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New Denver Brewery For Social Good: The Brewability Lab

Among the new Denver breweries popping up, we can now expect a new one in the Lakewood district that not only aims to provide great beers, but also a commitment to jobs for an underserved population: developmentally disabled adults. Not only with this new brewery bring us great beer, but it will also help out some members of our community in a great way.

The Brewability Lab is a startup brewery by Tiffany Fixter that will be taking over Caution Brewing’s original location, complete with Caution’s original 5-barrel brewing system, grain mill, canning line, tap system, bar and glassware. Once Caution Brewery moves out later this year (and will keep its second location in Lakewood open while it finds larger brewing facilities), The Brewability Lab will expand the hours, and redecorate the site to take on a 1930s and 1940s chemistry lab design.

The concept behind the Brewability Lab is great and has already received lots of community support through Kickstarter and IndieGoGo. Though these adults with developmental disabilities have a difficult time finding a job, a brewery is a perfect place for them: many of the tasks associated with brewing–from measuring grain to cleaning tanks and glasses, sanitizing equipment and pouring beer– are repetitive, and many of these adults can do this type of work consistently with ease. Some of the new crew has already started training for various beer brewing duties at Grandma’s House, and will help name some of the beers produced in the space.

The brewery will start off with an IPA, a cream ale, a Belgian dark strong ale, a saison, and an oatmeal stout for drinkers to enjoy. The head brewer who will be supervising the new team is Toby Gerhard, a longtime homebrewer, and Grandma’s House will continue to support training for the new employees.

Overall, it’s great to see a unique brewery in Denver that’s doing something different beyond the tap. For a great guide to breweries to visit in the Denver area, contact us.


3 New Denver Breweries You Have To Check Out

denver breweries

Denver is now the second booziest state in the nation, thanks in large part to having 4.7 craft breweries per 100,000 people.

Colorado is known for its incredible beer scene. According to a new Thrillest.com ranking, it can now add the honor of the second-most “booziest” state in the nation thanks in large part to having 4.7 craft breweries per 100,000 people.Weall know and love breweries like New Belgium, Great Divide and Oscar Blues, but Colorado is inspiring a ton of new and innovative breweries located right in Denver. We’ve narrowed it down to three amazing denver breweries you’ve got to check out:

  1. Our Mutual Friend- Founded by the drummer of Fear Before The March of Flames and some buddies, this tiny brewery is pumping out some amazing beer. Try their Gose.
  2. Jagged Mountain Brewery- This innovative brewery located in Denver’s ballpark neighborhood have a some awesome names for their delicious beers. Try their gotlandsdrika Men Who Drink From Goats. They describe it as “viking” beer.
  3. Former Fiction- This incredible brewery has been getting a ton of buzz because it revives beer recipes that are sometimes over a hundred years old to give their customers a taste of what their grandparents might have drank. Try any sour the have and you can’t go wrong.

The Denver Microbrew Tour is a guided walking tour through downtown Denver, Colorado’s historic LODO (lower downtown) and Ballpark Neighborhood districts. The tour includes beer samplings at several microbreweries and a localtap room, everything you could want to know about beer, a coupon for a pint of your favorite beer on the tour, and local Denver history. For more info on The Denver Microbrew tour, contact us today!


RiNo District Continues to Attract Interesting, Denver Breweries

denver breweries

As RiNo continues to grow, we expect to see more Denver breweries popping up.

More than ever, it is a really good feeling knowing that the RiNo Arts District is part of our Denver Microbrew Tour offerings. The area’s list of Denver breweries just increased to include First Draft and New Belgium Brewing. Why is that so exciting? Well for us, any new place to kick back and sample a freshly released brew is cause for celebration.

First Draft, in particular, really has us mesmerized. A true testament to the power of freedom and choice, it gives new meaning to the phrase, “beer tasting.” Customers who visit have a chance to pay for their drinks in the most unconventional way. As such, everyone can sample away without fear of having to force down something they hate for the sake of not wasting money. And by the way, it’s already open for walking tour related business.

New Belgium Brewing is different from First Draft. First, it isn’t open yet and you won’t find craft beers sold by the ounce. However, when the doors do fling wide open in the future, they’ll be lots of sour beers on tap to keep everyone smiling. In meantime, sour beers are available at several other places in RiNo. Plus, there are old standbys, like French saisons and American standard ales too.

As RiNo continues to grow, we expect to see more Denver breweries popping up in the area alongside of restaurants and other establishments of note. One thing is clear, we’ll be watching with one hand on a craft beer mug and the other on our Denver Microbrew Tour’s office keyboard. As soon as we hear of interesting places getting ready to open along our tour route, we’ll be sure to share the news. To learn more about the existing stops on both of our ongoing tours, pleasecontact us in Denver today.


History of Denver: Raise a Glass to Larimer Square’s Quinquagenary!

Have you ever heard of a quinquagenary? It means 50 and there is one place in the Mile High City that will be celebrating its quinquagenary anniversary this year. Can you guess where it is and how it fits into the beer history of Denver? Okay, pull up a bar stool and we’ll tell you:

history of denver

We’ll introduce you to a number of colorful characters who once worked the beer taps, and the system, in the heart of Larimer Square

It’s Larimer Square, the one place in Denver where beer history runs deeper than the world’s biggest keg, which holds 55,345-gallons of beer by the way. In 1971 it was named a historic district and that’s certainly worthy of a toast. Back in the 1800s, the area was the heart of Denver’s craft brew industry and it remains an important beer Mecca to this day.

During our weekend tours, you’ll get to learn more about the historic area and its once thriving, 19th century watering holes. Among them are Lincoln Hall, Gahan’s Soft Drink Parlor and the Double Eagle Bar. We’ll also introduce you to a number of colorful characters who once worked the beer taps, and the system, in the heart of Larimer Square. Examples include Soapy Smith, Countess Katrina Murat, Davis H. Waite and the lovely, albeit forlorn, Amelia.

Of course there will be plenty of craft beer drinking going on during the tours too. We’ll be warming the bar stools at a number of popular places, including the Rock Bottom Brewery, Breckenridge Colorado Craft, Falling Rock Tap House and the Wynkoop Brewing Company. And we promise, the conversation will be as compelling as the beers.

So what are you waiting for? It’s time for a quinguagenary anniversary celebration. Contact us now and reserve your tour of the historic district and its once suds-filled streets. All tickets include general admission and beer samples. Plus, we’ve got a special deal that includes a great pint glass to help you remember why Denver is the best place for craft beer drinkers.


Brew Dogs No. 1 Denver Craft Beer Bar

falling rock tap house

During Brew Dogs’ adventures in Denver, the dogs ranked Falling Rock Tap House as their number one choice among their Top 5 beer bars.

James Watt and Martin Dickie of BrewDog Scotland, and hosts of the Esquire network hit show Brew Dogs, are drinking and brewing their way around the US, Europe, and Canada looking for unique brewing styles, pairing local cuisines with local beer, and spreading the love of the craft brewing phenomenon. During their adventures in Denver, the dogs ranked Falling Rock Tap House as their number one choice amongst their Top 5 beer bars. The brew masters love deconstructing craft beers, understanding what local influences are impacting specific brewing styles, and where locals and visitors are drinking their favorite brews.

The dogs typically partner with their favorite brewery in the area, sample the brewery’s award-winning offerings, and work with their resident engineer, David Donley, to formulate a plan to make their own quintessential local beer. Their Denver beer was naturally a wild west inspiration, using black angus meat smoked malts, solar power panels to run the brewing operations and represent Colorado’s 300 days of sunshine, and a pale ale style foundation. Their meat smoked pale aleincorporated citrus notes from prickly pear cactus, a rich meaty flavor from Colorado black angus beef that fed on grass and spent malt, and a deep smokiness from the local applewood smoked malted barley. The breweries they visit, the brewers they brew with, and the brew pubs they drink in, all had one thing in common, amazing Colorado craft beer.

The craft brewing industry is less of a competitive market, and more like a supportive family of brothers and sisters, all eager to make excellent craft beer, support each other, share the beautiful nectar being bottled and canned out of their breweries, and encourage people to enjoy truly great beer again. So, please contact us today to take a guided tour of Denver’s finest brew pubs, tap rooms, microbreweries, and breweries to sample local offerings, earn about the city’s fascinating history, and visit the No.1 ranked craft beer bar in Denver the Falling Rock Tap House.


“Blue Moon Isn’t Craft Beer,” Says Pending Class Action Lawsuit

 

craft beer

One of the criteria that craft beers must meet is that yearly production of the beer must be 6 million barrels or less.

While some classify craft beer as how a brew is crafted, or closely associated with a lifestyle they have chosen, the simple truth is, craft beer is an industry, with specific legal definitions, all in place for craft protection.

So because the Brewer’s Association defines American craft beer as an industry, it must fit into finite definitions that allow brewers and micro-brewers certain rights, benchmarks, and associated statistics broken into an applicable three categories:

1. Small: Yearly production of 6 million barrels of beer or less, with production attributed to the rules of alternatingproprietorships.

2. Independent: “Less than 25 percent of the craft brewery is owned or controlled (or equivalent economic interest) by a beverage alcohol industry member that is not itself a craft brewer.”

3. Traditional: Total beverage alcohol volume in beers whose flavor is derived from traditional or innovative brewing ingredients as well as their fermentation.

What isn’t craft beer?

By definition, global beer conglomerate MillerCoors. More specifically, Blue Moon, their “craft style” beer. However, Blue Moon can not be a “craft beer” per the definition above, even though it is sometimes marketed as such.

For this reason, a man in California is taking a stand against MillerCoors.

On April 24, 2015, San Diego home brewer Evan Parent filed a class action lawsuit against MillerCoors (check out here), stating that they have been pulling the proverbial wool over the eyes of consumers who seek craft beer by overtly lying about what’s in the bottle and who makes it.

Mr. Parent is seeking an unspecified amount for damages for “misleading advertising and unfair competition.”

“What this case is really about,” he told his local news in this Huffington Post article, “is people think they’re buying craft beer and they’re actually buying crafty marketing.”

And that’s not all…

According to the lawsuit, Evan Parent claims that MillerCoors actively disassociates itself from Blue Moon in an attempt to mask their association. A scheme used as subterfuge, he implies, so those looking for craft beer at the grocery store won’t see through their elaborate ruse, and will buy Blue Moon instead of an actual craft beer.

Here is MillerCoorsresponse:

MillerCoors is tremendously proud of Blue Moon and has always embraced our ownership and support of this wonderful brand. The class action filed against MillerCoors in California is without merit and contradicted by Blue Moon Brewing Company’s 20-year history of brewing creative beers of the highest quality.

Unfortunately, “artfully crafted” isn’t part of the definition of craft beer… no matter how you spin it.

Then, of course, there is MillerCoors‘ production values: at 76 million barrels of beer produced annually, it’s difficult to consider Blue Moon, via MillerCoors, a “craft beer,” even if they designed it as such.

As for marketing, MillerCoors stands by the fact that they never actually said that Blue Moon was a craft beer, nor actively try to dictate otherwise.

It’s uncertain yet if a judge will throw this case out. Pending litigation hasn’t picked up speed, but the entire thing is very interesting.

What do you think about this case? Chime in below!

Feel free to contact us or more information or how we can help you.

 


River North’s Best Tap Rooms Receive Awards and Media Attention

river north brewery

Some of the ciders are aged in red wine or bourbon barrels.

Have you taken a look at Westword®’s latest list of award winners? If not, you may want to pour yourself a glass of hard cider and take a peek. One of the locations on our new River North Art District walking beer tour has been dubbed the besttap room party host in Denver for 2015 and we couldn’t be happier for them. Yes, we are talking about the ultra fabulous venue known as Stem Cider.

Founded by Eric Foster and Phil Kao, the Stem Cider team obviously knows more than just how to put on a heck of a party. They make amazing hard ciders too. Some of their ciders are aged in red wine or bourbon barrels and others spend time fermenting in stainless steel. As such, you can count on the tap room‘s offerings to have wide appeal.

And as for the parties, you already know that they’re legendary. Otherwise, they wouldn’t have won a nod from Westword®. But just in case there is any doubt, we’d suggest checking out some of their upcoming events for yourself. The team currently hosts regular events Tuesday through Friday evenings and special shindigs throughout the year. The themed vary too. So, one night you may enjoy live bluegrass music and the next could be a hard cider and cheese pairing.

Of course Stem Cider wasn’t the only River North Art District venue to receive kudos earlier this year. There were others that area foodies and wine lovers know well. Among them are the RiNo Yacht Club, Infinite Monkey Theorem, Acorn, Park Burger, Cart-Driver and Work & Class. To learn more about the River North Art District’s best places to grab craft brews, please contact us. We have a tour planned for this Sunday afternoon and would love to sip a cold one with you at Stem Cider.


A new addition to Denver breweries, shows us the skills.

On July 5, 2014 there was a new addition to Denver breweries. Baere Brewery in the baker neighborhood at 320 Broadway, is that great new addition. The co-founder Ryan Skeels has used his mindset as a skateboarder to build on the simple foundation of brewing to create unique flavors and styles. In skateboarding simply landing a trick and riding away is not good enough. One must have style.

denver breweries

Mastering both craft-beer brewing and skating takes artistry and personality. Baere Brewery does both.

The foundations of brewing beer are simple. Barley, malt sugar, and hops get boiled together. Yeast is then added to the mixture and left to ferment. In street skateboarding, the foundation is the ollie, or jumping with the skateboard. These two things might sound easy. What’s so hard about mixing a bunch of ingredients together? What’s so hard about jumping with a board. In reality, these are both very hard to learn. Mastering them is another story, altogether.

When kids first learn to skate, they practice for hours, days, even weeks to learn the ollie. When they finally get the coordination down and jump without falling, chances are they are barely leaving the ground. It takes another few months to actually get any height. Similar to brewing, which also begins with practice at home. Anyone’s first brew is probably drinkable, but usually lacks any style or complexity.

Once the ollie is master, to add complexity, the skateboarder learns flip tricks. Skateboarders do flip tricks by flicking feet in various ways while doing an ollie. This makes the board rotate before they land back on it, and ride away. Each variety of trick takes hours of practice, repeated failure, and often pain. After learning a trick, landing and riding away isn’t enough. The skater has to make it his own, by adding style. This basically means, making it look effortless in a personally artistic way. When it comes to brewing, simply creating a beer with an alcohol content isn’t enough for the skateboarding brewmaster. Through years of practice, he has learned to make beer personal, by adding complexity, artistry, and style. The people atBaere brewery really have created something amazing.

After I had a drink at Baere Brewery, later that evening I couldn’t get it out of my head. The smooth delicious taste, the aroma, the overall feeling, became a memory. I was back the next night to relive that memory.

To talk more about this, or anything else, please contact us. Thanks.


Walking Beer Tour to Open in RiNo Art District

Denver, Colorado – April 6, 2015 – Today, Denver Microbrew Tour (DMbT) announced the addition of a new tour route in the River North Art District (RiNo), just north of Downtown Denver. The inaugural tour will be on Sunday, April 12, and will start at 12:15pm at Ratio Beerworks (2920 Larimer Street, Denver, CO 80205). Tours will then be offered every Sunday, starting at the same time and same location.

Similar to DMbT’s long-standing LoDo route, the RiNo route will include:

  • visits to four local breweries, cideries, or tap rooms
  • beer samples at each stop
  • an in-depth lesson of how beer is made
  • info about each location’s founders and the inspirations that led them to brew
  • stories behind the street art and murals prevalent in RiNo
  • just enough scandalous Denver history to keep things interesting

The new route will feature some of the newest and most exciting breweries in the Denver area, and will also include a visit to a cidery. “We want to showcase the best brewers Denver has to offer, and there is no better place to do it than in RiNo,” said DMbT founder, Steve Schneiter. “The heavy concentration of breweries here creates a great atmosphere of collaboration and friendly competition. These companies work together to push each other to make the best beer in Colorado, and are succeeding in doing so.”

Schneiter continued, “But the tour won’t be all about the breweries – we’ll also focus on the RiNo neighborhood. In RiNo, there are motorcycle shops next to wineries, junkyards across from breweries, and run-down diners next to upscale restaurants; it is the perfect combination of dive and elegance. The stories behind these businesses, and the inevitable changes that they will face in the coming years, craft a great narrative for Denver locals and tourists alike.”

Arline Kellog, a self-proclaimed Cider Wench at Stem Ciders (one of the stops on DMbT’s RiNo route), added, “We are excited to have such a great company showcasing our growing artisan brew district; we can’t wait to show people what craft cider is all about!”

DMbT’s RiNo route will visit Ratio Beerworks, Stem Ciders, Our Mutual Friend Tenth Acre and Brewery, and Epic Brewing Company. The tour will be offered weekly, on Sunday afternoons starting at 12:15pm and lasting until roughly 2:30pm. The cost is $29 per person and includes the tour and at least 10 samples of beer (or cider). For more information, visit www.denvermicrobrewtour.com.

About Denver Microbrew Tour

For over five years, Denver Microbrew Tour has been showcasing the best of downtown Denver, offering tourgoers ten beer samples and scandalous history of the city and its development. This highly-reviewed, well-respected walking tour has served over 20,000 clients, offering both public and private tours, as well as appearances at corporate events. For additional information or to book your tour, please call 303-578-9548 or visit www.denvermicrobrewtour.com.
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Contact:
Steve Schneiter
media@denvermicrobrewtour.com


A Self Serve Bar in Denver

The Denver brewery and bar scenes are both booming, but this summer something new is coming to town, according to Westword. Mark Slattery, the popular beer blogger also known as the Denver Beer Guy, is moving into the 2601 Larimer development in River North, and he’s bringing a dream with him.

denver brewery

The dream is a tap room that is completely self service. In lieu of a bartender, the room is managed by a program called iPourIt, which allows customers to open tabs and pour their own beers in amounts strictly tabulated by corresponding wristbands. It’s an excellent way to sample small amounts of a variety of beers.

And the beers are worth sampling. Slattery says he plans to carry beers that are one-third to one-half from Colorado breweries, with the rest being choicely selected from across the country. “We plan to showcase the best beers we can get our hands on,” he says. The beers, as well as ciders and wines totalling forty in all, will rotate regularly.

Slattery has only the highest respect for Denver’s breweries, but felt he wanted to take things in a different direction. “Denver already has a great craft brewery scene,” he says. But rather than add his voice to many, he has decided to bring “a unique drinking experience” to the city.

First Draft will feature small but quality plates of food that pair well with the beers on offer, as well as a 900 square foot patio with a fire pit. He hopes to be open in June.

If you want to learn more about the latest beer news in Denver, please contact us!


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