Upslope head brewer Alex Violette leaving Boulder to start craft brewery in Vietnam

Categories: Beer Man

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Upslope Facebook page
Sam Scruby (left) will take over when Alex Violette (right) leaves for Saigon.
Upslope head brewer Alex Violette, who has been making beer for the Boulder brewery since early 2009, is leaving his post there to start his own place in Vietnam.

It's an unusual career choice to leave the center of this nation's brewing universe for a country where craft beer is virtually unheard of, but one Violette says he couldn't turn down. "They don't do craft beer in Vietnam...you literally can't find an IPA there," he explains. "Which is why I am going over there. It sound like a great challenge."

See also: Upslope Brewing introduces Thai Style White IPA

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Beer calendar: Throw down at Grimm Bros., Sanitas, Avery and Sierra Nevada's Beer Camp

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Powder Keg Brewing Facebook page
Powder Keg Brewing has opened in Niwot, where it's the town's second craft-beer maker; the location has a brewpub license (since it plans to serve food), which means it can also pour beers from other local breweries, including its neighbor, Bootstrap Brewing. Powder Keg plans to be open seven days a week, from 2 to 10 p.m.

Turn the page to see this week's craft-beer events.

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Call to Arms and Cannonball Creek brewing Peace & Assist -- not cease-and-desist

Categories: Beer Man

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Call to Arms Brewing Facebook page
Cross, Bell and Hutchinson brew Peace & Assist.
"You talk to any brewery, old or new, and they will tell you a story about how another brewery helped them out," says Chris Bell. "Everyone helps each other along. We want to celebrate that and celebrate what makes this industry great."

That's the idea behind a collaborative brewing effort between Cannonball Creek Brewing in Golden and Call to Arms, a future Denver area brewery being planned by three former Avery Brewing staffers: Bell, Jesse Brookstein and Jon Cross.

See also: In an era of trademark battles, would Avery and Russian River still collaborate, not litigate?

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Sierra Nevada's Beer Camp Across America lands in Denver on Friday

Categories: Beer Man

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California's Sierra Nevada Brewing, the nation's second-largest craft beer maker, is nearing completion on a second production facility, this one near Asheville, North Carolina. And to celebrate, company founder Ken Grossman wanted to turn the spotlight on the craft brewing industry as a whole, rather than on Sierra Nevada by itself. With that in mind, the brewery has launched a three-week, seven-city road-tripping festival called Beer Camp Across America, which starts in Sierra Nevada's hometown of Chico and will end in North Carolina. But it stops in Denver on Friday, July 25.

See also: Ten brand-new Colorado craft beers you'll be seeing in summer/fall 2014

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Finkel & Garf Brewing now pouring in Gunbarrel

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All photos by Chris Utterback
Finkel & Garf Brewing Company opened this week in Gunbarrel, adding its taps to a growing list of neighborhood beer makers in the towns and communities surrounding Boulder. The brewery, owned by Eric and Dan Garfinkel, derives its moniker derives from the lifelong nickname of both father and son. The two, along with brewer Mychal Johnson, opened the doors of Finkel & Garf on Monday, with ten beers on draft. Two more are slated to be tapped next week.

See also: Best By-the-Glass Wine List 2014 - Beast + Bottle

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First look: Baere Brewing on Broadway now open on Saturdays

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Kevin Greer (left) and Ryan Skeels want to serve you a beer.
Ryan Skeels and Kevin Greer want to serve you a beer, and although the majority of their brewing equipment has been delayed, they're tired of waiting. Which is why they decided to open Baere Brewing for business on Saturdays for the time being.

"We didn't want to start this small, but it's actually a nice transition," says Greer. " We'd rather limit our hours and have six beers on tap than have three and keep running out."

See also: 20 breweries that plan to open in Denver in 2014

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DMNS and Denver Beer Co team up on science, fun and a Maya-inspired beer

Categories: Beer Man

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The Denver Beer Co's Patrick Crawford talks science and beer at the DMNS.
Roughly 1,000 years ago in the highlands of Guatemala, a member of the Maya civilization lifted a clay vessel -- adorned with an intricate jaguar figure -- to his lips and took a slug of something. Beer? Corn liquor? Something else? Last May, two scientists from the Denver Museum of Nature and Science and Denver Beer Co's Patrick Crawford tried to find out what it was by chemically evaluating...the backwash. Ah, science.

"If they could ferment it, they drank it," says Michele Koons, the archaeology curator at the museum. "It's no different from today."

See also: The DMNS and Denver Beer Co conduct a wild brewing experiment with City Park yeast

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Beer calendar: Special events at Copper Kettle, Wynkoop, Upslope and World of Beer

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Avery Brewing Facebook page
Riders from last year's BoulDurango cracking beers at elevation.
Beer can pack on calories, especially for the owners and employees of Colorado's breweries, who have to drink their brews for a living (tough life). Fortunately, they know how to work them off as well. On Monday, July 21, owners and reps from six breweries (Avery, Ska, Boulder Beer, Left Hand, Oskar Blues and Great Divide) will participate in the sixth annual Tour De BoulDurango, a five-day, 426-mile bike ride that starts at Avery Brewing in Boulder, traverses some of the state's steepest passes, and ends at Ska Brewing in Durango. And then they will party: Finish Fest (tickets are $10) starts at 5 p.m. on Friday, July 25, featuring beers from all six breweries, including Wheelsucker Wheat, a collaboration between Avery and Ska. And this year, the riders are allowing anyone along the route to join in, cheer them on or meet them for a beer along the way with the use of Insta-Mapper GPS tracking software. Go to skabrewing.com for more information.

Turn the page to see all of this week's craft-beer events.

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Golden City Brewery stops serving food and cider; plans to open winery later this year

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Danielle Lirette
The patio at Golden City.
After more than four years of serving food along with its hand-crafted beers, Golden City Brewery has decided to shutter its kitchen and rely on food trucks instead.

"We were already really small, and the health department changed their requirements for what we had to do to have a kitchen," says Tamara Munroe, the daughter of brewery founders Charlie and Janine Sturdevant. "They want us to add about six more bathroom stalls. But that would take up most of our garden space, so we can't do it."

See also: Ten great Colorado brewery patios to try this summer

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Colorado Brewers Rendezvous, Breckenridge Hootenanny highlight this week's beer calendar

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Barrels & Bottles released three flagship beers this week, all of them created by new head brewer Kim Collins. The beers are Piney the First, a 5 percent ABV all Chinook-hopped pale ale; Lil' IPA, a 5.2 percent ABV session IPA; and Hot Lips, a 3.7 percent ABV sour mash blonde ale that was brewed with Lactobacillus to give it sour notes. The brewery, founded last September by Zach and Abby George, plans to create and release three new beers this fall as well.

Read on to see of this week's craft beer events.

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