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Atwater Craft Beer Buzz - April 26

Greetings craft beer folks! It's starting to feel more like B-B-Q and craft beer by the pool weather in Vail, Colorado. The fishing in Gore Creek behind the hotel is amazing too, so bring your fishing equipment (or sign up for some) and go stand in the river to chill.  I’ll bet some of our canning breweries would take this opportunity to plug craft beer in a can.  At the Vail Cascade we have switched into off-season mode, and will be offering our small plates, dinner and craft beer programs in Fireside Bar from 5 – 10pm until June 1 when Atwater reopens for dinner… just in time for the Teva Games and  our next Brewmaster’s weekend!

Speaking of craft beer in a can, our next Brewmaster's Weekend is a tag team event with both Crazy Mountain Brewing Co. from Edwards, CO and Bonfire Brewing Co. from Eagle, CO on June 1 & June 2.  And to tie up the canning topic, Crazy Mountain is now canning their libations for your outdoor adventuring convenience.  

Once we return from the Craft Brewers Conference in San Diego next week there will be details forthcoming on more upcoming Brewmaster's Weekends. Our Destination Hotels & Resorts sister properties,  Paradise Point and L'Auberge in San Diego, will most likely be seeing craft beer people everywhere!  

Back home in Vail, there are a couple of interesting happenings this week to report. In addition to a very successful Friday Night Flights last Friday, we are also having the first of our Craft Beer Learning Package sessions this Friday, April 27th. If you're not familiar with our Learning Packages, take a look. We have craft beer solo, with Atwater Small Plates and Atwater Desserts. They are designed for 2 people, and I'm sure we will have a wonderful time with them! There may be a little tweaking as we complete the first couple of events and find out what works best for everyone.

Friday Night Flights this Friday, April 27th will feature both our Craft Draft Sampler and our Friday Night Featured Flight for just $7.

Friday Featured Flight ($7):

  • New Belgium Dig
  • Ska ESB Special Ale
  • Dogfish Head Aprihop
  • Boulevard Nommo Dubbel
  • Stone Smoked Porter

Craft Draft Sampler ($7):

  • Rogue Hazelnut Brown Nectar
  • Samuel Adams Alpine Spring
  • Full Sail Amber
  • Great Divide Titan IPA
  • Fuller’s London Porter

Remember there’s always complimentary valet parking at Vail Cascade Resort, so it’s easy to stop to visit us.

Both the Full Sail and the Great Divide are on their last kegs, so come get it while you can! (no canning pun intended)

Be sure to check out Kimberly Lord Stewart’s article in Examiner.com about her experience at the recent Oskar Blues Brewmaster Weekend. Craft beer is BIG in Colorado, providing a huge boost to our state’s economy. Have a wonderful weekend, and we look forward to seeing you soon at the Fireside Bar.

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Beer Makes Men Smarter?

Okay, so researchers at the University of Illinois in Chicago actually did a study recently and claim that men who drank a couple of beers were actually better at solving brain-teaser questions than those men who were sober. 

No joke! Apparently the researchers gave both groups some word puzzles and brain teasers. They found those who had been drinking beer were better at creative problem solving by 40 percent and they were faster at answering the questions. 

The downside? The beer drinkers turned out to be worse at memory quizzes because alcohol diminishes the brain’s working memory capacity. Hrumph!

At Vail Cascade, home of craft beer and creative cuisine, test out the theory with our Friday Night Flights at Fireside Bar, featuring promotional discounts on a featured flight of Colorado, American and International craft beers for only $7.

For more information on our Craft Beer programs check out:  http://www.vailcascade.com/vail-dining-offers.php

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Atwater Craft Beer Buzz - April 18

Greetings craft beer folks! Vail Mountain’s last day for the 2011 – 2012 season was Sunday, and we ushered out the season with a ton of fresh snow….go figure! I think it’s supposed to be 60 degrees all week now, so it will likely be officially Spring here by the weekend.

At the Vail Cascade we’re switching into off-season mode, and will be offering our small plates, dinner and craft beer programs in Fireside Bar from 5 – 10pm until June 1 when Atwaterreopens for dinner… just in time for the Teva Games our next Brewmaster’s weekend! So mark your calendars for the Crazy Mountain & Bonfire weekend June 1st & 2nd, and I’ll keep you posted with specific details when they are nailed down.

In the meantime, we are still offering our Craft Draft Flights, Craft for a Crowd and Friday Night Flights throughout. The craft beer list will continue to rotate and we’ll have cool new stuff coming on as we run out of what’s on the list.

Last week we brought on New Belgium Dig and Dogfish Head Aprihop in single serving bottles, and this week we are rotating in Avery Maharaja in sharable bottles. An Imperial IPA, Maharaja is part of Avery’s Dictators Series and is a limited release product. We’re pleased to have a case to share with you!

This week’s Friday Night Featured Flight and Craft Draft Sampler Promotion remain $7.00 (all day) and consist of the following selections. I also enclose a flyer for posting purposes if you like.

Friday Featured Flight ($7):

  • Orval
  • New Belgium Fat Tire
  • Avery Maharaja
  • Oskar Blues Old Chub
  • Anderson Valley Barney Flats Oatmeal Stout

Craft Draft Sampler ($7):

  • Rogue Hazelnut Brown Nectar
  • Samuel Adams Alpine Spring
  • Full Sail Amber
  • Great Divide Titan IPA
  • Fuller’s London Porter

Remember there’s always complimentary valet parking, so it’s easy to stop to visit us.

Thank you so much for your support, have a splendid week, and we’ll look forward to seeing you soon!

Laura Lodge
Craft Beer Program
Vail Cascade Resort

O 970.477.5539
F 970.479.1021
llodge@destinationhotels.com

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Atwater Craft Beer Buzz

Greetings craft beer crowd! We are pleased to report yet another outstanding Brewmaster’s Weekend at Vail Cascade Resort. Dave Chichura from Oskar Blues was our guest for our April event, and in addition to having a fantastic fly fishing day on Saturday, he hosted two very successful events. If you were able to attend one of our events, we’re glad you could join us and hope you can attend our next event in June. 

The “Small Plates and Craft Beer” event on Friday afternoon doubled our attendance from last Brewmaster’s Weekend. Combining the Oskar Blues beers, Atwater cuisine, and the creativity of the food pairings, the event was a tremendous hit! We’re thrilled to have had several repeat guests, as well as Kimberly & Rick Stewart from Denver Life magazine joining us for the weekend, who gave the events two thumbs up!

Saturday’s après ski “Meet the Brewmaster” drew a steady stream of interested guests, some arriving at Vail Cascade specifically for this event prior to heading to the Taste of Vail Grand Tasting. The two barrel aged beers that Dave brought, in addition to the regular lineup, were also a great hit!

If you missed the Oskar Blues event, don’t worry! Our next Brewmaster’s Weekend will be after the snow has melted and the Teva Mountain Summer Games are in town. Mark your calendars for June 1-2 to visit with Crazy Mountain Brewing Company (Edwards, CO) and Bonfire Brewing Company (Eagle, CO). Further details will be forthcoming so check your email or visit our website for details.

So what’s new in the craft beer world at Vail Cascade? Well, this week we’re pleased to have some new items rotating on to our craft beer list. In our Colorado Craft section, we are bringing in New Belgium Dig Pale Ale. In the American Craft section, we are adding Dogfish Head Aprihop. We are also in the process of rotating our draft selection and the Rogue Hazelnut Brown Nectar is new this week. The other four lines will be rotating as we finish the existing kegs, so it will be a gradual process.

Friday Night Flights continues throughout off-season, and we will be featuring promotional discounts on both the Friday Featured Flight and the Craft Draft Sampler all day on Fridays. Both are $7, yup, that’s right!

The styles will be a little whacked on the draft line-up for a while as things change out, but there will be a balanced style selection available once again when we’re done….we promise.

Thank you all so much for your continued support, and please keep visiting us in the off-season! We’re excited to offer dinner and our amazing craft beer offerings in Fireside Bar and don’t forget, we offer free valet parking for all guests of the Fireside Bar and we’re only a 5 minute ride on Vail’s in-town bus.

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The Colorado Lamb Cook-Off Returns to the Taste of Vail

Yummy!  Fabulous! Tasty! Mouth-Watering! All words to describe one of Vail’s favorite events, the 8th Annual Lamb Cook-Off at the Taste of Vail.  This year, the Lamb Cook-Off joins the Après Ski Tasting to create the most memorable Apres Ski P-A-R-T-Y in Vail yet! 

Brought to you by the Vail Lamb Board and some of the Vail Valley’s finest chefs, you’ll sample an array of some of the best lamb dishes on the planet!  Enhancing the experience, Vail’s participating wineries will showcase their Reislings, Sauvignon Blancs, Pinot Noirs, Zinfandels, and more in an appropriate theme of “Life Beyond Chardonnay, Cabernet and Merlot”.  

Last year, Atwater on Gore Creek took the People’s Choice Award for favorite lamb dish. This year, we’re looking to defend the title with our Moroccan Lamb Roll.  Come out to support Atwater and help us shake off the competition! 

So come baaaaaack, come hungry, come thirsty and help Atwater “bleat” the competition!  

Individual tasting tickets are available for $4 each.  Event tickets are available for $75 in the venue.

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The Destination Dish Features Atwater on Gore Creek’s Curry Spiced Tempura Asparagus Roll

Destination® Hotels & Resorts has challenged our chefs across the country to take part in The Destination® Dish. Each month, Destination® Hotels & Resorts selects one ingredient and each chef must create a recipe using the chosen ingredient and feature it in their menu that month.  This month, the chosen ingredient is asparagus.

Vail Cascade, a Vail mountain resort offering premium condominium rentals in Vail, is pleased to be featured in this month’s article.  Jay Spickelmier, Chef at our Vail Colorado restaurant Atwater on Gore Creek Restaurant, has created a Curry Spiced Tempura Asparagus Roll. 

Jay first joined the Vail Cascade Resort 10 years ago and after working in many fine-dining restaurants, he returned “home” to the Cascade in May 2011. In current his role as Chef at Atwater on Gore Creek, Jay has become an integral part of the culinary operations of the resort.  

While working at a Japanese Restaurant, Jay developed a fondness for Asian-inspired cuisine, and this remains a significant influence in his culinary creations. His experience and the skills he’s garnered while working at fine-dining restaurants over the past 18 years are his most trusted tools. Jay’s philosophy is “cook with your heart!” 

For Jay’s featured recipe, go here.

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Atwater on Gore Creek Participates in the 22nd Annual Taste of Vail, April 5-7, 2012

Showcasing some of Vail, Colorado’s  world-class restaurants, including Atwater on Gore Creek, Taste of Vail is a 3 day event April 5-7, encompassing interactive seminars, food tastings, winemakers and wine tastings from top wineries around the world, a lamb-cookoff, mountaintop picnic, auction and a dance.  Set in the world-famous Vail Village surrounded by mountain peaks, the view alone will have you coming back for more.  

People come from all around to experience the food, wine and beer at this event. Atwater on Gore Creek, Vail Cascade’s signature creek-side restaurant, will be participating in the Mountain Top Picnic on Friday, April 6th and in the Grand Tasting on Saturday, April 7th. You can savor a taste of the unexpected, engage the senses and satisfy your culinary curiosity with dishes inspired by fresh, local ingredients and delightful twists and bursts of flavor. Atwater offers a distinctively different take on creative American cuisine. And, so you can experience one of our favorites, sure to be a hit at home and at the Taste of Vail…check out our chef’s recipe for Herb Gnocchi with Lobster, Maitake Mushrooms, Sea Urchin Butter and Orange Foam! 

Herb Gnocchi

  • 2# Yukon Gold Potatoes
  • 2 eggs
  • 1 cup of flour
  • Fin Herbs ½ cup
  • Oil for blanching

 Sea Urchin Butter ½ cup

  • 1# unsalted soft butter
  • 1 tray of clean sea urchin
  • Spices
  • Salt

 Main Lobster 2oz
 Maitake Mushrooms 1oz
 Pearl Onions 1oz
 Orange Foam 1 tsp

  • Orange Juice 2 cups
  • Orange Zest 2 oranges
  • Lemon Juice- ¼ cup
  • Salt 1 tbsp
  • Sugar 1 tbsp

 Fried Parsley 3 each pieces

Blanch gnocchi in oil ahead of time for 1 minute.  Let cool and reserve.  Sweat pearl onions in a ½ ounce of olive oil, and add mushrooms and lobster meat to the onions.  Cook for a minute until mushrooms are slightly softened.  Add sea urchin butter and season with S&P.  Add the blanched gnocchi and place in a hot bowl. Using an emersion blender, slightly heat the orange mixture and pulse for thirty seconds. Spoon a tablespoon of foam over the gnocchi and place three pieces of fried parsley over the top. Serve and enjoy. 

Looking for lodging during the weekend?  Vail Cascade Resort, Vail’s premier mountain resort, offers specials and packages specifically designed to help you gain the most out of your Colorado weekend getaway.  

So kick up your heels, enjoy the scenery, bring your appetite, and come enjoy one of the best events Vail has to offer!  It’ll be a weekend to remember.

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Say Hello to My Aluminum Friend

As America’s beer preferences shift to a more fragrant and flavorful quaff, more brewers are choosing aluminum cans as the package of choice to deliver the freshest beer to the thirsty masses. 

Unlike bottles, a can’s aluminum body protects beer from UV light exposure, which is a good thing. When beer is exposed to UV light, it reacts with the dissolved hop oils and produces ‘skunky beer,’ liquid bile that both smells and tastes foul.

Another reason is the can’s lid seal, which ensures that no oxygen enters the can. This is paramount because oxygen deteriorates the precious liquid within, degrading the aroma and flavor that we as brewers try so hard to create and preserve from the time we mash it until our faithful imbibers bring it to their lips. 

“Impossible!” you say.  “Glass is the best package for beer and only putrid swill is offered in cans!” 

At first, it was hard for me to understand, too. When I started brewing at Oskar Blues in 2005, I had certainly heard of ‘those other canned beers,’ which did contradict the can packaging argument. However, I was not hip to the fact that cans are the superior package for beer and pretty much any beverage you would like to have in its freshest presentation.

The famous ‘double seam’ provides a secure seal that can’t be matched by a glass bottle’s cap and the can’s epoxy liner keeps the beer from contacting the aluminum to ensure that all you taste is beer; no metallic flavor.

Craft beer in a can is increasingly becoming common as other brewers are seeing the light and choosing aluminum. Oskar Blues has an ever-growing number of peers in American craft brewing who see cans as the only way to package the beer they work so hard to make and the variety is astounding. You can now find nearly every known style of beer in a can. 

Beyond the benefits of the package to the beer itself the aluminum can offers….freedom. 

Freedom to bring a lightweight, durable container of your favorite liquid reward for riding that amazing trail, skiing that killer backcountry or climbing an insane route. Freedom to bring that same beer with you to those many places that don’t allow glass.

How about these fun facts to boot: 

  • Aluminum cans have the highest amount of recycled material of any beverage package and are infinitely recyclable.
  • Cans are far lighter in weight than bottles and are unbreakable.  You can pack up some delicious craft beer in cans and not feel like a pack mule.
  • Once you’ve finished off a can on top of the mountain or down on the Gold Medal water you just fished you can crush it and save pack space.

All that being said, I hope you have a greater appreciation of the many virtues of the modern aluminum can and what it offers the craft beer drinker. The variety and availability of more styles from more brewers gives the adventurous beer lovers even more ways to enjoy craft beer anywhere – and it’s the aluminum can that makes it possible.

Dave Chichura is head brewer at Longmont-based Oskar Blues. When he is not in the brewery he is a third-rate hack singer and guitar player, a second-rate hack fly fisherman and an aspiring yoga master and novice mountain biker living full throttle with no bottles.

Interested to learn more?

Explore the world of craft beer with celebrity brewmaster, Dave Chichura of Oskar Blues Brewery. Come one, come all for a fun and informative look at beer and the craft beer revolution from one of the true experts!
 
Friday, April 6: Small Plates & Craft Beer Pairings
Brewmaster Dave Chichura and Executive Chef Todd Bemis
Atwater on Gore Creek from 4:00-5:00pm
$20 per attendee, open to the public
per attendee, open to the public

Saturday, March 24: Meet & Greet the Brewmaster
Visit with Brewmaster Dave Chichura, sample Oskar Blues, be eligible for giveaways!

For more information, please visit our Website or call 970-479-7014.

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