Tuesday, October 11, 2011

The Hop - Days 3 & 4

Our last full day in Colorado we didn’t have GABF tickets so our plan was to just wander the city and enjoy the day, some football and some beer.

Denver Diner
We started the day with some much-needed breakfast at Stacey’s favorite place – Denver Diner. It is a great somewhat old-fashioned traditional diner. No frills just great food.  We all hungrily dove in and then afterwards decided it was nap time! So we headed back to the hotel J

Ken & I stayed lounging through the entire Navy vs. Air Force game. (What a game!) But Kev & Stacey headed off to GABF. After the football game I decided it was time to go and make our rounds of the breweries that we could walk to. I plotted out options and we set off.

Denver Beer Company
First stop was the one furthest away in the direction we needed to go overall for our meet-up with the Goods later that evening.  This is a new brewery and I was quite excited to try it out especially since I had just learned that their Graham Cracker Porter won a silver medal at GABF. The ambiance is good – very minimalist – but sadly they didn’t have much beer left on tap. As I said to Ken I thought it was quite possible they would need to close for 2 weeks after GABF to make more! I was able to try
  • ·      Rise of the 5th Horseman Saison (aka Pretty Peach Princess)
  • ·      ATAK Buh-na-na Hefeweizen
  • ·      Ichabod’s Revenge Pumpkin’d Ale
  • ·      In da Hood Hop Swap IPA
  • ·      A lime chili beer (can’t remember the name and it’s not on the board)

For as unique fun as their names are I have to say I was unimpressed with the beer itself. That’s not to say that I wouldn’t come back to try it again, I just wouldn’t put it at the top of my list.

~~~~~~~~~~~BEER COUNT: 81 +/-60!~~~~~

Wynkoop Brewery
Ken was not in such good shape at this point (I think I had overbeered him over the previous few days) so I was shocked when he offered up that we should hit up this brewery on our way to our final destination for the evening. He pointed out it was on the way pretty much (as if I needed convincing) so off we went! Wynkoop is a brewpub but we weren’t planning on getting any food so we grabbed a seat at a small table in the bar. It was fairly busy for a Saturday afternoon between lunch and dinner hours.  I am sure you will all be shocked to hear this but I ordered the sampler. It’s a total of 10 beers so the gal said she would bring them out 5 at a time. No problem! At this point Ken is looking very rough so I told him not to worry that I would “take one for the team” and take care of the sampler. 

He was a trooper though and said he would try to do his part.  The beers we got to try were Wixa Weiss, Two Guns Pilsner, Light Rail Ale, Patty’s Chili Beer, Rail Yard Ale, London Calling IPA, Mile HIPA, St. Charles ESB, B3K Schwarzbier (had just one a GABF medal) and Cowtown Milk Stout. All of the beers were excellent but my favorite by far was the Cowtown Milk Stout.

 It was possibly the best beer I had the entire trip!! I could have sat there and drank that ALL DAY LONG! But we had places to go and people to see so we had to head out. On the way out I just had to take a picture with the ape they had in the waiting area.

~~~~~~~~~~~BEER COUNT: 81 +/-60!~~~~~

We were meeting up with the Buenos (Okay the Goods but they are the Buenos to me!) after their daughter’s soccer game so we tried to pick somewhere that had food, good beer and TVs for the college football that we wanted to watch. Old Chicago was the suggestion from several folks so we went with it. This place has good pizza but they need not kid themselves… it’s not Chicago pizza at least not in the way of Giordanos or Eduardos…. But it is tasty. They have a good beer selection though the waitress we had was useless when it came to any beer questions at all. There are plenty of TVs so we did get to see Purdue get slaughtered by Notre Dame, which made Bueno pretty happy.  Ken rallied and had a great time! 

All in all it was a good evening and I even tried 2 new-to-me beers from Boulder Brewing. I can tell you that we were going to be sad to leave the next day….

Sunday morning we woke up and decided to wander about and see the capital building as well as the mile high markers. 

I found it interesting that there were a few with different dates so obviously there is some elevation change happening! 

We were amused by the squirrels, which were plentiful and apparently hungry! 

After wandering a bit we tried to go to a diner for breakfast (a different one than the day before – this one was a Triple D) but it was packed so we opted to gather all our stuff and head out to one last beer drinking stop on our way to the airport.

The Bull & Bush Brewery           
We had seen these guys at GABF and Ken was jealous of their jackets so we decided to check them out and get some grub too. They had an extensive menu and we both ended up with a breakfast/brunch item (available since it was the weekend). The portions were HUGE! Oh we also had the cheese dip appetizer which I HIGHLY recommend. Beers tried here included Big Ben Brown, Man Beer,  a stout and a pilsner. I would say the beers were above average though not exceptional. That said this is a stop worth making!

After that it was homeward bound… this was an amazing weekend. We had great beer, great weather, great scenery, great friends to hang out with and an all-around great time! Ken said he doesn’t know if GABF is something he wants to do every year because he prefers to just pick one beer and stick with it. I on the other hand want to make this a yearly pilgrimage!

Final tally….
~BEER COUNT of different beers not beers total: 87 +/-60!~

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