Posts Tagged ‘TRVE Brewing’

The pretzels were on point at Marblefest.

This was one of those weekends where most of us should have been in recovery mode, but the beer events (and metal shows) would not allow us to rest.

For me, the in-town fun was this past Thursday, when I took a trip out to Turtle Mountain to celebrate owner Nico Ortiz’s “39th” birthday and the recent gold medal that head brewer Mick Hahn brought home from the Great American Beer Festival. I thought we were just going to raise a pint of the Wooden Teeth and then I could head out, but noooooo, Mick had to go and bust out a whole bunch of beers from various places for us all to try. Darn it, Mick. Darn, darn, darn. Anyway, the Wooden Teeth tasted great, as a gold-medal winner should, and it was nice to see so many of Nico’s longtime friends and customers stop by to wish him a happy birthday and congrats on the medal.

From there, it was off to Steel Bender for the OktoberFiesta. The chef and his kitchen staff should be applauded for a delicious jaegerschnitzel, which is not an easy thing to make, especially as the place filled up and more and more folks stormed in wanting a plate. I was also happy to be one of the last people to get a commemorative mug, even though I need another piece of glassware (or ceramic-ware, in this case) like I need a hole in the head. Sadly, we also drank up all the OktoberFiesta beer. Who thinks we should petition the brewing staff to make another batch? Huh, even my parents have their arms raised.

Anyway, for the rest of the Crew (minus poor Luke, too sick to drink this weekend), here are their latest adventures in beer.

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The Crew finds Stoutmeister’s favorite street.

First, the good news: the Dark Side Brew Crew is in Denver for another round of the Great American Beer Festival! This is normally where one would follow that with some sort of bad news, but there isn’t any, at least not for us.

Once again, we are covering America’s largest craft beer festival out of the Colorado Convention Center, today (Thursday) through Saturday afternoon, including the Saturday morning awards ceremony.

A room with a view.

Our day so far involved waking up way too early, then flying to Denver and taking the train into town. From there, we stopped at the hotel (it is kinda close, as the picture shows above), grabbed our credentials early, and then naturally began to pack on the massive amount of food we will need to get through this first night even semi-coherently. Huzzah to Denver Biscuit Company on South Broadway, and an equally big huzzah to the fact we could walk from there to our home away from home, TRVE Brewing.

Of course an IPA from TRVE was how we started our drinking day.

With an Abysswalker IPA to get us going, here is just some of the stuff we have planned over the next four days:

  • Live videos via Facebook and Instagram from the floor of GABF. We will be stopping by to talk to as many of our New Mexico breweries as we can find (they changed it this year; rather than grouping breweries geographically as in the past, they are now in alphabetical order). If you are not following us on social media, now is the time. Ignore politics and all that, just focus on the goodness of the craft beer, and even Twitter can still be fun.
  • Franz Solo will provide daily written recaps here on the site. To avoid unintelligible gibberish, these will be posted the day after each session. Look for Saturday’s fairly early, as we have the awards ceremony at 10 a.m.
  • Live awards ceremony coverage, including post-ceremonial interviews with what we hope to be many, many local brewers who are bringing home medals!
  • Plus, whatever else we think of on the fly.

We realize it has become really hard, if not almost impossible, to get tickets to this event. We will do our best to take you inside so that you get to experience almost all of GABF from the comfort of your computer, tablet, or phone. If we could find a way to teleport samples of the many great beers to you, we would, but alas, that technology does not exist yet. Come on, scientists, get on that!

We found the Santa Fe Brewing van, but not the Santa Fe brewers.

Got any questions? Any suggestions for things you would like to know about? Just message us here or on social media and we will do our best to provide that for you.

As always, just wish us luck surviving this epic sorts of madness, in the Halls of Valhalla, where the brave, may live, forever!

After food, coffee, and one beer apiece, we are much more awake now than we were back at the Sunport.

Cheers!

— Stoutmeister

Proper glassware, Pfriem, TRVE, CAH, and … yeah, not sure what the frypan was doing there, but you can blame our insatiable need for bacon.

Welcome back to this weekly feature, which got skipped last week due to a deadly combination of not enough people sending in items, and too many other stories clogging up the queue.

This past weekend, however, was a lot more jam-packed with beer-related fun for most of us. Huzzah to that! For me (Stoutmeister), it was a chance to catch up with friends in the film industry who actually got a weekend off. There were beers to be consumed, ridiculous food to eat, and, naturally, a round of Cards Against Humanity was in the, um, cards.

On the beer front, folks cleaned out some oldies but goodies. We had beers from Trinity Brewing (Colorado Springs), TRVE Brewing (Denver), pre-evil-empire Wicked Weed (Asheville, NC), Pfriem (Hood River, OR), and one lunatic stout known as the Truffledome from California. For a few other beers, we did a little mixology. Using Santa Fe’s Chicken Killer as a base, we tested it out with some Oak Aged Vanilla Worldwide Stout from Dogfish Head, and the blend was a beauty, as it took away some of the CK burn as well as keeping the Worldwide from being overly sweet. Hey, if the folks at the SFBC taprooms can make some mixes, we can, too.

Now to the rest of the Crew’s weekend adventures … (more…)

Denver called. Franz Solo and Stoutmeister answered.

Denver called. Franz Solo and Stoutmeister answered.

We were somewhere around Wagon Mound, on the edge of the northern plains, when the bugs began to take hold. No seriously, these were a veritable swarm of all sorts of insectoids smashing and crashing against the car. Wait until you see the goddamn locusts! But I digress, it was a warm sunny day when Stoutmeister and I set out to the grand city of Denver to seek our fortunes in the plethora of outstanding brews to be found there and bang our heads to some absolutely amazing Finnish melodic death metal.

They have a sense of old-school humor at Trinity in Colorado Springs.

They have a sense of old-school humor at Trinity in Colorado Springs.

We stopped in Colorado Springs to get some much needed sustenance and sample a brew or two at Trinity Brewing for some delicious sliders and epic mac n cheese while sipping on an outstanding coffee stout. Those who love sours and saison would have a field day at this joint, for those of us who had just drove five hours at top speed, we needed sustenance and coffee-infused beer to finish the drive to Denver!

Once we arrived in the city proper, our accommodations were stupendous, and we were whisked away to the Atomic Cowboy, a top-notch beer bar on Colfax, where we imbibed several local brews, some as a preview of what was to come and others which were welcome new beers to our palates.

Lunch at Wynkoop. Don't panic, we had food, too.

Lunch at Wynkoop. Don’t panic, we had food, too.

The architecture of the Wynkoop building was rather impressive.

The architecture of the Wynkoop building was rather impressive.

The following morning we trekked to Wynkoop Brewing for an early lunch. The brews were average, but we were there for the food and the ambiance, which were excellent. I took a bit of a walk through the basement and was greeted with the requisite aging and barrel room.

The mothership that is Great Divide.

The mothership that is Great Divide.

The elusive Yeti, and friends.

The elusive Yeti, and friends.

We then trekked our way over to Great Divide in search of the elusive Yeti. Our arrival was badly timed, at least musically, for we were wearing our Pantera and Iron Maiden shirts and the tune playing in the joint was anything but metal. The bartender jokingly greeted us with “the metal brewery is just down the road,” referring of course to TRVE Brewing, which incidentally enough was on the list for the day’s adventures. We settled in for a veritable smorgasbord of delightful samples including Claymore, Hercules (which I have previously reviewed and was just wonderful on tap), as well as of course the inimitable Yeti.

A little slice of Germany in the heart of Denver.

A little slice of Germany in the heart of Denver.

Now that is a sampler tray.

Now that is a sampler tray.

Our palates whetted, our coffers filled we made our way to a little slice of Deutschland in the heart of Denver. Ever since my wife made her way to Prost, she raved at how I would adore them and she was not wrong in the slightest. Prost is as damn near to drinking German brews as one can get outside of being in Germany itself, as far as I’m concerned (one day that holy pilgrimage to Munich must be made), and we absolutely loved their beer and everything else about the place. Particular favorites of mine were the now GABF gold medal-winning Weißbier and the exceptional Keller Pils. Were I a resident of fair Denver it would be safe to call this an often frequented joint for the beer and the atmosphere alike.

All we got is \m/ \m/

All we got is \m/ \m/

Our German palates whetted, our loot of barrel-aged Doppelbock stowed, we set off to black metal heaven in the aforementioned TRVE Brewing. Our arrival, as it turns out, was badly timed. Or at least we had a bit of time to kill before the joint opened for the day so we went for a short stroll down the block and back. The shops around TRVE are a testament to the intriguing melange of culture growing in Denver and Colorado proper. You have high-end retail and fine dining next to dispensaries, cross fit, yoga, and adult shops. What to make of this blend? Time will tell.

Oh, glorious flight of TRVE brews.

Oh, glorious flight of TRVE brews.

We were the first inside TRVE as the doors opened and this brewery was everything we had been told it would be. A medieval long table commands the hall, the walls bedecked with black metal inspired art, and the altar of Baphomet, which also houses the taps, is stunning to say the least. Of all the places to prepare for a Finnish melodic death metal show this was TRVEly the ticket! The beer was as excellent as the metal music filling the place was well, metal. Our particular favorites were Tunnel of Trees IPA and the delightful Stout O))). This really felt like home to me and I would love to have a metal-themed brewery closer to home, although it is likely I would never want to leave.

We want to come back for some Saturday footy on the telly.

We want to come back for some Saturday footy on the telly.

We did, however, have a show to get to and required sustenance prior to the event. The Three Lions proved to be an excellent choice indeed and we would be quite lucky to catch a game or two of English Premier League, or most any other sport in the joint on a busy weekend.

The glory of metal was bestowed upon us.

The glory of metal was bestowed upon us.

Our show at the Bluebird Theater was a night to remember. The local openers Solar Flare set the tone and Omnium Gatherum and Insomnium put on a pair of stunning sets that set our hearts aflame with some rousingly grand metal.

This isn't heaven, but it's close.

This isn’t heaven, but it’s close.

The upstairs taproom. Jeebus.

The upstairs taproom. Jeebus.

The downstairs taproom.

The downstairs taproom.

We awoke the following day and set out for the great Avery in search of glory, and glory found us as well. For those of us who had been up all night head-banging to metal, we were in no mood for coffee and doughnuts, we needed strong drink, or at least a little slice of Valhalla to tide us over. The new Avery headquarters is simply jaw dropping. An enormous building, for starters, with a pair of taprooms and a modern brewing facility that would make many in the industry quite jealous. We were like a couple of giddy kids making our way to wonderland and the anticipation was met with some of the hands-down best beers I have ever had the pleasure of tasting from the source. Having enjoyed many of Avery’s offerings over the past decade or so, we stuck to some of the brewery exclusive options with such delectable choices as Gored (a splendid pumpkin beer), Out of Mind coffee stout, and Raja IPA (here’s hoping we get a few of these in Albuquerque!).

The ridiculous lineup of Avery beers, many only on tap at the brewery.

The ridiculous lineup of Avery beers, many only on tap at the brewery.

The food offerings were definitely on par with the quality of the beer, a menu fit for a king to be sure. Being that we are indeed the Dark Side Brew Crew, we were well prepared for such powerful brews as the Reverend (standard and barrel aged), Samael’s, The Beast (a particular favorite of mine from the days when you could procure bombers of the behemoth), and of course Uncle Jacob’s and Tweak. To say our palates were in heaven is the truth, nothing less, nothing more.

We were properly prepared for our self-guided brewery tour.

We were properly prepared for our self-guided brewery tour.

Represent properly.

Represent properly.

A snifter of Jacobs and Tweak in hand, we wandered through the sections of the brewery proper that were open to us and basked in the glory of being at the source for so many wonderful creations.

A packaging line for the ages.

A packaging line for the ages.

Tanks as far as the eye could see.

Tanks as far as the eye could see.

Dear lord, now that is a brewhouse.

Dear lord, now that is a brewhouse.

Alas, all good things … well we brought just a few souvenirs home … must eventually come to an end. We made the grueling drive through rush hour hell to the high speed burn from Raton to the edge of Santa Fe (our insectoid friends returned, with rain to boot) and found our way back to safety and security in our homes at last, just another couple of freaks in the freak kingdom of fair ‘Burque.

That should tide us over for a little while, right?

That should tide us over for a little while, right?

Until next time, Colorado.

Until next time, Colorado.

Until the next grand adventure we bid you keep the metal loud and the beer exceptional.

Prost!

— Franz Solo

Stoutmeister here. Porter Pounder went up to Denver in between movie gigs, or possibly on his days off, the rest of us are never quite sure. Either way, while there he discovered a fairly new brewery that taps into our group’s metal-loving souls. Now that he has another brief break in filming, he sent in his review of TRVE Brewing.

TRVE Brewing has barely been open for a little over a year. It is a metalhead’s haven of amazing beer, good music, and brutal artwork lining the walls, which is on a constant rotation of artists. Most of their beers are named after metal bands’ songs or namesakes. The best part of this brewery is the crowd. It’s clearly people of all styles of wardrobe and musical preferences who join in the name of phenomenal beer.

Metalheads opened a brewery and decorated it accordingly.

Metalheads opened a brewery and decorated it accordingly.

Here is a beer-by-beer review of what TRVE Brewing had on tap when I visited in June. A big thanks to bartenders Jason and Wil for their guidance in my journey.

Wanderlust (Belgo-American Pale Ale): Definitely Belgian-influenced with the lighter American hops blending with the Belgian yeast. Smooth and light and easy to drink. A perfect start to my inaugural flight. (5.8% ABV)

Prehistoric Dog (Salted Wheat Beer): Easily the most metal version of Blue Moon you’ll ever have. The salt brightens all the flavors and makes it extremely smooth. The smell is uncanny before it hits your palate. Still light and summery even if you’re cranking Nasum while drinking it. (4.4% ABV)

From left to right, the Hellion, TRVE Brewing Vol. I, Death Ripper and ATMA.

From left to right, the Hellion, TRVE Brewing Vol. I, Death Ripper and ATMA.

Tunnel of Trees (IPA): The nose on this is uncanny. Amazing floral hops with just the perfect bite. Another cool summer winner. (7.3% ABV)

Hellion (American Table Beer): Oat-y beer with a light alcohol volume. Drinking this is almost as easy as eating cereal and the flavor matches, too, and I mean that in only the best way. I want to pour this over my Wheaties or make oatmeal with it every day for the rest of my life. (4.2% ABV)

TRVE Brewing Vol. I (Party Beer): Their anniversary beer which breaks the mold of doing a drinking man’s IPA. By that I mean one that isn’t quite as pungent as a normal IPA. It truly is a perfect beer with a hearty hoppy flavor that you could drink all night. (4.0% ABV)

Death Ripper (Denver 666 Common): Just enough bite to keep you interested, this commons beer is very unique. The rich caramel color translates into the flavor as well as leaving an amazing lingering taste after you’re done. Oddly enough the bourbon mash makes for a really clean finish, unlike bourbon barrel-aged beers that overtake the beer itself. (4.2% ABV)

ATMA (Belgian Strong): The Belgian yeast is strong in this one. The citrus provides a palate cleanser after you get a wave of really well-balanced wheat and yeast. This is technically lighter than many Belgian strongs I’ve had in the past,  even at that 8-percent ABV.

And finally the one I saved for the end of my rotation:

From left to right, the Wanderlust, Prehistoric Dog, Tunnel of Trees and Stout O)))

From left to right, the Wanderlust, Prehistoric Dog, Tunnel of Trees and Stout O)))

Stout O))) (American Stout): This stout has one of the most pleasing noses I’ve smelled in a while. The very subtle but noticeable coffee tones are washed with chocolate and a deep, roasted aroma. It is not quite smoky, though, just roasted and warm. Easily the only heavy-body beer of the night, this is the perfect finish. Rich and malty and warming, this will coat your palate and leave you happy. It’s oddly low in alcohol volume for the flavor, but its so robust I would have no issue packing down a sixer of these in a night. (5.8% ABV)

* * * *

While I was there the Nazareth (Double IPA, 10% ABV) just went off tap and was replaced with the ATMA, and the Prehistoric Dog was pints away from being replaced with their new Black Cascade. Well, my friends, I’m off to bathe in goat’s blood in the forest, guiding my way through the dark treacherous path by flaming swords. I recommend you do the same!

— Porter Pounder

P.S. I came back and tried the new Black Cascade (Black American Ale, 6.6% ABV) as it went on tap finally. This is a bold change. Easily one of the most robust in all-around flavor. This beer packs a punch in hops and will creep up on you in alcohol content. Very pungent off the top of your tongue through washing down your throat, this is an IPA fan’s delight. For being a non-IPA fan myself, I’m sold.