We’re off to a smashing start in the first round of voting in the Colorado Brewery Cup’s first knockout stage: the Round of 32.
Over 5,000 votes have already been cast in Tuesday’s first eight matchups, which opened for voting this morning. You can still vote in all those matchups until 10:30 p.m. Tuesday.
For those of you who have already cast those votes, the round of 32 continues now with the final eight matchups of the day.
In this round, you’ll find several classic matchups of craft brewing giants, including Great Divide vs. Breckenridge and Dry Dock vs. Tommyknocker. You’ll also be able to give a nod to growing breweries like Station 26 and Eddyline.
If you want a description of how we got here, you can read more about how these 32 teams advanced from our four days of group stage voting, which featured all 200-plus breweries from across the state.
If you’ve heard enough, you can get down to casting your vote below.
NOTE: Voting in both the AM & PM Round of 32 Knockout Stages ends at 10:30 PM Tuesday
3. Odell Brewing Company (Fort Collins) vs. 6. Trinity Brewing Co. (Colorado Springs): Whether it’s a staple like 90 Schilling or East Street Wheat or an inventive brew from their cellar series, beers are a given at Odell. But they also have a renowned multi-story brewhouse, complete with spire, patio and fire pit. Believe it or not, Trinity can hold its own in that regard, offering a stained-glass ceiling and a book-lined archway leading to their holy grail of brewing, where they recently started experimenting with fermenting a beer using naturally-occurring bacteria and yeast.
3. Kannah Creek Brewing Company (Grand Junction) vs. Crazy Mountain Brewing Co. (Edwards): Kannah Creek is hoping to do for Grand Junction what Crazy Mountain has done for the Vail Valley: keep the brewery industry booming. Crazy Mountain first started brewing its signature amber ale in 2010, and was the first brewery in the area at the time. Now there are three more brewing alongside them. There are five breweries total in Grand Junction if you count nearby Palisade and Fruita, and two of those five are operated by Kannah Creek.
3. Station 26 Brewing Co. (Denver) vs. 6. Vindication Brewing Co. (Boulder): The pride of Park Hill since it opened last year, Station 26 sits in a building that once belonged to Denver Fire. And though it may just be a coincide that they specialize in smoked beers, it’s a delicious coincidence. Vindication was recently forced to abandon their former name, Kettle & Stone, by the larger Stone Brewing Company, but they haven’t missed a beat crashing the big-time brewery scene in Boulder with their all-natural Momentum IPA.
3. Dry Dock Brewing Co. (Aurora) vs. 6. Tommyknocker Brewery (Idaho Springs): Picking a winner in this matchup may be a real tough call for fans of these two long-time Colorado favorites on the craft beer circuit. On one hand, you have Dry Dock, whose Apricot Blonde and Wee Heavy scotch ale have been staples on the Front Range for nearly a decade. On the other, there’s Tommyknocker Brewery and its Maple Nut Brown and Butt Head Bock, which have long been enjoyed as part of an I-70 stopover for Coloradans on trips to and from the high country since 1995?
4. Breckenridge Brewery (Breckenridge) vs. 5. Great Divide Brewing Co. (Denver): If picking a winner in Game 12 was hard, picking a winner in Game 13, which features another pair of storied craft breweries, might be an even taller order. Opened in 1990, Breckenridge was Colorado’s third craft brewery. Opened four years later, Great Divide was one of the first craft breweries in Denver, and has watched the city’s ballpark neighborhood shoot up around it. Some love that Great Divide has kept their operation small, but it’s hard to fault Breckenridge for expanding in Denver.
4. Manitou Brewing Company (Manitou Springs) vs. 5. Revolution Brewing (Paonia): Though this matchup features two small-town craft breweries, the drinking experience in both tap rooms is anything but comparable. Manitou Brewing has a refined feel to it, offering gourmet food and tasteful touches of Black Forest wood all over the tap room to pair with their smooth Belgian Blonde. A stop at Revolution, on the other hand, is more like a trip to a friend’s front yard, typified by the experience of drinking a pale ale aptly named Jessie’s Garage.
4. Dad and Dude’s Breweria (Aurora) vs. 5. Avery Brewing Company (Boulder): Though Avery has plans to upgrade its tap room, their current drinking quarters could be described similarly to those of Dad and Dude’s: delightfully unrefined. It means these two breweries — both revered by the neighborhoods they occupy — can spend their time focusing on the beer. Avery has the edge when it comes to the awards — their White Rascal Belgian wheat and barrel-aged series are consistently honored — but Dad and Dude’s Dank IPA is nothing to turn your nose up at.
4. Eddyline Brewery & Restaurant (Buena Vista) vs. 5. New Belgium Brewing Company (Fort Collins): Don’t worry, Fort Collins, your flagship brewery is still in the running. While New Belgium represents everything that is the extensive history of craft brewing in Colorado, Eddyline may represent an interesting step in its future. Having recently announced expansion plans and retained the services of former Oskar Blues head brewer Dave Chichura, who was ready to retire to mountain life, it might not be long Eddyline’s River Runners Pale Ale starts becoming a lot more prevalent in Denver.