Taking cues from the pub and taproom model used by smaller breweries, big players in the beer industry, from 10 Barrel to Blue Moon and Lagunitas, attempt to cash in on the convenience and sense of community of urban outposts.
For non-profit 1400 Miles’ “Big Ride,” a dozen cyclists completed a 15-day, 1,400-mile journey from Cedar Park, Texas, to Denver to raise awareness about prostate health using beer and bikes as conversation starters.
In the past, including any alcohol options was enough to set a fast casual restaurant apart from competitors; now many chains are looking to customize their regional selections by offering local beers.
First Draft, a 40-tap bar in Denver, opened its doors without a single bartender. Instead, patrons pour their own drinks with iPourIt, a self-service system for serving beer (or any line-dispensed beverage) by the ounce.
Across the country, craft breweries have coffee specialists going far beyond mere coffee-beer collaborations. Taking notes from beer, coffee shops hope to increase conversation and connectivity between the parallel crafts, opening both to new customers and ideas.
The 31st annual Craft Brewers Conference brought together professionals from all parts of the industry for a packed schedule of seminars, a trade show and awards. Here are a few standout moments from the event in Denver.
The Great American Beer Festival and its sponsor, the Brewers Association, seem to have lost their way. While other long-running festivals, including the Great Taste of the Midwest and the Oregon Brewers Festival, remain true to their roots, the GABF seems unable to decide what it wants to be.
The Great American Beer Festival (GABF) is one of the largest events of its kind, and this year’s was the biggest yet: 49,000 tickets sold, and 580 breweries pouring 2,700 beers in the massive Denver Convention Center.
It’s October 1st, and the cavernous Colorado Convention Center is packed with throngs of grinning Great American Beer Festival attendees. But beyond the buzzed masses the dull roar of the public fades into hushed utterances. It’s about 10 minutes before the GABF’s 30th annual awards ceremony begins.
The reluctant or inexperienced traveler may need an excuse to enable them to overcome fear of the unfamiliar. As craft beer lovers, the lure of a famous beer festival might do it. Better yet, why not consider an obscure one?