#NorthernColorado – PorchDrinking.com
Ah, the holiday season. A time for cheesy movies, eating too many tree-shaped cookies, and imbibing in specialty beers that just fit perfectly with the time of year. Seasonal brews are a staple in nearly any taproom; since the colder months give brewers the inspiration to create warming and holiday dinner inspired drinks.
Maxline Brewing is now one of Fort Collins’ must-drink breweries. They have several awesome seasonal beers on tap, including their fiery Mean Heat Wheat and the childhood-cereal reminiscent Arrez Con Leche. This year, however, Maxline and head brewer Shaun Woodbury added Maxline’s Spiced Plum Ale to the rotation.
The Colorado brewery scene is one with its ups and downs, ebbs and flows. Some breweries see their star shine brightly, then quickly fizzle out and shut their doors nearly as soon as they opened. Others, like Crow Hop Brewing in Loveland, CO, find increased success year after year and eventually need to move locations to accommodate the greater fanfare.
Downtown Loveland is currently home to three breweries (soon to be four) which are well-established in the community and gaining notoriety among the always crowded Colorado craft scene. Loveland Aleworks has been in their current residence, for a long while, and Verboten had a recent change when they moved to their current location on 5th Street. Crow Hop Brewing, the third of the trifecta, called 3rd Street their home since their opening in 2015. That all changed last week, when the team closed shop on 3rd and moved one block north to the east side of 4th Street in Downtown Loveland. Prior to their grand reopening in early June, Crow Hop has put on a few soft open events for their loyal patrons, and Thursday was the first soft open for folks outside of Crow Hops staff and immediate family, and the event did not disappoint.
Colorado is synonymous with countless things: skiing, white water rafting, legalized marijuana, green chili, and, of course, craft beer. With the genesis of the movement often attributed to New Belgium and Odell Brewing in Fort Collins, alongside the well-known names coming out of Denver and Boulder, it’s easy to see how the other locales can be lost in the fold. Loveland, Colorado sits roughly 20 minutes south of Fort Collins, and about an hour North from both Denver and Boulder. While smaller in terms of brewery offerings (roughly six), these establishments sure know how to pack a punch. If you’re in town, here are the six beers you should ensure you get a taste of before you leave.
When you think of a porter, the first thing to come to mind is often the dark color and rich texture it has while sitting in its glass. You may wonder what exactly the difference is between a porter and a stout and why the heck they have to look so similar. Maybe the sheer excitement of a beer in front of you means you don’t think about any of these things, and that is probably the most reasonable reaction. If you’re looking for a traditional porter, turn back now. If you’re looking for one that will surprise your taste buds, Crow Hop Brewing‘s Knee Knocker is where you should turn.