The weekend of January 22nd saw Mile High Station play host to the 10th annual Denver Winter Brewfest (with this edition being the 8th one in a row hosted by this particular bar). For 2016, the venue played host to over 75 sponsors providing everything from delicious craft beer as well as a bevy of food options (including artisan cheeses provided by Fort Collins' own MouCo Cheese Company). Lastly, as always there was live music in the back tent, and this year the band turned out to a pleasant surprise: a competent cover band playing everything from the likes of skate punk demi-gods Rancid to late 90s bubblegum sensations the Spice Girls. It really lended a lot to the party atmosphere of the event, putting everyone within earshot at ease and in an almost instantly better mood.
First thing's first however, let's talk a little bit about the most unique aspect of this event, which was the beer and cheese pairing provided by the team of Fort Collins' MouCo Cheese Company and Greeley's Weldwerks Brewing (pictured above). Offering all five of their signature soft cheeses, with flavors ranging from mild (Camembert) to robust (Pepbert), the cheeses were then paired with a beer sample designed to have the flavors accentuate each other accordingly. It was an interesting wrinkle added to the experience from previous years, and we really hope that it continues to have a presence at their future events. In terms of all things barley cola however, we figured we'd break down the experience in a couple of different ways: for best beer, and then best vendor - in our humble opinions of course. To be honest this was a tougher call to make than we had originally thought, just due to the sheer number of quality beers (and people pouring them) that we encountered throughout the night.