Small Batch Festival 2012

Odell Small Batch Festival 2012

As right as rain, 2012’s Memorial Day Weekend centered around making our way up Fort Collins to attend Odell Brewing Company’s Small Batch Festival. A beer event that I would be hard pressed to miss and this year’s did not disappoint. Twenty of their finest offered up to 6,000 purported beer lovers.

Beer wise, I wager I got to at least sip in the neighborhood of seven of the beers offered. Without question, Footloose, a golden sour, and Kiwi IPA, an IPA brewed with New Zealand hops, were the standouts of what I got to have. The Kiwi IPA was another Odell IPA triple, if not a home run. The utilization of three New Zealand grown hops created an outstanding IPA that tasted of flavors of fruit and earthy dryness. Footloose was the perfect companion to the sun scorched parking lot. A decent amount of tart and funk while being very drinkable and refreshing. I left slightly disappointed that I didn’t partake in the Pond Hopper Double Extra Pale Ale and wasn’t able to get a pour of my favorite from last year, Wooden Elephant. Finally, it seems that there has been quite a bit of buzz about Mash of the Titans, a chocolate coffee stout. Had it been a rainy day, that probably would have been my first pick. I would be lying to say that I wasn’t hoping for some Hiveranno action.

Small Batch Festival 2012

In hindsight, last year’s cool, drizzly, and overcast day was much preferable to what became a very warm, if not hot day. Like a pack Peruvian dogs in the dead of summer, we sought shelter behind one of the Odell supply trucks for the majority of the event. I learned from last year that endurance is key at this event and baking myself in the late afternoon sun would have been a great hinderance to that. True, I may have missed out on even more people watching, but doing so allowed me to carry on my beer drinking at The Mayor of Old Town long after the event concluded.

My biggest criticism about the event would be how quickly it seemed beers ran out this year. Perhaps my memory has faded, but I don’t remember it being so drastic last year. In all honesty, I’d be OK with an increase in price per beer to guarantee extended availability of the more unique creations at the event. Conversely, the most noticeable change from last year was that every beer was available at every beer station which made navigating the festival that much easier.

All said and told, I’d be a fool not to be back in 2013.

Happy Birthday Miss Erin

Finally, a very happy birthday is in order for the lovely Miss Erin, who’s birthday once again coincided with Small Batch Festival. Nothing but best wishes for the new year for an amazing person and my best friend.

Catalyst Ale: 2012’s Create Denver Week Beer

Catalyst Ale Tap Handle

With my only experience designing for anything remotely beer related being the work I’ve done for our home brew operation, I was thrilled to play an integral roll in the design for 2012’s Create Denver Week beer, Catalyst. Getting to be the lead designer for the logo has been a highlight of my tenure at Design & Image and it was an honor to create something for the community – both creative and at large – that I am a native of. Moreover, it was pretty awesome to see how others involved in the week took my work and integrated into their contributions to create a successful campaign for the beer and event. Getting to see my work on tap handles around town was an added bonus.

Catalyst Ale Logo

The inspiration for the visual direction tips its hat to a few sources. Primarily, the logo is meant to reference utilitarian design that adorns light poles, circuit breakers, and various other industrial artifacts. The correlation establishes a foundation that the logo, beer, and week are a spark of energy for the creative community. The atomic-like symbol completes the circuit by being placed in the negative space of the “C”, a nice metaphor for what the week and beer represent.

Catalyst Ale at Wynkoop

The beer itself tastes like collaboration. A belgian quality dominates the initial taste of the brew which soon gives way to a hop bitterness provided by Sorachi Ace and Eldorado (?) hops. To me, Sorachi skates a line between a lemon citrus flavor with hints of more typical hop bitterness. Prior to having Catalyst, I had yet to have a beer that I’ve really enjoyed that utilizes this hop. They always seem to be a tad too lemon or sweet for my taste and lacked any bite. What I like about Catalyst however, was the combination of the hop bill and what the seven different yeast strains did to the beer. The bitter and citrus qualities of the hops mingled nicely with the Belgian flavors imparted from the yeasts that decided to take center-stage during fermentation. In the end, an apt beer for the week and the brink of summer.

Catalyst Ale Coaster

Not a bad post for B+C’s 100th, eh? Maybe we’ll end it on this.

Lost Dogs

Ci Vediamo Dopo

In a few short weeks, a great friend is heading off to jaunt around Italy. Lucky bastard. Did some digging around my archive to refresh my memory about some lesser known digs from some of my favorite stomping grounds. Whilst doing so, I ran across some other non-related gems of my archive. These are a few of my Lost Dogs.

Pictured above is a bit of an email invitation to a last night party at one of my old studios. I often forget about my time on Grant street. Sort of an awkward place in my life I guess. Not wanting to be back in Denver, missing Italy, and thinking about New York City all at once. That studio was boss. Wide open space to play guitar as loud as hell. Garage to paint. Basement to design. Wish I could have bought the place.

Spring 2008 Poster

On occasion, Zach Attack (my man in Austin) and myself would do a bit of layer tennis of our own. Still dig the one above. Reminds me of some good times.

Bill Cosby Invite

Shit design, but fuck Bill Cosby is one crazy mofo.