Monday, May 21, 2018

Black Bear Distillery releases Brazilian-style white rum

Posted By on Mon, May 21, 2018 at 6:10 PM

COURTESY BLACK BEAR DISTILLERY
  • Courtesy Black Bear Distillery
Green Mountain Falls-based Black Bear Distillery has reopened its doors for the summer season, and as part of that, owner Victor Matthews has released a new spirit. It’s a white rum, but it isn’t made like most — Matthews calls it a Brazilian-style rum.

“The difference between it being Brazilian and any other white rum is that we’re using pure cane sap juice to make this,” he says. By technical definition, it’s not a rum at all, but a cachaça, the signature spirit of Brazil, similar to rum but distinct. And Matthews agrees, but there’s a catch.

“The goal would be to have it be a cachaça, but you can’t use that word,” he says. “It has to come from Brazil.” Much like Champagne and Cognac, it has to be made in the right part of the world, as well as from the right stuff, thanks to a 2012 agreement between Brazil and the US.

The white rum will be released on Saturday, June 9, as part of a carnival party at the distillery, featuring rum and cachaça cocktail specialties using the spirit — and yes, that means caipirinhas galore. Check out Black Bear Distillery's Facebook page for more details.
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Friday, May 4, 2018

World Beer Cup awards Bristol, Cogstone, Cerberus Brewing Companies

Posted By on Fri, May 4, 2018 at 3:56 PM

Cerberus Brewing Company brewer/co-owner Joshua Adamski, left, and Cerberus assistant brewer Taylor Donner, second from left, accept their award. - COURTESY CERBERUS BREWING COMPANY
  • Courtesy Cerberus Brewing Company
  • Cerberus Brewing Company brewer/co-owner Joshua Adamski, left, and Cerberus assistant brewer Taylor Donner, second from left, accept their award.
We got in touch with Bristol Brewing Company founder/brewer Mike Bristol, who had this to say about his brewery's turnout:

“We’re always excited to win [World Beer Cup awards]. We’ve won some in the past… and it’s always an honor to be recognized by peers and beer judges. Our business is all about our fans… If I had a choice, I’d have the fans love the beer, but we get both!”

— ORIGINAL POST 3:56 P.M. FRIDAY, MAY 4, 2018 —

The World Beer Cup is over, and Colorado has come away with a sizable share of awards — including three for Springs breweries. Bristol Brewing Company's Beehive honey wheat took home a silver medal in the American-style wheat beer with yeast category. Cerberus Brewing Company's NBD Kölsch took home a bronze medal in the German-style Kölsch category. And Cogstone Brewing Company's beet cream ale took home a bronze in the field beer category.

“It means a lot," says Cogstone brewer/co-owner Robert Hemphill. "That beer was special for me, and I worked really hard to get it that way.”

Cerberus assistant brewer Taylor Donner says he's "super stoked that our hard work paid off. NBD is easily one of my go-to beers at the brewery, and it's rad to see that it can do so well on an international level."

Congratulations to all of the breweries who won. Click here for a full list of this year's winners.
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Thursday, May 3, 2018

Maté Factor's Twelve Tribes community called out by Vice

Posted By on Thu, May 3, 2018 at 10:44 AM

Many Colorado Springs and Manitou Springs locals, as well as tourists to the areas, know The Maté Factor as a cool, Ewok Village-lookin' spot to grab a bite and drink pre- or post-Incline hike. It's also a favorite spot for non-sabbath lingering and socializing into the late night hours, as they're open 24-6.

But for every new person who discovers a love for the fine flavored house yerba maté drinks and snacks, there's another person who questions what "We serve the Fruit of the Spirit" means, and what the religious pamphlets on site are all about.

The Indy has fielded so many questions over the years — or been privy to comments spoken about the place — that we sat down with some Twelve Tribes community members (a decade ago, ahem) to unpack the term they eschew at every turn: cult.

But the public, and journalists, apparently aren't interested in calling them anything different.
On April 30, Vice posted a story titled "The Idyllic Restaurant Chain Owned by a Homophobic, Racist, Child-Beating Cult."

To be clear, the story is set around San Diego area restaurants operated by the Twelve Tribes, and doesn't mention the Maté Factor. But the inflammatory piece obviously levels some charges, based partly on writings found on the community's own website.

Holding no punches or snark, the Vice writer concludes with: "I guess if you want a nice veggie burger and are looking to financially support homophobia, segregation, the hitting of children, and the subjugation of women, then I would highly recommend this place."

We reached out to the Manitou Springs Twelve Tribes community to see if they wish to comment on the article.

A Maté Factor manager I spoke with, who's been with the community in many spots across the country since 2006, and did not wish to be named here, says, "We're an open book. Come see us, we've been here 18 years. We'd love to answer any questions."

If you wish to sanitize your sipping, just grab a bag of maté and skip the religious pamphlets at the Maté Factor. - MATTHEW SCHNIPER
  • Matthew Schniper
  • If you wish to sanitize your sipping, just grab a bag of maté and skip the religious pamphlets at the Maté Factor.

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Wednesday, May 2, 2018

Rooster's House of Ramen celebrates first anniversary of making America slurp again

Posted By on Wed, May 2, 2018 at 12:15 PM

Rooster’s House of Ramen One-Year Anniversary Party, May 3, 5-10 p.m., makeamericaslurpagain.com. - MATTHEW SCHNIPER
  • Matthew Schniper
  • Rooster’s House of Ramen One-Year Anniversary Party, May 3, 5-10 p.m., makeamericaslurpagain.com.
When Rooster’s House of Ramen opened in 2017, it did so to crowds of more than 300 per day — quite a draw for a new downtown eatery. But Springsians were definitely desperate for a place that knew how to do ramen right, and Rooster’s delivered. Owned and operated by local top-tier chef Mark Henry (who won Food Network’s Chopped and Cooks vs. Cons), Rooster’s does playful things with traditional ramen dishes, while maintaining the integrity of the ingredients and the dish itself. The celebration for their one-year anniversary won’t be some hoity-toity fine dining experience. Rather, the establishment (as always) suggests bringing your family, slurping your meal, and having a casual good time. In addition to a throwback menu featuring some old favorite recipes, enjoy raffles, live music and a tap takeover by Matt Bessey of Avery Brewing Co. 
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Tuesday, May 1, 2018

Wild Goose Catering, Black Forest Chew-Chew Gastrotruck lauded at food truck cook-off

Posted By on Tue, May 1, 2018 at 1:33 PM

GRIFFIN SWARTZELL
  • Griffin Swartzell
Sunday, April 29 marked the beginning of Small Business Week, sponsored by the Colorado Small Business Development Center and, consequently, the third annual food truck cook-off at the Norris Penrose Event Center. 16 food trucks showed up to feed the sold-out event, substantially larger than previous years, and to pick their favorites.

By vote, attendees chose Black Forest Chew-Chew Gastrotruck's Korean bulgogi tacos as their favorite bite, with Filipino Food Truck's lumpia Shanghai and Lucy I'm Home's Cubano with plantain chips rounding out the top three.

In addition to a people's choice, the SBDC asked six members of the Springs' culinary community to judge the trucks' offerings over two rounds. On hand were Tyler Peoples, chef/catering manager for Springs Rescue Mission and Mission Catering; Brent Beavers, executive chef at AspenPointe Cafe and Immerse Cuisine; Greg Champagne, executive chef at the Double Tree by Hilton; David Patterson, executive chef at The Broadmoor; Mark Musial, chef de cuisine at The Broadmoor's Ristorante de Lago; and Indy food, arts and culture reporter Griffin Swartzell (yours truly).

With a mere six point spread between first and third places, the judges chose Wild Goose Catering & BBQ's mammoth "just a burger" sliders as their favorite, with NaO's Foodbus's curried chicken salad taking second, one point ahead of third-place Lucy I'm Home's Cubano with plantain chips.

Check out the Small Business Week event schedule here for more events. Click below for a slideshow of the plates that landed in the judges' top six spots.



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Thursday, April 26, 2018

Tap Traders dedicates Friday to local beer

Posted By on Thu, Apr 26, 2018 at 12:00 PM

Colorado Springs Beer Tap Takeover - April 29, 10 a.m. to 5 p.m., Tap Traders, 3104 N. Nevada Ave., #100, taptraders.com. - GRIFFIN SWARTZELL
  • Griffin Swartzell
  • Colorado Springs Beer Tap TakeoverApril 29, 10 a.m. to 5 p.m., Tap Traders, 3104 N. Nevada Ave., #100, taptraders.com.
Bless Colorado beer, and Colorado Springs beer in particular. With more than 30 craft breweries around town, we’ve got no shortage of excellent brews to enjoy. So went the thinking of Tap Traders, a local alehouse that always makes a point of showcasing Colorado Beer, and has decided to devote Friday entirely to beer from the Springs. On 30 taps, enjoy brews from Smiling Toad Brewery, Bristol Brewing Co., Cerberus, Red Leg, Dueces Wild and many more. “We are trying to celebrate the quality of brewing in Colorado Springs,” says Tap Traders owner Tim Black, “by offering 30 taps of just the local beers that are as good as anything we can bring in from around the state.”
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Friday, April 20, 2018

Atrevida Beer Company announces grand opening date

Posted By on Fri, Apr 20, 2018 at 2:17 PM

img_20180315_132731_821.jpg
Atrevida Beer Company will have its grand opening celebration on Saturday, May 5 — Cinco de Mayo — the final step in the business's metamorphosis under new owner Jessica Fierro, who operates the company with husband Richard and business partner Steve Marzulla.

“We should be starting the festivities right around noon and going in through the night,” says Fierro.

She bought the brewery, then known as Great Storm Brewing, from then-owners Jeff and Lynn Jacobs in January 2018. Over the months, she and her team have been preparing for the rebranding and reopening, which will include a renovated space and a portfolio of new beers.

For the grand opening, Atrevida will have a total of 15 taps — Fierro's bringing out a multi-tap kegerator setup so she can pour more beers. The offerings will range from an imperial rye IPA to a porter brewed with Mexican condensed milk and dulce de leche to a fresas con crema strawberry cream ale on nitro.
Location Details Atrevida Beer Co.
204 Mount View Lane, #3
Central
Colorado Springs, CO
266-4200
Breweries/Wineries/Distilleries

“We’re going to have a variety," she says. "I’ve made sure to ramp up my production so people have a really good idea of what my beer style is, and my brewing style.”

And that style, she says, is not nearly as sweet or fruit-forward as what her beers might suggest. She likes her fruits and spices to complement beers that are brewed to style.

“I don’t like that [fruity] flavor to dominate…" she says, using her fresas con crema ale as an example. "You get [the fruit flavor at the end], but it’s a cream ale.”

The grand opening event will feature tacos from Ranch Foods Direct-partnered El Chapin and music courtesy Pueblo- and Greeley-based Tigre FM. Expect also some giveaways from local groups like the Colorado Springs Switchbacks football club.

Of note, she says the brewery will close on Sunday, April 22, and Monday, April 23, for renovations.




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Wednesday, April 18, 2018

Down South Eats serves Memphis-influence barbecue from an unmistakable trailer

Posted By on Wed, Apr 18, 2018 at 3:56 PM

Down South Eats, cateromg an Easter event in the Painted Sky at Waterview neighborhood. - SETH CAMPBELL
  • Seth Campbell
  • Down South Eats, cateromg an Easter event in the Painted Sky at Waterview neighborhood.
Opened April 1 this year, Seth Campbell’s barbecue trailer, Down South Eats, is no joke. In fact, it’s one of a kind. Originally another food trailer called The Tucker Box, its exterior is decorated with a catalog of local antiques, including lassos, a weather vane and a saw.

“The trailer has a life of its own,” he says. “Since I’ve owned it, I’ve had probably 15 people stop and want to take a picture with it.”

Campbell, originally from Dyersburg, Tennessee, started Down South Eats as a catering business in 2017. He’s been a culinary professional for around three years, and is currently a student at Paragon Culinary School, operated by local chef/distiller Victor Matthews. Of note, Down South Easts also serves food at Matthews’ Black Bear Distillery in Green Mountain Falls on Saturdays.

Campbell specializes in pork and ribs — both nods to the proximity of his hometown to pork-first Memphis barbecue thinking — as well as brisket. For the kids, he offers burgers and dogs. His sauces are ketchup- and vinegar-based, permutations again of that Memphis style.

Campbell says he’s in the process of applying to do business on Fort Carson and Peterson Air Force Base. Check his page for updates on weekly service at other locations around town.


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Friday, April 13, 2018

Pikes Peak Market to relocate, expand downtown

Posted By on Fri, Apr 13, 2018 at 4:40 PM

The Pikes Peak Market will move into the former ARC Document Solutions, around the corner from its previous location. - GRIFFIN SWARTZELL
  • Griffin Swartzell
  • The Pikes Peak Market will move into the former ARC Document Solutions, around the corner from its previous location.
The Pikes Peak Market, a shared retail space for local food vendors, will be moving around the corner from 9 S. Weber St. to 315 E. Pikes Peak Ave., as affirmed by the Market's Board of Directors in a vote held Tuesday, April 10.

The new space is around twice the size of the current market, giving vendors more flexibility for configuration.

“The vendors were excited about the opportunity," says Board chair Chris Cipoletti. "They’re excited to see some more growth.”

He says the new space could host up to 38 or 40 vendors total.

There isn't a finalized floor plan in place yet, but Cipoletti says they do plan to add a coffee bar and bar space for craft beer and local wines and spirits. That's always been in the works for the market. Fortunately for the Board's finances, five months after the grand opening, they had not yet applied for a liquor license when the opportunity to move came up. The renovations will not, however, add any production space; vendors will still be producing their wares offsite.

Cipoletti says that, as of now, the plan is to soft-open in the new space on June 1. Until then, the current space will continue to operate as the new space is renovated. Ideally, Cipoletti says there will be no closure — at close of business on May 31, the vendors will relocate their stalls around the corner in time to open at planned hours the following day.
The existing market's been running since fall, 2017. - MATTHEW SCHNIPER
  • Matthew Schniper
  • The existing market's been running since fall, 2017.

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Thursday, April 12, 2018

Brooklyn's on Boulder releases spring menu

Posted By on Thu, Apr 12, 2018 at 12:50 PM

The bar team beyond hidden Springs spot Brooklyn's on Boulder — tasting room manager Carlos Garcia, head bartender Stephen Winchell and bartender Philip Taylor — debuted the Lee Spirits Co. gin joint's spring menu on Wednesday, April 14. It's a true collaboration between them and the entire Brooklyn's staff, says Garcia. Patrons can look forward to new house-infused spirits and syrups, as well, including crème de noyaux, an apricot kernel liqueur; falernum, a spiced Caribbean syrup; and an apertif akin to Campari, but somewhat less sharp.

For new drinks, they've seasonalized their classic offerings, adding a variation on a Clover Club that centers on their strawberry-ginger gin. But most of what's new is on their original cocktail list, and every drink takes on the term "refreshing" in a different way. We previewed three drinks at a tasting session, shortly before the menu was released.

Taylor crafted a drink called Flint & Steel, a play on the Scotch-and-Drambuie Rusty Nail. For Taylor, Drambuie's herbed-and-honeyed flavor profile recalls a meadow. By combining whiskey-evoking barrel stave gin with their house-made Colorado tonic syrup, house bitters made from smoked morel mushrooms and Angostura bitters, he sought to recreate that sense, but shifted to mountainous Colorado via the aspen bark in the tonic syrup and grounded by the smoky, savory mushroom bitters.
Flint & Steel - GRIFFIN SWARTZELL
  • Griffin Swartzell
  • Flint & Steel
One of Garcia's contributions is Poolside Strawberries, a light and refreshing drink he says is crushable at any size, but interesting enough to sip. It's made from strawberry-ginger gin, a house strawberry-mint shrub and soda water. The shrub, a sugar-vinegar syrup, is a variation on a recipe that Garcia selected for its restraint — this drink has a sourness, but it's not overwhelmingly vinegar-y or even vinegar-forward. Its name comes from the original codename for Lee Spirits' strawberry-ginger gin: Project Poolside, a reference to the goal of creating the perfect gin for serving with a splash of Champagne and sipping poolside in Las Vegas.
Poolside Strawberries - GRIFFIN SWARTZELL
  • Griffin Swartzell
  • Poolside Strawberries
Winchell crafted a drink named as homage to Jimi Hendrix: Gypsy Eyes. It's a mix of dry gin, falernum, Forbidden Fruit liqueur, lemon juice and honey syrup, and the resulting mix drinks dry, tart and refreshing, with a little ginger warmth. He says it sips like a Last Word, a delicate balance between sweet, sour, spicy and bitter notes.
Gypsy Eyes - GRIFFIN SWARTZELL
  • Griffin Swartzell
  • Gypsy Eyes

Check them out for yourself and let us know what you think.
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Monday, April 9, 2018

Distillery 291 founder Michael Myers discusses whiskey after winning World's Best Rye

Posted By on Mon, Apr 9, 2018 at 3:13 PM

GRIFFIN SWARTZELL
  • Griffin Swartzell
On March 23, Distillery 291's Colorado Rye Whiskey was declared the best rye in the world at the 2018 World Whiskies Awards in London.

“It’s a gigantic win,” says 291 founder/distiller Michael Myers. “A lot of people don’t realize this is a Golden Globe or an Oscar for the whiskey world.” The competition isn't craft-only, either — other winners this year alone include Diageo-owned Johnnie Walker whisky and Beam Suntory-owned Hakushu whisky.

While in London for the final round of tasting and the award presentation dinner, Myers made some business connections. His whiskeys will soon get a limited distribution in the United Kingdom, thanks to That Boutique-y Whisky Company of Royal Tunbridge Wells, United Kingdom. Their business model is the distribution of small-batch whiskies, typically single malt Scotches, in bottles with unique, custom-illustrated labels. That's what they'll be doing for a few pallets of 291 rye and bourbon, as well as distributing bottles of 291's Colorado whiskey and bourbon sold in the packaging locals are already familiar with.

We recently toured Distillery 291's facilities. Check out the slideshow below for a look at how 291's award-studded spirits get made.

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Wednesday, April 4, 2018

It's time for Bristol's annual toast to the blessed end of Prohibition

Posted By on Wed, Apr 4, 2018 at 1:05 PM

Bristol’s Prohibition Party, April 7, 7-10 p.m., Bristol Brewing Company, bristolbrewing.com. - COURTESY BRISTOL BREWING COMPANY
  • Courtesy Bristol Brewing Company
  • Bristol’s Prohibition Party, April 7, 7-10 p.m., Bristol Brewing Company, bristolbrewing.com.
In the Springs, we don’t begin to look forward to the beginning of summer on the first warm, sunny day (we kinda get that all year round). Rather, we know the season is on its way when Bristol Brewing Co. rolls out Yellow Kite, a local favorite summer pils. The occasion of its annual release, marked this weekend for the 12th year with a Prohibition-themed party, offers pints for $0.33 — a damn steal if you ask us. Plus, the party makes for a fun themed night out. Attendees are required (yes, required) to wear 1920s/’30s attire, to really get in the spirit of a post-Prohibition celebration, and there’s going to be a password to enter, hints for which you can find on Bristol’s Facebook and Instagram pages. Plus, the Model A Club will host an antique car show outside, and inside you can take advantage of a photo booth and a costume contest. So break out the flapper dress or the three-piece suit and raise a Yellow Kite to the blessed end of Prohibition.
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Thursday, March 29, 2018

Goat Patch Brewing Co. brewer Darren Baze revives Pappy Legba cult-favorite

Posted By on Thu, Mar 29, 2018 at 1:00 AM

GRIFFIN SWARTZELL
  • Griffin Swartzell
Before opening Goat Patch Brewing Company, head brewer/co-owner Darren Baze spent time brewing at Trinity Brewing. That's where he, in 2009, helped develop an imperial saison brewed with a huge amount of cherries — a pound per gallon. They named it Pappy Legba, for the Talking Heads song Papa Legba.

“Over at Trinity, they like naming their beers after different songs," says Goat Patch general manager Johannah Murphy, also formerly of Trinity. “The Talking Heads was on the iPad most of the time.”

And when Baze opened Goat Patch, Trinity owner/head brewer Jason Yester, the saison man himself, did a super-chill thing and transferred the copyright and the recipe to Baze. It took a little while for everything to line up on the legal side, but in the end, Baze had the right to brew the cult-favorite beer at his new establishment, and all was right with the world.

And on Thursday, March 15, Goat Patch re-released Pappy Legba into the public, available on tap or in 750 mL bottles. Over the years, the recipe changed somewhat, but this new version is true to the original beer, made in 2009.

“The excitement of it being brought back to its original recipe [was part of the appeal],” says Murphy. “People like to hear about people working together and making things together.”

So I bought a bottle — $23, all told. And this beer is a lot. The mouthfeel's massive, almost solid. But it's not syrupy or fruity, either. I can't find a better word for it than huge, and I certainly haven't had anything quite like it. The saison yeast's prominent, adding a little spice on the nose and sip, plus a prickly, refreshing clean finish. This beer is truly an experience, one that should not be missed.

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Friday, March 23, 2018

Lee Spirits Company, Distillery 291, 300 Days of Shine win big at Denver International Spirits Competition

Posted By on Fri, Mar 23, 2018 at 1:59 PM

MATTHEW SCHNIPER
  • Matthew Schniper
Lee Spirits Company also took home awards at the competition: a gold for Lee Spirits Dry Gin, and a silver for Mischief Vodka. The latter's a new product they plan to introduce in the Kansas in the near future.

For a full list of DISC winners, click here.

———ORIGINAL POST: THURS., MARCH 22, 2018 —————————————

Congratulations are in order for Colorado Springs' Distillery 291 and Monument's 3 Hundred Days of Shine. Both took home awards in this year's Denver International Spirits Competition.

Specifically, Distillery 291's Colorado Rye Whiskey took home a double gold medal, marking it as the best small batch American aged rye whiskey in the show overall. Their Colorado Bourbon Whiskey also brought home a gold medal. 3 Hundred Days of Shine took home four awards: a gold medal for their bourbon-mimicking Centennial Wheat and silver medals for their Colorado Harvest Honey, Summertime Strawberry Lemonade and Peach Cobbler.

For Distillery 291, the announcement comes on the heels of a "best American rye" award at the 2018 World Whiskies Awards.




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Thursday, March 22, 2018

Distillery 291 awarded World's Best Rye at World Whiskies Awards 2018

Posted By on Thu, Mar 22, 2018 at 5:51 PM

MATTHEW SCHNIPER
  • Matthew Schniper
More than a few congratulations are in order, as Distillery 291's Colorado rye whiskey aged on aspen staves was named the best rye whiskey in the world at the 2018 World Whiskies Awards in London, as announced on March 23. Earlier this month, the whiskey was dubbed the best rye in America. It was selected as the world's best over whiskies from Adnams Southwold of England, Lot 40 of Canada, Stauning Whisky of Denmark, and Millstone of the Netherlands.

The 101.7-proof spirit is distilled from 61 percent rye and 39 percent corn, aged in American white oak barrels for a year and finished on toasted aspen staves. It was originally labeled as Colorado whiskey — that name’s still used for the barrel-strength rye whiskey, which uses the same grain bill.

It's one of many awards the Distillery has picked up this year, including recent wins at the Denver International Spirits Competition.


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