From the Tasting Adventures of Lady Lupulin
With another great Crafty Ladies event under my belt, I’m feeling even more at home with this great group of women beer aficionados. Renegade Brewing was our guest for this gathering and the nearly one year-old brewery didn’t disappoint. One of the many benefits of Crafty Ladies is getting to hear first-hand stories about a brewery’s beginning, and being privy to a more intimate look (and tasting) of their beer.
Co-owner Khara O’Connell led us through a nice variety of some of the best that Renegade has to offer, and shared with us that she and her husband, much like my husband and I, have spent the past few years traveling around tasting beer in their spare time. Khara and Brian decided that after visiting breweries around the country, they should open their own space.
The adventurous couple wanted to brew the beer they like to drink, as well as experiment and go a little “renegade” with their brews. They are definitely living up to their name. I like that they’ve begun the brewery as a couple, and their labor of love has helped them gain huge success in a short period of time.
Their location is in a perfect Denver neighborhood, located in the Santa Fe Arts District on 9th Avenue between Santa Fe and Kalamath. And the laid back atmosphere is an ideal place to chill out for the afternoon. Check out our Denver page here at Colorado Brewery Days, to connect Renegade with other breweries in the area . . . and don’t miss their 1st Anniversary party on June 30th.
Una Mas, a Mexican-style Amber, gave us the first kick at the March 27th Crafty Ladies event. Like dry-hopping a beer, roasted poblano chilies are added at the end of the Una Mas brewing process, something Renegade describes as “dry-chile-ing” their beer. Paired nicely with chips and salsa verde by Highland Tap and Burger, this beer screams of a summer day sitting on the patio. And can anyone say Cinco de Mayo? Throw out those old Coronas and pick up a growler of Una Mas.
Next up, my go-to choice when I visit Renegade, the Ryeteous Rye IPA—currently on tap at Highland Tap and Burger. They served this selection with a cheese, cracker, grilled apple and candied almond platter. The sweetness and slight spice from the almonds paired nicely with the bitterness of the hops. And the creaminess of the cheese balanced the entire course.
If anyone was wanting more hops after the Ryeteous, (oh, I always want more hops), they got it with the Elevation Triple IPA, voted the second best beer in Colorado for 2011 by Denver Off the Wagon. Weighing in at 11.2% ABV with over 100 IBUs, this beer packs a punch, but Renegade manages it with finesse. The Elevation is a balanced and smooth hop-forward beer that would satisfy the most devout hopheads.
Rounding out the evening was the Jean Bel Jean Belgian Strong Ale paired simply with a piece of dark chocolate. Admittedly, I’m not much of a Belgian beer fan, but the intensity of the chocolate in this beer was really nice. It was certainly a dessert beer, and I really enjoyed finishing the evening with the not-so-subtle sweetness of this beer’s malts.
Once again, a big thank you to Katie O’Shea and Highland Tap and Burger for their efforts in putting on another incredible evening. And thank you to Khara and everyone at Renegade for sharing great stories and beer with us. Looking forward to Upslope in April!