Great Divide Brewing Co. held their 17th Anniversary party on Saturday, June 11, 2011. The party took place at the brewery located in the ballpark neighborhood, near Coors Field in downtown Denver. They blocked off the street, had bands playing throughout the afternoon, and had 4 local food trucks serving up delicious food.
Oh yeah…and they had beer. Lots and lots of beer.
I was excited for a few beer releases like Rumble IPA and Belgium Yeti, but was not expecting what else was on tap. Here’s some of the beers I tried:
- Chocolate Cherry Yeti – Absolutely wonderful. I wish I had more of this, it was chocolaty with bountiful notes of cherries. Not sour cherries, but sweet cherries. It was like drinking a chocolate cherry cake.
- Rumble IPA – This was a Summer-time favorite of mine last year. Still good and hoppy, but mellowed by the oak-aging. This is not usually released until July, but Great Divide was able to release it earlier this year and it’s already showing up in 6-packs on shelves.
- Samurai – A nice rice beer, not much more to say.
- Hoss – Great Divide’s Rye, and it’s pretty damned tasty. Great Divide put out random kegs in the street as sort of “self serve” stations while you wait on line for food. This was right there while I was waiting for some delicious arepas.
- Belgium Blonde – I got the last pour of this. It was a wonderful blonde with some big banana nose to it.
- Vanilla Bean Yeti (with star anise) – My least favorite of the Yeti’s, mostly because the anise was too much for me. Big black licorice on the nose and palate.
- Belgium-style Yeti – I have been looking forward to this one, and it did not dissapoint. I was pretty much gone by this point, but what I do remember was that good Yeti chocolatiness along with some Belgium funk. I’m looking forward to getting a bottle of this when it comes out in July.
As you can see by the list, I had a lot of Yeti. And that was sort of a mistake. The ABV of Yeti is in the 9.5% range, and after 3 different versions of it, I was toast. Regardless, I still found enough in me to go to Falling Rock for a quadruple and to Star Bar for a beer cocktail. I was pretty useless Sunday.
Great Divide does a great job with this event. As soon as a beer ran out, something new replaced it. There was a huge variety including many one-offs. There were so many beer stations that lines were mostly short. The lines that were long moved fairly quickly.
If you can make it to Great Divide’s anniversary party next year, I highly recommend this event.