Denverites drink beer that reflects and celebrates their diverse city and the surrounding beautiful nature. And the numerous neighborhood breweries that have bloomed throughout Denver reflect that joyful celebration of their city and their craft. But the perennial question remains: what are the best breweries in Denver? Here at Bellhops (we’re the modern alternative to traditional moving companies in Denver, by the way) we’ve put together this list of the sixteen best breweries in Denver to answer that exact question. Let’s dive in.
Founder Daniel Appell has been making sandwiches since he was six years old. His father’s Bangiola’s Sandwich Shoppe started Appell’s love for serving satisfying food to hungry customers. Naturally, in his adulthood, he added the best drink to pair with his tasty sandwiches – craft beer.
Try this: Brown Ale
This malty brew mimics more of an English style brown ale than American style brown ale. And it pairs perfectly with The Grateful Gnome’s Capicola, Proscuitini, Provolone sandwich. The sharp, nutty provolone and the salted meat matches perfectly with the biscuity, subtly sweet flavors of this brown ale. Mangia, mangia!
Stepping into this brewery feels like entering a pine forest. Woods Boss brought the outdoors inside, with stacked rustic wooden planks, tables made from giant split logs, and a bar built with rough, redwood walls. If you dream of cozying up in a cabin with a boozy Farmhouse Ale, you may have just found your new go-to.
Try this: Herbstwald (Autumn Forest) Märzen
How else could Woods Boss Brewing Company bring nature to its customers? By making a beer that tastes like a walk through the forest. Herbstwald, their Märzen lager, is as clean and crisp as nature’s air. Its darker aromas and flavors of brown sugar, toffee, and toasted breads bring to mind the darkening leaves of late fall. This brew is made specifically for the Autumn season, so make sure to snag a glass when it’s available.
Oasis is back! Re-launched in November of 2017, this Egyptian themed brewery tucked in the belly of an old church serves up some of the tastiest brews in the city. Sit amidst steel sphinxes surrounded by exposed brick in this unique taproom and enjoy that old taste you’ve been missing.
Try this: St. Bernard Saison
Sometimes referred to as a Farmhouse ale, this brew pours hazy and golden. As you sip away at this sunny brew, you’ll notice fruit and floral esters amidst honeysuckle, spice, and earthiness.
#13: Cerveceria Colorado
Punchy reds, brilliant blues, pinks, yellows and purples burst across this breweries building. Inside the taproom, one wall displays paintings of cacti made of crystals. Cerveceria Colorado celebrates the traditions, flavors, and culture of Mexico, featuring traditional Mexican ingredients, flavors, and techniques to create a fresh and colorful tap list.
Try this: Churro Stout
This creamy milk stout is made with churros, cinnamon and vanilla. It drinks like a cool, creamy version of the undeniably delicious Mexican hot chocolate, spiked at 6%ABV.
#12: Little Machine Beer
From day one, Little Machine Beer offered a varied menu of solid brews. Their taproom displays futuristic themes and is decorated in purple, red, and laser blue. And they schedule food trucks to bring local grub almost daily that pairs wonderfully with their sudsy creations.
Try this: Agribotix
This Hefeweizen doesn’t blow you away with banana or bubblegum. Its soft, earthy and complex, unfiltered with a light yeast character.
#11: Bierstadt Lagerhause
Bierstadt is your best bet when looking for those thirst-quenching, bready lagers. The brewery creates authentic German-style beers without any flairs or fancy added ingredients. Without those distractions, Bierstadt has been able to concentrate on making some of the cleanest, quality lagers you’ll find in the city. Pop up to The Rackhouse Pub for some grub pairings with any of Bierstadt’s lagers.
Try this: The Slow Pour Pils
This German-inspired Pils is crystal clear, crisp, and bubbly. Bierstadt takes their time on this Slow Pils, spending 30 hours to make it on brew day and then lagering it patiently. The signature feature of this malty, crushable brew is a billowing white head that pillows above the rim of your glass. Beers like this are why lagers still draw a thirsty crowd.
#10: Spangalang Brewery
This jazz-themed brewery makes a wide variety of brews, from sours to saisons. They’ve become the neighborhood brewery of Five Points, and they make it their mission to provide their visitors “with some of the freshest, best-tasting beer they’ve ever had!” A big goal, but Spangalang is well on its way, pumping out exciting, experimental recipes regularly.
Try this: Salted Plum Table Beer
Spangalang’s table beer was made to be enjoyed for flavor and experience rather than a buzz. Its sessionable at only 4.5%ABV with low bitterness and a light fruity flavor. Spangalang created this tasty sipper with Colorado malts and fermented it with Norwegian Farmhouse Ale Yeast. Then they added a dose of plums and a touch of salt to make a balanced and light table beer.
With their background at Avery Brewing, the founders of Call to Arms had big shoes to fill. But their wide range of styles brewed consistently well helped them blow past these high expectations. You’ll notice yourself feeling comfortable sitting in their homey taproom, which displays darker wood, white walls, and pictures framed and hung throughout the building.
Try this: Oats and Hose
This Oatmeal Porter billows with a huge mouthfeel. The brew pours creamy with a thick, tan head and gives off notes of chocolate and cherries. It’s lightly sweet and extremely drinkable at 5.7%ABV.
Located in an old fire station in the Park Hill neighborhood, Station 26 brews enough beer and enough varieties to make everyone happy. Their inviting taproom welcomes families and pets (on the patio) and offers in return some delicious, approachable brews to sample.
Try this: Colorado Cream Ale
This bronze beaut won a bronze medal from the GABF in 2014. Two years later, it decided to test itself against judges once more and won its gold medal in the Colorado State Fair. It’s light, crisp, refreshing, and brewed with Colorado-grown ingredients.
#7: Cerebral Brewing
Brewing should never be thoughtless. Tradition should be upheld, but boundaries should be pushed. This, at least, is what Cerebral Brewing believes and breathes, and anyone visiting their taproom will notice hints of this sentiment in their branding and beer. A little white brain stamped on each glass will remind you, as you’re sipping, that no brew has slipped through their taps without plenty of intention and thought.
Try this: Single Barrel: 16
This American Ale has been soured with wild yeast and aged for 12 months on oak. Cerebral Brewing then conditioned this brew on tangerine and soursop, a tropical fruit with flavors and aromas described as a combination of strawberries, apple, citrus, and pineapple. Single Barrel:16 is tart, complex, and hits a high 7%ABV.
Want a variety? Declaration Brewing makes them all, from lagers to ales to sours. Their passion for beer is evident when you peruse their massive list of 70 unique beer varieties. Ease down at one of their long tables in their casual taproom and…
Try this: High Class Horchata
If you’ve ever tasted sweet, velvety Horchata, you know why this beer caught our attention. Brewed with cinnamon, vanilla, lactose, rose, and sweet malt, this Spiced Mexican Lager is incredibly clean and crisp, yet creamy, just like a cold glass of Horchata.
With a polite wave as they pass by tradition, Odell moves on down the exciting path of creativity and innovation in their brews. They call themselves tinkerers and experimenters who are always seeking out new and interesting brewing techniques and ingredients. And while their beers do push boundaries, you’ll find quality and approachability in every can.
Try this: Cloud Catcher Milkshake IPA
Hazy as a cloudy day, Cloud Catcher matches the milkshake IPA style perfectly – big mouthfeel, creamy from the brews lactose and oats, sweeter than their IPA cousin. Odell double dry hopped Cloud Catcher, which makes this brew juicy and fruity, with notes of a citrus creamsicle.
Located in a 1920’s restored building, Long Table tucked its 7 barrel brewhouse and fermentation tanks between the taproom and bottom floor. The intimate 50-person taproom still feels airy and roomy under large exposed ceilings and next to glass-paned garage doors. In addition to tasty brews, Long Table also serves Hoppy Leaf Kombucha and schedules food trucks to come to their building daily. Bring your family, bring your pup, and enjoy some bubbly.
Try this: Hazy IPA
Long Table created its very own New England IPA, and it’s now our go-to on the menu. Its juicy and balanced with citrus notes and hoppy bitterness that balances its fruity flavors. This hazed brew pours as glowy-yellow as a sunset behind the Rocky Mountains.
#3: Bruz Beers
Moved by their passion for Belgian beers, Bruz built a business that brought these fine artisanal drinks to Coloradans. The founders wanted to build the kind of brewery they’d want across the street, and the neighborhood of Midtown practically grew up around them. Before enjoying a few drinks, try out some of the fun activities Bruz Beers offers, like their regular yoga classes and run clubs.
Try this: Pomegranate Blond
This Belgian-style Blond Ale has been fermented with ripe pomegranates. Its beautiful rose color matches the light, fruity quality you’ll taste. The fresh, cleanness masks its higher ABV at 6.8%.
For a perfect pairing, try this brew with the Cranberry Walnut salad, made of mixed greens, red onion, cucumber, tomato, candied walnuts and dried cranberries and topped with grilled chicken.
#2: Ratio Beerworks
Despite a large list of great craft breweries in Denver, Ratio Beerworks has caught quite a bit of attention. Their brewmaster, Jason zumBrunnen studied in Germany and at the Siebel Institute in Chicago and creates most of their delicious concoctions. The artwork throughout their taproom nearly steals the attention away from their tasty brews, an expression of their desire for creativity in every corner of their business. Ratio also offers their visitors yard games and a large, dog-friendly patio, occasionally hosting live music and stand-up comedians.
Try this: Dear You
Dear You was brewed with french yeast, which creates a perfectly dry, crisp Saison. Unlike Belgian style Saisons, this brew is more earthy than sweet and fruity. To brighten this beer up even more, Ratio added Citra hops for a medium bitterness and citrus aromas.
For American and Belgian brews, intentional beer and food pairings, and a beautiful environment, visit Briar Common Brewery + Eatery. Their building is made of scuffed red brick and wide windows with chalky black trim. A slate gray build out on the top of their building opens out to their second floor patio, draped with stringed golden lights. Inside, 12 foot, exposed brick walls meet rust brown decorative ceiling tiles, and amber chandeliers line the long dining area.
Brewer Greg Dawson, a Certified Cicerone and certified beer judge with the BJCP, brews up a delicious tap list that locals can enjoy alongside the restaurants dishes.
Try this: Sour Seoul
This creative sour chili ale was inspired by the Korean food, kimchi, a dish that Greg Dawson enjoyed during his 11 years in the country. Note the soft, balanced flavors and aromas of Asian pear and a slight warming spice.
Pair this with the Ahi Tuna Poke served with avocado, mango, white soy, pickled onion, and puffed sushi rice. Sour Seoul’s spice will pair perfectly with the fatty, mellow flavors of fish and avocado, and the pickled onion will compliment the sourness of the beer. This pairing will keep you coming back for more of Briar Common’s brilliant creations.
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