Tag Archives: Craft Beer

Monday Suds: Powder Keg Brewing

 

 

 

I definitely feel like I have been in hiding the last few weeks.  I guess when life gets busy, you tend to ignore the things you like doing.  To kick off our birthday week, the Husband and I hit a few new breweries in the area.  First up was Powder Keg Brewing.

IMG_5332Powder Keg has been open for a few months (mid summer opening) and as usual, I waited for the kinks of a new business to work themselves out before dropping by.  We parked out front right as they were opening for the weekend grabbed a seat at the bar.

IMG_5324When I think about some of my favorite styles, I usually don’t put saison near the top of my list.  They usually hit me as a little too fruity or too sour.  With the PKB list in front of me, I noticed that there was a farmhouse style ale, a saison, and an infused saison.  To say I was skeptical is an understatement.

And they I sipped…

IMG_5330and I was blown away!  My favorite beer on the list was the Chene Cerise which was the farmhouse all infused with cherry flavor.  It was easy drinking and the cherry was there but it didn’t hit you in the face like a can of cherry pie filling would.  This was real fruit flavor mixed artfully with the sensible beer.

IMG_5327I would definitely recommend a stop at Powder Keg Brewing for a beer and snack if you ever find yourself killing time in Niwot.  There isn’t a full kitchen but a small selection of warm snacks and empanadas.  Solid beer, beautiful building, and a great atmosphere.  We will be back (and soon!).

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You can check out their beer list here and the Powder Keg Facebook page here.     IMG_5331

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Monday Suds: It’s very nice!

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Yes it was!  After a fll day of driving around the front range of Colorado, I was ready to try out a new brewery.  As luck would have it, we stopped for lunch in Nederland.  This town is great for quick day trips!  We ski here, we visit Grandpa in the shed here, and we usually stop here on our road trips.  And now we have another brewery to try out!

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Once we settled in at Very Nice Brewing Company, we ordered a tray of seven tasters to split.  I really loved the variety of beers on tap.  You can see the whole menu here.

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My favorite beer of the day was the Very Nice Pale Ale.  As the website, it was easy drinking and full of flavor.  The Husband’s family seemed to like the Hefe.  I think if it was warmer when we visited, this would have been the perfect porch drinking beer.

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The only beer I didn’t like was the Gruit.  I don’t think I have tried this style before.  This is a hopless beer and this one was sour.  From Wikipedia:

“Gruit (alternately grut or gruyt) is an old-fashioned herb mixture used for bittering and flavoring beer, popular before the extensive use of hops. Gruit or grut ale may also refer to the beverage produced using gruit.”

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I can defintely plan on stopping here after we ski at Eldora.  There wasn’t any food here but the pizza place is upstairs and the grocery store is next door.  The first time we head up for skiing, I think I will take our apres ski picnic inside!  With so many options and such a great variety, my tastebuds will never be bored!

And be sure to check out their social media!

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Weekday Suds: Berthoud has a second brewery!

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We have been spending a lot of time close to home and we haven’t gotten out to all of the breweries I had hoped to at this point.  But luckily for me, a brewery opened up a few blocks away from one of our other frequent stops.  July 4th weekend was Berthoud Brewing Co.’s first full weekend!  I saw a bit of buzz for their soft opening and knew I had to stop in.

As the new brewers settle into their new set up, they are brewing on a 5 barrel system with 10 barrel fermenters.  I was able to taste four beers, 3 soon to be standards and 1 firkin.  6 standard beers will eventually make it to the tap handles at the bar.

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What I loved about about the brewery is the amount of history that was packed within the walls.  Most of the wood was reclaimed from barns around Berthoud.  There were traces of the trains that brought Berthoud to Colorado all over.  You can get a glimpse of Berthoud’s history from the Switch Track Amber description.

“It’s not every day an entire town moves. Not every decade either. But that’s what happened when in 1883 when the Berthoud train depot started getting demands from railroad managers. The officials said the depth of the Berthoud valley and the heavy weight of the loads made it difficult for the train to get out. But that wasn’t the only problem. After the train’s first two years running, engineers just up and went missing when they passed through town.”

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My favorite part of going to a new brewery is the staff!  Everyone behind the bar (and the staff at the bar) were so excited to answer questions and tell us about their beer.  What I learned is that over the next few months, Berthoud Brewing Company is aiming to be a place to hang out and have a few beers.  Each beer will be sessionable and full flavored!  Hopefully we can get some food trucks in and we can walk hang out for a meal and enjoy the full menu of beers!

Good luck BBC!  I can’t wait to see what else you can send out! (Especially the Friday Firkins)

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And if you don’t like beer (you might be in the wrong place!), here is a picture of fireworks for you!

 

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Monday Suds: Wiley Roots Greeley, Colorado

So when you want to drive your new car around Colorado, you might find yourself further from home than you think. A few weekends back, before the Poudre River came up, we found ourselves at the Wiley Roots Tap Room. Both Miranda and Kyle were in and we were able to sit down for a chat.IMG_4756IMG_4758

Over a tasty Con Lima beer, a collaboration with the Rio Grande restaurant, Miranda told me about their flagship beer, the Super 77. It is so popular it was out the day we were in but I can take the GABF judges’ word for it that it was worth the bronze medal!

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Miranda and Kyle have been open since July 20th, 2013 and they are brewing in Crabtree Brewing’s old spot on the north end of town. After some remodeling to make the space fit the current equipment, a 7 barrel system, and the wall featuring the mug club members, they were ready to go!

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There is no particular style of beer that they favor, but as the name suggests, they want to honor their roots. Both their ancestral roots, as shown by the flags on the wall, but also their Colorado roots. The beer is simply done and simply delicious, doing both their European roots and Colorado histories proud.IMG_4760

With the last set of nasty weather, the Poudre River came up and deposited some water in the Wiley Roots tap room. This photo is from the Wiley Roots Facebook page.

If you find yourself in Greeley, make sure to stop in and support some local business owners who really need it. The beer is great and the community rallied together to make sure they would have something to pour you on your next stop in. The big anniversary party is on July 19th so be sure to check out all of the details here!
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Weekday Suds: A family brewery business

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One more discovery from the New Brew Fest!  This time, we hit up Industrial Revolution Brewing Company in Erie.  This family owned and operated spot seemed like a great place to meet up with friends and chill out.  While the inside space was small (lloks like seating is set for a few dozen) and a bit dark, the patio was a great place to find a big table.  IRBC is nestled right in an older part of Erie.  It’s the only watering hole on the block and you can get food from the restaurant down the street.

At the New Brew Fest, the Passionfruit Wheat was definitely my favorite.  What I was surprised about was the Orange Ale this time around.  You can check out the entire beer menu was here.  This is a cream ale infused with orange.  It was great for summer drinking!  The beer menu is still small so as long as you find a style that you like, you are set!

The Erie beer scene is definitely start to come alive.  This space was built with the love of father and son and you can tell that they are proud of the beer that they are serving!  They have created a space that is family friendly and cozy.  There are some great pubs, the Old Mine, and Echo will be open soon!  If you are looking for a laid back afternoon, try Erie!

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Monday Suds: The New Kids on the Block

Just wanted to share a few pictures of the newest brewery in Longmont, 300 Suns.

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We had heard about them through the grapevine over a year ago and had a chance to check out their IndieGoGo campaign.  For a very long time, it’s been the big three in Longmont, Left Hand, Pumphouse, and Oskar’s.  I really liked the space and the location.  I loved every touch from the lights to the colors!  They have featured some great musicians already and the parking lot has tons of room for meetups and food trucks.

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What I will say is that I hope that their beer evolves as they settle into their new surroundings.    While it appears that they have selected some standards, I hope that they find a style that fits them!  Best of luck to 300 Suns!

Make sure to check them out on Facebook and stop in to see if your name is on the Pay it Forward board.

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Monday Suds: Craft Beer Conference Denver

So last week, the Craft Brewer’s Conference hit Denver and the Colorado beer crowd was ready! With the number of beer releases, pairing dinners, and tap takeovers there was something to do every night.

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I was lucky enough to be able to volunteer at the Pink Boots Society Annual meeting and meet some of the amazing women behind craft beer. With 185 women in the room, there was so much talent and energy! Hopefully someday, I will be able to be part of this group.

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On Saturday night, the World Beer Cup Awards gala took place. I wasn’t lucky enough to attend but I was able to follow along on the live twitter feed. #CBC14 was trending on Facebook Saturday night! This is a much bigger deal than GABF with 58 countries and over 4700 beers involved. Out of the 94 categories, 24 Colorado breweries took home some hardware. Even our beloved Left Hand took an award for Sawtooth.

Check out the list of Colorado Winners:

Fruit Beer
Gold: Cherry Kriek, Strange Brewing Co., Denver
Silver: Apricot Blonde, Dry Dock Brewing Co. – North Dock, Aurora

Herb and Spice Beer
Bronze: Señorita, Elevation Beer Co., Poncha Springs

Chocolate Beer
Gold: Shake Chocolate Porter, Boulder Beer Co., Boulder

Coffee Beer
Gold: Big Shot Espresso Stout, Twisted Pine Brewing Co., Boulder

Indigenous Beer
Gold: Wild and Crazy Rye, BJ’s Restaurant & Brewery – Boulder
Bronze: Got Beer, BJ’s Restaurant & Brewery – Boulder

Wood- and Barrel-Aged Strong Beer
Bronze: Bourbon Barrel Aged Mountain Man, Verboten Brewing, Loveland

American-Style Lager or Light Lager or Pilsener
Gold: Coors Light, Coors Brewing Co., Golden
Bronze: Coors Banquet, Coors Brewing Co., Golden

American-Style Amber Lager
Gold: Winterfest, AC Golden Brewing Co., Golden

Australasian-Style Pale Ale or International-Style Pale Ale
Silver: River Runners Pale Ale, Eddyline Brewing, Buena Vista

French- and Belgian-Style Saison
Gold: Saison, Aspen Brewing Co., Aspen

Belgian-Style Blonde Ale or Pale Ale
Bronze: Jean-Claude Van Blond, Wit’s End Brewing Co., Denver

Belgian-Style Pale Strong Ale
Silver: Deceit, Funkwerks, Fort Collins

Baltic-Style Porter
Silver: The Baltic Gnome, Rock Bottom – Denver, Denver

Ordinary or Special Bitter
Gold: Sawtooth Ale, Left Hand Brewing Co., Longmont

English-Style Brown Ale
Bronze: No Name, Glenwood Canyon Brewing Co., Glenwood Springs

Oatmeal Stout
Silver: Pure Imagination, Verboten Brewing, Loveland

British-Style Imperial Stout
Bronze: Weapon of Self Destruction Imperial Stout, Riff Raff Brewing Co., Pagosa Springs

Irish-Style Red Ale
Gold: George Killian’s Irish Red, Coors Brewing Co., Golden

Foreign-Style Stout
Bronze: Devil Dog Stout, Red Leg Brewing Co., Colorado Springs

American-Style Pale Ale
Bronze: Featherweight Pale, Cannonball Creek Brewing Co., Golden

American-Style Amber/Red Ale
Gold: Runoff, Odell Brewing Co., Fort Collins

World Beer Cup Champion Brewery and Brewmaster
Large Brewing Company
Coors Brewing Company, Golden, CO
Dr. David Ryder

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