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.
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!
Filed under beer, brewery
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.
Happy New Year to all! I hope you all had a wonderful, safe holiday! I spent my evening sipping a homemade hot toddy, coughing up a storm and watching In Bruges. Not quite the successful evening we’d planned, but we were miserably comfortable.
I’m attempting to sum up some highlights of this year with pictures, and I’ve realized that I have had a WONDERFUL year. If you thought 30 pictures was bad, prepare yourself for a visual onslaught.
The first of many, many nights at Ladyface, TRULY appreciating beer.
Learning all-grain brewing with Grayson and Frank.
Watching my first polo match in Indio.
Staying in a hotel in Indio where someone was possibly murdered…
Multiple trips to Ojai.
Opening my first brew: Dos Beckis!
Recording ADR for a film that has yet to surface… C’mon, Scott!
Enjoyed my first (of many) sangrias at Sofrita!
Created a recipe for Newman’s Own!
Had a blogger meetup at Ladyface.
Made Oatmeal Stout Brownies with Caramelized Bacon – this has gotten me recognized in the brewery and at the homebrew shop: “Hey, you’re the one who made the brownies with bacon!”
Attempted to resign, and then officially resigned from my retail job.
Went to Colorado for two weeks…
Was so sick that every time I inhaled I had to cough. (Seriously, I didn’t sleep for a week thanks to this horrible illness as I’m sure you can see in that picture!)
Went to the Odell’s Small Batch Revival. I jokingly told my brother that once he and his wife opened their brewery, I would be pouring in their taproom. They said, “We’d really prefer a sommelier for beer.” I went home, researched, and found the Cicerone program.
I became a Cicerone Certified Beer Server. I’m scheduled to take the exam to become a Certified Cicerone in the next few months…
Became a member of the American Homebrewers Association.
Was featured on The Chive three times!
Went to Breckenridge for a show and got to meet/interview the head brewer, Matt Darling.
…and enjoy Breckenridge in all of its chilly glory.
Purchased a MacBook Pro with my own earnings.
Purchased a camera. Then immediately upgraded to an even better camera!
Visited Wades Wines new tasting room. Then visited again and again and again. Then was interviewed by The Beer Wench.
Tried mussels for the first time. Tried mussels for the last time.
Visited Island Brewing Company.
Got a tour from the brewer.
Brewed my second batch of beer with the Maltose Falcons.
Finally trespassed and got a closeup look at an old abandoned water park.
Became a founding member of Ladies at Ladyface. Haven’t missed a meeting since.
Went to the second concert of my entire life with my friend/cousin Allie. She owled.
Went to Seattle for the first time in my life.
Visited Elysian Brewing Company and became obsessed with their Avatar Jasmine IPA.
Learned how to use the bus and visited Deschutes Brewery on our way down from Seattle.
Made a pit stop at Sierra Nevada Brewing in Chico to try all SIXTEEN of their brews.
Met the brewers at Enegren Brewing Company.
Weasled my way into the brewery and started volunteering there so I could be a Cicerone Certified Beer Server who’d actually served beer to people instead of just passed an online test. Then they threw me into a brewniform, let me help with a brew day and got stuck with me.
I learned how to lift 50lb kegs over my shoulder while wearing heels. Enegren will seriously have a hard time getting rid of me.
I visited TONS of breweries. The few I’ve featured are only skimming the top…
I created some delicious recipes for the autumn season…
Some boozy autumn recipes as well.
One of my recipes was featured on Taste Terminal and was their second most popular post of 2011!
Discovered a program for HDR and went slightly beserk with that. Consequently, I realized that food doesn’t always do so well with HDR.
Brewed again with Frank and Grayson up in Santa Barbara.
Met the Beer Chicks at the latest Ladies at Ladyface.
And that’s barely skimming the surface. Happy Holidays and Happy New Year to all!
Raising a glass to 2012 being as good, or even better than 2011.