Wow, what a weekend of beer. Even if you only had half as much fun as I did, you’re still in great shape. My only complaint is that the weekend still isn’t long enough for my liking. I’m still campaigning to cut the work week down and get a 3-day weekend every week, but that hasn’t happened yet…
On Saturday, we were lucky enough to attend Zwanze Day over at Crooked Stave. After a weekend of good beer, I typically like to let the pictures do the talking, but I have some thank you notes and quick observations to share with you.
First of all, a HUGE Thank You to Chad Yakobson and his team over at Crooked Stave. They had their hands full with the hundreds of sour beer freaks that started showing up on their doorstep as early as 3 AM on Saturday morning. The Crooked Stave gang did an outstanding job of handling the large turnout and keeping everyone happy on a very busy day. Thank you guys! You rock!
Second, big shout out to the Colorado Craft Beer Community. The pre-Zwanze bottle share was nothing short of awesome and the generosity was unreal. Huge thanks to everyone that brought beer and food to share. I was camped out next to the table that was full of beer bottles, hoplava (hoppy baklava), doughnuts and 5 pounds of freshly grilled bacon. If that’s not reason enough to get up at 4 AM, I don’t know what is. You guys rock and I’m proud to be part of this enthusiastic, friendly and generous group of beer lovers.
Finally, Thank You to Jean Van Roy and Brasserie Cantillon for sending some of your amazing beer to Colorado and sharing it with us. As if the highly anticipated Zwanze wasn’t enough, you spoiled us with Fou’ Foune on draft and bottles of Lou Pepe Framboise, St. Lamvinus, Classic Gueuze and Iris. Not to mention, my wife finally got that Cantillon shirt she’s been trying to track down for too many years to count. Thank You Cantillon, I hope Colorado made you proud. Cheers!
Hope you enjoyed this round of pictures. If you have comments, pictures or anything you’d like to share from your Zwanze Day experience, please send me an e-mail or leave a comment on our Facebook Page. I’m sorry we missed Parade of Darks at Wynkoop and the Grand Opening of Black Bottle Brewery up in Fort Collins, but I’ll never forget Zwanze Day.
We’ve got a big weekend folks and I’m dropping bombs! Say what? Hey, there’s not one, but two new breweries opening in Colorado this week! This looks like it’ll be the biggest weekend we’ve had since the GABF circus rolled through town almost two months ago. Strap on your beer goggles and get ready to go. Oh and if you really want to enjoy this week’s post, grab your favorite beer and take a swig every time you see the word “BOOM!”. Hurry up, you just missed one.
Ready? Alright, let’s do this.
Earlier This Week
Firestone Walker XVI dropped not once, but twice. BOOM!
The Bad News: It disappeared from store shelves almost as soon as it landed. The Good News: It’s on tap at Parry’s Pizza right now (11/29/2012 11AM). Head over and try this unique anniversary blend of 8 different barrel-aged beers! BOOM!
Deschutes The Abyss hit Colorado. BOOM!
This inky impy stout is proving to be a challenge to track down as well. There’s not as much to go around as originally anticipated. I’m not sure if we’ll be getting a second shipment or if the beer geek boom is stretching the supply thinner than previous years. Whatever the case may be, if you want some, don’t wait around. It’s hitting shelves this week and a few stores have already sold out.
Dry Dock bottled their 2012 batch of Bligh’s Barleywine on Tuesday. BOOM! This luscious Barleywine has spent the better part of 2012 aging in Stranahan Whiskey Barrels.
I had the opportunity to try a sample a few weeks ago during our interview with Dry Dock Co-Owner & Founder Kevin DeLange and it’s shaped up very nicely. You’re going to love it. And if you don’t, you’ll sell your bottles to me and like it. Dry Dock’s releasing 10 cases at the brewery on Sunday, 12/9 ($20 each / 1-bottle limit), with more cases going to local liquor stores on 12/11.
Brewery Rickoli Ltd. opened in Wheat Ridge on Wednesday. BOOM!
Brewmaster Rick Abitbol has been brewing along the Front Range for more than a decade. Rickoli opened with Black Pliny Double IPA, Social Lubricant Scotch Ale, Aldo’s Red, Totally IPA and a Rye Stout. Stay tuned for a single-hopped Pale Ale series exploring one hop variety at a time, plus a Hoppy Barleywine, a Bourbon Peach Strong Ale, a Dark Chocolate Milk Stout and more! Brewery Rickoli Ltd is located at: 4335 Wadsworth Blvd, Wheat Ridge, CO 80033. Mon – Thu: 3 PM – 11 PM & Fri – Sun: 2 PM – 12 AM. 303-344-8988.
Cantillon bottles have been dropping on local retailers too (thankfully no one was injured)! BOOM!
My most favoritest of the Belgians. I heart you Cantillon. Sadly, I’m not too hopeful that I’ll find any. With everyone on the hunt, I figure winning this week’s $400+ Million Powerball jackpot might be easier than finding a little Cantillon on a store shelf around town. But, hey, at least it’s returned to CO. More Cantillon news below…
Friday, November 30, 2012
For this week’s Deviation down at Rockyard Brewing, the Jellyman will be pouring JPA – Jelly Pale Ale.
According to Jellyman, this is a 7% ABV that pours a “dark straw with lacy white head”, has aromas of “fruit berry jelly with hints of toffee” and has “a balanced maltiness and citrus hops, punctuated by jam”. Get your Jelly On at 4 PM! BOOM! Rockyard Brewing is located at: 880 W Castleton Rd, Castle Rock, CO 80109. 303-814-9273.
Dry Dock Brewing is following up last week’s Ho Ho Ho Slapdown with a very festivus Firkin Friday. Here’s Firkin Friday Surgeon General Walt Chleva modeling an amazing beer and pairing it with this Christmas sweater that’s… Well it’s… hmm, oh yeah nothing nice to say, don’t say anything at all. Thanks Mom.
This week’s firkin will feature a Roasted Marshmallow version of Bethla-Yam. Bethla-Yam is a Sweet Potato Stout, winner of the 2012 Ho Ho Ho Slapdown and creation from Dry Dock Brewer Brett Williams. The win has secured Brett bragging rights around the brewery for the next 12 months as he beat out fellow brewers Doug Hyndman and John Schneider for the title.
As for Bethla-Yam, it’s a sweet, moderately spiced stout. BTW – Dry Dock is still pouring all of the Ho Ho Ho Slapdown entries, so if you’re interested in trying them or grabbing a growler to-go, head over now and get your fix. As for Firkin Friday, tappings will be at 3 PM & 7 PM. Dry Dock Brewing is located at: 15120 E Hampden Ave, Aurora, CO 80014. 303-400-5606.
Saturday, December 1, 2012
Wynkoop’s Annual Parade of Darks is lined up for Saturday.
34 breweries bringing 82 brews, all leaning towards the darker side of the force. BOOM! Here’s the complete list from Wynkoop’s very own Beer Evangelist, Mr. Marty Jones:
Arvada Beer Co – Jolly Holiday Ale, Foreign to Me Stout
Avery Brewing – The Czar, Old Jubilation, Out of Bounds Stout
AC Golden – Blueberry Sour, Plum Sour,
Bootstrap Brewing– Worthog Stout, Boomer Brown
Boulevard Brewing – Bully! Porter, Dark Truth Stout
Breckenridge Brewery – Oatmeal Stout, Vanilla Porter, Extra ESB, Christmas Ale
Bull & Bush – Big Ben Brown Ale, Stonehenge Stout, Punk Up The Yams, The Legend Of The Liquid Brain, Captain Funk, Captain Midnight
Caution Brewing – Toaster Bat Black Smoked Porter, Dunkel(er)weiss.
Copper Kettle – Mexican Chocolate Stout, Pumpkin Porter
Denver Beer Co– Graham Cracker Porter, Chill Out Chocolate Chili Stout
Elevation Brewing – Apis, Lil Mo Porter
Drydock Brewing – Wee Heavy Strong Scotch Ale, Raspberry Porter
Firestone Walker – Velvet Merlin Oatmeal Stout, Walker’s Reserve Porter, DBA
Fort Collins Brewery – Double Chocolate Stout
Great Divide – Yeti Imperial Stout, Espresso Oak Aged Yeti, Claymore Scotch Ale, Hibernation
Green Flash – Double Stout
Grimm Brothers Brewhouse – Master Thief German Porter, Fearless Youth Dunkel Lager, Wee Heavy Barrel-Aged Scottish Strong Ale
Jolly Pumpkin – Bam Noir
Left Hand – Fade to Black, Milk Stout Nitro
Lone Tree Brewing – Acres O Green Irish Red, Toots’s Full-Bodied Oatmeal Stout, Chili Beer Collaboration #2, Old # 99 Rauchbier
Lost Abbey – Lost & Found
Maui Brewing – Coconut Porter
Mountain Sun Brewery & Pub — Megatron Imperial Stout, Oatimus Prime Imperial Stout
Odell Brewing – Mountain Standard, Isolation Ale
Ommegang – Three Philosophers
Port Brewing – Old Viscosity
Prost Brewing – Doppelbock, Dunkel
Pug Ryan’s– Brain-teaser Barlywine, Barell-Aged Leap Year Trifecta
Sierra Nevada –Narwhal Imperial Stout,Wine Barrel Aged Dubbel
Ska – Steel Toe Stout, Nefarious, On The Sly Again
Strange Brewing – Pumpkin Porter, Cherry Bomb Stout, Gingerbread Man, Vanilla Rum Porter
Twisted Pine – Espresso Stout, Honey Brown
Upslope Brewing– Christmas Ale, Brown Ale
Wynkoop Brewing – Gingerbread Stout, 2012 Barleywine, Cowtown Milk Stout, B3K Black Lager, Rocky Mountain Oyster Stout, Colorojo
As you can tell, this is going to be full of awesome beers for your tasting pleasure. Tickets are $35 in advance and available HERE or $42 at the door (if they’re not already sold out come Saturday). The Wynkoop is located at: 1634 18th St, Denver, CO 80202. 303-297-2700.
Just up the road from the Wynkoop, Crooked Stave will be hosting Cantillon’s Zwanze Day on Saturday. BOOM!
This is a world-wide event with a coordinated toast at 1 PM MST. This is the first time a Colorado location has been picked to participate so don’t miss out. To quote some snotty teenager somewhere in America, “it’s kind of a big deal”. BOOM! For more specifics, check out our article about Zwanze Day from earlier in the week by clicking HERE. Crooked Stave Artisan Beer Project is located at: 1441 W 46th Ave, Unit 19, Denver, CO 80211. 720-508-3292.
Black Bottle Brewing up in Fort Collins, CO will open their doors to beer freaks for the first time this Saturday. BOOM!
This new brewery, run by Sean Nook, will be pouring their own beers, along with some great craft beer on their 40 guest taps. They’ll also have a full bar and fermented grape juice for those non-beer drinking types you so unwisely choose to associate yourself with… I’m freakin’ psyched about these guys. They’ve gotten great reviews and took second place in the People’s Choice Awards at the 2012 Gnarly Barley Brew Festival. In the near future, they’ll be working out a barrel-aging program, souring beers and brewin’ up some nice styles of craft beer that they’ll want to drink. And by the looks of things, I’m pretty sure you’ll want to drink them too.
Their videos are tough to beat. I mean, have you seen this yet?
Because Craft Beer Rocks! BOOM! I can’t wait to visit Black Bottle Brewing and give them a try. Black Bottle Brewing will be open 7 days a week from 11 AM – 2 AM and is located at: 1605 S College Ave, Fort Collins, CO 80525. 970-493-2337.
Over in Boulder, Asher Brewing turns 3 this weekend.
They’ve got a little shindig planned complete with beer, food, beer, music, beer, dogs, games, beer and beer. Beer, it’s what’s for dinner. Bet you thought I was going to say “BOOM!”. I did clown. Now drink! Two for flinching. The party runs from noon – midnight. Asher Brewing is located at: 4699 Nautilus Ct, Suite 104, Boulder CO, 80301. 303-530-1381.
But wait, there’s more. While you’re up in the People’s Republic of Boulder, swing over to Twisted Pine and grab a bottle or 3 of the last installment in their Artisan Ale Series. For December, they’re releasing Noel Tripel.
This beer is a 9% ABV Belgian-style Tripel. 750mL bottles will be sold in the tap room beginning at noon. Twisted Pine Brewing is located at: 3201 Walnut St, Suite A, Boulder, CO 80301. 303-786-9270.
Monday, December 3, 2012
Into next week, New Belgium has planned “The Creator’s Dinner”, where all the beers being poured will be introduced by their creator / brewer. This is happening over at The Kitchen in Denver on Monday at 6:30. Check out this lineup:
- Kick- Presented by Kim Jordan (NBB Co-founder and CEO) and Dick Cantwell (head brewer and owner of Elysian Brewing Co)
- La Folie- Presented by Peter Bouckaert (Brew Master at New Belgium)
- Le Terroir- Presented by Lauren Salazar (Wood Beer Blender and Sensory Specialist at New Belgium)
- Eric’s Ale- Presented by Eric Salazar (Wood Beer Brewer and Blender at New Belgium)
- Chocolate Coffee Stout- Presented by Grady Hull (Assistant Brew Master at New Belgium)
- Transatlantique Kriek- Presented by Peter Bouckaert (Brew Master at New Belgium)
BOOM! There will be incredible food paired with each beer. This is a really great opportunity to meet and talk with some of the creative minds behind New Belgium’s fantastic beers. Reservations are $85 and can be made by calling 303-623-3127. The Kitchen Denver is located at: 1530 16th St, Denver, CO 80202.
That’s it. Did you make it all the way to the end? I hope so. I’m all BOOM’d! out. Yes, that one counts too, so take your final sip and go grab a nap. You’re going to need it before the weekend gets here.
Have fun out there.
Zwanze Day is coming to Colorado. Shhh!!! There’s not much to go around, so don’t tell anyone, OK? Don’t even read this post. You already know too much!
Just relax and take a deep breath will ya? Zwanze Day is almost here, but there’s no reason to freak out. Read on to get the latest on this Saturday’s world-wide toast with Cantillon.
Cantillon, the legendary Lambic brewery in Brussels, Belgium, began making Zwanze in 2008 and decide to bottle it for an annual release at the brewery. Zwanze is a spontaneously fermented Lambic and the bottles that were released at the brewery from 2008-2010 were highly sought after by craft beer lovers around the World. All was well until 2010, when several bottles appeared on eBay for more than ten times the original price.
So in 2011, the brewery decided to keg the entire batch and send it to some of the finest breweries and beer bars around the world for everyone to enjoy. This year marks the first time a Colorado location has been chosen to receive Zwanze. Cantillon’s fourth generation brewer and blender, Jean Van Roy, chose the Crooked Stave Barrel Cellar in Denver to participate in this years’ Zwanze Day, which has turned into a world-wide tapping and toasting party.
On Saturday, December 1st at 1 PM MST, wild beer fans from all over the Rocky Mountain area will descend upon Chad Yakobson’s Crooked Stave Barrel Cellar for a chance to try this unique beer and raise a glass with beer lovers around the world. Crooked Stave is one of only 35 beer destinations across the globe, 15 of which are in the U.S., to receive the coveted brew.
Chad and the Crooked Stave Team are preparing for a big crowd on Saturday. They’ll be opening up the Barrel Cellar to accommodate the gathering of loyal beer hunters. Chad says this will be a first-come, first-serve event and they’ll be using a ticketing system to keep things as fair and orderly as possible for attendees. The doors will open at noon and ticket holders will be allowed to purchase 2 pours of beer (1 Zwanze and 1 yet unnamed Cantillon) plus a Zwanze day glass for what is expected to be a $20 (CASH ONLY) price tag.
There will only be 150 pours of Zwanze on Saturday and jokes have already started buzzing around about how early beer nerds will begin lining up for the festivities. Those ARE jokes right guys? I hope. I mean, we just survived the Black Friday shenanigans and that was just over TV’s… This is about BEER, which is obviously way more important than any TV could ever hope to be. Do we at least have time to run home for a shower and a hot meal before heading back out to line up for Zwanze Day? A low-key, in-line bottle share has been discussed as well, but it remains unclear if the powers that be (i.e. local laws and surrounding businesses) will allow a bottle share to take place or not. If not, I’m pretty sure Crooked Stave will have some beauties on tap to share.
Crooked Stave Artisan Beer Project is located at: 1441 W 46th Ave, Unit 19, Denver, CO 80211. 720-508-3292.
Here’s a few more details about this year’s Zwanze Day straight from Cantillon’s Jean Van Roy:
When in early April we brewed a top-fermentation beer which was to become Zwanze 2012, we hoped that it would be ready 3 or 4 months later so that we could organise another Zwanze Day sometime in September.
However, since we are working in the very specific environment of traditional Lambic brewery where natural yeast flora reign supreme, even a top-fermented beer can take control of its own destiny. As such, on the occasion of a final tasting session at the end of June it became crystal-clear that the Zwanze 2012 would not be ready in time and that it would, we hope, become Zwanze 2013.
Seeing that we had received numerous requests to organise a Zwanze Day this year we decided to recreate the very first Zwanze produced in 2008. As a reminder, that year’s vintage had been brought about by soaking rhubarb in Lambic. The ultimate result of that experiment was a very delicate and complex product in which the beer’ acidic taste struck a very nice balance with the plant’s tartness and then lingered long on the palate.
For this new production batch we decided to work with organically-grown rhubarb, and you can really taste this in the beer, which is more structured and full-bodied than the 2008 vintage. We opted to recreate the rhubarb Lambic because very few consumers had been able to taste this beer 4 years ago, when only 300 litres had been produced. On top of this, unlike fruit crops, rhubarb production was not adversely affected by the very poor weather which hit Europe this spring. And finally, the last, perhaps most important reason of all for bringing back Zwanze 2008: my wife tells me it’s one of her favourites.
Of course, because of the delays encountered with the first Zwanze we will not be able to hold this year’s Zwanze Day in September. Instead, Zwanze Day 2012 will take place on Saturday, 1 December at the 30 or so locations around the world listed below.
I wish you all an excellent Zwanze Day!
- America – USA :
- Armsby Abbey – Worcester, Massachusetts
- Avenue Pub – New Orleans, Louisiana
- ChurchKey – Washington, D.C.
- Crooked Stave Barrel Cellar – Denver, Colorado
- Holy Grale – Louisville, Kentucky
- Hop and Vine – Portland, Oregon
- Lord Hobo – Cambridge, Massachusetts
- Monk’s Café – Philadelphia, Pennsylvania
- Novare Res Bier Café – Portland, Maine
- REAL a gastropub – Honolulu, Hawai’i
- Redlight Redlight – Orlando, Florida
- Spuyten Duyvil – Brooklyn, New York
- The Foundry – Kansas City, Missouri
- The Trappist – Oakland, California
- Toronado – San Diego, California
- West Lakeview Liquors – Chicago, Illinois
- America – Canada :
- Canada – Montréal : Dieu du Ciel
- Europe :
- Belgium – Brussels : Moeder Lambic Fontainas
- Belgium – Brussels : Moeder Lambic Saint-Gilles
- Belgium – Arlon : Mi-Orge Mi-Houblon
- France – Paris : La Fine Mousse
- France – Lille : La Capsule
- Great Britain – London : The Earl of Essex
- Italy Rome : Ma Che Siete Venuti A Fà
- Italy Bergamo : The Dome
- Italy Nicorvo : Sherwood Pub
- Italy – Quinto Vicentino : The Drunken Duck
- Italy – Quartu Sant’Elena : Ristopub Margherita
- Norway – Grimstad : Nøgne Ø
- Finland Helsinki : Pikkulitu
- Denmark Copenhagen : Olbutikken
- Netherlands – Amsterdam : De Bierkoning
- Sweden Stockholm : Akkurat
- Spain – Sant Joan de Mediona : Masia Agullons
- Asia :
- Japan – Tokyo: Embassy of Belgium
- America – USA :
In all seriousness, everyone just remain calm and good luck this weekend beer hunters! It’s only beer. Right? This post will self destruct in 3… 2… (Cheers!) 1…