Rocky Mountain Brewing News August/September 2012 : Page 1
Aug/Sept • 2012 Vol. 8/No. 5 The INTERSECTION of CRAFT BREWS and SOCIETY By Amy Moses ALE TRAIL. Odell Brewing employees volunteering with Wildlands Restoration. PHOTO COURTESY OF ODELL. W While driving up a canyon or cruising along a city street you may notice a white sticker with a bright red left hand that’s plastered on signs, posts, trash cans and many other objects. This well-known logo of Lefthand Brewing in Longmont, Colo., is a literal example of the intersection of craft brewing and soci-ety. But how much are non-craft brew drinkers and the communities at large being positively impacted by the local craft breweries that are popping up all over the Rocky Mountains? More than you know. In 2011, craft brews comprised only six percent of the overall beer market (which is extremely impres-sive), but the impact that craft breweries have on the communities where they operate is astounding, making it seem as though they have a lot more of the overall market share than they do. You’d be hard-pressed to find another industry that does as much to contribute to the well-being of the community in which it resides, whether it’s through monetary contributions, in-kind donations, man hours donated to non-profits, support of local farmers, art-A Denver Fixture Grows By Jim “Doc” Damon MEDALHEAD. Andy Brown, head brewer at Wynkoop, with two GABF medals he won in 2008. PHOTOS COURTESY OF WYNKOOP. A rider enjoys herself during New Belgium Brew-ing's Tour de Fat, which just eclipsed the $2 million mark for funds raised for non-pro ﬁ ts. PHOTO COURTESY OF NEW BELGIUM . See Intersection p. 3 In the Beginning... 1988 an unemployed geologist and oil engineer in Colorado was forced into looking for a new career. His name was John Hickenlooper. He gathered a few other investors and began looking for an inexpensive location in which he could create a new concept: a brewery with a restaurant. The building that interested him most was the Mercantile Building built by JS Brown in 1899. He consulted with several people including beer guru Charlie Papazian, who looked at this large dilapidated building in a very depressed neighborhood and offered him no words of encouragement. The first major obstacle he needed to overcome was a giant legal hurdle. At that time, there were no Colorado laws that allowed for the development of a brewpub. The primary focus of his energy was writing new legislation and rallying behind it to assure its passage, thus See Wynkoop p. 4 Calendar .......................2 Calendar ........................................2 Business of Beer.........3 Homebrew .....................................7 ....................7 Beer Homebrew Directory ........................10-12 Beer Directory ..... 10-12 Colorado Montana ....................................................................... 4 Upper Range ................................................... 13 6 Idaho Front ............................................................................ Central Peaks ............................................................ 14 8 Utah .............................................................................. Western Slope........................................................... 15 9 Wyoming ..................................................................... Denver ....................................................................... 16 Colorado Four Corners ............................................................. 18 Upper Front Front Range Range ................................................... 13 Lower ................................................... 19 Central Peaks ............................................................ 14 Western Slope........................................................... 15 Denver ....................................................................... 16 Four Corners ............................................................. 18 Lower Front Range ................................................... 19 IN John Hicklenlooper, founder of Wynkoop Brewing, poses in front of his establishment in 1989.
The Intersection Of Craft Brews
While driving up a canyon or cruising along a city street you may notice a white sticker with a bright red left hand that’s plastered on signs, posts, trash cans and many other objects. This well-known logo of Lefthand Brewing in Longmont, Colo., is a literal example of the intersection of craft brewing and society.But how much are non-craft brew drinkers and the communities at large being positively impacted by the local craft breweries that are popping up all over the Rocky Mountains? More than you know.<br /> <br /> In 2011, craft brews comprised only six percent of the overall beer market (which is extremely impressive), but the impact that craft breweries have on the communities where they operate is astounding, making it seem as though they have a lot more of the overall market share than they do.<br /> <br /> You’d be hard-pressed to find another industry that does as much to contribute to the well-being of the community in which it resides, whether it’s through monetary contributions, in-kind donations, man hours donated to non-profits, support of local farmers, artIsts, and musicians, or the examples set in sustainability and environmental awareness.<br /> <br /> Reaching Out<br /> <br /> Contributing to non-profits isn’t just something craft breweries do to promote their image…it’s a part of who they are and represents the values in which they believe. Amanda Johnson-King from Odell Brewing describes the multitude of ways Odell supports the community, including tasting room staff donating all tips to a different charity monthly and selecting two charities each month to receive the proceeds from their taster tray sales. In addition, they lead by setting an example. Johnson-King explains, “We have a volunteer program we call Odell Outreach that started a couple of years ago. For the past two years, the brewery has selected a volunteer project and our entire staff spends two days working for the non-profit.”<br /> <br /> Johnson-King recalls, “The first year we helped Wildlands Restoration Volunteers with erosion mitigation by planting willow poles, laying erosion mats, and seeding. Last year we spent two days cleaning, cooking, and painting at The Mission homeless shelter.John Giordanengo, Colorado Northern Regional Director from Wildlands Restoration, explains how much the efforts mean to them. “Having the Odell crew participating at the Campbell Valley watershed restoration was truly inspiring and a ton o’fun!” He continues, “Not only did they complete some very important and high quality work, but their participation has motivated other local businesses to get involved in this work including Mugs Coffee Lounge and New Belgium Brewing.”<br /> <br /> This year Odell invited their fans to join in and help repaint a home for at-risk youth. Volunteers were rewarded with pizza and Odell brews at the brewery afterwards.<br /> <br /> Karla Baise, Outreach Coordinator for Odell sums it up by saying, “These events and outings mean so much to us in reaching out to our community, but they are invaluable in getting us together for a cause that is greater than us. The vibe lasts a long time after returning to work.”<br /> <br /> Revolution Brewing in Paonia, Colo., started a “revolution” embodying the spirit of being one with the community, excitedly shares founder Mike King. “We chose this small town in Western Colorado because we wanted to create a regional, small scale brewery that specifically serves the community,” he explains.He continues, “We try to do this in a number of ways.We hire local labor-our cooler, as efficient as any commercial unit, was built by the young carpenter who also built our tasting room bar and benches.The wood, all matching slabs from a single beetle-kill spruce, comes from the local tree service and was cut within thirty miles of our building. A local electrician, patron and friend built all of our control boxes for the glycol system. The painters, landscaper, local hardware guy, plumber-they are all regulars, just as we are to them.”<br /> <br /> King relays, “Paonia is a small Colorado town filled with artists, farmers, ranchers and miners and the latter two groups took a long time to embrace the local product, but we now have a large percentage of regulars who didn't drink microbrew until we came to town.” Finishing, King states, “That said, we have also taken the advice of our patrons, and we have introduced new lagers.” These lagers bridge the gap between PBR and Revolution’s hoppier beers.<br /> <br /> Forget GDP – We Have GNH!<br /> <br /> When asked how microbreweries are interwoven with the community, responses of all sorts are generated.“We are promoting the ‘GNH’ – gross national happiness,” exclaims, Dave Collins who works in the warehouse for Avery Brewing in Boulder. In Avery’s case they prefer to donate craft beer to events that benefit the community and people in need. Marketing Director Joe Osborne explains, “Sometimes it's for a 5K fun run that donates proceeds to cancer research, a midnight art auction that raises money for the museum, or a beer dinner whose profits go toward protecting a local river. For all of our large festivals, like the Boulder Strong Ale Fest and Boulder SourFest, we Donate 100% of our profits to charitable causes.” Osborne enthusiastically shares, “In 2011 alone, we donated over $22,000 in cash and another $25,000 in beer to organizations that were able to use it for their fundraising efforts.”<br /> <br /> Innovation with Spent Grain<br /> <br /> Spent grain, a by-product of the brewing process, is commonly donated by breweries to farmers who use it to feed their cattle; however, two Colorado breweries are ensuring there’s a unique twist to that donation. In his new book, Of Mines & Beer! The History of Brewing in Gilpin County, Colorado, and Beyond! Author Dave Thomas explains what Dostal Alley Brewpub and Casino does with their spent grains.<br /> <br /> “Since 2007, local resident John Kittredge has driven his truck to the brewery on brew day and loaded up with heavy, wet spent grains. When he returns to his home, located on several former mining claims in Russell Gulch, he scatters the material over the ground. Placer and deep rock stamp mill tailing piles have covered most of the good, arable soil in Russell Gulch and surrounding mining districts.Residents have been unable to drink well water for many years due to heavy metal contamination from deep-shaft mining. Scattering the brewer’s spent grain replenishes some of the organic material missing from the soil for more than 150 years, allowing natural growth to occur.”<br /> <br /> Aspen Brewing Company donates a portion of their spent grain to the Aspen Center for Environmental Studies and their teaching farm, Rock Bottom Ranch, an institute that teaches sustainable farming techniques and environmental impacts. Aspen Brewing co-owner Duncan Clauss estimates that they donate 1,000 pounds of dry grain each week and are proud to help have a lasting impact on their gorgeous community.<br /> <br /> Wheeled Past the $2 Million Point<br /> <br /> Heard of that zany bicycle parade coordinated by New Belgium…the Tour de Fat? Yeah, the one where people wear costumes and ride their bikes around cities en masse to celebrate bicycling? This year the festival eclipsed the $2 million mark for total funds raised for non-profitsand this after only 13 years in existence. The Overland Mountain Bike Club in Fort Collins and the Southwest Idaho Mountain Bike Association are two of the organizations that have benefited. In 15 cities nationwide, young tykes, college coeds, and octogenarians turn out to pedal around the streets, and I’m betting all of them don’t quaff Fat Tire…or other craft brews…but there they are, participating in an event sponsored by the country’s third largest craft brewer. Leading the way in caring for our planet, New Belgium proudly reported that in 2011 Tour de Fat boasted an impressive 90 percent Diversion of waste from landfills. This definitely has an impact of beer drinks and non-beer drinkers alike!<br /> <br /> New Belgium is also a member of 1 % for the Planet, so one percent of their revenues go to environmental causes such as the Save the Colorado campaign.<br /> <br /> Boosting the Economy<br /> <br /> Beer festivals and events are a windfall to a community. The 2011 Oregon Brewers Festival in Portland had an economic impact of $23.2 million dollars on the local economy. This year more than 80,000 craft beer fans will travel to Portland from around the world and leave their money behind at a rate of more than $750 per person.<br /> <br /> Pop into a tasting room and there’s a good chance you’ll see artwork created by local artists adorning the walls and that there’ll be a musician from the community sharing their soul. Kimberlee Rubin of Fort Collins Brewery estimates that they support 60-75 local artisans and musicians a year. Twisted Pine Brewing Company in Boulder is in the midst of a yearlong endeavor that has them releasing a different style of beer each month that’s placed into a bottle sporting a label with a local artists’ handiwork.<br /> <br /> Breweries such as Fort Collins Brewery (FCB) who are affiliated with a restaurant or are a brewpub support the local economy by purchasing fruit, vegetables, and meat from area farmers. FCB has also been a host pick-up site for the Grant Family Farms community-supported agriculture program for five years.<br /> <br /> It’s common to hear of breweries advertising that on certain nights they’ll donate one dollar per pint to a local non-profit, as Grimm Brothers Brewing in Loveland, Colo., recently did. In mid-June they donated $1,200 to the Red Cross to benefit the High Park fire victims. The tasting room staff donated their tips and Grimm Brothers received a matching donation – a very successful event! Co-owner Russell Fruits is passionate about non-profits, as he worked for one for almost seven years. Fruits shares that Grimm Brothers donates to four to five non-profits a week, either by providing beer for a function, giving a monetary donation, or letting a non-profit use their facility. In the near future, they’re planning to pair each new beer with a local non-profit, starting with Water of Life, an American IPA. It will benefit Life for the Innocent, an organization that rescues kids from human trafficking.<br /> <br /> Glenwood Canyon Brewpub takes a slightly different route to impact the Glenwood Springs area.It donates brewing ingredients and equipment to the local homebrew club, the Roaring Fork High Altitude Mashers, who in turn turn brew beer to sell at fundraisers benefiting groups such as the Thunder River Theater Company and Glenwood Springs Youth Hockey.<br /> <br /> Three Cheers for Craft Breweries<br /> <br /> In jolly old England, pubs used to promote foot races to bring patrons to their establishments and increase sales. This marketing strategy was employed simply for profit’s sake. We’re a far cry from those days as evidenced by the examples above…and this was just scratching the surface.<br /> <br /> Microbrewing is a sub-culture that people want to be a part of and it’s not just because of the beer – it’s due to the myriad of efforts that the companies who comprise the industry are undertaking each and every day. A Loveland resident recently commented that she’d love to wear a Fat Tire cap or a Grimm Brothers shirt, but she doesn’t like beer and so doesn’t feel it’s appropriate to sport the breweries’ apparel. I initially thought that this coffee-drinker shouldn’t wear the brewery garb; however, after reflecting on what craft breweries mean to our communities and what a better world we live in because of them, I’ve retracted my statement. Next time I pull on one of the many brewery shirts comprising my wardrobe, I’ll be proud to wear it not only because of the amazing beer they produce, but because of the environmental stewards they are and the community bonding they promote.It’s one more reason why we should all be proud to be craft beer drinkers.
Read the full article at http://rmbnonline.brewingnews.com/article/The+Intersection+Of+Craft+Brews/1137613/121329/article.html.
Wynkoop: A Denver Fixture Grows
Jim "Doc" Damon
In the Beginning<br /> <br /> IN 1988 an unemployed geologist and oil engineer in Colorado was forced into looking for a new career. His name was John Hickenlooper. He gathered a few other investors and began looking for an inexpensive location in which he could create a new concept: a brewery with a restaurant. The building that interested him most was the Mercantile Building built by JS Brown in 1899. He consulted with several people including beer guru Charlie Papazian, who looked at this large dilapidated building in a very depressed neighborhood and offered him no words of encouragement.<br /> <br /> The first major obstacle he needed to overcome was a giant legal hurdle. At that time, there were no Colorado laws that allowed for the development of a brewpub. The primary focus of his energy was writing new legislation and rallying behind it to assure its passage, thus Paving the way for all future brewpubs in Colorado.<br /> <br /> Thank you, John!<br /> <br /> Despite these long odds, he was able to forge ahead and open the Wynkoop Brewing Company in October of 1988, complete with a restaurant.They were able to create some brand new brews that fit well with the burgeoning craft beer industry.He teamed up with his homebrew friend, Russell Schehrer, who quickly became a very creative brewer, and for many years spearheaded numerous successful brewing projects. Schehrer pushed Wynkoop to new heights and achieved great success until his untimely death in 1996 following injuries he sustained after a fall. He was only 38.<br /> <br /> In the early ‘90s this project was luckily enhanced by a new renaissance in downtown Denver. The lower downtown project became what is now known as LoDo, transforming it from a slum area into a new hip, vibrant section of Denver, populated by numerous restaurants, clubs, shops and apartments. Within close proximity is the Colorado Rockies’ baseball stadium, Coors Field, built in ’95, and within walking distance are the Pepsi Center, where the Avalanche and Nuggets host opponents, and Sports Authority Field at Mile High, home of the Denver Broncos.<br /> <br /> Early Days and Today<br /> <br /> This grand old building had hardwood floors, huge timber pillars and pressed-tin ceilings, all of which have endured to the present time. The main floor in 1899 served as a grand show room, where settlers could find supplies and furnishings they needed. This area now houses the main barroom, brewery, restaurant and kitchen. The giant metal door in the main barroom served as a door to the primary vault, but now hosts another precious resource-the brewery and its office.<br /> <br /> Upstairs, you will find Wynkoop Billiards, one of the finest pool halls in the West. This enormous space features 22 pool tables, two private pool rooms, several dart lanes and a spectacular bar serving many of Wynkoop’s fine beers. The bar itself was rescued from the original tasting room of the old Tivoli Brewery from the historic old Denver (Auroria) location. This floor also contains some very popular banquet rooms and the entire floor and poolroom can be rented for private functions.<br /> <br /> The downstairs area contains fermenting and storage tanks for beer, along with their hand canning line. They presently are able to hand can 80 cases of beer a day. Also in the basement level is the Impulse Theater, a very popular improv comedy club.<br /> <br /> John Hickenlooper served two terms as Denver's mayor (2002-2011) during which time he first placed his growing interest in a blind trust to avoid conflict of interest issues and later sold all of his shares. He now has no economic interest in the Wynkoop Brewing Company. Hickenlooper was subsequently elected as governor of Colorado and continues to serve in that position.<br /> <br /> The Joint Venture<br /> <br /> In 2010, Wynkoop and the Breckenridge Brewery entered into a joint venture. Although they have combined their corporate offices, each half of the family has maintained their own identity. What does that mean to us beer drinkers? The beers have not changed. This new arrangement has, however, benefited Wynkoop by allowing them to make 150 extra barrels of beer every five weeks.Furthermore, they have access to Breckenridge's new canning facility on Kalamath Street - most of their canned beer is packaged there.<br /> <br /> The Beers<br /> <br /> One of their flagship beers presently is Rail Yard Ale, a hybrid amber beer. The idea behind it was to combine a German Oktoberfest lager with a British ale yeast. B3K is a black lager or German Schwartzbier, which has won two medals at the GABF. Silverback Pale Ale, originally created to benefit the diminishing gorilla populations, is an American pale ale.<br /> <br /> They've recently released a pair of brand new beers brewed especially for Elitch Gardens Theme and Water Park in Denver. Elitch Gardens Orchard Wheat is a 4.8% ABV unfiltered American-style wheat made with pale malt, malted wheat, German Saphir hops, kaffir lime leaf and a small dose of natural peach flavor. It’s a complex, ultra-refreshing wheat beer with hints of citrus and fruit in a creamy bodied, perfect-for-summer beer.<br /> <br /> Elitch Gardens Fire Roasted Amber is made with pale and crystal malts, US and UK hops, roasted- in-house Anaheim and ancho chilies, and a dose of smoked Serrano peppers. It’s fermented with an English ale yeast and is a very drinkable 5.2% ABV.<br /> <br /> Fire Roasted Amber features a fresh-roasted pepper aroma and hints of pepper heat, blended with caramel and malt flavors. <br /> <br /> New Brewery Expansion<br /> <br /> Although they increased their production by 370 barrels in 2011, they found themselves unable to keep up with growing demand for their beers; thus, expansion was inevitable. A solution was to move four open fermenters in the main floor brewhouse to a newly built space downstairs in the cellar. Two 20-barrel unitanks had been installed in their place in the brewhouse and two more are scheduled to be installed later this year.<br /> <br /> Beerdrinker of the Year<br /> <br /> For the past 16 years Wynkoop’s been holding a national contest to select and honor the Beerdrinker of the Year. This concept, originally developed by Lew Cady and John Hickenlooper, was designed to recognize and redefine new ambassadors for craft beer. The criteria for selection are strict as they only select very special beer geeks who have taken it to the next level by making outstanding contributions to the educational and creative aspects of craft brewing in all of its ramifications.<br /> <br /> What to Expect in the Future<br /> <br /> Coming up soon (as soon as the fresh hops are available) is Belgorado, a Belgian pale ale, wet hopped with hops right off the vine. Also look for Orville, Double Red, Brewjolias Nouveau (a collaboration with Peter Bouckaert of New Belgium), and Koop de Ville. Due for release in July, 1892 Artesian Lager is brewed with water from the aquifer under the Brown Palace Hotel. The passion for originality continues.<br /> <br /> The Wynkoop Brewing Company is dedicated to continue in the footsteps of its founding fathers.Not only do they intend to preserve the fine restaurant and special beers that they have created, but they are committed to continuing to push the envelope of creativity and explore new brews on a never-ending basis. In this manner, they’ll continue to serve the customers who have befriended them in the past and create another generation of beer lovers dedicated to exploring new avenues of brewing.Brew on, guys!
Read the full article at http://rmbnonline.brewingnews.com/article/Wynkoop%3A+A+Denver+Fixture+Grows/1137628/121329/article.html.