What happens at the annual Arapahoe Basin Ski Area Craft Brewery Festival?

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People overlook the base area at the 2019’s Festival of the Brewpubs at Arapahoe Basin Ski Area. This year’s festival will have six local breweries and two more from the Front Range.
Photo by Ian Zinner / Arapahoe Basin Ski Area

It’s been about a year and a half since attending a beer festival and I miss the experience of exploring new flavors and the sense of camaraderie they bring. Fortunately, the Arapahoe Basin ski area Brewery Festival returns to the Continental Divide this weekend.

Traditionally a spring skiing event, the festival started 20 years ago and is one of the most popular in the ski area. Although later in the year than normal, people can still have fun from noon to 3 p.m. on Saturday, July 31. Tickets cost $ 35 and include a souvenir tasting cup and unlimited payouts.

The event also features fresh burgers and kids in addition to live music from Hobo Village. The 6th Alley Bar and Grill is also open if you want to fill up in the morning. Enjoy a breakfast burrito or stuffed French toast at brunch before sipping a beer at the festival.



The festival isn’t the only thing happening that day either. You can watch the athletes in the Reverse Enduro MTB Race climb 1,500 vertical feet for 3 miles, then descend from the comfort of the base zone. Do you feel active? Then, explore the Aerial Adventure Park, take a scenic ride, or hike to admire the magnificent views of the East Wall.

“If you want, you can spend the whole day here,” A-Basin spokeswoman Katherine Fuller said. “We actually have a lot more to do this year than we’ve ever had. This is the first year of operation seven days a week in summer.



While the beer menu is subject to change, here’s what breweries are currently planning to pay.

Outer Range Brewing Co.

Frisco’s Outer Range Brewing Co. offers two different beers to suit different tastes. One is High Peak, a 5.2% ABV Pilsner for easy drinking, while the other is 7.2% ABV dry double-hopped Steezy India pale ale.

Angry James Brewing Co.

Angry James Brewing Co. of Silverthorne opts for a similar combination. Participants can start with Jake’s Pils, a traditional 4.8% German Pilsner that’s crisp and clean. Sampling is complemented by the West Coast style 7% tricentric IPA brewed with Centennial, Cascade and Citra hops.

The Baker’s Brewery

The Bakers’ Brewery offers four different beers – most of the festival breweries. People can expect to find classics like Malty, 4.7% Barking Dog Brown, and 6.9% Elated IPA that straddles the old and new school. Then there’s the Party Pils which has been washed for two months to balance the flavors at 5.2%, and the wild and new Tropical Dance Tripel. The 7.5% beer combines dry double-hop New England-style IPAs that have fruity Zamba hop flavors with the light, dry finish of a Belgian triple.

Steep Brewing & Coffee Co.

Summit County’s newest brewery has two of its latest offerings. The 5.3% Coconut Coffee Porter was made with 30 pounds of coconut and the roaster’s homemade cold brew. Hop lovers should take note to taste the Hopocalypse Now Double IPA. It was created with four different hops, 10 different hop additions and achieved 7.4% ABV.

Pug Ryan Brewery

You’ll find more malt under the tent at Pug Ryan’s Brewery. He will pour his traditional blond Helles bock and Mexican amber blond beer Cerveza Rubia. Beers are respectively 6.9% and 5.2% ABV.

HighSide Brewing

Frisco’s HighSide Brewing will use Pilsner Pro-Czech Ya Neck which balances the sweetness of malt and the bitterness of 4.6% ABV hops. In addition, it will also have the Trip Leader, a 6.9% IPA that has aromas of pine, grapefruit and hints of tropical fruits.

New Belgium Brewing Co. and Denver Beer Co.

Local breweries will not be the only ones present on Saturday. New Belgium Brewing Co. of Fort Collins will bring its Dominga, a 6% sour mimosa beer, as well as the Mountain Time lager at 4.4%. Meanwhile, Denver Beer Co. will feature 6.5% Juicy Freak IPA and 4.8% Tangy Princess Yum Yum Raspberry Kolsch.

If you’re craving more beer after the festival, jot down your schedule for A-Basin’s beer pairing dinners. New Belgium will be presented on Friday August 6, while Avery Brewing Co. is highlighted on Friday September 3. Each race from 6 p.m. to 9 p.m. at the 6th Alley bar and Grill. Dinners cost $ 65 and can be booked at ArapahoeBasin.com, the same place to buy tickets for the Brewery Festival.


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