Day 1: I arrived at Denver airport at 1pm, and was immediately picked up
by Mr. Batty (aka Saint Erik) who was there on a business trip, and is a man who
posses the rare combination of steel nerves and infinite patience.
Stop 1: Pints
Being that it was close to lunch (Denver time) we decided to start our
beercation right away. I whipped out my handy Find Beer app and pointed
at something close to the hotel. We shrugged and soon pulled into Pints.
Pints is a quaint English looking bar, with a tough but lovable bartender. Finding
out that we were noobs in the mile high city his advice to us was “drink
lots of water, the elevation will make you dehydrated, and to be careful,
every beer will equal three”. My heart sank, as a girl who loves her high
ABV beers and lots of them, this was not good news at all. I immediately
developed a headache. We headed back to the hotel for a disco nap and I
tried to rally my spirit.
Noteable: Mr. Batty (a burger connoisseur) thought the burger and the
fixing tray was the bomb.
Stop 2. Falling Rock Tap House
We rallied at the iconic Falling Rock Tap House to meet my new
hometown hero, Scott, who I have probably known longer than some of
you have been alive. Scott moved to Colorado after college and claims to
have been a craft beer enthusiast since back in the day. If anyone could
show us how to navigate the Bar/Brewery Scene of Denver in 24 hours,
he was the man with the master plan. He did not disappoint. Within
minutes of being seated, he had made a beer trade, helped me order
Pliny the Elder on tap, of course, and had drawn a detailed beer map free
hand with an aggressive strategy to “Taste All the Beers”.
Noteable: Iconic and a must, but know your order going in. This place has
little patience for beer 101. The “soup nazis of beer”.
Stop 3: Dry Dock Tap House
Our journey began at noon. Chauffer Scott picked us up and drove us
to a non-descript stripmall in the suburbs. There a light filled warehouse-like space was filled with tables and taps. The Mr. and I decided to try the
12 standard and special sampler, including a nitro and were immediately
blown away by the beers. I can see why this place is decorated with
awards and if you make a trip all the way to Colorado, it’s a must. I had
hesitated when I learned where we would be going because it seemed so
out of the way. I will never doubt you again Scott. Never.
Noteable: Far and away but worth the drive and since you’re driving, fill the
car with bombers, sold on site. Female Brewer too!! Woot!
Stop 4: The Bull and Bush
From a light filled place in the suburbs to a dark English pub, my eyes
took a moment to adjust. Again, the Mr. and I ordered a flight. Once the
flight and some food had been consumed, Scott alerted us to the unique
feature of the Bull and Bush, which was not their adorable logo, but rather
the ability to order any beer to be brought to the table in a French press, a system similar to the DFH Randall Jr. Any beer on tap can be combined
with a chosen hop for an entirely unique taste sensation. We ordered a
round of ESB and each chose a hop. An experience I will chronicle at a
Noteable: French press your beer with hops.
Stop 5: Vine Street Pub
Back out in the sunshine, we settle onto the patio of a brewery closer to
downtown and again, a round of tasters. Good beer mixed with amazing
hand drawn artwork. This would be a fantastic spot to chillax for an
afternoon as long as you have the cash, because they don’t take credit
cards. Visa isn’t always everywhere you want to be.
Noteable: Does not accept credit cards.
Stop 6: Freshcraft
A quick trip back to our respective hotels to freshen up and then proceed
for the rest of the trip on foot. I was thankful that we could still walk a straight
line, or what seemed straight to me. Again, we chose open to the air seating on a
beautiful downtown Denver day. So many amazing beers to choose from
and I had to commit to a glass at this establishment. The Linchpin and the
Apis IV where both added to my Untappd account and both worth the full
Stop 7: Wynkoop
More upscale and whimsical than I was expecting. A large establishment
that boasts beer, banquets and billiards. Although we only stopped by for a
flight before we fled, this place could easily be a stop to spend a few hours
and grab some food.
Noteable: Random gorilla statue, a great beer list, and events and
Stop 8: Great Divide
“Even if you have had their beers, you have to go”, advised Scott the Master
Sargent. So go we did. Great Divide’s rustic appearance was a contrast
to the previous Wynkoop glitz and gloss, but I will go to a dive bar in
a heartbeat for some great beer. However great the beer, the story
gets slightly fuzzy from here, at hour X of drinking. Uptappd checkins
ceased to exist and the conversations started to drift to more personal and
private topics, most of which were discussed at the top of my lungs. You know, ”that one time, at band camp”, and maybe a few national secrets were leaked.
Noteable: Go because its great. Great Divide.
Stop 8: Euclid Hall
Food: yes, yes, my gawd yes
Sensing a meltdown of the troops, Euclid Hall (our chosen place for food)
could not have come at a better time for Scott. A foodie’s paradise,
boasting delicacies such as duck fat fries and bone marrow. Oh and did
I mention, more beer? We were hanging tough, taking no prisoners and
a full glass of Tank 7 arrived with my perfectly plated fish sandwich and
Noteable: The food. Go for the food.
Stop 9: Star Bar
Food: Maybe who knows
Flights/Tasters: I don’t think so
Scott had left this one open ended, assuming we even made it that far. However,
5 months of being quarantined for grad school and we were determined
to see this plan through to the end. The Star Bar was rockin and rollin with
music, a loose dog, and a tiny but manageable beer list. Then we proceeded
to close the place down to the point of being kicked out. “You don’t have
to go home, but you cant stay here” as the tired staff was less than happy
to clean around us and continue to urge us out the door. Unfortunately, I
realized I had not taken one single picture, especially of our gracious host,
and a quick shot was taken while I slid down in my chair, kicked out a leg,
and gave the peace sign. Scott appears to be taken off guard.
Do you want another picture, questioned Mr. Batty. “No, that says it all,
that’s the perfect way to end the night” said Scott. And, it really was.
For your reference:
Falling Rock Tap House: http://www.fallingrocktaphouse.com/
Dry Dock Brewing Co: http://www.drydockbrewing.com/
Bull and Bush Pub and Brewery: http://www.bullandbush.com/
Vine Street Pub: http://www.mountainsunpub.com/
Wynkoop Brewing Co: http://www.wynkoop.com/
Great Divide Brewing Co: http://www.greatdivide.com/
Euclid Hall Bar & Kitchen: http://www.euclidhall.com/
Star Bar Denver: http://www.starbardenver.com/Star_Bar_Denver/Home.html