Station 26 Brewing Company | Brewery Review

Location: Denver, Colorado (in between The Stanley Marketplace and Stapleton areas)

The Scene: While I was looking through the lists of all the breweries I had reviewed over the last year and a half I was totally shocked to see that I hadn’t put my appreciation for Station 26 in writing. This brewery is everything you love about the brewery scene in Denver and Colorado. The brewery is housed in an old fire station, it’s laid back, offers a variety of legit beers and has the type of patio that most places only dream of having. Not to mention the new/heated cover for the patio making it beer drinker and dog-friendly year round. Station 26 is the right mixture of the neighborhood vibe underscored by beers looking to stand out in a crowded beer scene.

The Beer List: What I love most about Station 26 is that you can expect to have certain things on the tap list every time and they are versatile. The Colorado cream and the Tangerine cream are absolute musts – even in the cold weather these beers crush. The other thing you can expect? IPAs that demand respect – when people ask me about the best IPAs in the state – I can’t help but reply with Juicy Banger. On this visit, they also had the anniversary Quad, a Porter and a barrel-aged Stout on tap – something for everyone.

The Best: I am by no means a Porter fan. As a beer blogger and someone who is passionate about beer, I believe that you should understand and appreciate every style. This year though, this year seems to be the year I learn to love the porter. My favorite beer this night was the Cherrywood Smoked Porter. It was dark but not heavy – had hints of dark chocolate and the smoke enhanced instead of distracted – perfect for a cold evening.

What am I going back for? The same thing that brings me back time after time. The patio and the Juicy Banger. Any and everything else I get to try on my next visit is just extra.

Overall Brewery Rating:     9 out of 10 spades

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Thirsty Thursday | Beer Review | Coffee Coconut Stout

Coffee Coconut Stout – Weldwerks Brewing Company 

It took me a bit longer than it should have to select my first beer of “cellar month” for the Thirsty Thursday beer review. As we all know, or I bet you assume, the majority of my precious cellar beers are boozy bottles of happiness. I wasn’t ready to jump into something that robust tonight – and the last thing I want to do is force a special beer – waste for everything involved. With that in mind I hopped over to the beer fridge and the blue can popped. This is a beer I can drink on a Thursday night in the midst of a crazy week – I can enjoy it and maybe, just maybe get a few things done.

Also, I know for me personally, some of the more accessible beers tend to get overlooked. Great beer even if it’s easy to get should get the same love as its Whale Brothers. 

Visual: Incredibly dark – still brown but borderlines on something darker. A thick and creamy head that unlike many other lasts for sip after sip.

Aroma: As the beer pours into the glass the scent of coffee comes with it. Once you bring the beer closer in you get the toasty roasty feel. It’s only on the third sniff that you notice the light coconut flavor that you now know has been there all along.

Taste: The beer is a light feeling stout – which seems counter-intuitive – it’s not. The mouthfeel is super creamy and you hit the coffee flavor first. As the flavor runs over your tongue you get the sweetness of the coconut. The sip then finishes with a bit of a roasty bite and aftertaste – it’s not bitter but warming. This beer is versatile – it can start your day or end.

ABV: 8%

Overall Beer Rating:     8 spades out of 10 

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No Buy January | Cellar Resolutions

People love a fresh start and who can blame them? There is no better time each year to get yourself re-aligned with the universe than the first day of January. This got us thinking – what could we do to get on track? I won’t bore you with the personal details but we did think of one great beer-themed resolution. 

While most people do Dry January – an entire month without booze to give their bodies and more importantly their livers a break after the holiday excess we can’t do that. It’s not that we couldn’t give up beer for a month – it wouldn’t be great but certainly very achievable. We simply have to drink beer (it’s a rough life but someone has to do it) to keep this blog up to date and for our other beer writing jobs.

Dry January was a no go – instead, we are going to go with No Buy January. The rules are simple we can go to breweries and have a beer or two there but we cannot bring home any beer from anywhere if it cost us. Trades are allowed if they were already set in motion and if a friend wants to give us a beer, well it would be just rude to say no.

What’s the point? 

It’s time to break into the cellar. I have been buying and buying with just a bit of drinking mixed in and it’s getting out of hand. My beer cellar (which I just expanded) is starting to overflow with delicious beer goodness. This is a fun challenge to crack open the beers I have been hoarding – so you will see a theme to the beers we are reviewing and some of the articles we are putting out this month. I am not making a statement against cellaring beers – that’s never going to end – but I am trying for this month and for the rest of this year to drink more beer in the moment.

Today is January 6th and I haven’t purchased any beers yet this month. I know there is going to be extreme amounts of Temptation – so I will just drink that beer. I will check in throughout the month and let you know how it all went down on February 1st.

Anyone want to join me?

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Imperial Frambozen | Beer Review

Raspberry Ale with Cocoa and Vanilla – New Belgium Brewing Company

Limited Release

New Belgium has been doing a lot of great things lately – it feels like they have in a way gotten bigger while going back to their roots. As the sour program expands there too has been special attention paid to styles that made them a special stalwart in the Colorado Craft beer scene. There is no better example of this then the “new” release of the Imperial Frambozen – a re-release of an old favorite with a special cocoa addition.

This particular bottle (actually two of them because I am spoiled) was gifted to me for Christmas. Gifted by someone who isn’t a beer person – making it that much more impressive… or it means my obsession with seeking out this holiday beer was a bit too much. Either way, this delightful beer is a holiday win – get it now. It will pair well with family, candy and cold evenings under the Christmas tree.

Visual: Incredibly dark copper with medium head.

Aroma: It begins with a hint of malt followed by a semi-sweet cocoa flavor and ends with lush raspberry.

Taste: It’s no exaggeration to say the taste of this beer feels like biting into a decadent (but not over the top) piece of chocolate that oozes raspberry filling. It is also carbonated enough to pop on the palate. This beer satisfies the beer nerd and could lure the non-beer drinker to our side.

ABV: 8.5%

Overall Beer Rating:     8 spades out of 10

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Brew Adventures | Phoenix Arizona

The City – Phoenix

The Vibe: There is something going on in Arizona when it comes to the craft scene. In Phoenix it is emerging – there is a sense of what is coming. Everyone I spoke to before hitting the road had a couple of suggestions – a lot overlapped but they all mentioned it had been a little while since their last visit. None of them even mentioned the Beermuda Triangle – which I pointed out on my return, after all, a girl needs to plan for something like that. It’s a craft beer (and mead) scene that is gaining momentum – it’s finding itself. 

The Mead: I have had mead. I can now say I have had amazing mead. You read about it, you hear it spoken about in reverent tones but nothing can really prepare you for your first Superstition Mead. It’s better than the reputation and in Phoenix, you can find their regular line everywhere. I mean damn near everywhere – even Whole Foods – which by the way has it’s own taproom, finally a reason for me to hang out at Whole Foods. I was lucky enough to secure a trade to get my hands on the PBJ version – which brings me to my next topic.

Side Note: Mead is Dangerous (the good kind) – Sip with caution. 

The People: The craft beer community in Phoenix is legit – I met many people on accident, chatted them up in line or at the store and each one of them was too happy to share their favorite spots and favorite brews. I discovered the Wandering Tortoise (liquor store and taproom of happiness) while I was completing the trade for my PBJ – I hope he enjoys the Black Project. The beer people in Arizona welcome you into their desert beer family with open arms.

The Breweries: I wasn’t able to visit as many places as I wanted – my itinerary on this work trip might have been a bit too ambitious. Huss Brewing allowed me one of my favorite indulgences – a Patio Beer in December. Bonus you can mix the coffee Kolsch with the Coconut Sweet Stout and find a sip of happiness. I also had a quick stop and Wren House – too quick – and fell in love with its atmosphere. The brewery is inside a house from the 1920s with blacked out windows. It felt like I wandered into a Beer Speakeasy – an item clearly missing on my beer bucket list. Next time, Wren House, next time I promise to belly up to the bar.

Bonus #2: Postcards From Hell a special collab between La Cumbre and Modern Times was released and I scored the last four pack. 

The Favorites: Usually I am quick to answer this question – there is always something that immediately jumps to mind. In this case, it wasn’t a beer but where I got to drink it. Each night I would walk down to the outdoor patio and sit around an open fire pit – mostly with the commercial airline pilots in town on training but sometimes others. It was nice to chat with strangers – to just listen and share. There is something relaxing about it – the way the flames dance and knowing these are just friends for the night. It’s freeing – add that to a tasty local brew and it’s damn near heaven.

Cheers until next time Phoenix 

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Thirsty Thursday | Beer Review | Machine Language

Dry Hopped Saison – New Image Brewing 

Black Friday was a beautiful beer holiday for me. I got to visit a few different breweries up north and relax after what has been a busy last couple of days, weeks, months etc. When I laid out my original plan I put New Image at the top of the list because of their Melanoidin can release – 16 ounces of Imperial Coffee Stout with Madagascar Vanilla Beans and Maple Syrup, a superb offering by the way. 

But just before release day came New Image added in another can release – Machine Language – a Dry Hopped Saison. This saison is freshly hopped with Hallertauer Blanc and Motueka Hops (New Zealand Hops) and then finished with Brettanomyces – there was no way I could pass up such a unique offering.

Tagline:“But unlike that flip phone stuck in the back of your desk drawer, it doesn’t become obsolete with time. Age it longer for more brett funk. Time to compile your executable and insert into your beer interface system.”

Visual: Vibrant but deep gold to straw color – hazy. Pours with a robust and fluffy head.

Aroma: The first thing that hits your nose is the funk of the brett – funk that isn’t quite sour and leads you down a path towards something almost tropical in nature (pear, peach maybe pineapple). As you linger you find a hint of hops behind all of that – for a moment you wonder what style of beer you about to sip.

Taste: This beer is a mind bender with the number of different flavors that pounce on you at once. It’s a light, fluffy saison but there is the brett funk waiting to get you in the background and then just when you think you are safe the distinctive New Zealand hops pop out although not with overwhelming authority. The mouthfeel bursts with carbonation but it’s still smooth allowing you work through all the flavors of each sip. This beer is an adventure, a tasty adventure.

ABV: 6.5%

Overall Beer Rating:     10 out of 10 spades 

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Pick 8 | Sunday Night Football Mix Pack

Pick 8 – Not 6

We almost went with Pick 6 but the way the Broncos season has been going that felt like inviting even more bad luck. Besides the four-pack is dominating the beer scene right now and it’s easy enough to bring two of them.

Whenever we get invited to tailgate whether it’s our beloved Broncos or Buffs there is always one more request that follows – can you bring some beer? The answer, of course, is always yes. This got us thinking – what is the best way to pick a selection of beers that can meet any palate and is perfect for gettin’ rowdy before kick-off?

Here are our 5 rules for Picking 8:

  1. Find a beer that matches the weather – fall is great because it allows for more styles.
  2. Pick something for the non-beer drinker – think Berliners for wine drinkers
  3. Pick something for macro-beer drinkers – think light Ales.
  4. Go for variety – bring a couple styles so everyone can find their groove.
  5. Bring at least one beer that you know they haven’t had – it’s your job to expand their beer worldview.

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Thirsty Thursday | Beer Review | Mail Order Mule

American Sour with Key Lime and Ginger – Wiley Roots Brewing Company 


There are a lot of reasons to be drawn to this beer – first and foremost how do you not love the name and that adorable little mule? But the main reason I was drawn to it was my affinity for sours and fascination by the idea of beers mimicking classic cocktails. It’s something I have seen over and over again but for the most part, it’s led me down the path of disappointment. Like anything in life – you have to keep trying, and damn I am glad I did – Wiley Roots knocks this key lime/ginger beer out of the park. Bonus – it’s a crushable sour cocktail.

Visual: Pale gold with blonde undertones with a haze to it – minimal to no head

Aroma: The first short sniff immediately comes away with the key lime but then when you go back again and look for it the ginger shows itself from the background. It’s sweet but also warns of the sour/tart bite that’s on the horizon.

Taste: On the tip of your tongue the sweetness of the key lime bounces but as the beer moves back your taste buds perk with the sour tang and the ginger. The beer fizzes and transports – if you have the right song on and close your eyes you can see yourself in an old-time speakeasy. It’s layered, it’s easy drinking and it’s definitely a kettle soured beer that does a Moscow Mule proud. 

Tagline: A kettle soured Golden Ale inspired by the classic 1940’s cocktail

ABV: 4.6%

Overall Beer Rating:     9 spades out of 10

 

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Beertography | October in Review

Thank You!

First and foremost we want to give a huge shoutout to our followers who were immensely patient with us during the Month of October. We were able to meet so many of you during GABF which might have been the best part of the festival. That being said – there’s been a bit of a lag as time flew by faster than we could drink our favorite HAZY IPA last month. 

Our promise to you – we are getting back on track with new regular posts – maybe more meetups and general beer shenanigans as we round out 2017. We are also looking for suggestions for what you would like to see in 2018 – so send us your thoughts.

Now, finally, our favorite shots from the crazy month that was October:

Beers Made By Walking

What The Funk

GABF Friday Night

GABF Thursday Night

Denver Rare Beer

Denver Rare Beer

GABF Friday Night

Jester King

Woods Boss

Pumpkin Beer Season

Outer Range Brewing

Spice Trade Brewing

WeldWerks Medianoche Release

Loveland Aleworks

Friday Night Haul

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

With Stout Season In Full Effect – I Can’t Wait To See What November Brings

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Thirsty Thursday | Beer Review | Coconut Snowed In

Oatmeal Stout aged in Bourbon Barrels – Copper Kettle Brewing 


Snowed In from Copper Kettle Brewing is a tradition. Every year when the leaves fall and the first flakes begin to hit the ground you know something special is breaking out of its Bourbon Barrel. The OG beer is a must have and if you can (meaning you have the patience) enjoy a vertical – it is an awesome experience. But for now – let’s focus on the tropical twist on a winter beer – Coconut (seemingly this year’s favorite adjunct) Snowed In.

Visual: Dark – rich brown with minimal head.

Aroma: Your nose is immediately hit with the coconut and then the Bourbon announces its presence. The best description is that it smells like an adult Mounds bar.

Taste: The first flavor to hit your tongue is the coconut followed immediately by the toasty almost roasty Bourbon flavor. The base beer comes out more as the beer warms up a bit allowing the creaminess of the oatmeal stout to shine. The coconut and the Bourbon begin to meld together as you make your way through the bottle – it will warm you up on a chilly night.

ABV: 12.8%

Overall Beer Rating:     8.5 spades out of 10 

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