Joyride Brewing Company – Edgewater, CO

Joyride Brewing logoJoyride Brewing Company is located in Edgewater, CO across the street from Sloan’s Lake, a popular Denver park for walking, biking and even boating. Due to their location, Joyride has become a hot spot for visitors of the lake. If you’ve never heard of Edgewater, it’s because the city is less than one square mile in size. The area has a unique history that Joyride embraced in many aspects of their operation. From the logo, to the names of the beer, there are some really cool facts about the area that have been integrated into the brewery and taproom.

History of the Brewery:
Joyride Brewing Company opened for business on July 16, 2014 to great fanfare. There was a great deal of excitement for the opening because the building had been vacant for a couple of years, and Joyride would become the first brewery in Edgewater. The first day was crazy as group after group kept coming and the staff realized they were not quite ready for the amount of people that showed up. Thanks to great support, and the amount of people that visited the brewery early on, Joyride streamlined their processes and can now handle large crowds.

I had the opportunity to sit down with Dave Bergen, Brewmaster and Owner of Joyride Brewing. Dave went to college for management of business computers, but it wasn’t something he was really excited about. He ended up going into sales, but felt like he wanted to do something different. Dave bought his dad a Mr. Beer homebrew kit, but his dad wasn’t really into it. He got the kit back from his dad and started getting really excited about brewing, and the science behind it. He then got a second Mr. Beer kit and started brewing more and more. In late 2008, Dave reached the point that Mr. Beer was too limiting, and he got into all-grain brewing so he could try new things, and of course, brew better beer. Eventually he joined a homebrew club, Foam on the Range, and began gaining notoriety for brewing good beer.

After a few years of learning, and gaining experience brewing quality beer, Dave and two friends, Grant Babb and Brent Smith, decided they wanted to partner up and open a brewery. The trio decided to treat their goal like being in a band, and they dedicated regular time to brewing, much like a band having regular practices. After about three years they started writing a business plan, looking for investors, and searching for properties for the brewery. They found the location in Edgewater after walking about fifty buildings. They signed a long-term lease on an abandoned pawn shop that had been vacant for about two years. The building Joyride Brewing occupies had been various businesses, including a pawn shop, a record store, and Edgewater’s first grocery store and meat market. The building was built in 1910 and operated as Knoll’s Meat Market.

Sloan’s Lake also has an interesting history. Thomas Sloan, a cattle rancher, was digging on his land in 1861 and hit an underground aquifer, creating Sloan’s Lake (which people dubbed Sloan’s Leak when it first happen). Sloan would cut ice blocks from the lake in the winter and sell it to breweries. This fact inspired Joyride to name a beer “Ice Cutter Kolsch” in honor of the German breweries that were prevalent when Sloan was supplying them with ice blocks. Manhattan Beach opened in 1881 on the shore of Sloan’s Lake and was the first amusement park west of the Mississippi River. Roger the Elephant was the first elephant that P.T. Barnum (founder of Barnum & Bailey Circus) purchased, and he spent time at the Manhattan Beach Amusement Park at Sloan’s Lake. Roger had a woven basket on his back, and gave kids rides around the park. There was an accident and Roger was put down, then buried nearby at 20th and Depew. Joyride Brewing really embraced the great history of the area, and this why they have an elephant in their logo. Dave is very knowledgeable about the local history, and says that it’s a good reminder that life’s about the journey instead of the destination. Joyride Brewing1 (1)Another historic aspect of the Joyride story, is that their building had a mural detailing the history of Edgewater. Unfortunately, they had to tear off the mural to meet the city regulations for having windows for a minimum transparency from the outside looking in. Where the garage doors are now located, there used to be a mural detailing much of the history of Edgewater, and Sloan’s Lake. Joyride’s ownership was really bummed about taking down the mural, but they were happy to have helped bring more people to the area, which has helped many of the local businesses. I’m very impressed with the level of knowledge of local history, and the amount of history that Joyride incorporated into their operation.

The Beer:
Joyride boasts a diverse mix of beer, with options for people that like all different beer styles. They embrace having people visit that may not have a lot of experience with craft beer, and educating them on different beer styles. Dave loves the discovery aspect of craft beer, where he can try new beers. He even plans his vacations around being able to check out new breweries and brewing styles. The brewers at Joyride (Dave + three assistant brewers) brew six regular beers, but they try new styles, and are constantly looking to evolve their skills. They use a wide variety of hops in their beers, where some breweries use the same hops for many of their beers.
Joyride Brewing1 (2)Regular Beers (descriptions from the Joyride menu):

  • Ice Cutter Kolsch5.5% ABV, 25 IBUs: In the winter after Thomas Sloan flooded his farm, he would cut ice from the lake and sell it to local breweries. As most brewers in the day were of German decent, a Kolsch style beer could have been produced. Joyride’s Kolsch is a classic interpretation of the style, very smooth and drinkable like a lager with a light fruit flavor from ale fermentation. It has moderate levels of bitterness and noble hop flavor and a crisp, dry finish. Nothing pairs better with our Lakeside view than our Kolsch.
  • Bear Paw Oatmeal Milk Stout7.2% ABV, 45 IBUs: The Bear Paw is a deliciously decadent Sweet Stout that is robust and silky smooth. Seven different malts create chocolate, roast, caramel and coffee flavors, while five pounds of lactose sugar per barrel balance it out with a velvety sweetness. The flaked oats contribute to a luscious mouthfeel that will leave you wanting another glass. It may seem cute and cuddly, but at over 7%, this one’s got some claws.
  • Cougar Pale Ale5.1% ABV, 40 IBUs: Cougar Pale Ale is west coast inspired with English character. We use a method known as “hop bursting” and add all of the hops after the boil during our whirlpool. This gives the beer an extremely soft and pleasant bitterness while maximizing hop flavor and aroma. We also add Maris Otter malt as about 20% of the grist to provide a more toasty and bready malt backbone. The result is a very balanced American Pale Ale without the hops or malt being over the top. Take a Cougar home tonight!
  • Dry Hopped Antelope Amber5.3% ABV, 50 IBUs: Antelope is a bold rich and hoppy American Amber that leaps across your tongue. Antelope weaves caramel, nutty and dark fruit flavors from six premium malts with the citrus characteristics from four types of American hops to create a delicious Amber Ale. For this batch, we dry hopped with Amarillo hops to increase the grapefruit and floral aromas. Let this one run wild.
  • Edgewater IPA6.5% ABV, 70 IBUs: Edgewater IPA is a west coast style IPA that bursts out of the glass. We use obscene amounts of Apollo and Chinook with a touch of Amarillo hops to layer citrus, piney, resiny and floral characteristics across your palate. The hop explosion and dry finish make this extremely drinkable and enjoyable. Edgewater. This is our town. This is our IPA. Take it for a ride.
  • Joyride Double IPA9.3% ABV, 100+ IBUs:  Intended to be seasonal but the response was strong it’s now always on tap. Calling all hop heads, this beer is for you! We used three pounds of hops per barrel to give our Double IPA an aggressive and delicious hop profile. We used 4 different types of American and German malts, but the hops are definitely the star here. We did 7 different additions of Simcoe and Citra hops to layer piney, citrus, tropical fruit and melon flavors into this dangerously drinkable ale.

Seasonal/Rotating Beers:

  • Black Razz Blonde
  • Give Peach a Chance Berliner Weisse
  • Sloan’s Pale Ale
  • Emerald Irish Stout
  • Batch 69 Hoppy Wheat Ale

As described above, Joyride offers a diverse mix of beer to fit nearly any taste. I was impressed by a few of the beers, but my absolute favorite is the Antelope Amber. I’m not normally a huge fan of Ambers, but the dry hopping makes this one unique and flavorful. My next favorite is a tie between the Ice Cutter Kolsch and the Batch 69 Hoppy Wheat Ale. Both are simply easy drinking, complex, tasty beers. Joyride switches out their beer menu about once per week, so the list above may not be exactly what they will have when you stop in. They’re looking at doing limited canning through a mobile canning provider, but that has not been finalized. For now you can only get Joyride’s beer at the brewery. You can purchase a 64oz glass growler for $20, or a 64 oz stainless steel growler for $60. The cost to fill a 64oz growler is $12. You can also purchase a 32oz growler for $8.

I would like to thank Dave Bergen for sitting down and talking craft beer with me. The team at Joyride is extremely knowledgeable, and create a fun environment for beer lovers to enjoy a fresh local brew. I definitely recommend a trip to Joyride for anyone that is looking to try a new brewery. The taproom is a fun, open room that is normally full of people enjoying a beer and a conversation. Denver Westword recently awarded Joyride as the “Best New Brewery Taproom” and the “Best Brewery Taproom Ambiance”. So get some friends together and take a trip down to Joyride Brewing, you won’t be disappointed!

Joyride Brewing Company
2501 Sheridan Blvd
Edgewater, CO 80214
(720) 432-7560

38 State Brewing Company – Littleton, CO

38 State Brewing Company is our first featured brewery in Littleton, CO, and they’re also the first brewery/taproom located in Littleton. The name 38 State Brewing is in honor of Colorado becoming the 38th state to join the union in 1876. I had the opportunity to get some background information on 38 State Brewing from Brett Blazek, VP of Marketing, and one of the 4 part owners of the brewery. 38 State Brewing Logo

38 State Brewing started much like everyone else (homebrewers), and decided to take their passion for brewing to the next level after friends and family gave them ample amounts of positive feedback about their product. Initially they began brewing as a hobby, never thinking it would escalate to anything more than that, but friends can be quite persuasive, so they decided to take 38 State to the next level and open their very own brewery.

38 State Brewing is currently located at 8071A S. Broadway in Littleton, which makes them the very first brewery/taproom in the city. 38 State is strictly a brewery, so they don’t have the capability of preparing any food on site (like the Old Mill Brewery/Restaurant – also in Littleton). The team at 38 State is quite excited to be labeled with the distinction as Littleton’s first true brewery/taproom, and look to cater to those locals who have desperately wanted a place to call their own. The brewery and taproom is located just north of C-470 & Broadway.

The four owners of 38 State Brewing are: Mike and Kim Keating, Jason Virzi, and Brett Blazek. When you take a married couple, high school friends, and literal neighbors… and put all of that together, along with their backgrounds (Mike – Master Gardener, Kim – CFO of a payment processing company, Jason – Aviation Project Manager, and Brett – a humble school teacher), you get the heart and soul of 38 State Brewing Company! 38 State Brewing is glad they could come together and give Littleton something that it has been missing, and hope they will continue to do so for decades to come. In my visit with Brett Blazek, it was evident there is a ton of passion behind what is being done at 38 State Brewing. Great beer, good friends, and a fun place to get together is how I would describe what the owners of 38 State have created.

38 State is about as small as a nano-brewery can get. The brewery is currently running a one-barrel system made by Ruby Street Brewing (out of of Fort Collins). Head brewer, Mike Keating, along with two assistant brewers put in long hours the one-barrel system to ensure that 38 State can meet the demand of its patrons. 38 State opened to the public on May 10, 2014 and had such a positive turnout that they actually went light on a couple of their beers due to demand being so high. This was great news for the brewery, but meant that they would have to crank up the production schedule.

38 State Logo

38 State Brewing’s  logo – spray painted mural in the taproom

The team at 38 State is quite fond of their little one-barrel system as it allows them to not only produce their staple beers, but gives them the freedom to try new things, recipes, ideas, etc. knowing that if lightning doesn’t strike, they’re only out one barrel as opposed to twenty. This freedom and creative approach is what they began with back in the garage while homebrewing, and they continue to keep the same thought process day in and day out. One of the many things that 38 State is proud of is the truly “hands-on” approach to what they do. According to Brett Blazek, “Each day our grains are milled by hand, and that hands-on process doesn’t leave until that beer is poured into a guest’s glass. Milling, steeping, stirring, transferring, pouring… it’s all done (by hand) by our fantastic staff who understands what it takes to make a great pint of craft brew.” Brett Blazek 38 State Brewing

The Beer: In addition to the list below, 38 State plans to constantly introduce new styles to keep their beer selection fresh and different. Since their opening they’ve also showcased a small batch of Broadway IPA (a traditional IPA), and have two others debuting within 10 days time. As Brett Blazek puts it, “Again, we have this creativity per our one-barrel system, and we couldn’t be more excited to give the people something new time and time again.”

One thing I think is really cool about 38 State Brewing is that they’re still figuring out which beers are the most popular. Since they’ve only been open about a month, they’re taking feedback from patrons to figure out which beers should become a staple. Visitors of 38 State have the distinct opportunity to help shape future beer offerings by trying different beers, and providing feedback to the staff. It’s pretty cool that the people coming in to try a fresh craft beer, may also be the reason one of 38 State’s beers becomes a local favorite.

38 State’s current stable of beers consists of a little something for everyone. Keep in mind that with the current system, styles will be rotating frequently. The beer listed below may not be available tomorrow. The good thing is that overall, 38 State brews awesome beer, so you’ll be able to pick at least 1-2 that you’ll really enjoy when you visit.

Beer List:

  • Golden Lemon-Honey Wheat: This beer is created using fresh lemons, organic lemon juice and local Colorado honey. This American style Wheat beer has a crisp and refreshing taste that will help you get through the dog days of summer – or any time of year! Not too tart, not too sweet, we dare you to have just one! ABV 5.4%
  • ColorAmber Amber Ale: This American style Amber Ale focuses heavily on the special blend of both Munich and Biscuit malts which create a flavorful beer that is unbelievably drinkable. Add to that the pairing of Fuggle and Willemette hops, and you have an Amber Ale complete with superb taste and feel, making it a truly well-balanced session beer. ABV 4.3%
  • Great Plains Scottish Ale: This ale undergoes an extensive boil to help achieve its remarkable flavor and crisp bronze color. The high levels of fermentable sugar in conjunction with the gentle hop balance make this beer a special blend of savory malts and rich aromas that is sure to satisfy. ABV 6%
  • Two Buttes Double IPA:  A brew for serious hop heads! This robust and genuinely flavorful Double IPA is inspired by the old world style of brewing, making it a favorite amongst beer drinkers. A strong Double IPA, this beer endures a lengthy boiling process to guarantee maximum flavor from its special blend of grains. This recipe’s meticulous attention to detail of both malt and hops creates a “beast” of a beer. ABV 9.2%
  • Chocolate Stout: This is a very creative recipe inspired by both classic English and Irish stouts. We use an awesome blend of chocolate and coffee malts. This stout is lightly hopped to complement the roasted flavors unleashed during the boiling process which leads to an easy drinking beer. ABV 6.5%
  • Littleton Kolsh: This one’s brand new! We’ll have a description and ABV soon!
  • Chocolate Oatmeal Stout: Chocolaty, a little smokey from the oatmeal, and a good choice for fans of stouts.
  • Dunkelweizen: Dark in color, smooth, refreshing beer for a hot day. Well, any day really.
  • Lunch Pale Ale: A great summer Pale Ale with a subtle hoppy flavor. This is a great beer for someone that may have avoided hoppy beers in the past. Try this one out, and you will see what you’ve been missing.
  • ESB: A smooth ESB, with a subtle bitterness.
  • IPA: We didn’t try this one, but it will be back soon.

After visiting 38 State Brewing, and sitting down with part owner, Brett Blazek, I can say without a doubt that beer drinkers will enjoy visiting the first brewery and taproom in Littleton. The atmosphere is inviting and the feel of the taproom is unique. 38 State is located in an area that is predominantly automotive. There are repair shops, dealerships, and other automotive business close by. The building they’re located in is actually an old garage that has been revamped, and now has the feel of a modern cabin. There’s nice woodwork on the walls, flights are served on hand-crafted wooden serving trays, and the old garage doors open to give the taproom an outdoor feel. Of course, if you want to sit outside, there is a nice patio in the front as well. It’s fitting that 38 State opened in an old garage, as that is how the owners began brewing together years ago. I look forward to seeing the growth of 38 State Brewing, and will definitely be heading back to try more of their outstanding Colorado craft brews. Check them out at the link below.

38 State Brewing Company LLC
8071A S. Broadway
Littleton, CO 80122
760-220-8580

Yak & Yeti Restaurant & Brewpub – Arvada, CO

Yak and Yeti Logo

The Yak & Yeti Restaurant & Brewpub is located in Arvada a few blocks from Olde Town. Yak & Yeti operates from within what was once a historic Victorian Mansion, and has been transformed into one of the most unique places in Colorado to enjoy a freshly brewed craft beer. On top of the fresh craft beer served up at Yak & Yeti, visitors can also enjoy Indian and Nepalese Cuisine that is among the best in the State of Colorado.

The original structure at the present day Yak & Yeti Restaurant and Brewpub was built in 1864 by a man named Eli Allen. Allen was the second postmaster in Arvada, having taken over for Benjamin Wadsworth, who was the first postmaster in Arvada (Wadsworth is also where the name for Wadsworth Blvd came from). Eli Allen lived and worked out of the home until his son moved in and added onto the original home in 1891. The story of the home is quite interesting and includes stories of being haunted. For more information on all the history of the Yak & Yeti mansion, visit the About Us page on Yak & Yeti’s website.

The story of Yak & Yeti Brewpub is much more recent than the building it is located in. Yak & Yeti celebrated its 5 year anniversary as a brewery in 2013. Prior to being Yak & Yeti, an English brewpub called the “Cheshire Cat” operated out of the building. When Yak & Yeti first took over the building, they were not a brewery and the Owner, Dol Bhattarai, nearly sold all of the brewing equipment that came with the purchase of the building. Yak & Yeti had been operating a successful restaurant in Westminster, and was simply looking for a second restaurant location. After considering the possibilities of running a brewery, Dol decided to keep the brewing equipment, and to hire a brewer. Many people wonder how an Indian restaurant got into brewing – now you know.

Adam Draeger has been the head brewer for the Yak & Yeti Brewpub since 2011.  A Wisconsin native, he did his undergraduate work in Engineering Physics.  After a decade of engineering and homebrewing, he took the plunge to change careers. adam draeger Adam studied at Siebel Institute in Chicago, IL and the Doemens Academy in Munich, Germany where he received his International Diploma from the World Brewing Academy.

When Adam took over the brewing operations, Yak & Yeti only had 3 beers on tap, and Adam made it his goal to change that. Adam is a fan of craft lager beers, but has done a great job of having a mix of different types of beers. I spent a couple hours taking the tour of the historic mansion, and getting a taste of many of the fresh beers Adam has created. It was evident in my visit with Adam that he’s a guy that loves beer, and he loves to talk about beer (he’s also very good at brewing beer). Yak & Yeti offers a well-diversified portfolio of beers on tap ranging from Belgian-style beers, German lagers, American ales, English ales and several specialty and seasonal offerings.

  • Wheat Beer Series – Brewed in the summer, a new beer is tapped weekly with fresh fruit served right in the keg.
  • Porter Series – a new beer is tapped weekly, but focuses on fruits, adjuncts and spices that compliment porters.
  • The Haunted Beer Series – Adam’s stage for debuting small experiment pilot batches that range from Russian Imperial Stouts to White IPA’s to spruce beers and many other. The series gets its name from the stories of Yak & Yeti being haunted.

Beer List: Yak & Yeti offers 6 standard beers, which are available all year. They also offer some great seasonals (including the Oktoberfest, which was awesome). Below is a list of the standard beers you will find at Yak & Yeti. To view the entire beer list, visit their Crafted Beer Page. Yak & Yeti won’t be found in liquor stores, but can be found around Denver at many taphouses that specialize in craft beer. If you want to take some fresh Yak & Yeti beer home with you, they have growlers available for any of their standard beers, and whatever seasonals they have on tap. 

  • Namaste Pilsner – 5.1% ABV. ~ 34 IBUs (available year round)
    Our Pilsner is a Northern German style hopped with German Tettnanger hops. Third Place winner at 2011 Colorado State Fair.

  • Himalayan IPA – 6.3% ABV. ~ 70 IBUs (available year round)
    Our 2010 GABF-winning India Pale Ale is dry-hopped with Columbus and Cascade hops right before being transferred into the serving vessel. This isn’t East-coast or West-coast style IPA but rather pure Rocky Mountain gold.
  • Chai Milk Stout(*has lactose) – 5.2% ABV.~30 IBUs (available year-round)
    This stout is our flavored version of the milk stout. The Chai tea spices are the Yak and Yeti’s own blend. A perfect dessert drink.

  • Jalapeño Lena – 5.1% ABV. ~ 34 IBUs (available year round)
    A light-colored but full flavored Jalapeño pepper beer. Huge fresh aroma from the pepper served right inside the keg! Some say it isn’t that hot, others can’t handle it. You decide. We also make red beers called Bloody Lena’s!
  • GF Apple Ale – 4.9% ABV. ~ 0 IBUs (available year round)
    GF stands for gluten-free as this ale is made iwht cider and sorghum. Looks like a cider, tastes likes a cider but is still technically an ale. (a hop pellet for good measure)

  • West-Coast Glutton (DIPA)- 9.5%ABV.~150 IBUs (available year round)You like them RED, BIG & Hoppy?! This Double Red/DIPA is a Centennial and Cascade-hopped behemoth that gives some unique citrus and resiny flavors/aromas.

Beer Festivals: Yak & Yeti is an active participant in beer festivals across the state. Here are a few places you will most likely find them:

  • GABF (Great American Beer Festival) – Denver, CO
  • Vail Big Beer Festival – Vail, CO
  • Brewers’ Rendezvous – Salida, CO
  • Epic Beer Festival – Denver, CO

Awards: For a small brewery, Yak & Yeti has picked up some big awards. Here’s a list of what they’ve won, and where the won it.

  • 2010: Gold Medal for the Himalayan IPA (American Style Extra Pale Ale, GABF)
  • 2011: Bronze Medal for the Namaste Pilsner (Pilsner category, Colorado State Fair)
  • 2012: Bronze Medal for the Honey Ginger Soda (Soda category, Colorado State Fair)
  • 2013: Bronze Medal for the Honey Ginger Soda (Soda category, Colorado State Fair)
  • 2013: Silver Medal for the Chai Milk Stout (Urban Spiced, GABF)
  • 2013: Bronze Medal for the Himalayan IPA (Fresh Ales/IPA/DIPA), Colorado State Fair)

I had a great visit with Adam and learned a lot about Yak & Yeti, and the awesome beer they brew. I would highly recommend a visit for the food, and of course for their beer. The atmosphere at Yak & Yeti is truly unique, and one that will impress anyone that has an interest in history. Even those that don’t drink beer will have the ability to enjoy a fresh brew – the Honey Ginger Soda is very good. The Chai Milk Stout is one of the most unique beers I’ve ever tried, and has won awards for good reason. If you love craft beer made in Colorado, a trip to Yak & Yeti is a must! Thanks Adam for the tour, and of course for sharing your fresh craft beer.

Yak & Yeti Restaurant & Brewpub
7803 Ralston Road
Arvada, CO 80002
(303) 431-9000
www.theyakandyeti.com

 

Brewery Rickoli – Wheat Ridge, CO

Brewery Rickoli Logo

Brewery Rickoli is located in Wheat Ridge, CO. on the Southwest corner of Wadsworth Blvd. and 44th Ave., just west of Denver. Brewery Rickoli opened up in November 2012, becoming the first ever brewery in Wheat Ridge. The idea behind opening Brewery Rickoli was to provide the local neighborhood a place to enjoy a fresh pint close to home. While the brewery has only been open a short time, it has already made a big impression in the community.

Brewery Rickoli is the creation of Rick Abitbol, a seasoned brewer with 10+ years of professional brewing experience. Rick has a unique brewing story. He started out in homebrewing, and entered his first contest at the Colorado State Fair in Pueblo. His Cream Ale did very well and was highly regarded among judges at the fair, it was even a finalist for the “Best of Show” award. Rick decided to approach a local brewery to see if they would be interested in letting Rick brew his cream ale. He was able to convince the owner of Shamrock Brewing to give him a shot, and Rick was able to get his first experience brewing in a brewery.

Later on, Rick joined Hop, Barley & the Alers, a well known homebrew club in Boulder. This club happened to be the same club Charlie Sturdavant (Owner of Golden City Brewery, and Tommyknockers), was also in. Rick met Charlie and basically begged him to give him an opportunity to help out at GCB. Rick started out doing anything he could to help, and eventually began helping brew. After gaining more experience, and the departure of the head brewer, Rick took over as head brewer at GCB. Rick worked at GCB for two years, then gained additional experience brewing at Rock Bottom, Denver ChopHouse and finally Renegade Brewing.

Over the years, Rick learned a great deal from his time brewing in several types of breweries. He developed tastes and methods that grew his love of brewing, and he began dreaming of starting his own brewery. With a bankruptcy looming, Rick began to make plans to open his own brewery. Thanks to financing from Rick’s dad, and the Sam Adams Brewing the American Dream Program, Rick was able to realize his dream. Rick officially opened Brewery Rickoli on November 28, 2012. Since then, locals have been enjoying fresh pints – some have visited as many as 80 times in the roughly 150 days Brewery Rickoli has been open!

Rickoli Black and Tan

A Black & Tan served especially for us!

Beer List: For a small brewery, Brewery Rickoli offers a ton of beer choices! Not only are all of Brewery Rickoli’s beers Gluten Reduced, they are great tasting. There are beers for every taste, and all levels of beer geekdom. From the lighter Cream Ale, to the hoppy Double IPA, the beers at Brewery Rickoli are very good. My personal favorites are the Aldo Red and the Black Pline! Although, it was a tough call to pick any favorites. Rick said it best, “Brewery Rickoli brews big beers to compensate for their small equipment!” Of course this is in reference to their small homebrew setup, that produces outstanding, consistently flavorful beers. Rick is proud to be able to produce the beers he does with what he calls, “the smallest brewery setup in the state.”

  • M.E.H. (Most Excellent Homebrew) Cream Ale – This is a very refreshing and light ale that is very similar to Genesee Cream Ale. This beer is only 4.3% ABV, so you can relax and have a few after work and still get stuff done. A malty leaning beer that has just the right kiss of hops! 4.3% ABV, 20 IBU’S. 
  • ALDO RED –  (Named after Rick’s Dad) This is a very flavorful derivation of a German style called ALTBIER. A little fuller boded than the German version, this beer has the depth of flavor of an Irish Red, but finishes cleaner.  This beer is 5.3% ABV and uses Munich, Vienna, and Pilsner malt with a little noble hop to give it character. 5.3% ABV, 30 IBU’S.
  • Totally EYE-P-A  –  Everybody has an IPA and we have a great one! Pale malt and a touch of Munich malt combine to provide a clean and sturdy base for the intense hop flavor and aroma in this beer. At 6.8% abv, This beer falls in line with the new wave of IPA beers on the market. 6.8%ABV, 65 IBU’S.
  • Rickoli’s Rye Stout – This is a hearty Rye Stout that satisfies the soul! Roast and coffee notes are combined with rye spiciness and the full body sweetness of malt to cradle the gentle American hop flavor that this beer takes advantage of.                 7% ABV, 45 IBU’s.
  • Social Lubricant – This is traditional Scotch ale.  Golden Promise malt with a touch of roast barley, boiled extensively to concentrate the caramel flavors with just the stingiest amount of English hops! 8% ABV, 30 IBU’S.
  • Disturbed Reflection Double IPA – This is our double version of Totally Eye-P-A! It reeks of pungent hops and alcohol and has a wonderful creamy mouth feel that lays the lupulin goodness across all of your senses.  9.7% ABV, 190 IBU’S – Whew!
  • The Black Pline – This is a very intense Imperial Black IPA! Extreme hop nose and flavor supported by just a kiss of dark malt that gives a subtle smoke in the profile. 9.8%ABV, 70 IBU’S
  • Session IPA Our second offering in our Single-hop Pale Ale Series.  We make a nominal Pale Ale recipe and change out the featured hop variety.  This month we combine Summit with 2 experimental hop varieties. 5% ABV, 65 IBU.
  • VannFaw Red Hefeweizen –  Inspired by the awesome folks in our homebrew club, the VannFaw Hefe uses a darker shade of caramel to compliment the banana-like esthers and reminds one of Bananas Foster on the palate while still light and refreshing! 4.55% ABV
  • Thrilla in Vanilla –  Rickoli’s Rye Stout spiked with vanilla!  The heartiness of this very approachable stout is balanced and softened by the subtle vanilla flavor.        7% ABV, 45 IBU’s.
  • Elke Brown – (Named after Rick’s Mom) An American-style brown ale, with an array of medium to dark caramel malts. Accented with English chocolate malt, which gives a full-bodied sweetness that cradles the Williamette hops used throughout this brew. 6.8% ABV, 45 IBU

Brewery Rickoli serves all of their beers from the tap. If you would like to purchase beer to take home, Growlers are available. I personally grabbed a growler of the Aldo Red, and can’t say enough about the great quality of the beer, and the freshness. Brewery Rickoli is working on distributing kegs to local restaurants and bars that specialize in providing quality craft beer from the great State of Colorado.

Events: Here are a few local events where you will be able to try Brewery Rickoli’s beers.

I had a great visit with Rick Abitbol at Brewery Rickoli. He’s created a nice local brewery and taproom, which is perfect for beer lovers in the Wheat Ridge area. Of course, Denver is only a few minutes away, so it is a short trip down to Brewery Rickoli from around the metro area. Rick brews awesome beers and the vibe in the taproom is positive and laid-back. Brewery Rickoli provides good music, fresh beer, and a simple, fun environment to relax and enjoy a pint. I highly recommend making a trip to see Rick and enjoy a beer at Brewery Rickoli. Keep an eye out as Rick has plans to add a beer garden area behind the taproom. His plans include a 4-tap system and live music! Thanks again for the hospitality, and keep up the good work Rick!

Brewery Rickoli
4335 Wadsworth Blvd
Wheat Ridge, CO. 80033
303-344-8988
www.BreweryRickoli.com

Arvada Beer Company – Arvada, CO

 

Arvada Beer Company LogoArvada Beer Company is located in Arvada, CO. in the historic Olde Town district. The building Arvada Beer is located in was originally built in 1916, and has changed quite a bit over the years. The building was divided into smaller units that originally included a drug store, a car shop and most recently, a printing shop. Arvada Beer decided to move into the building in November 2010, and finally opened up the brewery in October 2011 after a massive renovation that included replacing all electrical and plumbing throughout the building. The owners of Arvada Beer Company are proud of the building, and enjoy taking visitors on tours of the facility.

Arvada Beer Company was started by Cary & Kelly Floyd.  The husband and wife brewing duo have a really interesting story that is deeply rooted in a mutual love of homebrewing. Cary started homebrewing in 1988 and learned a great deal through trial and error. In 2002, Cary won his first medal for homebrewing. In 2004 he started dating Kelly (this is where the story gets interesting!). Kelly watched Cary brew one of his favorite recipes, and told him it looked really easy. Cary took that as a challenge, and told Kelly they should both brew the same recipe, and enter their individual beers into a homebrewing contest at the Colorado State Fair. Kelly won the gold medal! Cary won silver…this was when he knew he needed to make Kelly his wife!

With over 400 homebrewing medals (including 50 multi-award winning recipes), Cary and Kelly Floyd have learned a thing or two about experimenting with their recipes. They have created great beers that are always available, but they’re constantly tweaking recipes, or adding flavors for special occasions. Arvada Beer offers their ‘Brewers Limited Release’ on Thursday nights. The limited release is usually a regular beer with an extra flavor, or a twist on the original recipe. A recent beer featured in the ‘Brewers Limited Release’ was the Butter Pecan Gold. This unique beer was made with the Olde Town Brown and butter pecan flavoring from the ice cream shop next door. While Cary Floyd wouldn’t personally drink a full pint of the Butter Pecan Gold, he said the beer was a big hit among bar patrons.

Dennis O’Harrow is the brewer for Arvada Beer Company. He also has a strong brewing background, and brings a great deal of talent to the team. Dennis has won 49 professional brewing medals. His Coffee Porter won a Gold Medal at the Great American Beer Festival, and the World Beer Cup. Dennis previously brewed for CB & Potts before joining Arvada Beer. With a mix of experiences and techniques from years of practicing, the team at Arvada Beer Company brews excellent beers in many different styles. They are not afraid to push the limits, or to try something that sounds completely off the wall. Many breweries stick very close to their recipes, and try not to differ from batch to batch. Arvada Beer on the other hand, is contantly looking for a new way to add a crazy twist to what they do.

Beer List:

  • Water Tower Wheat: This true to style Bavarian Wheat beer is cloudy from the yeast, and includes notes of banana and clove.  4.5% ABV
  • Ralston’s Golden Ale: A crisp, refreshing beer. Easy drinking, malt oriented American ale.This beer is lighter and not too hoppy. This beer would be a great choice for someone that is looking for a good intro craft beer. 4.8% ABV
  • Goldline IPA: Smooth, not bitter with great citrus and floral tones. Goldline is hopped with 5 different hops, and then dry hopped with 3 different hops.  5.8% ABV
  • Flanigan’s Irish Red: With a deep red hue and subtle maltiness this Irish Red Ale is a sure fire easy drinking brew, with just enough hop for balance and the lower alcohol level of a traditional English ale. 4.8% ABV
  • Arvada Pride Double IPA:  American Hops and extra malt for a classic American Style Double IPA. With the high alcohol content, this DIPA still has as a great taste, and finishes smooth. 8.8% ABV
  • PoolHall Porter: A cross between a brown Porter and a Robust Porter, with all the taste of a robust porter and with some of the subtle flavors of a brown porter.      5.1% ABV
  • Lemon Shandy: This is a unique brew that starts as the Water Tower Wheat. Lemonade is added and it creates a lighter, sweeter flavor, and decreases the alcohol content. 3.8% ABV

We enjoyed tasting Arvada Beer Company’s beers. Our favorite was the Goldline IPA! Anyone that enjoys an IPA should definitely try out this beer. Arvada Beer is planning on canning in the near future, and the IPA will be one of the beers that is canned. Check back to find out when the IPA is available in cans, or you can always pick up a growler at the bar. Arvada Beer Company has a constantly changing beer list so check out their website for the latest: http://www.arvadabeer.com/our-beers/.

The atmosphere at Arvada Beer Company is very laid-back and has a great vibe. Olde Town offers a cool historic feel but with updated modern interiors in the buildings. There is a great neighborhood feel, and in our experience everyone was very friendly. While food is not provided by Arvada Beer, a cool option they have is to order from a number of closeby restaurants. Not only will these restaurants deliver your food, they will bring it right to your table! You can have Italian, Chinese, Indian, or many other options delivered in just a few minutes.

Arvada Beer Company has become an important part of the Arvada area. They participate in many city festivals and activities, and are a main part of many Olde Town gatherings. On March 16th Arvada Beer will be participating in the St. Patrick’s Day Festival. This festival will close off traffic in Olde Town, and will include activities for kids and adults. Arvada Beer will be providing green beer, and their Irish red as well.

Other Activities:

  • Brew Class: For $25 per person, you get your first pint of beer and a 6 pack of the beer made that day when it is ready ( limited to the first 10 people who sign up). If you want to just come watch and ask questions, our classes cost $10 each person, which includes your first beer. All Classes start at 9 am with mash in and should end around 3 pm. Must be over 21 to attend class.
  • Pro-Am Competition: We will be holding a competition again this year to determine our GABF Pro-Am entry. All entrants must be a member of the AHA at the time of judging and on 10/15/13 to be able to participate in the GABF Pro-Am.
  • National Homebrew Association Competition: Arvada Beer Company will be hosting some of the competition.
  • Arvada Oktoberfest: check the Arvada Beer website for more details as the event gets closer.
  • Beer Dinner: April 3rd at the Golden Hotel in Golden, CO.

We want to thank Cary Floyd for sitting down with us and sharing both the history and the beers of Arvada Beer Company! We had a great time, and look forward to visiting again. Anyone that wants to try great beer in a great environment, should head over and try out Arvada Beer for themselves. If you’re looking to try something different, and maybe a little outside of the box, look no further. With unique beers, and creative twists on everyday recipes, Arvada Beer Company is doing things most other breweries don’t. We hope you will take a trip to Arvada and see for yourself!

Arvada Beer Company
5600 Olde Wadsworth Blvd.
Arvada, CO 80002
Phone: (303) 467-BEER
E-mail: info@arvadabeer.com