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Beer & Beverage Life is too short to drink cheap beer.

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Old 05-20-2014, 11:13 AM   #1
DZ
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Colorado Craft Brewery trip report

Colorado Craft Beer Report
Spent 4 days visiting Denver and Boulder during American Craft Beer Week while my wife was attending the Annual Certified nurse Midwife National Conference. (It would have been a good week for any woman going into labor in a taxicab.) We stayed in downtown Denver right on 16th Street which is a pedestrian mall with access to many of the over 40 craft breweries. 16th street also has a free shuttle system making walking access much easier so as to avoid the problem of driving (for obvious reasons).

While in Denver we visited Breckenridge Brewery and the head bar tender gave us a list of all their “sister” breweries within walking distance. We then visited Epic, Great Divide, Wynkoop, Jagged Mountain, Denver Chop House, Black Shirt Brewing, and Rock Bottom (not all on the same day . It’s interesting to note that some of the breweries also carry guest beers from other breweries. At Breckenridge they had a guest beer from Crooked Stave which was a recommended visit – the tender told me that Stave specialized in sour beers and let us have a taste. Well, he saved me a trip there – I guess the sours are an acquired taste – just not for me or the wife.

Almost every brewery and beer drinking local highly recommended hitting Black Shirt Brewing which has what they call the Red Ale Project – beer was fantastic there. Some of the smaller brewers like Black Shirt do not have kitchens but instead provided specialty gourmet food trucks parked outside that had some great food – a very unique idea which we loved.

We had to drive to the Hop and Bush brewery which was about 10 miles away. While there we had a “hop infused” house IPA. Hop infused meaning the beer was served in a “coffee/tea press” that was filled with your choice of hops – we picked cascade. You then let the beer steep from 3-10 minutes – we went 5 minutes. Good tasting! Then we ordered the same beer without the infusion to taste the difference. A unique marketing idea for sure.

We took a road trip to Boulder to try the Mountain Sun Brewery which was HIGHLY recommended by Nebe. Boulder is a fun town… kind of like Newport in the mountains. Well, we told the waitress we came all the way from Rhode Island just to visit their brewery because it was highly recommended by our glass artist friend – after that comment beer was on the house! Two brews later we headed to hike the trails of the Rocky Mountain National Park – many of which were still snow packed. The drive took us by some severely flood damaged towns that saw flooding from the remnants of a hurricane last September when torrential rain came running down the mountains. The flooding reminded me of the devastation in Vermont a few years back.

I have to say there wasn’t a beer that we didn’t enjoy (other than the Crooked Stave sour). We stayed mostly with IPAs and other hoppy type beers. Would have enjoyed a few more days but not sure I could have taken more beer – I’m kinda a lightweight when it comes to alcohol.

Thanks to all who gave me advice about Denver. Hopefully this breakdown will help a few others fortunate enough to get there.

DZ
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"Limit Your Kill - Don't Kill Your Limit"

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Old 05-22-2014, 08:53 AM   #2
Ian
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Quote:
Originally Posted by DZ View Post
Colorado Craft Beer Report
Spent 4 days visiting Denver and Boulder during American Craft Beer Week while my wife was attending the Annual Certified nurse Midwife National Conference. (It would have been a good week for any woman going into labor in a taxicab.) We stayed in downtown Denver right on 16th Street which is a pedestrian mall with access to many of the over 40 craft breweries. 16th street also has a free shuttle system making walking access much easier so as to avoid the problem of driving (for obvious reasons).

While in Denver we visited Breckenridge Brewery and the head bar tender gave us a list of all their “sister” breweries within walking distance. We then visited Epic, Great Divide, Wynkoop, Jagged Mountain, Denver Chop House, Black Shirt Brewing, and Rock Bottom (not all on the same day . It’s interesting to note that some of the breweries also carry guest beers from other breweries. At Breckenridge they had a guest beer from Crooked Stave which was a recommended visit – the tender told me that Stave specialized in sour beers and let us have a taste. Well, he saved me a trip there – I guess the sours are an acquired taste – just not for me or the wife.

Almost every brewery and beer drinking local highly recommended hitting Black Shirt Brewing which has what they call the Red Ale Project – beer was fantastic there. Some of the smaller brewers like Black Shirt do not have kitchens but instead provided specialty gourmet food trucks parked outside that had some great food – a very unique idea which we loved.

We had to drive to the Hop and Bush brewery which was about 10 miles away. While there we had a “hop infused” house IPA. Hop infused meaning the beer was served in a “coffee/tea press” that was filled with your choice of hops – we picked cascade. You then let the beer steep from 3-10 minutes – we went 5 minutes. Good tasting! Then we ordered the same beer without the infusion to taste the difference. A unique marketing idea for sure.

We took a road trip to Boulder to try the Mountain Sun Brewery which was HIGHLY recommended by Nebe. Boulder is a fun town… kind of like Newport in the mountains. Well, we told the waitress we came all the way from Rhode Island just to visit their brewery because it was highly recommended by our glass artist friend – after that comment beer was on the house! Two brews later we headed to hike the trails of the Rocky Mountain National Park – many of which were still snow packed. The drive took us by some severely flood damaged towns that saw flooding from the remnants of a hurricane last September when torrential rain came running down the mountains. The flooding reminded me of the devastation in Vermont a few years back.

I have to say there wasn’t a beer that we didn’t enjoy (other than the Crooked Stave sour). We stayed mostly with IPAs and other hoppy type beers. Would have enjoyed a few more days but not sure I could have taken more beer – I’m kinda a lightweight when it comes to alcohol.

Thanks to all who gave me advice about Denver. Hopefully this breakdown will help a few others fortunate enough to get there.
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Old 05-23-2014, 08:42 AM   #3
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No - didn't look for it. Gives me another reason to go back west in the future I guess.

DZ
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"Limit Your Kill - Don't Kill Your Limit"

Bi + Ne = SB 2

If you haven't heard of the Snowstorm Blitz of 1987 - you someday will.
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Old 05-23-2014, 08:44 PM   #4
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Sours aren't for everyone, DZ. If you're a wine drinker also, it's an easy transition. I would suggest you try a few more as some are sweeter/fruitier than sour.
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Old 05-23-2014, 09:11 PM   #5
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Glad you had fun !
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