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Mile-High Hops and Malt- Spotlight on the Denver Brewery Scene
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Mile-High Hops & Malt: Spotlight on the Denver Brewery Scene

Mar 16th, 2015

Home to the Great American Beer Festival and dozens of nationally recognized microbreweries, the Denver brewery scene is, without a doubt, one of the most impressive in the world.

Like mountains, parks, pho, and casual Fridays, Denver takes appreciation for craft beer to another level. If you’re new to town or you’ve just started to appreciate craft beer and want to explore the best pours the city has on tap, here are some Denver brew scene locales to visit.

Crooked Stave Brewery & Tavern

Although it was founded in Fort Collins, Colo., Crooked Stave Brewery has called Denver home since 2012. The brewery, known for its delightfully sour craft brews, has grown exponentially since relocating. Crooked Stave has a happening tap room in River North’s Source Market, and is currently running its brewing operation out of its Sunnyside brewhouse.

Epic Brewing Company

Walk three blocks south of Crooked Stave’s brewhouse, and you’ll run into Epic Brewing Company’s Denver brewery and tap house. Another import, Epic Brewing was founded in Salt Lake City but has a charm and high alcohol-content beer that Denver’s craft beer snobs have embraced with gusto. So far, Epic’s greatest claims to fame have come in the form of its Elevated Series beers. Each stout, Belgian-style ale, pale ale, and IPA in this series is stamped with its own release number.

Great Divide Brewing Company

Well-known in the world of craft beer, Denver’s Great Divide Brewery has been churning out taste-bud captivating brews since 1994. In addition to an expansive selection of beers that is kept fresh and exciting with new arrivals annually, the brewery offers highly-rated free tours several times a day. Great Divide’s 22nd and Lawrence Street brewing operation is just a 15-minute walk from AMLI Park Avenue and AMLI Riverfront Park.

Platt Park Brewing Company

An atmospheric taproom and diverse lineup make Platt Park Brewing Company, a newcomer to the Denver brew scene, a beer production center worth checking out. Head brewer Greg Matthews and the company’s lead partners have mastered the art of brewing Vienna lager, American-style wheat ale, amber ale, a Japanese-style lager, and a more-hoppy-than-malty IPA. Large community tables and a fun selection of board games encourage social interaction in this south Denver brewery.

Renegade Brewing Company

Proud of its tendency to deviate from the norm, Renegade Brewing Company crafts some of the most uniquely flavored brews in Denver. Chocolate and coffee are infused into plenty of craft beers, but vanilla and peanut butter? You can find hints of these flavors and more at Renegade, a haven for connoisseurs of IPAs and stouts. Brewery tours are , but include two beers, a souvenir pint glass, and discounted on-site beer purchases. Most participants end up feeling like they are paid to take the tours.

Strange Craft Brewing

Ten-beer taster flights make Strange Craft Brewing a great place to find out what hops-and-malt combinations and fermentation styles you like best. Like Renegade, Strange Craft Brewing experiments with non-traditional flavors and achieves unusually exceptional results. In pleasant weather, the southwest Denver brewery’s beer garden is the perfect place to enjoy a pint or two.

Vine Street Pub & Brewery

One of Boulder, Colo.’s Mountain Sun Pub & Brewery’s six locations, Vine Street Pub offers an escape to beer heaven without Highway 36’s infamous traffic. At Vine Street, you can enjoy Mountain Sun’s signature beers and the pub atmosphere that makes so many craft beer lovers feel at home. If this sounds good to you, you might just become a regular.

Dry Dock Brewing Company

The only brewery on this list without a Denver address, Dry Dock Brewing Company deserves to be on here because of its proximity to the Mile-High city, and its excellence as a craft brewer. If you like your beers fruity or wheat-laden, try this Aurora, Colo. brewery’s apricot ale and regionally renowned Hefeweizen.

This is no definitive guide to the Denver microbrewery scene. But if you live in a downtown Denver apartment and want to get out and explore the brewery scene, we hope this proves to be a handy resource as you embark on your quest.

Already in-the-know where Denver’s microbrewery scene is concerned? How did we do? Let us know how your tastes align with ours by leaving a comment.

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