Tag Archives: Funkwerks

GABF Week

We did it! We survived Great American Beer Festival week! And the Oktoberfest week before that, and the week before that…
am1 I’ve been kind of buried in work and haven’t had a chance to update, so I’ll do a little picture purge to recap the last few weeks for you. Dave and I visited Pateros Creek to show our support for Stevetoberfest and wish brewer Steve a happy birthday. We left our mark as is expected.
am2 As everyone knows, Oktoberfests should be celebrated whilst wearing traditional German dirndls. My parental unit just got back from Germany and brought my sis-in-law and myself these so we could celebrate accordingly.
am6 Keg deliveries were made in said dirndl, as is also required when running a startup business.
am5 We went to the second youngest brewery, Zwei Bruder, in southern Fort Collins to try their wares, as well as to say hello to my old brew system from Wolf Creek Brewery which made its way to this new brewery last year!
am21 A Colorado Avalanche preseason game was attended. Not while wearing a dirndl…
am22 I was able to sneak out of the taproom for an hour one day and made it all the way down the street to New Belgium! am24 Snowbank Brewing had TONS of special releases prepared for GABF week. Chocolate Porter with the cacao husks and nibs from our friends over at Nuance Chocolate which just had their first day of operation yesterday!
crank2 Coffee Pale – my very own creation that I might be slightly proud of.
crank1 The wonderful Susan over at Cranknstein was kind enough to model for our Coffee Pale press release picture.
chile Green Chile Pale infused with roasted pueblo chiles. Intense chile aroma and a slight heat that hit your throat about a minute after sipping.
am We have a lot more collaboration beers coming up that I’m beyond excited about. The local companies we’ve been connected with through this wonderful brewery have become incredible friends.
am21 Last Friday morning I left the brewery in the capable hands of Broox and headed down to Denver for the Samuel Adams Longshot brunch at Marlowe’s. Pumpkin challah french toast, crab cakes, sausages made with elk, rabbit and buffalo, biscuits and gravy…
am19 And of course, beer! We were the first of the public to try Samuel Adam’s new double IPA – Rebel Rouser – a west coast style IIPA that clocks in at 8.4% ABV.
am20 I sat with the crew of The Brew Happy Show out of Portland, who I’d happened to meet up at Snowbank the night before!
am13 After brunch I headed back up to Fort Collins to meet with my wonderful bestie craft beer girl from California.
AM15 The beautiful Janelle! She was child-free this time around so she, her hubby Andrew and I hit up the town.
am12 First up was Funkwerks where I had a (GABF gold medal winning!) Raspberry Provencal.
am11 Odell Brewing for tacos and brews.
am10 And of course I had to introduce them to my latest hangout – Social. On all the nights where we close extremely late, we can always count on Social to have their delicious menu waiting for us.
am16 The next morning was GABF! The Snowbank crew filed into the Bellco theatre for the awards ceremony and sat amongst an ocean of Coloradoan breweries with full glasses of beer.
am17
am18 Colorado’s cheers for every win were only one-upped by the Texans sitting a level up. I’ve never been so proud to be a resident of this wonderful state!
GABF After the ceremony we filed into the convention hall and started the important part – drinking great beers and visiting with our friends, both old and new. We even ran into a few Snowbank Brewing t-shirts in the wild! I don’t think I’ll ever get used to seeing those shirts on someone else around town.
am9 And now I must bid you adieu as I venture out on my first day of sales outside the taproom! I GET TO GO OUTSIDE! Like, where the sun is! I might be excited…

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Craft Beer for the Homebrewer {GIVEAWAY}

A few months ago I was contacted by a publisher who’d seen some photos of mine and wanted to put them in a book about clone recipes for homebrewers. Um, okey!
AMYesterday I saw a tweet by the Beertographer (check out his photos, by the way. Absolutely beautiful beer porn) that his copies had just arrived. I lamented back in a tweet.
Screen shot 2014-02-07 at 8.24.02 AM Seconds after I posted that, a knock came at the door.
AM1“Didja hear dat?”
AM2“What dat? Who dat?”
AM3Well, my sweet Barleywhine, that’s called a book. It’s got about 40ish recipes from a bunch of high profile breweries.
AM7Cigar City, which I haven’t yet had a chance to visit or try.
AM9Rogue Ales, which I’ve been fortunate enough to taste, but not visit. Yet.
AM8Stone Brewing which I’ve visited, tasted, taken a test at, fallen in love with…
AM10The Bruery, which I’ve visited, tasted, re-taken a test at (rawr) and fallen in love with…
AM4And also a handful of smaller breweries like Funkwerks!
AM5Sorry, I still can’t get over seeing my name in another published book. Insert smiley face here.
AM6And there’s Andy who now works at New Belgium! Good to see some friends in this book!
AMAnd now it’s YOUR turn to get your hands on one of these! I’m giving away two copies to two lucky readers! I know I’ve got a LOT of lurkers and not many commenters, but you’re gonna hafta come out of your shells if you want one of these books. Your e-mails are private to everyone but me, so relax, don’t worry, have a homebrew. Wait, I mean relax, don’t worry and comment away.

How to enter: Leave a comment on this blog post letting me know your favorite brewery and favorite beer that they produce! Make sure you leave a valid e-mail so I can contact you if you win!

For a second entry: Follow me on Twitter! Leave a comment on this blog post telling me you followed! (If you already follow, leave a comment letting me know)

For a third entry: Follow me on Facebook and leave a comment on this blog post telling me so! (If you already follow, leave a comment letting me know)

For a fourth (and final) entry: Follow me on Instagram and leave a comment on this blog post letting me know! (If you already follow, leave a comment letting me know)

You get up to FOUR entries for this one! Open to U.S. residents only. This giveaway will run through next Friday, February 14th at 6pm MST. I’ll randomly select two winners and contact you by e-mail!

Happy homebrewing and happy Friday!!!

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Christmas, Breweries and Beer

It is so incredibly hard to get back into the swing of real life after a glorious 11 days being spoiled and pampered by my parental unit.
AM4 Savory Christmas Bread Pudding aka Eggs Portugal. We have this every Christmas, Easter and birthday morning. Drool.
AM It snowed on Christmas Eve! I set a beer outside to let it chill and when I came back out, it was covered in a good half inch of this beautiful white stuff!
AM1 Bare feet in the snow on Christmas morning. I don’t recommend it.
AM3 Delicate crystals atop the table.
AM2 I snapped a few pictures before rushing inside to escape the 3 degree weather. The rest of the day was spent roasting in front of the fireplace.
AM6 My Christmas gift from my bro and his wife! He made this himself the night before. Quite awesome, if I do say so myself!
AM7 It also came with this – unfortunately I didn’t have enough time to brew out there with all of the brewery tours we had lined up, but I’m creating a recipe at this moment for my next visit!
AM8 IPA tastings. I am head over heels in love with Myrcenary and Mountain Standard by Odell Brewing. Le sigh. Please distribute to California, already!
AM5 My favorite nephew got to spend the day with us. Nothing like having the whole family there for Christmas!

A few days later we picked up Commander Matt from the airport and headed straight down to Boulder for the first brewery tour on our schedule.
AM9 Avery Brewing! We found the brewery hidden back in an industrial area – the true sign of a real brewery. Scouting out the locations is half the fun!
AM10 A beautiful beer list! I’ve only had one or two of Avery’s brews before, but as much as I wanted to try them all, the altitude was still making me a cheap date (read: tipsy after a taster), so I stuck with a taster of Out of Bounds Stout and…
AM11 MEPHISTOPHELES’. 16.2%ABV. I couldn’t NOT try that!
AM12 Out of Bounds on the left, Mephistopheles’ on the right. The Mephistopheles’ was full of rich bourbon flavors, thick roasted coffee, spicy dried fruits and bitter dark chocolate powder. We may or may not have taken a 12oz bottle home. And by may or may not, I obviously mean we did.
avery Jon Cross was kind enough to give us a tour of their 40bbl system. Avery is prepping to move up to a 120bbl system over in Gunbarrel in the upcoming year!
AM13 Perhaps they’ll allow diving in the new, gigantic mash tun. We visited two other breweries after, neither with beer worth talking about, and the next day we went to one of my old favorites.
funk Oh, Funkwerks, how I adore thee. Best small brewery of the year – well deserved! We tried the cask of the week – peppermint saison! Amazingly potent peppermint nose, but a surprising bite of black pepper, hints of light citrus and rounded out with a fresh, clean mouth. The first sip was a little odd, but after the second sip I was ready for a full pint.
AM14 Natalie was in the middle of lautering when we arrived, so she was able to give us a grand tour of the place and answer all our questions about sour beers, barrel aging, bottling and a zillion more things that kept coming up.
AM15 After an hour exploring the place, we headed over to New Belgium where we were scheduled to tour thanks to my job. Perks!
AM19 It was a much longer tour than the last time I took it – over three years ago. They’ve built many expansions since and turned a half hour tour into ninety wonderful minutes!
AM16 Brewhouse 1.
AM17 Not too much heavy lifting going on here except on the brain.
AM18 We moved upstairs and drooled over the tanks, checking out each progression from mashing all the way to the rolling boil they had going on. You couldn’t smell anything inside, but the air outside smelled lusciously of hop resin being released from the grips of its pellets.
AM20 The barrel aging room was next. Epic. I don’t know how many oak foeders they had in there, but I could’ve wandered for hours and been content.
AM21 We got many, MANY samples throughout the tour, but this was my favorite. I hated La Folie the first time I tried it three years ago on the same tour, but now it’s pure adoration. Sours have won me over.
AM22 The next part of the tour took us outside past the gigantic bright tanks and into a relatively new building where the bottling and canning line are.
AM23 Capturing the deliciousness happens in here!
AM24 The brewery is covered in random art. I’d love to see this chandelier lit up at night!

After the tour officially ended, Matt and I saw one of the brewery employees at the bar and asked him some questions about New Belgium’s pilot system and cask program. He happened to be JR, the cellarmaster. He also happened to say, “Wanna see?”

Um, yes.
AM26 8.5bbl system. They measure everything here in hectoliters. I spent a lot of the tour on my phone doing conversions from hectoliters to barrels. I’m cool like that.
AM27 Quite a colorful pilot room.
AM29 This system has one of the best views of the brewery. Look at all the pretty foeders!
AM28 Poor neglected Sputnik was empty. There were four fermentors that were full of experimentals. I spotted a stout, a dark set for release in fall of 2013, a light set also releasing in 2013 and a collaboration. I can’t get into any more detail than that – don’t want to give away the secrets!

The trip ended with the traditional – shooting range!
AM30 Fire! I shot this thing once and said no more. Not a fan of fire in my face and a kick that almost makes me drop the gun on top of my head.
AM31 Aaand an assault rifle rental from my bro. Kinda like a BB gun with laser sights.

We celebrated New Years Eve with my parentals and their best friends (who I consider my second parentals) playing five hours of the rousing game HedBandz, sipping champagne and rare beers like the Eclipse Series from Fifty Fifty Brewing, and flipping on the TV to catch the ball drop with three seconds to spare. All of this in a onesie. Again, I’m cool like that.
Fox A belated Happy New Year to you all!

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My Favorite Colorado Breweries

My Favorite Colorado Breweries (that I’ve actually visited in person. I’m not intentionally ignoring you, Avery or Left Hand! In fact, I’ll be there very soon for a visit!)

It’s a couple of weeks overdue, but here’s a recap of my short-but-sweet trip to Colorado!
I fell in love with Funkwerks the last time I visited, and since then they won Best Small Brewery of the Year at GABF!
The fam and I grabbed two flights of tasters and enjoyed the gentle warmth of sunshine that cut through the slight chill hanging in the air.
It was very uncrowded – not surprising considering it was the middle of the day on a Wednesday. We shared the tasting room with one group of pub jumpers.
I bought a few souvenir bottles to enjoy. Pricey, but (hopefully) worth it. I haven’t gotten a chance to pop them open yet!
Up next was Odell Brewing! This brewery is one of my original faves.
Grabbed a flight, of course. Did I mention that this is at altitude? These little ones were affecting me in a wonderful way!
Myrcenary Double IPA, how I adore thee!
Continuing on, Equinox! I wasn’t able to visit this one on my previous trip, but it’s held a special place in my heart ever since my big bro took me there for a beer and some sibling hang-out-time right before his wedding. And THAT was before I really even understood or liked beer.
Another flight split round the table.
This brewery is one of the more peaceful I’ve attended. Again, most likely because of it being in the middle of the week…
And finally, Grimm Brothers Brewhouse. My first visit here I was so sick that I couldn’t taste a single thing. I’m glad I’ve finally healed.
Taster flight!
My favorite of theirs is still a tie between Master Thief and Little Redcap. With the chilly winter months coming up, I’ve been craving porters and stouts like there’s no end in sight!

After looking through, I’m realizing that these are the ONLY Colorado breweries I’ve ever actually been into aside from New Belgium – and if I had pictures from that one, you can bet they’d be up here. Colorado’s got some awesome brews.
And awesome sunsets. I can’t wait to go back in two weeks!

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Beer + Guns = Colorado

I had an amazing, ridiculously fast three day vacation in Colorado this weekend!
Commander Matt and I took an evening flight to Denver to hang with my parentals and attend the Odell Small Batch Revival. It was a painlessly quick flight. My parental unit picked us up at DIA and we headed back to their house to have some Enegren brews we’d brought as gifts, and then to pass out.
The views from their place are absolutely hideous. What’s with all the open space? It’s also incredibly noisy – that little creek below their porch makes quite a ruckus as it burbles over the rocks with the trout darting through.
They also have these rude deer that traipse through their yard whenever they please. Ugh.
We got all fancy and made breakfast – chocolate chip pancakes and grilled bacon!
These pancakes are made with almond milk and vinegar as a buttermilk substitute, and OUT OF THIS WORLD DELICIOUS.
After fooding, we met up with my brother and his wife and headed over to the Odell Small Batch Revival. It was HOT and packed!
We waited in exceptionally long lines for our beers and then found the small amount of shade that was available.
So. Many. People! This was taken right before the swarms of people arrived.
Ah, yet another perfect capture of how much we enjoy each other’s company.
I had the Totes McGotes Pale Ale Wheat – funky and sour with a strong Reisling flavor from the barrel, and the Extra Special Red. I was saving the Mash of the Titans for last, but they ran out right as I got to the front of the line. Heartbroken.

The next day we had a full schedule as well. First thing on the list:
Smith & Wesson 686 revolver. 357 magnum! I have no idea what all this means, but firing it is fun.
My bro firing his Glock. I preferred the .22 for accuracy, but this one was enjoyable too!
And back to the revolver!
Those holes in the head? All courtesy of me via the 686, before I started switching guns and throwing off my aim.
Can I have it? Christmas is coming up in only seven months. A Ruger Mark 3 would be lovely, thanks!
After shooting, we moseyed about twenty feet through the parking lot to the brewery. Grimm Brothers Brewhouse – it was nice to be able to taste and smell the beers, unlike last year!
I got a flight of eight. Had to try them all since I really hadn’t been able to before.
Shockingly enough, the Snow Drop was my favorite. The honey and molasses aroma were subtle but noticeable, with a sweet, almost mead-like honey flavor. This was an easy light sipper, but still came through at 7.1%ABV!
I also loved the Little Red Cap Altbier. Nice and malty and clean with a pleasant American hop bitterness.
My brother, Matt and I continued on to Funkwerks – a brewery that brews only Saisons!
The interior of this place is cozy and well lit, and full of craft beer enthusiasts.
I had to get a taster flight, of course. I was on vacation!
My favorite was the Codename: Farmhouse – roasted candied apricot and a bready finish with a hint of tartness.
To wrap up the evening, we swung by my brother’s work and he showed us some of the planes he’s rewired.
The new Garmin system is almost exactly like a video game! I’m fairly certain I played this game when I was twelve… The graphics are slightly better though, I must admit.

The next day was Memorial Day, and I was completely exhausted. We decided to have a slow day and regenerate on the lake.
Carter Lake was pretty quiet considering it was Memorial Day. We sat down on the dock and enjoyed the warm breeze.
Peaceful. Until he tried to throw me in.
Our flight out was at 9pm that night. It was tough to say goodbye to the parentals and the beauty of Colorado, but the bagpiper TSA agent helped ease the pain.
It was a wonderful, albeit far too short, weekend. I’m counting down the days until my next trip out.

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