Apis IV, Elevation Beer Company, Poncha Springs

Style: Belgian quadrupel

ABV: 10.7 percent

Serving Type: 750-mL bottle

Malty? Hoppy? Some hops, but it is all about the malts.

Reviewed: August 2012

A recent trip to Salida, gave us an excuse to stop by the newly opened Elevation Beer Company in nearby Poncha Springs and bring home a bottle of Apis IV. Now, for those of us who’ve completely forgotten taxonomy, “apis” is the honeybee’s genus—a grouping that is bigger than a species but smaller than a family in the science nomenclature world. It’s an apt word to name a beer that showcases Colorado honey. (The “IV” refers to the number of people that made the beer happen.)

Brewers like to put honey in beer—even the White House gets in the game, despite Gov. John Hickenlooper’s concerns—but we often find the honey too cloyingly sweet. That’s not the case with this brew, where the honey’s sugary taste is balanced by a dose of two hops (Northern Brewer and German Tettnang). The beer pours a deep mahogany color with a thick head like a strong, winter brew. The appearance is deceiving, though: Apis IV is light. So much so, that it is easy to forget the 10.7 ABV. But don’t make that mistake; this is a beer that’s better sipped and savored.

Would we buy it again? If the weather ever cools down, this is perfect for a crisp, fall night.

Natasha Gardner
Natasha Gardner
Natasha Gardner is a Denver-based writer and the former Articles Editor for 5280.