Taste of the West – June 9, 2016

Taste-of-the-West-logo-finalThursday, June 9, 2016
Jeffco Fairgrounds, 15200 W. 6th Ave. Frontage Rd, Golden, CO 80401

Taste of the West is the premier culinary event in Jefferson County, Colorado. The “Taste” will feature award-winning cuisine from many of Jeffco’s best restaurants and caterers. In addition to tasty food samples, the festival will feature an assortment of beer from local breweries, wine, spirits, culinary exhibitors and networking with over 1,200 attendees. 2016 marks the 2nd year for our Taste of The West beer garden, which highlights the great local craft beer from Jefferson County! Check out the full vendor list below:

Celebrating more than 20 years of “Great Tastes,” this is an event enjoyed by attendees of all ages. The West Chamber hosts Taste of the West each June at venues in Jefferson County. This year the event will be held at the Jefferson County Fairgrounds, 15200 W 6th Ave Frontage Rd, Golden, CO 80401.

Tickets are $20 each or 6 for $100. Tickets include unlimited food tasting and 5 beer, wine or spirits tastings! Join us for Taste of the West and experience the best food and drink that Jefferson County has to offer! Click Here to purchase tickets. Your ticket stub will be good for a BUY ONE – GET ONE FREE drink at World of Beer – Belmar the weekend following Taste of the West (June 9-12).

Beer-Garden-Sponsor-Banner-Web6Breweries:
AC Golden Brewing
Barrels & Bottles
Brewery Rickoli
Caution Brewing
El Rancho Brewing
Golden City Brewery
Holidaily Brewing
Ironworks Brewery
Joyride Brewing
WestFax Brewing

Restaurants, Wine & Spirits Vendors:
240 Union
Applejack Wine & Spirits
Buck’s BBQ
Chad’s Grill
Coyote Gold Natural Margarita
Enstrom Candies
Flights Wine Café
Grappa Italian Bisto
Hana Matsuri Sushi
Hurricane Grill & Wings (Littleton)
IHOP Belmar
Jose O’Shea’s
Mount Vernon Country Club
Old Chicago
Outback Steakhouse – Denver West
Pink Zebra Cupcakes
The Grove Restaurant @ Raccoon Creek
Table Mountain Inn
The Vista @ Applewood Golf Course
Village Roaster

Taste of the West: June 11, 2015

PrintTaste of the West is the premier culinary event in Jefferson County. The “Taste” will feature award-winning cuisine from many of Jeffco’s best restaurants and caterers. In addition to food sampling, the festival will feature an assortment of beer from local breweries, wine, culinary exhibitors, a silent auction benefiting Youth Leadership Jefferson County, music, and networking with 1,000 attendees. New for 2015, Taste of The West will include a beer garden to highlight the great local craft beer from Jefferson County.

The Beer Garden is sponsored by World of Beer – Belmar, and will include Arvada Beer Company, Barrels & Bottles, Brewery Rickoli, Caution Brewing, Colorado Native, Golden City Brewery, Joyride Brewing, and select beer from World of Beer.

Beer-Garden-Sponsor-Banner-WebWHEN: Thursday, June 11, 2015
TIME: 5:00 P.M. to 8:30 P.M.
WHERE: Lakewood Heritage Center – 801 S. Yarrow St., Lakewood, CO 80226
TICKETS: $20 for unlimited food samples + 5 beer samples. To purchase Click Here!
WHO ARE THE VENDORS?: Many of the best restaurants & breweries from Jeffco
WHO WILL ATTEND?: Families, foodies, and local beer & wine enthusiasts

Celebrating more than 20 years of “Great Tastes,” this is an event enjoyed by families, young professionals, retirees, couples, individuals and of course, foodies! It is brought to the community each year by The West Chamber in June at the Lakewood Heritage Center in Lakewood, Colorado.

To purchase tickets to Taste of the West, Click Here.

Colorado Native Releases New IPL (India Pale Lager)

AC Golden Brewing Company, the makers of Colorado Native Lager, announced this week they have a new addition to their Colorado beer lineup, Colorado Native IPL. IPL is an India Pale Lager, which is a newer style, and not seen very often. Colorado Native IPL is similar to an IPA (India Pale Ale) with a big hop flavor, and aroma. The main difference is the IPL is brewed with a lager yeast, which makes for an extremely smooth, balanced taste. You still get the hops you would in a typical IPA, but the bitterness is really toned down. I’m an IPA drinker, and found IPL to be a really good beer that is perfect for someone wanting to try something hoppy, but doesn’t like too much bitterness. Colorado Native IPL is a full bodied, hoppy, All-Colorado beer that I highly recommend trying.
Colorado Native IPL3There are many beer drinkers that say Colorado Native is simply a Coors product in flashy new packaging. I’ve been lucky enough to visit AC Golden twice – where I met the small staff, and brewers that brew the beer. Colorado Native is brewed in a small brewery within the Coors facility in Golden, however the production is on a very small scale in comparison. Colorado Native is unique in the fact that it’s brewed with only Colorado ingredients. Due to only being brewed with Colorado water, hops, barley, and the oldest yeast strain in the state, AC Golden can only produce a small amount of beer. Colorado does not have a big enough hop output to be able to produce Colorado Native in the large quantities of a Coors Light, or Coors Banquet. So for those of you that think Colorado Native is just another Coors product, I hope you realize that is not the case. While the beers are held to the same high quality standards as Coors, Colorado Native is produced by a small, passionate staff that puts a lot of love into what they do. For more of a background on AC Golden, check out the details from my first visit, here.

Colorado Native IPL2I visited with AC Golden’s President and Co-Founder, Glenn ‘Knip’ Knippenberg, Brewer, Jeff Nickel, and Marketing Consultant, Aimee Valdez. I spent a couple hours finding out about Colorado Native IPL, touring the brewery, and trying IPL at different stages in the brewing process. The team at AC Golden is as excited about their product as any brewery I’ve featured so far. From using only Colorado ingredients, to taking on a newer style of beer, the team at AC Golden impressed me with their genuine passion for what they do, and the commitment to making an excellent product that is only available in Colorado.

Colorado Native IPL Info:

  • Hops: Chinook, Centennial, Cascade, Nugget, Crystal
  • Malts: Moravian 2-row Pale and Munich
  • IBUs: 62
  • ABV: 6.5%
  • All ingredients are grown in Colorado
  • Bottles are manufactured in Wheat Ridge, CO
  • Colorado Native Lager and Colorado Native IPL are only sold in Colorado
  • Colorado Native provides incentives for Colorado farmers to produce hops. In doing so, they helped create a market for Colorado-grown hops and a new category of agriculture.

For more information, visit www.ColoradoNative.com

 

Colorado Native Lager Offering Free Blue Spruce Saplings to Aid in Colorado Reforestion

AC Golden Brewing Company, the makers of Colorado Native Lager, are offering free Blue Spruce saplings to those interested in regrowing the state. For full details see the flyer and additional information below.

Colorado Native Regrow

Golden, Colo. – Colorado Native Lager, Colorado’s only homegrown beer, is offering free tree saplings to Coloradans who want to help regrow Colorado.

After several years of devastating wild fires and beetle infestation, and last year’s 100-year flood, the state’s forests and urban areas have lost millions of trees.

To celebrate Arbor Day, which is Friday, April 18 in Colorado, and to help regrow Colorado, locals can join Colorado Native’s club, The Brew Crew, and request a free Blue Spruce sapling be sent to their home for planting.

The Blue Spruce saplings, about 1½ years old, were grown by and purchased from the Colorado State Forest Service’s Seedling Tree Nursery in Northern Colorado.  The trees come ready to plant.  The Blue Spruce is Colorado’s state tree and is well suited to the local environment.

“As Colorado’s home grown beer, Colorado Native Lager is the perfect fit for helping Coloradans regrow the state, one tree at a time,” said Glenn Knippenberg, president and co-founder of AC Golden Brewing Company, brewer of Colorado Native. “Colorado Native is brewed with 100 percent Colorado ingredients, and is packaged and shipped only in Colorado. We reinvest 25 cents from every single case sold back into the state through projects like this one.  Colorado is our home and we feel strongly that our efforts and investments should benefit our beautiful state,” said Knippenberg.

To receive a sapling, go to www.ColoradoNative.com during April and click on Brew Crew.  There is no cost to join the club. Members receive free gifts and special offers like this one. Last month, Brew Crew members were able to join Colorado Native’s legion of volunteer hop growers and receive a free hop rhizome.  Members can grow and harvest their hops for inclusion in a Colorado Native brew in the fall.

About CSFS Seedling Tree Nursery
The Colorado State Forest Service (CSFS) seedling tree program allows farmers, ranchers and rural landowners to obtain trees at a nominal cost. Its goal is to encourage landowners to plant new forests; to establish effective windbreaks that reduce erosion; to protect homes, cropland, livestock and highways; and to enhance wildlife habitat. The nursery has many outdoors acres and an 18,000 square foot greenhouse. It sells an average of one million seedlings annually.

About Arbor Day
Arbor Day is a nationally recognized day to encourage individuals and groups to plant and care for trees. It originated in Nebraska City, Nebraska in 1872.   National Arbor Day is April 24 this year however each state observes its own date to facilitate the best tree planting time.  Colorado’s Arbor Day this year is Friday, April 18.

About AC Golden Brewing Company
AC Golden Brewing Company, located in Golden, Colo., is a small-batch brewery specializing in handcrafted beers for discerning beer drinkers. Among its beers are: Colorado Native, an amber lager made with 100 percent Colorado ingredients; Herman Joseph’s Private Reserve, a German-style lager; Barmen, a German-style pilsner, and Winterfest, a Vienna-style lager shared only during the holidays.

Coors Field ranked #1 baseball stadium for craft beer

Coors Field

Coors Field is widely considered one of the nicest stadiums in Major League Baseball. The facilities are fan friendly, and the atmosphere at Coors Field is always fun for fans to enjoy a game. With a name referencing one of the largest breweries in the country, it is a bit ironic that Coors Field would be #1on a list of Top 10 Baseball Stadiums for craft beer. Welcome to Colorado, home to one of the nation’s largest breweries, as well as a mecca of smaller craft breweries.

Visitors of Coors Field can enjoy beers from New Belgium, Breckenridge Brewery, Oskar Blues, and Odell Brewing. Of course, one of the coolest parts of Coors Field’s beer offerings is that the Sandlot Brewery is located on site, and provides fresh Blue Moon from the tap. It is a sign of how the beer landscape is changing when a fan can visit Coors Field and get a beer from a craft brewery. Looking back 10-15 years ago fans were not able to order anything other than Coors or Coors Light at a Rockies game. While there are many fans that will always stick to Coors, there are a growing number of fans that want to enjoy a craft beer, and Coors Field offers a great opportunity to do so.

Coors Field Ranked #1 on FoxNews.com’s list of Top 10 Baseball Stadiums for Craft Beer.  FoxNews.com states “Several ballparks are featuring better and better beer — you just have to know where to find it. With that in mind, we explored Major League Baseball stadiums across the country to find the 10 best spots for beer.” Here are the rankings according to FoxNews.com:

#1 Coors Field – Denver, CO (Colorado Rockies)

#2 Miller Park – Milwaukee, WI (Milwaukee Brewers)

#3 Citi Field – Flushing, NY (New York Mets)

#4 Comerica Park – Detroit, MI (Detroit Tigers)

#5 Camden Yards – Baltimore, MD (Baltimore Orioles)

#6 Petco Park – San Diego, CA (San Diego Padres)

#7 PNC Park – Pittsburgh, PA (Pittsburgh Pirates)

#8 Citizens Bank Field – Philadelphia, PA (Philadelphia Phillies)

#9 AT&T Park – San Francisco, CA (San Francisco Giants)

#10 Safeco Field – Seattle, WA (Seattle Mariners)

AC Golden Brewing – Golden, CO

AC Golden Copper Kettles

AC Golden’s Copper Kettles

AC Golden Brewing Company is located in Golden, CO, and operates out of a small section of the Coors facility. AC Golden brews in what was once the pilot brewery for Coors – which focused on trying new recipes and qualifying new varieties of barley and hops. AC Golden Brewing Company was founded by Pete Coors in 2007, and is run by President and Co-Founder, Glenn (Knip) Knippenberg. As Knip describes the company “At AC Golden all we care about is the customer. Our goal is to brew quality beer that our customers will enjoy.”

In 2007, Pete Coors was looking for a way to be able to create good new beers without breaking the bank to do it. Over the years, Coors, Miller and Anheiser Busch had attempted to market many new beers, and had seen their efforts add up to the loss of large amounts of money. Pete had the idea to start a small, separate company that would be able to focus on brewing new beers, selling them locally and using a smaller geography to determine whether or not to expand them. He also envisioned a separate sales force to avoid distracting the mainstream salesforce – who needed to keep their eye on the brands that paid the bills…Coors, Miller Lite, Blue Moon, etc. The new company would be able to focus efforts on the most important thing – the beer.

Glenn (Knip) Knippenberg originally starting working for Coors in 1983. He left the company and was living in Kentucky when he got the call from Pete. Pete invited Knip to come back to Colorado to run AC Golden, which was going to focus on small-batch beers. As Knip put it “Coming back was a no-brainer, it was a great idea and I knew it was what I wanted to do.” The opportunity to brew craft beers was too good for Knip to pass up. In April 2007, AC Golden Brewing Company officially began brewing in the old pilot brewery at Coors. They expanded the capacity from 1,000 barrels annually, to 8,000 barrels by adding a new fermentation cellar, commissioned in January 2010.

I had the great opportunity to spend time with the team at AC Golden last week. After sitting down with Knip for a few minutes, it is obvious he loves what he does, and he brings a passion to the team at AC Golden. Pete Coors definitely knew what he was doing when he asked Knip to run the company. Knip is happy to talk about AC Golden, and especially its most popular brand, Colorado Native Lager. On top of meeting with Knip, I was also able to meet with Head Brewer, Jeff Nickel and Brewers Steve (Fletch) Fletcher, Jason zumBrunnan and Ben Knutson. Everyone on the team was excited to discuss their role – and especially the beers they brew. They were all smiling quite a bit too – I’m guessing the beer might have had something to do with that! I know it definitely brought a smile to my face. I can’t explain how great it was to meet them all, and to find out about AC Golden Brewing Company.

AC Golden Brewing Company is best known for Colorado Native Lager, which is a very unique beer for a few reasons. Colorado Native is brewed with all Colorado ingredients. The barley, hops, yeast and water are all sourced from within the great state of Colorado. To take it a step further, Colorado Native Lager is only available for sale in Colorado. To say this is a unique beer is putting it lightly. AC Golden came up with a great idea, but they also did a ton of work to make it possible to actually brew this beer. To be able to source hops from Colorado, AC Golden actually got involved in the process of growing hops. They set out to find farmers that could grow for them. They also planted different hop varieties on the Coors farm in Center, CO. They started with 8 types of hops and eventually narrowed this down to 3 hops – the 3 that are currently used in Colorado Native Lager (Cascade, Centennial and Chinook). Once they figured out which hops to use, AC Golden found more farms in the San Juan Valley, and Western Slope that were able to grow those hops as well. Today, there are 11 Colorado farms that grow hops that are used in Colorado Native Lager!
 Colorado Native Logo AC Golden Brewing Company is best known for Colorado Native Lager, but they brew other beers that are very good as well. Herman Joseph’s Private Reserve is a German style lager, and is also only available in 16 restaurants in Colorado. Born of German heritage dating back to 1868, Herman Joseph’s Private Reserve recipe combines the finest European and North American hops with prized Moravian two-row barley. Herman Joseph was Adolph Coors’ two middle names. 

Winterfest is the third beer that AC Golden currently brews. Winterfest is a limited release beer, just for the holidays. It was originally brewed just for friends and family. 2013 will mark the 27th year for Winterfest. The more it was shared, the more popular it became, and the more of it was brewed. Winterfest is also brewed with Moravian two-row barley malt with choice hops from the Hallerrtau region of Germany.

The fourth beer brewed by AC Golden is a German Pilsner called Barmen. Barmen Pilsner Barmen German Pilsnerwas first brewed in what is now the AC Golden Brewing Company. It was initially offered on November 12, 1997. The brewing was later moved to the Sandlot Brewery at Coors Field. In February of 2012, Barmen brewing was moved back to AC Golden Brewing Company. Barmen was born of Pete Coors’ desire to brew a German Pilsner that tastes exactly like the great pilsners of northern Germany. The beer was named after Barmen, Germany; birthplace of Adolph Herman Joseph Coors. Barmen is offered in only a few bars and restaurants in and around Golden, CO. To ensure you enjoy the full Barmen experience, bars and restaurants offering Barmen are requested to honor the traditional “German Seven-Minute Pour” and to serve the beer in the  proper Barmen branded pilsner glass. When properly poured, it should look like this.

I was able to find out about some new things in the works at AC Golden. The brewers are working on some new beers that should be released later this year or possibly next year. I can’t provide too much info about that, but I’m looking forward to it! I was able to sample some sour beers the brewers are aging in oak barrels at the pilot brewery. These were a nice change of pace, and much different than any of the other beer offerings from AC Golden. The brewers were really excited to talk about the flexibility they have to work on new styles and recipes – and ultimately the next production beer they will be releasing.

AC Golden  Barrels

Oak aging new recipes at AC Golden

My visit to AC Golden Brewing Company was great for many reasons. It was awesome to learn how the company works, and to be able to dispel some misconceptions about the brewery (which I believed myself). Many beer enthusiasts, and other brewers, think that AC Golden is just Coors coming up with new packaging and marketing campaigns. Well, that couldn’t be further from the truth. The team at AC Golden is small, and passionate about brewing great craft beer. They want their customers to get world-class beer, and they use the best ingredients in order to make this possible. In fact, AC Golden is so passionate about their hops, they have done a great deal to introduce the crop to many farmers in Colorado. I sat down with Brewer Steve (Fletch) Fletcher for a solid 20 minutes just talking about the selection of hops. 

Another misconception about AC Golden is that they brew with the same equipment as Coors. This is not true. The equipment they use was part of the the pilot brewery, but is very small in comparison to the large brewery. The AC Golden brew kettle is 30 barrels while the Coors brew kettles are closer to 500 barrels. AC Golden operates in its own section of the brewery, has its own brewers, and operates completely separate from Coors. There is a separate sales team, marketing team, and leadership team. It was nice to see this first hand as I had heard a few theories as to how the company operated, and they were all pretty far off base.

I would like to thank everyone at AC Golden Brewing Company for a great visit. I thoroughly enjoyed talking, sampling beers, and touring the pilot brewery. If you are a craft beer drinker and want to try a great local beer, definitely try Colorado Native Lager. Colorado Native has a rich, full-flavor with slight fruitiness, and clean finish. Just make sure you are in Colorado, or you won’t be able to find it! Of course, you can always try Herman Joseph’s Private Reserve, Barmen, or Winterfest when they are available as well. I’ve added beer locators below:

Colorado Native locator (On Tap):
Where to find Herman Joseph’s Private Reserve
Where to find Barmen Pilsner

AC Golden Brewing Company
1221 Ford St.
Golden, CO. 80401
http://ColoradoNativeLager.com

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