It’s springtime in the Mile High City. OK it’s still snowing on and off, but that’s not gonna stop the local breweries from offering some tasty new beverages for the warmer months. Breweries are shifting away from traditional “seasonals” to a more fluid beer release approach, so some of these beers aren’t technically seasonals. More often than not they’re just new releases that happen to coincide with spring, but we’ll just stick with “spring seasonals” because it’s easier to work with.
Without further adieu, here’s my Top Ten list for 2013 Denver Spring Seasonals:
1. Great Divide Chocolate Oak Aged Yeti 9.5% ABV
I’m a sucker for the Oak Aged Yetis. All of them. But the chocolate version just might be my favorite.
2. Renegade Resignation XVI 9% ABV
Named after Pope Benedict XVI’s papal resignation, Renegade’s Facebook page classified this beer as a “dunkelrauchweisenbock”. Needless to say, it’s complex. It’s a banana-y, smoky, hoppy wheat beer.
3. River North Brewery Dubbel 7.4% ABV
Finally a high quality traditional Belgian dubbel in the Denver area that rivals New Beligum’s classic empire starter. River North definitely gets the flavor right on this one.
4. Copper Kettle Bourbon Aged Baltic Porter 8% ABV
Copper Kettle has always done dark beers well, and this is another good one. Brewed for their two year anniversary and available in limited release at their taproom.
5. Crooked Stave St. Bretta Witbier 5.5% ABV
Brewed with 100% Brettanomyces yeast strain, this beer spent 6 weeks in one of their new upright foeders. St. Bretta was also brewed with Minneola Tangelos, and is light and fruity.
6. Black Shirt Brewing Red Evelyn Rye IPA 8.5%
Including the Red Evelyn at this point might not be fair, because at the time of posting this I’m not exactly sure if they have any left! Black Shirt Brewing‘s first growler release, the Red Evelyn comes packaged in a cool 32 oz. screen printed, reverse-pressured, swing top growler for $22.
7. Dry Dock Pop Fly Apple Pie Rye 5.4% ABV
Brewed for the start of baseball season. Didn’t somebody say something once about baseball and apple pie? I can’t remember… This beer is (was?) available at Hops & Pie as part of their 1st Firkin Friday back on April 5th. Dry Dock cask conditioned apples, a homemade crust, and a spicy rye beer to create this All-American concoction.
8. Yak and Yeti Cherry Tart Ale 4.3% ABV
I work in Arvada, and Yak and Yeti is a revelation. Indian food + beer = a very happy Denver Beer Guy. This new beer is packed with tartness but not alcohol, and very nearly hits the “sour beer” mark.
9. Arvada Brewing Company 5600 Dark Farmhouse Ale
Farmhouse Ales have become a new trend in the craft beer scene, but I really like this dark version from Arvada Brewing Company. Mild like traditional farmhouse ales, but with some balanced flavors from the darker malts.
10. Great Divide Heyday Belgian Style White Ale 5.2% ABV
GDBC’s more prominent spring offering, Heyday is a great and more flavorful alternative on a hot day to those other beers that necessitate an orange slice.