Beer Me: October 25, 2016 – October 31, 2016
If you’re reading this column, I’ve got bad news: you are too old to go trick-or-treating. Sorry, it’s the truth. While you could turn off the porch lights and feast on candy supposedly purchased for costumed neighborhood kids, there’s a decidedly more adult method to getting your cocoa fix: pair it with beer.
River North Brewing Co. has teamed up with Chocolate Lab to offer a four-course chocolate and beer pairing on Saturday, October 29 from 2 – 5pm. The menu this go-around features a thyme and lemon truffle paired with White (Witbier), glazed pecans with J. Marie (Imperial Saison), an orange truffle with Saison Conspiracy Noir (Barrel-Aged Dark Saison), and a triple chocolate brownie with Avarice (Belgian Imperial Stout).
“You don’t want them to clash,” explained Chocolate Lab’s Phil Simonson, of the pairing process. “You want them to complement each other and enhance each other’s flavors. With the chocolate, I want it to bring out the orange notes [in the Conspiracy Noir] of the beer and the same thing with the beer, it will enhance the orange notes of the chocolate.”
This is the seventh such pairing this year for Chocolate Lab and the marrying of the two craft creations doesn’t end at the events. The chocolatiers have also created truffles using beer from several local breweries, including Denver Beer Co.’s award-winning Graham Cracker Porter.
Craft beer has proven to be the perfect foil for chocolate. Whereas the unique characteristics of wine can sometimes make the perfect pairing tricky, beer offers more flexibility. “You can be a little more creative,” said Simonson. “You can pull out the subtleties of the beer. You might sit down to have a beer and think, ‘this is really good,’ but you might not get that little bit of cardamom that is in there. But, give it something else to [enhance that flavor] and you’re going to get that cardamom that’s in the beer.”
Tickets to the pairing are available for $20 or $35 for two people when purchased in advance.
Tuesday, October 25, 2016 @ 5:30 – 8:30pm: Toccalmatto Beer Freak Show at Falling Rock Tap House
Bruno Carilli, head brewer and founder of Italy’s Toccalmmatto, brings his Beer Freak Show to Falling Rock. He’ll tap Quintessenze, a 12% Golden Quad brewed in collaboration with Alex Liberatti (Revelation Cat Brewing/Rome and Brewery Liberati/Denver) while Bryan Jansing and Paul Vismara, authors of Italy: Beer Country, will be on hand to share their knowledge.
Wednesday, October 26, 2016 @ 6 – 9pm: Pie and Beer Tasting at Black Shirt Brewing Co.
Shauna Lott of The Long I Pie Shop brings her pie-making prowess to Black Shirt once again. $20 gets you four pies (Caprese, The Tradition, Honey Flower, and Pumpkins in the Mud) and four sample-size beers. No advance tickets necessary, just stop on by.
Thursday, October 27 – Saturday, October 29, 2016 @ 4pm: One-Year Anniversary Party at Little Machine Beer
Little Machine is turning one and the celebration kicks off on Thursday with their 2nd Annual Wax Party and continues through Saturday. Big beer flights are $10 and they’ll be tapping several different barleywines, some barrel-aged. Josh Moorehead plays on Friday and Funkma$ter plays on Saturday.
Friday, October 28, 2016 @ 6pm: New Beer Release at Seedstock Brewery
Seedstock taps a brand-new 8.5% ABV Bourbon Barrel-Aged Scotch Ale and What Would Cheesus Do serves up the grilled cheese. Come out and try this very limited release.
Friday, October 28, 2016 @ 7 – 10pm: Halloween Bash at Caution: Brewing Co.
Caution kicks off their Halloween festivities a few days early by releasing Frisky Bat, the Colorado whiskey-barrel aged version of Toaster Bat (Smoked Porter). The best costumes will be favorably rewarded while anyone dressed up will get free candy. Karaoke by Sound Master Entertainment.
Saturday, October 29, 2016 @ various times: Halloween Festivities
Avanti F&B is throwing a bash starting at 11am. Fiction will have live music and discounts for those in costume. Alpine Dog will release Liquid Pancakes, a Maple Red Ale. Diebolt will have candy-infused beers (watermelon Jolly Rancher-infused French Ale anyone?) and Odyssey will have a few special releases. Odd13 will have a costume contest and live music and Station 26 will throw a dance party. Beryl’s has their third annual Monster Mash Halloween Bash and Westminster Brewing Co. will host a joint party with Whistling Hare Distillery. Ratio will release Darklands, a hoppy Brown Lager, and Nobody’s Darlin’, a Barrel-Aged Whiskey Ale along with a few special firkins and The RaMoans (a Ramones tribute band) will play at 9:30pm. Black Sky will roll out bombers of Ale of Minerva, an Imperial Oatmeal Brown Ale aged in bourbon barrels #party
Sunday, October 30, 2016 @ noon – 8pm: Sunday Funday at Boggy Draw Brewery
Sunday Funday at Boggy Draw means free bowls of posole, a pumpkin carving competition, and the much-anticipated rematch between the Broncos and the Chargers.
Monday, October 31, 2016 @ 5 – 8pm: HOWL-o-ween Doggie Costume Contest at Denver Beer Co.
Time to “pimp your pup” in his or her best doggy costume for a chance to win a $25 gift card in one of three categories. In addition to cuteness overload there will be pumpkin beers and tricks + treats for both doggies and humans alike! No cover.
Still thirsty? Use this handy map of Colorado breweries and other drinking establishments to plan your next adventure. Cheers.
Matt Sandy, a self-proclaimed “Beer Gadabout” and Certified Beer Server, has been enjoying beer since he was of legal drinking age. Having been born across the pond where “legal drinking age” is a relative term, let’s just say he washed down a shandy or two while still in short pants. He moved to Denver in 2007 and immediately took up residency at the Great Divide taproom. Since then, he’s enjoyed exploring all of the craft corners of this great town and in this column will highlight weekly beer-related events that you should consider drinking in.