Denver, CO – The world’s largest celebration of beer is heading to The Mile High City Oct 2-4, 2014 when the 32nd annual Great American Beer Festival (GABF) brings 600 breweries to Denver to serve 3,000 different kinds of beer. The wildly popular event sold out all 50,000 tickets in 32 minutes!
What to do if you don’t have GABF tickets? VISIT DENVER has come to the rescue with the 6th annual Denver Beer Fest – a nine-day celebration of beer to surround GABF with hundreds of other beer-related events at area breweries, restaurants, tap houses and attractions. Running from September 26 to October 4, 2014, Denver Beer Fest offers beer tastings, firkin tappings, beer bike nights, midnight beer breakfasts, beer paired dinners, brewery tours, brewer vs. brewer competitions, meet the brewer nights, tap takeovers, beer quizzes, and even a beer street party with bands, brews and food trucks. All of the events can be found at denverbeerfest.com.
“We originally launched Denver Beer Fest as a way of celebrating and welcoming the Great American Beer Festival to town, but Denver Beer Fest has grown on its own to now become a major city-wide celebration of craft beer,” said Richard Scharf, president & CEO of VISIT DENVER.
Scharf points out that the Denver area produces more beer than any other city and has the world’s largest single brewing site (Coors Brewery in nearby Golden). The “Denver Beer Triangle” (the Front Range area of Denver-Boulder-Fort Collins) has the largest concentration of craft breweries in America and has been called “the Napa Valley of Beer.” Of course, Colorado also is proud of Governor John Hickenlooper, the first former brewer to be elected state governor since Sam Adams in 1794. Governor Hickenlooper opened Colorado’s first brewpub, The Wynkoop Brewing Company in Denver in 1988.
Blazing the Denver Beer Trail
Back again in 2014 is the Denver Beer Trail, a free booklet that offers a map and a guide to 20 downtown-area Denver breweries. The passport-sized publication offers a suggested signature beer at each brewery, as well as providing room for tasting notes and a “Been there,drank that” box to check off.
The 20 participating breweries in 2014 are: Beryl’s Beer Co., Black Shirt Brewing, Black Sky Brewery, Blue Moon Brewing Company at the SandLot, Breckenridge Brewery, Crooked Stave Artisan Beer Project, Denver Beer Co., Denver ChopHouse & Brewery, Epic Brewing, Former Future, Great Divide Brewing Company, Jagged Mountain Craft Brewery, Lowdown Brewery + Kitchen, Prost Brewing Company, Renegade Brewing Company, River North Brewery, Rock Bottom Restaurant & Brewery, Strange Craft Beer Company, TRVE Brewing Company and Wynkoop Brewing Company.
Some Other 2014 Denver Beer Fest Events
Just some of the events taking place at Denver Beer Fest include. All events can be found at DenverBeerFest.com:
· Fresh Hop!
Falling Rock Tap House, Sept. 27
This event will take over all of Falling Rock Tap House, recently named one of the top 5 Great American Beer Bars of 2014 by CraftBeer.com, to showcase a medley of fresh hopped beers created by breweries across the country. What is a fresh hopped beer? Here’s the timeline… Hops growers have about 24 hours to get the hops from the farm to the brewery’s drying kiln before they start showing signs of spoiling. But if these hops connect with that batch of beer within that 24-hour window, then eureka! You’ve got one heck of a beer. These beers are exciting because every beer is different, all have varied levels of hoppy flavor and are super exclusive due to the fresh hop process.
· Ales, Lagers and Beyond: Tasting and Appreciating Beer
Metropolitan State University, Sept. 29
Taste and learn about the major styles of beer and how to analyze flavor, pair with food, and serve in glassware that maximizes your enjoyment of beer. The $49 fee includes instruction from one of the world’s foremost experts in craft beer, all beer samples and light food samples, and a Spiegelau craft beer tasting kit ($50 value) to take home. During this two-hour session, participants will: Taste and recognize the characteristics of beer styles such as lager, ale, IPA, stout, pilsner, and more; learn about beer styles of major beer regions of the world including Germany, the British Isles, Belgium, and America; engage your senses in learning to analyze flavors of beer and food and learn how to select the right glass to increase your enjoyment of beer. Sample food items with their best corresponding beers to gain the knowledge to create your own pairings at home. Beer U, indeed!
· Midnight Breakfast at Euclid Hall
Euclid Hall, Oct. 2
Avery Brewing Company and Euclid Hall Bar & Kitchen are welcoming the GABF attendees in great American style right after the first GABF session on Thursday, October 2nd. The doors at Euclid Hall kick open at 10:45 p.m. and the breakfast gets underway at 11:00 p.m. Enjoy an epic breakfast and special Avery brews like Meretrix, Uncle Jacobs, 2003 Czar, and a few other pulls from the cellar.
· Offensively Delicious: A Craft Beer Comedy Show
Oriental Theater, Oct. 1
Renegade Brewing and Sexpot Comedy present a craft-beer comedy show! Ticket includes an unlimited sampling from 10 breweries including Renegade, Epic, Breckenridge, Brooklyn, Community Beer, Ommegang, Santa Fe, Schmaltz, and Boulevard. The comedy show will kick off with an Open Mic featuring “comedians” from our participating breweries. Stick around for the professionals to come on stage – Andy Juett, Adam Cayton-Holland, and headliner Nikki Glaser.
· Flights at DIA
Denver International Airport, Sept. 19 – Oct. 4
Denver International Airport (DIA) will host a temporary beer garden in the center of the Jeppesen Terminal. “Beer Flights,” presented by the Colorado Lottery, will be open from 11 a.m. to 7 p.m. daily from Sept. 19 to Oct. 4. Admission is $10 and visitors must be 21 or older with a valid ID. Admission to the event includes a souvenir glass, a bag of pretzels provided by Southwest Airlines, and access to 10, 2-ounce samples of beer. A total of 11 Colorado breweries will be represented.