Snowcat Coffee Stout, Crazy Mountain Brewing Company, Edwards

Style: Stout

Serving Type: A draft pint, thought it’s also available in 12-ounce cans

ABV: 5.9 percent

Malty? Hoppy? Malty, thanks to the chocolate and coffee notes

Reviewed: March 2015

I first tried Crazy Mountain’s Snowcat Coffee Stout at Avon’s WinterWonderGrass Festival this past February, a six-minute drive from the brewery’s Edwards base. For an all-day outdoor festival, which was always cold and at times exhausting, there was no better companion than the caffeine-laden stout. Named in honor of the venerable souls who keep our mountains skiable—rising as early as 2 a.m. on powder days to flatten snow—Snowcat wakes and warms as it satiates a love of craft beer.

(Read more beer reviews from 5280 editors)

Though the seasonal beer pours and looks like a higher ABV stout, it’s actually only 5.9 percent, and when you take your first sip you’ll note the lack of body. For certain stout enthusiasts this might be a bad thing, but I found it made the Snowcat more of a session beer, albeit one that doesn’t sacrifice on flavor. Brewed using five kinds of artisanal roasted coffees from Vail’s Mountain Coffee & Tea, as well as a blend of roasted malts and Rocky Mountain water, Snowcat tastes of dark coffee without being excessively bitter. Though the slight caffeine buzz certainly provides a pick-me-up, we don’t recommend throwing a couple back before hitting the slopes.

For a more in-depth look at how the Snowcat Coffee Stout is made, check out this video.

Would we buy it again? Definitely. Though it’s not your typical stout, that’s part of Snowcat’s appeal. The brew is only available during Colorado’s ski season though, so those who want it year-round should stock up on its canned equivalent.

(Check out 5280’s comprehensive guide to Colorado’s craft beer scene)