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’Tis the season to gather around the table and celebrate with delicious food—and more importantly—great libations. In the sudsy state of Colorado, craft beer is already a holiday menu staple, but with approximately 300 local craft breweries making exceptional beers, how do you choose which ones to serve? We caught up with Colorado Brewers Guild operations manager and craft beer expert Steve Kurowski for his top picks.
Featherweight Pale Ale
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“No, this is not a holiday beer, or even a seasonal beer. It’s a clean, balanced craft beer with a low ABV percentage, and it just might be my favorite beer to drink all day long—which is something that happens around the holidays. You can’t buy it in a liquor store, though; you have to visit the Cannonball Creek tap-room in Golden and fill your growlers, each and every one of them.” 393 N. Washington Ave., Golden, 303-278-0111
Dunwich Robust Porter
“Trve is known for brewing super creative and damn tasty beers using mixed cultures, farm-sourced fruit, and using wooden barrels to ferment a handful of beers. Each year around this time, they tap this beauty, one of the smoothest, easiest drinking porters I’ve ever had. Again, the only place to get it is at Trve’s Broadway tasting room, so don’t forget your growler.” 227 Broadway, #101, 303-351-1021
Hibernation English-Style Old Ale
“This beer has been around for as long as I can remember and has been winning medals since the ‘90s. Yes, I said the ‘90s. And every single year, this beer is reliably delicious. Great Divide has darn near perfected the dry-hopped, English-style, old ale over the years.” 2201 Arapahoe St.; 1812 35th St., 303-296-9460
“Motif is a take on a Belgian Dark Strong (nine percent ABV), fermented with the brewery’s mixed culture of wild yeast and bacteria in large oak foeders (barrels). This complex beer will pair well with any holiday meal. Motif is also perfect for aging, and will make a great addition to your beer cellar as well as the holiday table. You can buy the 2015 version of this beer at the Crooked Stave Tasting Room at the Source.” 3350 Brighton Blvd., 720-550-8860
“If there was such a thing as a “comfort beer,” this classic would be it for me. Isolation warms me with roasted malty flavors and has a beautiful mahogany color that makes it look as beautiful as it tastes. One of Doug Odell’s earliest seasonal recipes, this beer has become a staple for many Colorado craft beer lovers.” 800 E. Lincoln Ave., Fort Collins, 970-478-9070