Archive | July, 2010

The Only Informational Post on this Blog (BOULDER BEER TOUR, BOULDER)

21 Jul

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Best Wrist Bracelet EVER

As we said in the previous post, it was necessary for us to split Boulder Beer into two trips, because of the brewery tour schedule that only is convenient for hobos and babies.

However, we’re glad that we took the time for this inconvenient tour, because it was the best one we’ve done so far! It was informational, we actually cared and were entertained, and…the tour ends in a room with 6 or 7 pitchers of free beer!

As usual, we were running a little bit late, thanks to me, so we got there about five minutes late. However, what we’ve learned after several instances of rushing places for tours (usually my fault), is that the Boulder breweries are pretty laid back about their tours, unlike New Belgium in Fort Collins, where it’s harder to get in than an elite nightclub.

Our tour guide immediately greeted us, and suggested we get beer before the tour began, and that he’d wait for us. (We also enjoy the tours where you are encouraged to start drinking before it even begins).

We started off in the room with the mash tanks, and got to actually see the guy working on it (This is the first time that’s happened. All the other breweries seem to work similar to the Wonka factory and have secret brewery oompa loompas that brew the beer when no one is looking).

We manged to escape this room with only two close encounters of ruining 50 barrels of beer.

Note: Don’t sneeze into the mashton tanks and try not to trip right in front of them sending yourself into 1,750 gallons of beer sludge.

This brewer was clearly not an ompa loompa

Pre-beer gooey sludge mess

During the rest of this hour-long tour we were taken through the entire process of beer making- from making the yeast to the actual brewing, to the bottling. Then we ended in the tasting room, where Boulder Beer supplied the tour with the pitchers of all of the beers.

At the end of the tour we also got to see some of the first ever canned version of Hazed and Infused as well as the miniature brew system that is available to any Boulder Beer employee that wants to try out and experiment in a small quantity of their own batch of beer which is where some of the most liked beers from Boulder Beer have started out.

Because we usually only half pay attention when people talk, even when it’s interesting, here are the highlights from the tour.

  • Boulder Beer is a 50 barrel brewhouse
  • They put their grist hopper in the wrong spot and have to use a giant tube to get it into the mash tanks. This could have been easily avoided if the original design of the brewery had been done BEFORE they were testing the beers.
  • "Shouldn't we put this by the mash tank?" "Details..."

  • Beer actually comes in barrels as a unit of measurement, but that term isn’t usually used because it would be a pain in the as to have to carry around a barrel, which is equivalent to 2 kegs. That’s why we have handy things like kegs and pony kegs. And Firkins.
  • There are two types of yeast used in their beers. Wheat beers have a special yeast.
  • Secret pictures aren’t so secret when you stick a camera up to someone’s neck, because someone else keeps pointing at their lanyard.
  • He just really wants to save the ocean!

  • Air is bad for beer, really bad.
  • We have no idea where this door goes. Speculation is that it would be a great trick to play on someone you don’t like.
  • Well mortal enemy, what you're looking for is right through that door...

  • It takes the yeast and beer 2-7 days to ferment
  • As the yeast gets cold, it sinks. That’s why the beer tanks are cone shaped.
  • Beer is pumped into aging tanks and sits there for weeks.
  • The same yeast can be used for 10 generations safely, and still give beer a great flavor.
  • There are several different types of hopping, including wet hopping and dry hopping.
  • You can only imagine how many times we snickered, and how many innuendos we made when our guide was talking about “dry hopping”
  • Men can’t be trusted to do anything right, including taking decent pictures. But check out the home-grown hops in the background! We were told none of this hops is actually used in the beers because someone planted it years ago, no one wrote down what kind it is; surprise, surprise.
  • It's like a really bad senior picture.

  • Malt is actually pretty good. It tastes like burnt toast.

    "I could eat this like a snack!"

  • Caramel malt is crunchy and kind of sweet.
  • Hops are weird. They look like rabbit pellets and have a very citrusy, floral smell- just like hoppy beers do.
  • "It looks like a rabbit pooped in your hand."

  • Bad things happen when you stick your hand into a machine.

I bet that guy regrets drinking on the job
  • Lisa hates everyone. (I was the only one that had to return to work after this tour was over and therefore didn’t get to enjoy the beers for as long as everyone else did, hence the angry face.  – Lisa)

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Where the footjobs are plentiful (BOULDER BEER, BOULDER)

15 Jul

The whole place has such a Boulder vibe.

To start it should be noted that this brewery had to be done in two parts. First, obviously was the beer drinking and second was the actual tour of the brewery itself. We did the beer drinking a few weeks back and then had to wait for nice weekday to sneak out of work and head to the brewery for the tour because for some unknown reason Boulder beer only does brewery tours on WEEKDAYS at 2pm.

When we arrived to sample the beer and we first noticed a few key things.

1) We were really late – this is not surprising knowing Julia

2) The parking lot is very Boulderish and makes no sense at all and almost deterred from going at all

3) What looked to be EVERY employee was smoking in front of the building which means not only did we get blog content, some good beers and a lot of laughs but lung cancer too!

Even the straws are Bouldery- meaning they're smarmy and eco-friendly. You can see how we feel.

As previously stated we eat constantly so we all ordered food. Not just any food but the most fattening food on the menu. What better compliment to the empty calories we were about to consume in beer than some of the most fat filled foods you can get? Flawless female logic. (Kind of like how I go to the gym before every brewery. –Julia)

And all of it was delicious.

While waiting for our food we were asked by one of the other non-boobed group members (no this was not a highly athletic semi-lesbian female) but one of the males what we were going to do after we finished all our 30 brewery tours and subsequently had nothing more to write about.

The obvious progression for any good alliterative blogger is to continue down the alphabet. So be prepared for our follow-up blog- Cocaine, Cooters and Confined Spaces (We felt we should continue with something unhealthy, something dirty, and a place to do all of it).

I got irrationally angry at the waitress (admittedly) because she was singing and dancing to the awkward 80’s cover band and it was uncalled for. The males decided to challenge our blog with their own entitled “Burritos at Breweries” because every time we go to a brewery with food they order burritos. In case you were wondering it WILL feature a moob rating system.

As a result of Julia dropping her pen under the table, me wearing a short dress, and her taking pictures under the table of me trying to pick up the pen with my feet we also inadvertently started the “Cooters” portion of our next blog early.

I guess Julia's not that good at cooter capturing

 At this point it also got a bit awkward when I proclaimed that I am in fact “better with my feet”. For the rest of the night, the males referred to me as “Footjob”. All jokes aside, footjobs ARE possible.

(I just keep picturing you being an evil James Bond Nemesis. And killing good guys with your feet. After you bang, of course. –Julia)

After devouring his food in record time, one of the males began staring at everyone else’s food as they were still eating.

Male 1: “Do you want some of this?”

Male 2: “No, that’s okay…” 

As you can see by the picture he had his eyes on something else he was hoping to be offered by staring at them.

"Hey it worked for everything else I stared at..."

Our guest boob for the night was Sarah Megill! Since I generally don’t get along with females – EVER, I ran out of female friends after the first guest boob, which means we have to rely on Julia to provide us with additional females to accompany us on the remainder of the brewery tours.

(Good luck on that. I have approximately 5 female friends, Lisa included. If we were doing a blog involving gay men as our companions, we’d be SET –Julia)

Yay! Fun Sarah! (we know so many Sarahs we have to differentiate them somehow)

As we started with the beers we *astonishingly* realized one of the beers on the taster we had already had. Buffalo Gold is also served at the Walnut Brewery and because we were too lazy to ask we have no idea which brewery actually brews this.

I would hope though that if we had asked they would have passed blame to the other brewery. Yes, I said passed blame because this beer is sub-par, especially in comparison to the other beers they serve.

 We also noted most the beers weren’t very cold. but we seized the opportunity as an excuse to drink them faster.

Onto the beers.

The waitress kept looking at us awkwardly as we did this

Buffalo Gold– It’s been less than a week and we still hated it.
1 boob

Cold Hop Spring Ale – Bitter aftertaste.

“It tastes like flowers!”
“Yeah. Bitter flowers.”

Julia -2
Lisa -3 (only because Julia gave it a 2)

Pastime Ale– Not bitter, smells like fruit.
2 boobs

Singletrack Copper Ale– The name serves it justice. Tastes like copper.

“Tastes like if you got a penny stuck under my tongue, then drank a beer. Maybe just half a penny though, not the full thing.”

2 boobs

Sundance– nutty and hoppy
2 boobs

Sweaty Betty– Originally excited for this beer, but then realized it tastes like cloves and rotten bananas. The bananas freaked us out. It’s creative, but weird.
2 boobs (only for originality)

Hazed and Infused– The original. It’s powerful and delicious.
3 boobs

Flashback“There’s a biscuit in this!” “This tastes like I got it in my nostril”

2 boobs

Lisa probably is smiling because she got an early start on the Cocaine, Cooters and Confined Spaces blog by snorting coke

Planet Porter- WEAKEST PORTER EVER. There wasn’t really a point

“It’s a lady porter. It’s the Smirnoff Ice of porters.”

1 boob, only because it was a disgrace to porters

Mojo Pale Ale– Wasn’t as good as Avery’s.

It PALES in comparison. HAHAHAHAHA.” -Lisa

To be fair, I found this beer was delicious and was only disappointed since it lacked the real kick that the comparable IPA’s had. Definitely a must order if you go to this brewery though.

3 Boobs

Blueberry Beer (seasonal) Kinda Blue– Tastes like tea. Would’ve been better had it not been flat and warm.
“Tastes like tea.”
“What kind of tea?”
“Shitty tea.”

3 Boobs

And that was that. Stay tuned for the review of the Boulder Beer tour, which we really liked. I leave you with this picture of my dress, which matched perfectly with my bra, making it the perfect drinking dress. You, know, just in case.

Gypsy Trickery in Golden COORS BREWERY, GOLDEN

7 Jul

Word of the Week- Gypsy Trickery

If you recall, this phrase was used in the Avery Post. You may have wondered exactly what it meant, and, seeing as that weekend (and this whole week, really) have been filled with gypsy trickery, we thought we should explain.

 Have you ever been tricked into doing something because you thought is was something else? Did someone guilt you into going somewhere awful? Have you ever been lured somewhere under false pretenses? Do you not pay taxes anywhere because you’re a vagabond? THIS IS GYPSY TRICKERY.

We spent the afternoon at the pool, which backfired horribly when we realized that Coors only gave tours until 4 pm. We booked it down to Golden (which, by the way, there is no easy way to get there from Westminster) and showed up about 30 minutes before the last tour bus left.

The nice parking attendant directed us to the line, while I panicked that we weren’t going to make it before the tours closed.

Julia: "What is this?" Amber: "That's a line. Also known as a queue in the UK"

Since we had some time to kill, we began taking pictures with the Coors sign as though it was a celebrity.

We started a trend. Everyone else after us started taking this same picture.

In line, we discussed the merits of bringing children on brewery tours, since they seem to be plaguing us wherever we go. The general consensus was that children don’t belong on brewery tours, and if you as a parent are dragging them along it doesn’t make you “cool” or “hip”.

It pretty much just means you’re setting your child up to be a drunk frat boy, or a drunk whore who those frat boys will sleep with.

It also proves that you as the parent either got pregnant too young and are now attempting to squeeze every last ounce of your youth out of your life but are too cheap to afford a babysitter or you actually think bringing your child to an alcohol factory is a good “family” activity. Either way, it’s a shame you were allowed to procreate anyway.

She'll probably make many, many men very happy someday

*Also, as the sign below reminds us, you cannot bring in more things for your child than necessary. I accidentally loudly made a comment questioning how I was going to use my pretend child as a liquor mule if I wasn’t allowed to bring a diaper bag. (It’s awfully troubling that Coors felt the likelihood of parents using their children as alcohol smuggling devices was so great it warranted a sign to prohibit it. –Lisa)

We actually didn’t have to wait for too long. Coors is really good about continually having busses picking up and dropping people off from the brewery. At first we thought it was strange that they were sending a bus to drive us about two blocks from the parking lot, but as soon as we boarded it became clear this was a gypsy bus.

“Welcome to Golden, Colorado, home of Coors Brewery, Buffalo Bill’s Grave and the School of Mines. On your left, is Olde Town Golden…blah blah blah.”

We had been gypsy tricked into going on a tour of Golden (which is not that exciting, hence the trickery to get anyone to do it.)

Lisa got gypsy tricked into sitting alone on the bus

About 10 minutes later we finally pulled up in front of the brewery, I told Amber that from now on, every time someone gets in my car for me to drive them anywhere, I’m going to take them on a tour of Arvada and my childhood, regardless of where our destination is.

The bus driver assured us that the pools of water surrounding the brewery that actually looked more like black tar were NOT used to make the beer but instead to clean things. Phew. How horrible would that be if a Coors beer actually had some flavor to it?
The first thing we had to do when we were inside was take a tourist picture in front of a cheesy background that we could buy at the end of our tour for the low, low price of 19.99!!

Then, they swiped our driver’s licenses and gave us personalized bracelets (which could double as hospital/prison admittance bracelets later in the day depending on how the tour went), and what looked like cell phones from the 80s.

I'm going to have to call you back. I need to crank the battery in the backpack for my phone so it doesn't die.

These turned out to be our tour guides for the day. The desk lady explained that we were supposed to press the number that coordinated to whichever one was on the wall and put the phone up to our ear to hear what they had to say.

The information probably was interesting, but I honestly don’t see how self-tours benefit Coors. Most of the people around us weren’t listening to any of the stops. They were instead rushing to the three free beers at the end. In fact, there was even an option at the start of the tour to forgo the 80’s cell phone tour guide all together and just meander to the tasting room for the free beer. If they really want to make the tour more interesting they should hold races to see who can run past the educational exhibits and drink all three free beers the fastest (bonus points for knocking the most small children into vats of beer along the way!)

However, we took the time to kind of do the tour. This is what followed.

  • Did you know that Coors is made from water from the Colorado Rockies? You probably could’ve guessed, since ALL OF THEIR BEER TASTES LIKE WATER.
  • There are a bunch of flowers all over the brewery because Adolph Coors’s wife really liked flowers.
  • Large boobs are great places to hold things.

We had to figure out some way to juggle our drinking, purses and 80s phones

  • There are subliminal messages in the self-tour. Whenever the man doing the voiceover would mention a Coors beer, a softer woman’s voice would immediately whisper it afterwards. Lisa and I both heard it. Amber didn’t. I guess we know which one of us is going to end up in a cult drinking Kool Aid someday.

What's that, lady's voice? You want me to do WHAT?

  • The Coors Brewery in Golden is the largest self-contained brewery in the world. This means they do all of the brewing, packaging and distribution from there. Which is kind of cool.
  • Acid might be the secret ingredient in their beer. Okay, probably not, but this room was hilarious.

I just bought you these flowers to apologize for the acid spill...

  • There is an elusive Red Keystone. The only place you ever hear about it is the brewery. It’s not sold anywhere. No one knows why this is. And I couldn’t ask, because the 80s cell phone wasn’t answering ANY of my questions.

They cryogenically froze the last one, so that they could bring it back to life in the future, when they have the right technology

Finally we found some really awesome cutouts of giant Coors beer and the proper tourist picture taking commenced. We even talked a stranger into taking the picture of us and didn’t end up with them asking us if we stalking them OR them walking away horribly offended!

These were really cold. You can tell, because the mountains on the bottle are blue

We also came up with the best Halloween costumes ever. Lisa, Amber and I are going to be Slutty Keystones.

 

Amber: “I’m going to be Key Light because I go down easy”

Lisa: “I’m going to be Key Red because I’m a tease”

Julia: “I’m going to be Key Ice, I guess…because no one likes me?” (Picture me looking sad)

 

Finally we reached the mecca of shitty beers- otherwise known as the Coors Tasting Room. You get 3 free, pretty decently-sized beers. They’re all on tap and you’re supposed to be impressed because they’ve never left the brewery. It was kind of crowded, you have to finish one beer before they’ll give another, and old ladies will poach your table as soon as you get up, even if you’re planning on coming right back. Did we mention there’s small children running around making messes everywhere? Thanks again responsible parents!

Now, for the beers. Keep in mind we spent most of college drinking an array of Coors products. These are the staples that we compare all of the other beers we drink to, so the descriptions were incredibly hard.

Blue Moon- It tastes like Blue Moon. It’s a light, wheat beer with just a hint of citrus to it. Best served with an orange. It’s a good staple beer if you’re at a bar with limited choices and you want to be slightly classier than everyone else, but not too douchey.

Amber and Lisa- 2 boobs

Julia- 3 boobs

Honey Moon- This is just like Blue Moon, only sweeter.

“I expected to get stung by a bee. It was THAT sweet.”

3 boobs

Molson- “It takes like Key light, only Canadian. Yeah. You know what I mean.”

1 boob

Batch 19- This is their strongest beer. It’s still not great, but it gypsy tricks you into thinking it’s better than it is because it gets your drunk quicker.

2 and a side boob

*Note, we’ve added side boobs into the equation. We don’t believe in half boobs, because that’s dumb, but side boobs make sense. It’s when you’re shirt is just a little too small and you get that weird amount of boob that kind of spills out the side. See: Lisa most of our time in Vegas.

Killians- It’s a red beer, and it definitely tastes like copper.

“For a beer that’s never left the brewery, I expected this to be better.”

2 boobs

Colorado Native- this is the newest beer from Coors, and they’re pretending that it comes from some small, side brewery in the middle of the mountains. It’s their shot at a “craft beer” because they realized that they weren’t going to be able to cut it in Colorado anymore. It’s a solid, mass-produced beer.

“I can’t tell if it’s good or not. It might be like being the smartest kid on the short bus…”

3 boobs

Our outing ended with a stop at the gift shop, where we realized we were JUST drunk enough that buying stuff seemed like a good idea. Gypsy tricked again.

Thanks to Amber for being a guest boob. And for not smashing things when you got angry.

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