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Christmas Ale — Breckenridge has been brewing the ale since 1993. It’s a full-flavored, well-balanced ale with lots of malty flavor and a warming 7.1 percent ABV (alcohol by volume). No spices are added to the recipe, but it has a hint of spice courtesy of Chinook and Mount Hood hops.
Holidale — A variation of Christmas Ale that has rested in whiskey barrel for several months. The barrels add notes of oak and whiskey to the caramel sweetness of Christmas Ale.
Nitro Chocolate Orange Stout — An entry into the brewery’s Nitro Series is a roasty stout brewed with orange zest and locally sourced Cholaca, pure liquid cacao. The brew is topped by the velvety texture of the nitrogen head.
Through December, the Christmas Ale is available in six-packs and 12-packs, a five-liter mini keg that holds 10 pints, and a very limited supply of 240 one-liter gift bottles, signed and hand-labeled by the elves at Breckenridge Brewery. The one-liter gift bottles are sold at the Farm House at Breckenridge Brewery, 2920 Brewery Lane in Littleton.
Holidale is available in 22-ounce bombers through December.
The Nitro Chocolate Orange Stout is packaged in four-packs of nitrogen-charged cans and can be purchased through January.
Check out the beer locator (www.breckbrew.com/beer-locator) to find specific stores and pubs that carry them.
Lone Tree Brewing Company
Horchata stout — A milk stout with chocolate and cinnamon
Old Ale — Features gingerbread spices
The holiday beers are available in 22-ounce bombers, available on tap in the Lone Tree Brewing Company tasting room, 8200 Park Meadows Drive, No. 8222, and at several bars across the metro area.
The Cranberry Sasion and Old Ale are currently available, and should be through the end of December. The Horchata Stout will be released right before Christmas, and will be available for the rest of the winter.
Oh Snap! — For the second year, the brewery is offering its Oh Snap! Spiced winter ale. It features a rich malt base with biscuit accents complimented by classic winter cookie spicing and sweet orange peel.
Available both on draft and in cans, through the end of the year at Odyssey, 5535 W. 56th Ave. No. 107 and craft-beer centric liquor stores throughout the Denver metro area.
The holidays are a time to gather together with friends, family, co-workers and other near and dear ones.
And to make that time a little more delicious, and possibly more bearable, many local breweries produce holiday and winter brews specifically for the season.
“The great thing about beer is how it brings people together. More than any other time of year, the holidays bring together family and friends in celebration time and time again,” explained Todd Usry, president and brewmaster at Breckenridge Brewery, headquartered in Littleton. “Seasonals allow us to get creative using ingredients that are common that time of year, introduce styles that have historic relevance to the time of year, or brew a beer that has flavors that reflect the emotions of the season.”
At Breckenridge, they offer a Christmas Ale, the Holidale which is a variation of the Christmas Ale that has rested in whiskey barrels, and a Nitro Chocolate Orange Stout, while at Arvada’s Odyssey Beerwerks, they offer Oh Snap!, a spiced winter ale that includes winter cookie spicing and sweet orange peel.
“We want our holiday brews to be fun, but not too over the top. As always, the primary goal is to make a high-quality beer,” said Chris Hill, who runs Arvada’s Odyssey Beerwerks with Deana, his wife. “We often tell people that ‘dark is a color, not a flavor’ so don’t be afraid of dark beers — especially this one.”
The Lone Tree Brewing Company adds a little fruit and gingerbread to its holiday beers, said Josh West, head brewer at the company. It also makes a Horchata Stout right before Christmas.
“Our goal is for the beers to not only be consumable independently but also pair well with food when the beer is released,” he added. “We try to think of what types of beer will pair well with the season and create recipes based on popular seasonal flavors.”
As with the holiday season, the beers aren’t around for long. Most can be purchased through December, but some of the winter recipes go through January.
“Like most things in life, when people are happy, everything is more enjoyable. The holidays offer a great time for people to sit back, relax, and enjoy the moment,” Hill said. “Who wouldn’t want a great beer to be a part of that picture?”
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