Tag Archives: Brewery

More than a brewery

When you go to your local brewery or bar, the first thing you look at is the beer menu.  What do they have on tap that is going to taste good?  Once you have settled in, you usually take a look at the upcoming events.  Who’s playing and how much will it cost to get in?  Is there anything else coming up?  A Potlucl? Some Beer Geek Trivia?  What you generally don’t see too much of is a a fundraiser.

Photo courtesy of http://farm2.static.flickr.com

Left Hand Brewing has been in Longmont since 1993 and they have been part of the community in a big way.  This last summer alone, they gave back to several local organizations including the Longmont Humane Society, Bicycle Longmont, and the Longmont Symphony.  They hosted a benefit for the High Park Fire, benefited many national organizations like Bike MS, and helped their neighbors in need through the Leukemia and Lymphoma Society.  They raised over $275,000 in 2012 alone!  Even though these events are a great way to show off their beer, they are also a great way to connect with the community.  From the president of Left Hand, Eric Wallace :

“We started giving back to the community from our earliest days. It’s our belief that it is the right thing to do, so we do it and we did it back then. We also believe that what goes around comes around and contributing to building a better and stronger community makes us better in the end.”

What we do know about Left Hand is that they are much more than a brewery, they are a community beacon.  Being part of the community is part of the core values of the Longmont based Left Hand Brewing Company.  When I asked Josh Goldberg, Left Hand Employee, how they choose causes, the answer was pretty simple.  He said it was about choosing events that hit close to home and carried a lot of passion and belief behind them.  For Josh, it is definitely about helping those who need it most.  Josh has always been quick to see and need and try to help whether it is for the earthquake is Haiti or for a local Fire Department needing support during a dry Colorado summer.  When I asked Josh what his favorite event was, he let me know that it wasn’t one that was dollar driven.  His favorite event was the toy drive for OUR Center in Longmont.  Helping Santa hand out toys to kids who wouldn’t have seen anything else was enough to put a smile on his face.

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In 2013, Left  Hand has a lot of great events planned.  They will once again be at the helm of Leftapalooza, a music festival to benefit charity, and Longmont Oktoberfest, a community event to celebrate all things Longmont (including the beer).  The staff will also be introducing a Summer Concert Series as well as the Hops and Handrails event, to benefit A Woman’s Work, SOS Outreach, and Colorado Brewers Guild, coming up in March which will include almost 20 craft breweries, including all three from Longmont!

What you can take from Left Hand is that being a brewery is more than just being about the beer, it is about being part of something bigger.  From Eric Wallace “ Giving back and doing the right is as fundamental to our business operations as brewing great beer!” With great influence and outstanding beer comes great responsibility to be part of your community.  As Left Hand grows, so will their outreach and events to support the local community.

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If you know of a cause in need, how do you get noticed? How do I get in touch with Left Hand to let them know? Many events are still in the planning stage. If you know of a charity of cause that is need of a little help, you can contact Josh Goldberg at goldberg@lefthandbrewing.com.  While they can’t support everyone, they are happy to consider the application!

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Monday Suds: Welcome to Loveland! Verboten and Dancing Pines

So we didn’t get the snow we planned on this weekend… I was really hoping for some real Winter weather and not the dreary weekend that we had.  Anyway, we made the best of it and heard some great music at Echo on Saturday night thanks to the Prairie Scholars!  We also hit up a brand new brewery in Loveland.  This makes 4 breweries for Loveland and I am sure there will be more!

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Verboten has been open officially for a week and they were pretty busy this weekend as well!

From their site:

“Verboten means Forbidden.
According to the German Beer Purity Law, Reinheitsgebot, the only ingredients that could be used in the production of beer were water, barley and hops.  Anything else was “Verboten”.  Our idea is to focus on those “forbidden” ingredients in making great beers.”

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We were greeted by 6 different beers that we are pretty non-traditional.  They even had a nitro porter on tap and everything was pretty good.  Angie was a great host letting us know about all of the great things they have going all already!  Her favorite beer on their menu right now is the IPA.  As they have already changed their menu since we have been in, we know that this is bound to change!

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The Husband and I really enjoyed the Wit and the Wheat.  I only tried tasters this time around but I can imagine enjoying a pint of the Wit when the weather warms up.  Both were highlighted with citrus and were amazing!

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One really amazed us about this place was the size!  They are brewing on a 3 barrel system in 1300 square feet!  Only 1300 square feet and plenty of beer selection.  It was incredible to walk in and see everything.  There is no hiding anything!

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The next two pictures were taking from the direct center of the unit.  The brewing happens on the left and the fermenting on the right.  Despite size, they still have barrels on hand and they also make the caramel for their own Caramel Porter.

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Of all of the beers, I think we liked the Angry Banjo the most.  The Husband had just brought up the idea of brewing a creme ale but we wanted to try it first.  It isn’t a common beer on the front range to find and we were happen we stumbled upon it.  Despite it’s murky appearance, it was tasty.

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After Verboten, we headed across the street to Dancing Pines Distillery.  They have been around for 3 years and there was plenty to try.  I had the Dark and Stormy (one of my favorite drinks) and the Husband tried the flight.  I will definitely be sharing some cocktail recipes soon!

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Have you tried anything local lately?  What have you loved?

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Monday Suds: Am I hearing your correctly?

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Besides great beer…

the other thing I am always looking for at a brewery is great music!  While I do not profess to be any kind of afficianado or music snob, I definitely know what I like.  With so many great venues in the area, I have seen a few more shows than I normally would.  Also, as a local fanatic, I love searching out the bands that are from the Denver area or at least play here more than a handful of times.

So what have we seen?

This weekend, we had the pleasure of going to an After Hours event at Left Hand.  While there is a cover, it’s definitely worth it when Squid is playing!!  Some originals and some great covers.  Everyone was dancing and having a great time.  Don’t believe me?  Check my Instagram for pictures of a packed house!  I really loved the originals this time around and the guest singer.  What I really like is that both the Husband and I can enjoy the music and maybe even dance a little.

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Another band we listened to a few weeks back was Technicolor Tone Factory.  This is a larger band with 5 guys and a big sound!  What I loved about this band was that they were huge in sound but not overwhelming in the tasting room.  I grabbed a CD and I have loved listening to them on my way in to work.  Just enough sound to get you moving!  They have some great shows coming up so be sure and check out their Facebook page.

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What I love about living in this area is the wide array of music and venues!  You can always stumble across something you love!  What music are you listening to lately?  Any great live shows?

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Monday (Tuesday) Suds: Denver Beer Company

Sorry for the late post.  I had planned on putting this up last night and I fell asleep.  A pretty lame excuse but the truth.monday-sudsFINAL.png

While the rest of Denver was busy watching the Broncos game this weekend, the Husband and I thought it would be a perfect time to venture downtown and find out what we were missing.  We were trying to pick a place that was close to where we planned on grabbing some dinner but that wasn’t too close to Mile High.  We picked a place right off of the interstate and in the Highlands neighborhood.  We drove past a few other breweries that we are excited to try (now that we know where they are) and finally stumbled upon Denver Beer Co.

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We pulled up to find the place rather, well, empty.  With the game only minutes away and a serious lack of TV’s, we almost had the bar and the bartenders to ourselves!  I really don’t mind that there are no TV’s.  That usually means that the staff actually engages with you and you learn more about the beer.  The Husband and I sat down and we were quickly greeted by Nate!

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What we noticed about the Denver Beer Co. is the amazing amount of space!  They have garage doors along the front wall and plenty of community tables.  I can’t wait to go back when the weather is a little warmer to see how busy a Saturday afternoon could get.  I will definitely be putting this brewery along with the other ones on their bike/walking map for a summer adventure!  You can also see the big chalkboard wall! so much fun for events and seasonal art!

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There were seven beers on tap when we visited and there were batch numbers on the board.  When we visited, they were up to 208 total batches since they opened (a year ago!).  We sampled and chatted with Nate.  Turns out there is still a lot of experimenting going on and some expanding as well.  The will be opening a barrel room very soon.  The Husband can’t wait to go back and try some big beers with some friends.

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I really loved the Graham Cracker Porter (strange, I know) and the husband really liked a cider collaboration that they have on tap.  When we looked at the beer menu, there wasn’t really a style that you could identify.  They are just making the beers they like and hoping the neighborhood will like them as well!  This was such a comfortable place with such a great vibe.  The beer was good and people were friendly.  Can’t wait to see what other great things they have going on!

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Monday Suds: Where to next?

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So this weekend, the Husband and I got the opportunity to celebrate the end of Movember at Left Hand with a silent auction to benefit Prostate Cancer.  So many great breweries were represented and we walked away with some great packages for a good cause.  As our time was spent at a brewery that I have already loved on, I thought I would take this chance to ask you where we should go.  There are only a few more weeks left in 2012 and 2013 promises to be even busier.  I would love to satisfy my “Type A” needs and get scheduling done early (maybe even schedule a meet up!).

As you can see from the main page, the Husband and I have seen (and imbibed) quite a bit of beer in Colorado this year.  What are we missing?  Which great breweries are we leaving out?  For those of you not in Colorado, do you want to see how the big operations work?  For those of you that are local, where is your favorite hang out?  I really want to see this project take off in 2013, but I can’t do it without your help.

Either let me know through Twitter @kemerselis or leave a comment here to pick our destinations for 2013!  We will also be picking our favorites from this year.  Make sure to let me know who you think should take the cake!

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