Climbing and Hogshead Brewery

More climbing! Actually I’m gonna throw a few random pictures in here before I get to the cute little brewery we found.

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After a day of climbing, we went out in Boulder that night and got Mexican food. Emma and Ben also joined us! It was great to get a chance to see all of our friends that recently moved to CO!

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The next day we climbed some more! It was crazy hot and there was no shade. I recall huddling under a small bush for a while, trying to stay out of the sun!

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But that night we were back in Denver and went out in search of dinner and drinks. Hogshead brewery sounded really awesome so we stopped by, the only downside was that they don’t have a kitchen. This seems to be a common theme for small breweries in CO. But I kept finding it surprising.

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Hogshead has nothing but cask beer! Cask beer is unfiltered and is secondary fermented in the cask. There is no additional CO2 or nitrogen used to carbonate the beers. When being served a cask beer, the bartender will have to “pull” or hand pump the beer into your glass.

(I love the t-shirt on the wall in the picture, F*CK CO2, I should have gotten one! Damn!)

Hogshead was really cool because they focus mostly on traditional English style beers, so I knew I would find something I would really enjoy. I got the Gilpin Black Gold, a porter.

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Maybe I was just ravenously hungry, but I thought this beer was delicious! If I only could have ordered food I would have spent all evening in this taproom!

A subtle and well done porter. Nice hints of coffee but I wouldn’t call it robust. English malts and semi sweet chocolate. Very smooth. Not completely flat, but exactly what I would expect of cask beer. Velvety and creamy mouthfeel .

Jack and Liz also tried different beers, while I cant remember what they ordered, I know I took a little sip and they were all fantastic. This little brewery was a gem of a find!

A Visit to Avery Brewery

The climbing areas in Colorado are so accessible that we were easily able to get a half day climbing and then head into Boulder to go to Avery Brewery in the afternoon!

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After a quick change of clothes I was ready to try some new beers! I was blown away with how many beer they had on tap at the brewery!

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It was so hard to pick just one at first, but I wanted something that I could carry and drink on the tour, so I went with their 3point7 Milk Stout. I figured there would be a lot of drinking and I should start out with something light on the alcohol, hence the 3.7% abv. The flavors were great though and just by tasting it I would never have guessed that it was a low alcohol beer.

Jack got a flight to start and I helped him with the beer a bit, I was just too excited to wait till I got a flight later!

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They had a great taproom to hang out in, we chilled at the bar for a bit while waiting for the tour. Also, Emma was going to join us! She had just moved out to CO a few weeks before from DC and so we were happy to get to catch up!

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Hey ladies!

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The tour itself was fantastic! I thought it was really cool that we had a woman tour guide! I love to see ladies get involved in beer! She was quirky and well spoken so the tour flowed very well.

We got to see maybe four or five different areas of the brewery, but I was most excited to see all the barrel aged beers! During this part of the tour we also got little tasters of the Avery White Rascal.

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Once back in the taproom, we immediately ordered food and I finally got my samplers!

I got the: Lilikoi Kepolo, Hog Heaven Barleywine, The Reverend, and The Beast Grand Cru.

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What a line up! The Likikoi was only 5.6% abv, but my other choices were really alcoholic at 9.2% abv, 10% abv, and a whopping 16.83% abv! They were only tiny samples, but they packed a punch! It took me the rest of the evening to finish them. They were slow sippers.

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We have so many friends that have moved to CO! We were also joined by Austin and Sarah for dinner!

All in all, out of the three brewery tours in CO, Avery was by far my favorite!

Jack and I tour Denver, Great Divide Brewery

Ever since we biked through Belgium, beer and biking now go permanently hand in hand. So we meandered through some beautifully kept residential walking paths until we came to a place where we could rent bikes for the day!

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We found Denver B Cycle! Yes, they are big, heavy bikes, but they were fun to ride around town. We grabbed two and headed about 6 miles into the city center!

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We had tie to kill before we toured Great Divide Brewery at 3 or 4:00, naturally, we went straight for the first museum we came across!

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Beautiful views from their balcony!

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After a bite to eat, we made it to Great Divide Brewery! It was a hot day, about 90 degrees and I was ready for some beers!

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Right away we hit a major snag. To go on the tour, you had to be wearing closed toed shoes. Since it was 90 out, I was wearing sandals. Crap. I know this is a common rule at breweries, but I have never before come across one that actually enforced it.

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Everything looked so tasty, I could sit in their taproom and drink or I could go find shoes. I was determined! Damn it, I was going on the tour! We walked about three quarters of a mile back to the shopping district and I got a pair of shoes at payless.

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And I still had time for a beer before the 4:00 tour! I got the Chocolate Oak Aged Yeti at 9.5% abv. This beer was so good! I’ve never seen it in bottles before so I was so glad they had this available at the brewery! Full bodied, flavorful, thick. And you can distinctly taste the chocolate and oak along with caramel, vanilla, and espresso.

Not a bad tour at all! The guide was fun and talkative. Since they were only doing two tours that day I didn’t feel like we were all hurried along as fast as possible. Good pacing and lots of time for asking questions.

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After the tour I was in sample heaven! Unfortunately you don’t get any free samples, but they are very reasonably priced. For my first three I ordered the: Colette Farmhouse Ale, Wolfgang Doppelbock, and the Old Ruffian Barleywine.

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For my next set I ordered the: Hades Belgian Strong Pale Ale, Claymore Scotch Ale, and their 19th Anniversary Ale.

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After leaving the brewery we picked up another set of bikes from B Cycle and explored Denver. We hit up REI and then made our way to Yardhouse downtown so that Liz could join us for dinner!

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I got the Deschutes Black Butte Porter by Deschutes Brewery out of Bend, OR at 5.2% abv. Nice and thick, creamy with a good chocolate flavor. Smoky and hints of black licorice. Really enjoyable and well balanced porter.

Such a great day exploring Denver!

Funkwerks

After we finished with the tour and our beers at Odell Brewery we decided to go to a bar that had a great variety. Amber told us that one of the best bars in town is called The Mayor, so that’s where we went!

It was the middle of the afternoon on a Tuesday so the place was pretty quiet, which was a good thing! We got our beer and food fast!

They had an impressive number of beers on tap!

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I decided to go with a bunch of samples so that I could enjoy multiple beers. From left to right I had: Funkwerks Provincal, Funkwerks Rum Deceit, Grand Teton Oud Bruin, New Belgium La Folie.

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They were all fantastic! The Mayor had such a good selection of beers that I doubt Ill be able to find on the east coast. I could have stayed there and sampled beers all afternoon!

I really wanted to try some of the local Funkwerks beers because they sounded amazing! The brewery is in Fort Collins, but I didn’t think I could convince the group to go to another brewery. But I was wrong! After getting some food in our bellies, we made is across town to Funkwerks!

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Funkwerks Brewery only makes Saisons, but its not like they only have two or three beers that they brew. They had a whole line up of 10-14 beers! Each saison was different and unique. They really explored the sometimes forgotten style thoroughly.

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For a small brewery that had a great setup and lots of seating, most of it outdoors.

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Again I went with a flight, it was really hard not to go overboard!

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I had a blast in Fort Collins! Such a good city for beer lovers!