A six-pack of dark new Colorado beers for your cold weather blues
Brrrr. It's starting to get a little nippy out there, and the forecast calls for even colder temperatures this weekend. But the weatherman may not have mentioned that dropping digits means big beers in Colorado, where the breweries start cranking out their deep dark belly-warming concoctions for the dark days of winter. While there are dozens of brews to choose from, here are six new beers that have only recently been released.
Hammer & Sickle Russian Imperial Stout
Renegade Brewing announced back in August that it planned to start canning Hammer & Sickle Russian Imperial Stout, so it worked out pretty nicely that the beer, a hefty 9 percent ABV taproom favorite, won a bronze medal in October at the Great American Beer Festival. The beer, which just hit shelves this week, is the first seasonal can release for Renegade, which sells three other canned beers. Hammer & Sickle, it says, "has a warming quality with flavors of coffee, vanilla, and a dark chocolate finish."
Woodcut No. 7
Odell Brewing unveiled the latest in its Woodcut series this month, a Russian Imperial Stout aged -- like the rest of the Woodcut beers -- in brand new oak barrels. Weighing in at 12.5 percent ABV and boasting "notes of chocolate, vanilla, graham cracker, and brown sugar in the nose, the beer was bottled in 750 ml Belgian-style bottles, rather than the Champagne bottles Odell had been using. The Fort Collins brewery has also lowered the price by a few bucks, as compared to its previous Woodcut beers.
Fade to Black, Volume 5
Left Hand Brewing
Left Hand made a few people sad when it discontinued its winter seasonal, Snow Bound, and replaced it with Fade to Black four years ago, but the beer, which changes every year, has impressed (Volume 1, a foreign export stout, has won two gold medals at GABF). This year's version is a Black Rye Ale that has aromas of dark coffee and Maplewood" as well as molasses, nut bread, and spicy rye notes. Volume 5 is now out in six-packs, but you can also find the previous four beers -- the export stout, a smoked Baltic porter, a pepper porter and a black ale -- in a new Fade to Black variety twelve-pack.