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Hot Doughnut Action and more decent brews at Happy Tap 

click to enlarge GRIFFIN SWARTZELL
  • Griffin Swartzell

Located in the former Smiling Toad Brewery, this 16-handle taproom has turned the space into something of a man-cave under the guidance of owner/MLB pitcher Bret Helton. The former brewing room now has five TVs hung over a dedicated poker table with drink holders.

The main room, with its long, communal tables and inviting bar, also hosts several TVs. Now if that darn chalkboard told us which brewery made which beer, we’d be happier. Still, we try the Hot Doughnut Action from Michigan’s Roaring Fork Beer Company, a soundly made imperial stout clocking in at 10 percent ABV, served by the pint — just shy of three CDC standard drinks — and packed with coffee and roast notes, with a big but not enormous body.

We also get a tasting flight of four, enjoying three quality offerings from Red Leg Brewing Company — try that maple-scented, warming harvest ale in particular — and Renegade Brewing’s sound rye IPA. One can find more diverse beer offerings in town if that’s the goal, but this place, from ales to atmosphere, rates just fine.

Location Details Happy Tap
1757 S. Eighth St.
Cheyenne Mountain
Colorado Springs, CO


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