Despite the Festival’s Cancellation, Collaboration Fest Beers Now Available to the Public
A few weeks ago, the Colorado Brewers Guild (CBG) had to make the difficult decision to cancel this year’s Collaboration Fest due to the developing COVID-19 pandemic and concerns over public health and safety. This would have been CBG’s seventh annual event and was originally created as an opportunity to bring together breweries and the collaborative spirit. It was a difficult decision for them because over the years, it became one of their largest fundraising efforts.
Since they are unable to hold the event, CBG started another fundraiser for the community to show their support for independent craft brewers during the pandemic with the “Colorado Strong” tee. The limited-edition shirt will directly benefit CBG and its mission “to promote, protect, and propel breweries in the state of craft beer.”
Although the event itself is suspended, the collaboration beers have been brewed and many are still being released this weekend or have already been released for to-go or delivery sales. Despite not being able to taste them in the festival setting, breweries have been announcing the releases of these beers they would’ve brought, so you’re not missing out on trying these awesome, collaborative beers that highlight the spirit of the industry. Without further ado, we’ve rounded up as many of these releases as we could find so that you can experience the spirit of Collaboration Fest from your own home.
Collaboration Fest To-Go | Jagged Mountain Craft Brewery
Jagged Mountain has not one but FOUR collaborations they’ll be releasing on April 3rd, the day before when CollabFest was supposed to happen. They’ll be selling 32oz crowlers for $14 each with $2 of each crowler going to benefit CBG.
- “All in this Together” – a Limoncello Sour Kviek that was brewed with real Limoncello and hopped with 100% Lemondrop hops. It’s brewed in collaboration with Woods Boss Brewing, Spangalang Brewery, and LIBERATI.
- “Garudarado” – a Sichuan peppercorn and mushroom Wheat Ale inspired by a brewing trip that head brewer, Alyssa Thorpe, took to Tibet last year using Szechuan Peppercorns found in a local market on the trip as well as dried mushrooms. It’s brewed in collaboration with 14er Brewing Company, Mockery Brewing, and Baere Brewing Company.
- “Brave New Pils” – A Bohemien Pilsner aged with whole leaf Chinkook hops. This was brewed in collaboration with Black Project.
- “Mole” – an Imperial Mole Stout brewed with a special Mole spice blend from Oaxaca, Mexico and dried Ancho Chiles. It was brewed in collaboration with their friends south of the border at Morenos Beer in Mexico City.
Red Elephant | Next Stop Brew Co. & Guanella Pass Brewing Co.
Next Stop Brew Co. and Guanella Pass Brewing Co.’s CollabFest brew, Red Elephant, is releasing on April 3 and will be available in crowlers to-go at Next Stop Brew Co. It’s a 7% ABV raw red ale brewed with rosemary and thyme in lieu of hops. It was then fermented in red wine barrels on fresh grape must with Kviek yeast
Epically Strange | Epic Brewing Co. & Strange Craft Beer Company
Epically Strange is a blend of Epic’s Big Bad Baptist and Strange Craft’s Cherry Kriek, fresh and ready-to-go for you at Epic’s RiNo taproom. $1 of each can will go back to CBG.
JuicyFish | WeldWerks Brewing Co. & Pinthouse Pizza
JuicyFish is a Hazy Double IPA brewed with Citra, Lotus, and Azacca hops in collaboration with Pinthouse Pizza, who is based out of Austin, TX. Pinthouse knows their IPAs and has won several awards for their brews, so WeldWerks and Pinthouse decided to create a mashup of WeldWerks’ Juicy Bits and Pinthouse’s flagship hazy IPA, Electric Jellyfish. They then decided to take it a step further to make it that 8.6% ABV DIPA with those hops in particular for bursts of papaya, guava, pineapple, grapefruit and apricot; all combined with a silky smooth mouthfeel to support.
JuicyFish was a fan favorite from last year’s collaboration fest and was brought back specifically for CollabFest. “CBG has been instrumental in helping Colorado breweries navigate the COVID-19 crisis, providing valuable resources, effective communication and most importantly, by advocating at the state level for the legal provisions allowing breweries to continue to operate and offer to-go sales here in Colorado.” the brewery shares in their post, “For all intents and purposes, CBG is the reason WeldWerks is still up and running and their efforts will undoubtedly help keep many Colorado breweries in business during this difficult crisis.”
$2 from every 4-pack of JuicyFish will go back to CBG in an effort to help them continue their mission of supporting the community here in Colorado.
CollabFest Releases | New Image Brewing Company
New Image Brewing Company will be releasing the three beers they made specifically for CollabFest. They wanted to also take this as an opportunity to give back to CBG, who has worked around the clock to make clarifications with the state so breweries across CO understood how to operate. So, for all three CollabFest releases, they’ll be donating $1 of every bottle and 6-pack back to the Guild.
- Va-Niller Time – a blended Imperial Stout with Madagascar Vanilla aged in Whiskey and Bourbon barrels. “We aged this in both whiskey and bourbon barrels so it’s packed with flavors of vanilla, marshmallow, burnt caramel, and cacao,” the brewery shared in their post, “It’s like the drink you were too young to appreciate back in the day, but you’re coming back around to it now, and now you’re down with it.” This was brewed in collaboration with Call to Arms Brewing Co. It’ll be available for pre-order online and ready for pick up on Friday, 4/10.
- Breakfast at Molly’s – a crisp Vienna lager infused with coffee and maple brewed in collaboration with Molly’s Spirits. With a smooth coffee flavor intertwined with hints of vanilla and maple, Breakfast at Molly’s comes in at 5% ABV. As the brewery said, “it’s a perfect mix of complex and crushable.
- Joben – an Imperial Stout brewed with coconut and banana, and then aged in Woodford Reserve double oak and South American rum barrels. This was brewed in collaboration with Phase Three Brewing Company back in 2019, where it was immediately aged in the Woodford Reserve and South American Rum barrels for a year. They got the chance to pull it a month ago to taste together. At that point in time, they became inspired by the notes of vanilla, rum, and marshmallow, so they decided to pile on coconut and banana to emulate a somewhat tropical adjust stout profile. The beer is silky smooth with creamy coconut and rich banana that paves the way to a depth of oak, vanilla, and spirit character. NOTE: This beer is already sold out during the pre-sale.
Online CollabFest Beer Releases | Fiction Beer Company
- Liquid Idiom – a New England-style IPA brewed with Nelson Sauvin and Sabro hops in addition to US ProvOak, an experimental hop blend, in collaboration with Wiley Roots Brewing Co. “Sitting down with the fine folks from Wiley Roots is always a great time. As brewers, we both tend to color outside the lines: we forge our own path to create unique, flavorful, and interesting beers,” Fiction Beer Company shares, “For our newest collaboration we started with a style we both know well: a New England Style IPA. And, because we thrive on a foray into the unknown (and unconventional), we used a US Provoak hop addition to imitate that fresh new book smell we love so much. Provoak is a special blend of hops and toasted white oak. The toasted white oak powder blend adds a unique complexity to the flavor and aroma to this IPA. Massive amounts of Nelson and Sabro hops in the dry hop create the flavors of fresh coconut, ripe mango, and crisp gooseberry notes on your palate. The oak brings out additional notes of vanilla, coconut, and rich earth.”
- Carrate Cake – a carrot cake Sour brewed with carrot juice, brown sugar, cinnamon, nutmeg, vanilla, and lactose in collaboration with Tattered Flag Brewery & Still Works out of Pennsylvania. Their mission with the Veteran-owned brewery was to create a beer that has similar characteristics similar to carrot cake. It came with a high level of difficulty, for too much or two little of any one ingredient could throw off the balance entirely, so military precision was key in this brew. They started off with a simple Berliner Weisse base, then added pilsner and wheat malts and a touch of oat. To create the carrot cake simulation, they added 100 lbs of carrot juice, rich dark brown sugar, golden molasses, and last but not least, lactose. The result was a kettle sour that has the aesthetic and taste of a slice of carrot cake.
Strange Times | Strange Craft Beer Company & Freetail Brewing (& Argonaut Wine & Liquor)
Strange Craft Beer Company is able to release their first canned beer, Strange Times, “through the kindness and generosity of friends in the craft beer industry.” Strange Times is a collaboration with Freetail Brewing out of San Antonio, TX. It is a Baltic Porter aged for three months in a Kentucky Wheated Bourbon Barrel provided by Argonaut Wine & Liquor. The Baltic Porter complements the sweet floral notes and bold vanilla notes of the barrel and is combined with hints of spice and cinnamon in the finish. The beer was canned and filled by Codi Manufacturing, a Colorado canning line manufacturer who had generously offered to can beers for breweries across the Front Range after the mandatory closures. There is only a limited 750 cans available at Strange Craft’s tasting room and at Argonaut.
Strat Boy | Cannonball Creek Brewing & Pizza Port
Cannonball Creek Brewing teamed up with Pizza Port Carlsbad (CA) to brew this 100% Strata hopped American Pilsner made completely with Canadian Pilsner malt. You’ll be able to enjoy notes of peach, grapefruit, and a hint of the Devil’s cabbage. It all comes together to create this crisp, clean 5.4% ABV Pils that ends with a dry finish.
CollabFest Beer Can Release | Knotted Root Brewing
- Milk and Honey – an unfiltered Imperial Oat Cream IPA brewed in collaboration with Fiction Beer Company that comes in at 8% ABV. They hopped the beer with Southern Passion while in the kettle, then double dry-hopped with Nelson Sauvin and the Bruce. It was followed up with the addition of a hefty dose of lactose to produce that silky mouthfeel and local wildflower honey for a rustic sweetness. “Think Golden Grahams, lychee sorbet, and orange blossom honey sticks.” shares the brewery.
- Expanding Exponentially – an unfiltered Spelt IPA brewed in collaboration with Cellar West Artisan Ales. “As a twist, we utilized mostly European ingredients for this hoppy ale, including Belgian Pilsner malt, German Spelt, English Golden Naked Oats, French Barbe Rouge hops and German Callista hops,” shares the brewery, “And then we added a touch of Mosaic – cause ‘Merica. Think strawberry fields, grape slushy, and boysenberry shortcake.”
Piña Colada Milkshake IPA | Cheluna Brewing
Cheluna Brewing teamed up with 5 Rabbit Cervecería out of Chicago to brew this 9.8% ABV DIPA. At it’s ABV, it’s almost a triple — but smooth nonetheless at an easy 45 IBUs. It’s infused with aromatic tropical coconut and pineapple. All that’s needed to escape to a warm beach in your mind with a cold brew in hand. They can take your orders to go from 11-7 every day. Call ahead to order!
Dual CollabFest Can Release | Wiley Roots Brewing Co.
CollabFest holds a special place in all of our hearts, since it fosters the collaborative spirit of the industry. “It’s one of our favorite beer festivals in Colorado, because every beer is a one of a kind collaboration with brewery friends,” Wiley Roots shares, “It’s an opportunity for breweries to share ideas, learn from each other, and celebrate everything we all love about craft beer.” Although we may not be able to have an “in-person” CollabFest, Wiley Roots is encouraging everyone to post a selfie or a photo online and tag them, so that we can share the enjoyment of the beers, virtually.
- Shake Shack Neapolitan – a Milkshake IPA with puréed Strawberry, Chocolate, and Vanilla dry hopped with Strata and Mosaic hops. This was brewed in collaboration with Dark Sky Brewing Company.
- Uncomfy Lobster – a Sour Ale with puréed Guava, Pineapple, and Toasted Coconut collaboration with Cerberus Brewing Company in Colorado Springs, CO.
New (CollabFest) Beers for the Weekend | Something Brewery
The dual releases at Something Brewery this weekend are both brewed in collaboration with Mountain Cowboy Brewing Co. that were supposed to be released at CollabFest this weekend. Although we wish we could be there, social distancing will help us all get back to tasting rooms, beer fests, and other beer related activities hopefully sooner. These beers that they’re releasing may be the WFH breakfast combo you’re looking for.
- Doodle My Strudel – a sour apple strudel Belgian Ale
- Tap my Frap – A caramel macchiato blonde stout.
Into the Woods Release | Copper Kettle Brewing Co.
Copper Kettle teamed up with Big Grove Brewery, who brews out of Iowa City, IA, to create their newest Kettle Sour, Into the Woods. The brewery shares, “Something weird happened on the way to Colorado from Iowa. Some full-bodied Midwestern lactose stumbled through a berry bramble and this perfect kettle sour was born. Raspberries and blackberries give a tart, fruity zing and lactose adds ideal body to this delectable treat. From the fields of Iowa City to Denver’s Rocky Mountains, we know one thing: thirsty happens. When it does, support your local brewery, grab a can, and head into the woods.” Copper Kettle will have Into the Woods available in 19oz cans only.
Homerberry White Stout | Station 26 Brewing Co.
Brewed in collaboration with Hops & Pie, Station 26 will be releasing Homerberry White Stout on April 15 at the craft beer bar and pizzeria. In honor of Hops & Pie’s newest venture Berkeley Donuts, the Homerberry White Stout features strawberries, vanilla and lactose at 6.9% ABV.
Winter Warmer Lager | Goldspot Brewing & Seedstock Brewery
Seedstock Brewery and Goldspot Brewing’s collaboration beer is available now at both breweries. The Winter Warmer Lager is not only striking in color, but is also an incredibly clean tasting beer with subtle notes of dark fruit and rich malt. This beer weighs in at 8.5% ABV.
If y’all know of any additional CollabFest releases, please feel free to reach out so that we can get it added to this round-up! Stay Safe. Support Local. Cheers!