Bring $40, a full stomach and a DD. RSVP to: email@example.com Falling Rock Tap House is located at: 1919 Blake St, Denver, CO.
So there’s my picks for a good weekend of wholesome beer fun. I hope to see you all around town over the next few days. This is my favorite weekend of the year and personally, I can’t wait to get out there and enjoy all that is GABF. Have fun, be safe, try something new and please don’t drive.
I like Growlers. Here in Colorado, nearly every brewery offers them. Anything from big ol’ gallon sized, to the standard 64 oz. growler and many breweries have even started offering little 32 oz. growlers. These days, you can track down a huge variety of styles and material. Glass, canteen, genie bottle, metal, medicine bottle, plastic, swing-top and on and on and on…
But, the beauty of the growler isn’t what it looks like or what it’s made from, but rather what’s inside. Growlers make it possible to bring fresh beer home with you that might not normally make it to a bottle or can in your local liquor stores.
Laws vary from state-to-state. Here in Colorado, only breweries with a proper license can fill growlers. In other states, bars and restaurants are allowed to sell growlers. This is a great concept and one that I’d like to see adopted in Colorado. Imagine, being able to walk into The Falling Rock Tap House and leaving with a growler full of your favorite beer.
New York is a state that allows a business other than a brewery, to get a license, that will allow them to sell and fill growlers for off-site consumption. Some of these businesses include grocery stores, gas stations, bars and restaurants. It’s brilliant. On our recent trip, we came across a chain of stores across New York State called the Craft Beer Exchange (CBX).
The CBX has teamed up with Sunoco gas stations, to offer a solid selection of craft beer and a rotating selection of taps available for growler fills. I had the opportunity to visit several of these locations and every one of them offered 6-packs, 12-packs, mix-packs, singles, bombers and 750’s of craft brews. Everything from Pale Ales, Ambers and Browns, to Double IPA’s, Russian Imperial Stouts and Barrel-Aged Sours. It was pretty impressive to see hundreds of different beers on the shelves at a gas station.
As for the growler fills, each location has anywhere from 6 to 14 different beers available to choose from. There are plenty of local breweries available, including Saranac, Ithaca Brewing and Lake Placid Brewing, but they also offer options from out-of-state breweries, such as Stone, Founders and Dogfish Head.
The CBX is also attempting to educate consumers by offering information on each beer that’s available for purchase. The ABV, a description of the beer and other details are listed on cards, which are on display near the tap lines. Customers are free to take one after their purchase, in order to gain a greater appreciation of the beer.
In addition to the information cards, I noticed some locations offering free pint glasses and discounted fills during their “Growler Hour” specials throughout the week.
This is a great idea and cheers to New York for making this possible. How great would it be to fill your car and your growler in one-stop? The Craft Beer Exchange has more than 40 locations across New York state and more than a dozen in South Carolina. They run a website that lists all of their locations, plus up-to-date tap lists. The website also keeps readers in tune with local beer fests and happenings in the area.
I can’t say whether or not Colorado will ever adopt a law that would allow for growler fills in locations other than a brewery, but it’s an interesting concept. While there are certainly arguments for both sides, I think it makes for a great opportunity to promote craft beer, convert macro drinkers to craft beer and help spread the word about local micro breweries. What are your thoughts?
Man, there’s another ton of great beers headed to our shelves. Check these out!
Dry Dock is gearing up for the opening of their 2nd location and adding a canning line. Here’s a sneak peek at their Amber and Hefeweizen cans. I’m hoping for an early winter release on these.
Twisted Pine released another addition to their Artisan Ale series over the weekend. On Saturday, they debuted their Wagon Wheel Stout. This big and rich stout was aged for 12 months in Buffalo Trace barrels with fresh, organic cherries.
Remaining bottles will be hitting local shelves shortly.
Trinity Brewing has another yummy Saison headed to bottles.
Le Capataine Petite Bouddha Saison Regal is aged in Chardonnay barrels with cacao and fermented with Brett and Lactobacillus. A 10.4% ABV Saison? Sounds like funky goodness to me.
Elevation Brewing is also getting ready to release a Chardonnay barrel-aged beer this Summer. Look for Signal de Botrange, which is a 7.5% ABV, Barrel-Aged Farmhouse Ale.
This will be Elevation’s first barrel aged release in bottles and is part of their Double Black Diamond, upper-end series of beers. They just signed a deal with Elite Distribution to bring 8 different beers to the Front Range throughout the year. Keep an eye out for these beginning August 10th.
The Beast is back!
This year’s batch of Beast Grand Cru was recent released at Avery Brewing on August 1st. This was the 10th release of this monstrous brew and it ages extremely well. Grab one fresh, but grab a few to stash away for the next decade or for the upcoming zombie apocalypse. Look for a 14%-18% ABV on this bad boy, so be nice or it’ll bite!
Dad & Dude’s Breweria has teamed up with Prost Brewing to bring you their Dank IPA in cans.
There was a huge release party at Dad & Dude’s Breweria on August 4th. This 6.5% ABV IPA should be on any hop heads radar. Look for 16oz. cans hitting the CO market shortly.
From our out-of-state friends, look for Stone Brewing to release their 16th Anniversary beer in the next few weeks. This year is a 9.4% ABV, lemon-tinged Double IPA.
They’re also gearing up to release “Enjoy By 09.21.12 IPA”. This is an 8.5% ABV IPA that is a hoppy, citrusy, bitter brew. Just like the label says, drink it fresh and live for the now!
I always enjoy Stone and these look to be a pair of great summer releases. Both will be making their debut at the Stone Anniversary Party in Escondido, CA on August 18th, 2012. Plan on bombers hitting local shelves soon after.
Over in Deschutes country, keep an eye out for The Dissident sour brown ale.
This 11.4% ABV brown ale is brewed with cherries and aged in French oak wine barrels. Don’t let the “brown ale” trick you… This is Flanders Oud Bruin. It’s sour, fruity and complex. Grab one if you see it as they won’t last long!
A little further down the road is The Abyss.
This is typically a November / December release, so I might be getting a bit ahead of myself, but I can’t help it. This is an absolute favorite of mine! The Abyss is a blend of beers aged in Bourbon barrels, Oak barrels and Wine barrels. This 11.0% ABV Imperial Stout has notes of licorice, chocolate, molasses, caramel, coffee and more. So complex and yummy, this also ages exceptionally well. My earliest bottles will be turning 5 this year. Might be about time for a nice, big vertical tasting. An amazing beer, but save me some will ya?
In my last bit of news, I’m a little sad to announce that Head Brewer Tod Mott has left The Portsmouth Brewery in Portsmouth, NH. Tod has been leading New Hampshire’s amazing brewpub for more than 8 years and has really helped to put them on the map, particularly with Kate the Great, his decadent Russian Imperial Stout. There’s an entire day devoted to the release of this beer. At one point, Kate the Great was considered to be the best beer on the planet!
Patti and I have visited The Portsmouth Brewery several times over the years and they never disappoint. Tod will be replaced by Tyler Jones, who has served as Tod’s assistant for the past four years.
As for Tod, last week he announced that he will be opening a new brewery somewhere in Southern Maine. While no further details have been released, he plans to brew about 500 barrels a year and will be releasing Kate the Great at his new brewery. He mentioned that the name will be change, since it’s owned by Portsmouth Brewery, but he owns the recipe and plans to release it under a new name in the future. I wish him the best of luck.
It seems like every weekend, there are more and more events going on around town. There’s a TON of events happening this weekend. I’m not complaining, I just hope I can fit it all into one post. It’s worth a shot.
Start your weekend by hitting up Dry Dock’s Firkin Friday release on July 20th. Mix Master Walt has come up with Apple Pie Rye in July for this week’s release. 3 PM sucka!
Dry Dock Brewing is located at: 15120 E Hampden Ave, Aurora, CO 80014. 303-400-5606.
Speaking of Dry Dock, Patti and I will be pouring beers for them over at the Hops for Habitat Beer Festival on Friday, July 20th at the Plains Conservation Center in Aurora, CO. Come out and drink some beer while raising money for the environment! This charity brewfest runs from 5 PM – 9 PM and will feature more than 15 Colorado breweries, food trucks, wagon rides, live music and more.
Some of the breweries pouring include Dry Dock, Copper Kettle, Odell, New Belgium and Ska. Stop by the Dry Dock booth and say Hi! Tickets for the event are $30 ($15 for DD’s) and can be purchased in advance HERE. The Plains Conservation Center is located at: 21901 E Hampden Ave, Aurora, CO 80013. 303-693-3379.
Celebrate Belgian Independence Day on Saturday, July 21st, over at the Wynkoop Brewing in Denver, CO. They’ll be hosting the 2nd Annual United Tastes of Belgium with more than 50 breweries on-hand, pouring authentic Belgian and Belgian-style beers.
Some amazing breweries will be in attendance including Stone, Great Divide, Crooked Stave, Duvel and of course Wynkoop. Check out the complete list of beers HERE. Advance tickets are $30, which covers your glass, beer, cheese and chocolate samples. Tickets can be purchased HERE. Any remaining tickets will be sold at the door for $37.50. Wynkoop Brewing is located at: 1634 18th St, Denver, CO 80202. 303-297-2700.
The radio waves will be blowin’ up again with Turk and The Gubna from the Colorado Craft Beer Show on AM 760 at noon.
This week, they’ll be sitting down with the guys from TwinHops Brewing to talk about their campaign on Kickstarter and hear about their plans to open a brewery in Aurora next year. (More on TwinHops further down in this post). Also in the studio will be Whitney and John from City Star Brewing out of Berthoud, CO. The Colorado Craft Beer Show will also be giving away tickets to Kyle’s Brew Fest and the Denver Summer Brewfest, so keep your phones handy.
Over on American Craft Beer Radio, Gary V will be sitting down with a panel of beer judges. They’ll be breaking down the Beer Judge Certification Program (BJCP) style guidelines, explaining how a beer is judged and doing some on-air tastings of commercial beers.
Tune in to the show on 102.3 FM on Saturday, July 21st at noon.
Where my freaks at? Sour Freaks that’s you! (Don’t get offended, I include myself in that category). The 2nd meeting of the Funk ‘n Wild Club is scheduled for Saturday, July 21st at Oskar Blues Homemade Liquids and Solids in Longmont, CO.
This unofficial club of local sour freaks doesn’t require a golden ticket or secret password to get inside. Just show up and be ready to get your mouth-puckering, funky, freak on. Breweries on-hand include Crooked Stave, Jolly Pumpkin, New Belgium, Russian River and more. Beers can be purchased in full pours, half pours or tasting flights. Special guest Chad Yakobson, the mastermind behind Crooked Stave Brewing is scheduled to be the guest speaker.
Dude, I’m pumped for this! More info on Funk’n Wild can be found HERE. The event runs from 3 PM – 6 PM at Oskar Blues Liquids and Solids: 1555 S Hover Rd, Longmont, CO 80503. 303-485-9400.
Speaking of sours, The Rackhouse Pub keeps their Sour Month rolling with new sours getting tapped daily throughout the month of July. This week, look for Great Divide Bretty Yeti, Crooked Stave Surette, Odell Shenanigans and AC Golden Apricot Sour hitting the tap lines.
The Rackhouse Pub is located at: 208 S Kalamath St, Denver, CO 80223. 720-507-7824.
Looking for something not sour, but still packed with complexity and flavor? Copper Kettle Brewing’s got ya covered. They’re releasing an Imperial Oak Aged Stout on Saturday, July 21st. This is one of those rare chances to try a nice, big, flavorful stout, right, smack in the middle of summer. Skip the wheat and pils, grab your big boy drinking pants and hit up Copper Kettle for this one.
Stop by at noon for the tapping, stick around for the Harvest Food Truck at 5 PM and music from Pete Stein at 6 PM. Copper Kettle Brewing is located at: 1338 S Valentia St, Denver, CO 80247. 720-443-CKBC.
River North Brewery is getting ready to begin accepting sign-ups for their Locals’ Club. Sign-ups for the club begins on Sunday, July 22nd at 1 PM. The $30 membership includes an exclusive, 16 oz. glass (pictured below), $4 pints all day, every day and a membership card.
Memberships will be sold to the first 50 people on a first come, first served basis. River North Brewery is located at: 2401 Blake St, Denver, CO 80205. 303-296-2617.
Hops & Pie is back with the next round of their Littlest Big Beer Fest on Sunday, July 22nd. There’s a killer lineup of Firestone Walker beers hitting the tap lines at 2 PM. Look for Double Jack (Double IPA), Double DBA (Barrel-Aged Barleywine), Parabola (Barrel-Aged Russian Imperial Stout / my FAV of the bunch!) and more.
This special collection of Firestone Walker beers should not be missed. Hops & Pie is located at: 3920 Tennyson St, Denver, CO 80212. 303-477-7000.
Lastly, the guys behind TwinHops Brewing want to invite you over to help them brew a batch of beer on Sunday, July 21st. Brad, Scott, Rick and Colin will be firing up the burners to educate, answer questions and share with fans all the details about their upcoming brewery. More info on TwinHops Brewing can be found on yesterday’s blog.
Starting at noon and rolling throughout the day, stop by and taste their beer. Bring your homebrew rig over and brew with them if you’d like! This is being held at: 23891 E Alabama Dr, Aurora, CO 80018.
7/20 Update: The TwinHops brew day has been postponed. Just got word that it won’t be happening on Sunday, July 21st, but will be rescheduled for a later date. I’ll update you when they get a new date scheduled.
That’s it kids! Hope to see you around town this weekend. Have fun, stay cool and follow us on Facebook for more updates throughout the weekend.