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Insider’s Guide to Special Beer Releases During GABF

2017 PorchDrinking GABF Coverage Generic

As we’ve all come to know, the Great American Beer Festival has far greater implications for Colorado beer fans that extend beyond the four day festival itself. One of those external benefits is the growing practice of out-of-state breweries utilizing the week to make a special limited drop of beers either as a means to test the market or just to make a splash to help grow their brands. In previous years, breweries such as Fremont, Perennial, and Burial have all used GABF week as a launch pad toward regular, or in some cases semi-regular distribution to Colorado. In other scenarios such as last year’s short-lived Bell’s Brewing drop, these brief market flirtations can help stoke the hype for breweries that may eye a longer term distribution expansion in the future.

(More: 38 Can’t-Miss Colorado Events During GABF)

Regardless, the 2017 Great American Beer Festival will once again yield a healthy bounty of beer treats that aren’t typically widely available as well as plenty of special releases from local breweries thoughtfully timed to celebrate the week.

We’ve begun compiling our guide to these special releases and will continue to update this list as more information presents itself. Happy hunting!

The following brands will be distributed by Elite Brands:

  • Independence Brewing, Austin, TX
  • Sun King Brewery, Indianapolis, IN
  • Modern Times Beer, San Diego, CA
  • Marble Brewing, Albuquerque, NM
  • Short’s Brewing, Bellaire, MI
  • Surly Brewing, Minneapolis, MN

Three Taverns Brewery

(More: 13 Must-Visit Denver Breweries You Won’t Find at GABF)

The following brands will be distributed by TRVE Distribution:

  • 7venth Sun Brewery, Dunedin, FL (limited draft, potential package)
  • Burial Beer Co., Asheville, NC (limited draft, limited package)
  • Brewery Bhavana, Raleigh, NC (limited draft, potential package)
  • The Commons, Portland, OR (limited draft, potential package)
  • Commonwealth Brewing Co., Virginia Beach, VA (limited draft, potential package)
  • Finback Brewery, Queens, NY (limited draft, potential package)
  • Three Taverns Brewery, Decatur, GA (limited draft, potential package)

rhinegeist brewery cans

The following brands will be distributed by Crooked Stave Artisans

  • Two Roads Brewing, Stratford, CT – New package and draft
  • Rhingeist, Cincinnati, OH – New package and draft
  • Arizona Wilderness Brewing, Gilbert, AZ – New package and draft
  • Pure Project Brewing, San Diego, CA – Very limited draft
  • American Solera, Tulsa, OK- New package and draft
  • Half Acre Beer Company, Chicago, IL- New package and draft
  • Alesong Brewing & Blending, Eugene, OR- New package and draft
  • Captain Lawrence Brewing, Elmsford, NY – Very limited draft
  • Beachwood Brewing, Long Beach, CA – Limited package and draft
  • Beachwood The Blendery- Limited package and draft
  • Jack’s Abby Craft Lagers, Framingham, MA- New package and draft (Already hit the state last week. Some fun barrel aged offerings will be around for GABF events)
  • Societe Brewing, San Diego, CA – Very limited draft
  • Boneyard Beer, Bend, OR – Some really cool new draft options
  • Fort George Brewery and Public House, Astoria, OR – Very limited package and draft
  • Scratch Brewing, Ava, IL- Very limited package and draft
  • Madtree Brewing, Cincinnati, OH – Limited package and draft
  • Ale Apothecary, Bend, OR – New and limited package
  • The Rare Barrel, Oakland, CA – Very limited package and draft
  • Creature Comforts Brewing, Athens, GA – Very limited package and draft
  • Jackie O’s, Athens, OH – Very limited package and draft
  • Jester King Brewery, Austin, TX- Limited package and draft
  • pfriem Family Brewers, Hood River, OR – Very limited package and draft

GABF Routes: Big BeersFunk, Sours & Wilds | Hoppy Beers


Toppling Goliath, Decorah, IA – Very limited draft

Special Releases from Denver Breweries

Avery Brewing (Boulder):

  • Adam Avery’s Cellar Release! – With vintages that date back to 2001, this might be one of the most impressive vintage and vertical sales the beer world has seen to date.

All bottles being released for sale Friday, October 6 at 11am

Black Shirt Brewing:

  • Born To Hula – Tropical Sour Nitro – Tapping Wednesday, September 27
  • Pistachio & Lavender Rye Pale Ale – Limited Crowlers and Tapping on Thursday, September 28
  • Soul To Squeeze – 5th Anniversary beer -Limited Crowlers and Tapping on Friday, September 29
  • Buffalo Trace Barrel-Aged Stringbender Saison – Limited Crowlers and Tapping on Saturday, September 30
  • Black Beacon Storm – Bourbon Barrel-Aged Imperial Red Rye Stout-  Tapping Wednesday, October 4
  • Electric Ladyland – Foeder-Aged Saison w/ Raspberries – Tapping Thursday, October 5
  • Bourbon Barrel-Aged Quad– Tapping Thursday, October 5

Call to Arms Brewing:

  • Frites Libertatum’ Farmhouse Ale Batch 1
  • Frites Libertatum’ Farmhouse Ale Batch 2
  • ‘Really, Really Ridiculously Good Tasting’ Petite Farmhouse Saison
  • ‘XXXX’s Belgian Quadriceps’ (or ‘Name Your Own Beer’) Sour Belgian Quad
  • ‘Costermonger’ Tart Apple Ale Batch 2
  • ‘Zany Razzy Winey Thing’ Brett IPA with Raspberries
  • ‘The Shadow’ Port Barrel Russian Imperial Stout with Pomegranate Molasses

All tapping on Thursday, Oct 5 at Noon

(More: The ENTIRE 2017 GABF Pour List)

Cerebral Brewing:

  • Open Invitation – Collaboration IPA brewed with Almanac Brewing, brewed with spelt and oats, hopped with Citra, El Dorado, Motueka and Galaxy in the whirlpool and then dry-hopped with all of the above + Citra Lupulin Pellets and then fermented with a blend of Conan and Sacch Trois – Releasing in limited quantities of crowlers on Wednesday, Oct 4 at 4pm
  • Trophy Hunt, an Imperial Milk Stout that has been aging in bourbon barrels for 18 months with adjuncts – Releasing at Cerebral Brewing on Friday, Oct 6
  • Tonal Language, brewed with wheat, oats and CO wildflower honey then conditioned on mandarin oranges and fermented with a mixed culture of Saccharomyces and Brettanomyces in Sauvignon Blanc barrels for 6 months.

Copper Kettle Brewing:

  • Vanilla Bean Mexican Chocolate Stout
  • Coffee Mexican Chocolate Stout
  • Pumpkin Mexican Chocolate Stout

Tapping & Bottles on sale Wednesday, Oct 4th at 2pm

  • Scotch Russian Imperial Stout
  • Buff Trace Well Bred
  • Mocha Snowed In (2016)
  • Maple Snowed In (2017)

Tapping on Thursday, Oct 5th at 2pm

  • Apricot Sour
  • Blood Orange Sour
  • Raspberry Sour
  • Peach Golden Sour

Tapping on Friday, Oct 6th at Noon

Factotum Brewhouse

  • BA Maple Porter – A Maple Porter, made with molasses, maple syrup and oak chips, hibernated in some tasty Bear Creek DistilleryRye Whisky barrels for 6 months

Tapping on Friday, Oct 6 at Noon

Jagged Mountain Brewery

  • Belgian Golden Strong – Tapping on Monday, Oct 2nd
  • Barrel Aged Thunder Thighs Belgian Quad (2015 batch) – Tapping Tuesday, Oct 3rd
  • Wild Old Cougar Blackberry Saison wine barrel aged with wild yeast – Tapping Wednesday, Oct 4th
  • Cabernet Barrel ages Cherry Wheat– Tapping Thursday, Oct 5th
  • Rum Barrel Aged Doppelbock – Tapping Friday, Oct 6th
  • Rose barrel aged Belgian Wit with wild yeast – Tapping on Saturday, Oct 7th

Mockery Brewing

  • Sour Grapes – Golden Sour Ale with Muscat Grapes and Brettanomyces

Tapping & Bottles on sale Thursday, Oct 5th at 12pm

  • Heart of a Hellraiser – Oud Bruin collaboration with Adriot Theory fermented with yeast propagated from flowers near Adriot Theory in Virginia. The two breweries then drove whiskey barrels full of the beer all the way across the country and were allowed to open ferment during the drive then barrel-aged in Denver.

Tapping Saturday, Oct 6 at 2pm

New Belgium Brewing (Fort Collins):

  • Oscar Aged in Blackberry Whiskey Barrels
  • Felix Aged in Apple Whiskey Barrels! 

Tapping and Releasing in cans on Thursday, Oct 5 at 11am

Odd13 Brewing:

  • Eric’s Ex-Wife– huge fruity aromatic IPA from copious dry-hopping with all of the Citra, Simcoe, and Mosaic she got in the divorce settlement. $11/6pk, 2 case limit p/p.

Tapping and Releasing in cans on Wednesday, Oct 4 at 3pm

Ratio Beerworks:

  • Continuous Thunder Double IPA – Double IPA double dry-hopped with Idaho-7 and Mosaic hops

Tapping on Wednesday, Oct 4 at Noon

River North Brewery:

  • Single Cask J. Marie Saison – Saison aged in port finished whiskey barrels – Tapping & Bottle Release Wednesday, Oct 4 at 4pm
  • 2016 God Complex – Quadrupel – Tapping & Bottle Release Thursday, Oct 5 at 4pm
  • 2016 Shadowman – Imperial Stout – Tapping & Bottle Release Thursday, Oct 5 at 4pm
  • 2016 Father Time – Old Ale – Tapping & Bottle Release Thursday, Oct 5 at 4pm
  • Toasted Coconut Mr. Sandman – Toasted Coconut Imperial Stout – Tapping & Bottle Release Saturday, Oct 7 at Noon
  • Mayan Chocolate Mr. Sandman – Mayan Chocolate Imperial Stout -Tapping & Bottle Release Saturday, Oct 7 at Noon

Station 26 Brewing:

  • Same Day IPA – brewed with Galaxy and Citra hops and is going straight from tank to tap for maximum freshness

Packaged, delivered, and tapped in less than 12 hours Friday, Oct 6 at 9am in taproom and at select accounts around town.

Verboten Brewing (Loveland)

  • Little Nonsense – Imperial Oatmeal Stout aged in bourbon barrels, 11%ABV.  2016 GABF Bronze.  (Draft and 12oz Bottles)- Releasing on Friday, September 29,
  • Grow Old With You – English style barleywine aged in bourbon barrels, 13% ABV. (Draft and 12oz Bottles) – Releasing on Wednesday, October 4,
  • Double Cask Little Nonsense – Blend of Little Nonsense aged in bourbon and brandy barrels, 11% ABV.  (Draft and 12oz Bottles) – Releasing on Wednesday, October 4

WeldWerks Brewing (Greeley):

  • Medianoche – Aged 17 months in Breckenridge Bourbon barrels
  • Medianoche Reserve – Aged 17 months in Breckenridge Bourbon barrels, blended with another batch aged for 14 months in Woodford Reserve® Rye Whiskey barrels, those blends were aged on 25 lbs of freshly toasted coconut, and finally with 1.5 lbs/bbl of Madagascar vanilla beans, along with more than 2 lbs/bbl of TCHO Chocolate cacao nibs. added to finish off the beer – Bottle Release Wednesday, Oct 4 at 11am – Tickets on sale Sunday, September 24 at 4pm

Wibby Brewing (Longmont)

  • Fresh-Hopped Equal Hops American Pale Lager – spinoff of their Equal Hops APL was brewed with fresh Cascade and Crystal hops

Tapping & Can Release Thursday, Oct 5 at 5pm

Wiley Roots Brewing (Greeley):

  • Oak Rebellion– Golden Sour Aged on Peach and Blackberries – 7.3% ABV (108x 750mL bottles available) – Releasing Wednesday, Oct 4 at 11am
  • Tropical Vacay– Passion Fruit Hibiscus – 5.6% ABV (180x 750mL bottles available) – Releasing Wednesday, Oct 4 at 11am
  • Laws Barrel Aged Stout (Name TBD)- Imperial stout aged in a Laws Bourbon Whiskey Barrel – Releasing Wednesday, Oct 4 at 11am
  • Neature Walk – a collaboration hazy, New England-Style Double IPA made with Outer Range Brewing. Brewed with Citra, Mosaic and Jarrylo hops. Neature Walk was then double dry hopped with Citra, Mosaic, Jarrylo and Colorado Cascade. – Releasing in cans on Wednesday, Oct 4 at Noon

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