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Atwater Beer Buzz July 29

Greetings from prime summertime!

The Bravo! Music Festival wraps up its fantastic music season this evening, only to relinquish the stage to the Vail International Festival of Dance. Lacrosse camps, rafting adventures, horseback riding, hiking 14ers, and just about anything you can imagine in the mountains…Vail in the summertime offers so many opportunities that it’s difficult to choose how to spend your time. However, we all know there’s one best way to celebrate and relax: with an amazing craft beer at Vail Cascade, of course!

Last weekend was a terrific celebration of craft beer with Boulder’s Upslope Brewing Co.! Alex Violette, Head Brewer, hosted our Small Plates & Craft Beer Pairing as well as treating everyone to a variety of Upslope samples at the Meet the Brewmaster event on Saturday in Fireside. Although we often see many/most attendees at the Small Plates Pairing point to the same specific pairing as their favorite, that wasn’t the case this time.

The All-American Corn Dog with housemade condiments seemed to be the cuisine that everyone was the most fascinated by, and they absolutely enjoyed it with the Upslope Craft Lager. But the Sweet Onion Popover with grilled peaches and Tillamook sharp cheddar cheese paired with the Upslope Imperial IPA had many fans as well… The light Herb Crusted Alaskan Cod danced with the equally light Upslope Session Pale Ale, and the TLT – smoked organic turkey, lettuce, heirloom tomato and chimichurri mayo had the most comments about pairings highlighting different flavors of both the food and the Upslope Belgian Pale Ale. Many thanks to Alex and Upslope for their time, expertise and fantastic beers!

To check out a write-up of the weekend, see .

This week’s Wednesday Craft Beer Tasting in Atwater on Gore Creek featured Breckenridge Brewery, and Willy had a steady flow of guests and locals excited to taste the diverse collection that he brought. From Breckenridge Distillery Bourbon Barrel Aged Oatmeal Stout (last two growlers!) to the refreshing Summerbright, 471 IPA and Vanilla Porter, there were fans for each and many excited to taste something special that just isn’t available in the liquor store! Many thanks to Willy for his special treats and beer-savvy conversation for hours on end.

Next week’s Wednesday Craft Beer Tasting features Eddyline Brewing Co. from Buena Vista, CO. Nic Blake will be bring a selection of Eddyline products for your tasting enjoyment, and will be available in Fireside Bar from 4:30 – 6:30pm as per usual. Mark your calendars and come out to enjoy some boating beer! (Eddyline is from the Arkansas River Valley, and their products are built around the river and the mountains.)

A quick review of upcoming craft beer programming is fitting this week, since we’re in between Brewmaster’s Weekends and once again in preparation mode. Here’s the schedule:

August 16 & 17 – Brewmaster’s Weekend in Vail with Todd Usry of Breckenridge Brewery                

  • Friday: Meet the Brewmaster  4 – 7pm, complimentary                
  • Saturday: Small Plates & Craft Beer Pairing 6:00pm, $25/person, reservations recommended

September 6 & 7 – Sip, Savor & Brew on Gore Creek with John Carlson of the Colorado Brewers Guild                

  • Special guests: Charlie Berger, Denver Beer Co.; Brian Lutz , West Flanders Brewing Co.; Steve & Leslie Kaczeus , Bootstrap Brewing Co.                
  • Weekend Package with Lodging: $330 includes 2 nights + 2 passes to all craft beer events. Call 800-282-4183 to make a Vail hotel reservation.               
  • Weekend Vail Package without Lodging: $69 per person                
  • Friday: Meet the Brewmasters (complimentary & open to the public) - Informal Discussion with the Brewers - Craft Beer Dessert                
  • Saturday: Brewmasters’ Seminars (2) - Small Plates & Craft Beer Pairing (also available a la carte, reservations recommended) - Informal Discussion with the Brewers - Craft Beer Dessert

December 6 & 7 – Brewmaster’s Weekend with AC Golden Brewing Co.

  • Friday: Meet the Brewmaster  4 – 7pm, complimentary                
  • Saturday: Small Plates & Craft Beer Pairing 6:00pm, $25/person, reservations recommended

Wednesday Craft Beer Tastings - Fireside Bar each Wednesday from 4:30 – 6:30pm. Here’s the schedule through September:

  • July 31 Eddyline Brewing Co.                
  • August 7 Boulder Beer Co.
  • August 14 Bonfire Brewing Co.
  • August 21 Ska Brewing Co.
  • August 28 Odell Brewing Co.
  • September 4 Deschutes Brewing Co.
  • September 11 Oskar Blues Brewing Co.
  • September 18 Sierra Nevada Brewing Co.
  • September 25 New Belgium Brewing Co.

New on our craft beer list this week is:                

Flights and Bites continues as always, with 50% off of the Small Plate of your choice when you purchase a Craft Draft Flight. The current flight is as follows:

  • Samuel Adams Summer Ale                
  • Steamworks Colorado Kolsch                
  • Elevation First Cast IPA                
  • Mendocino Eye of the Hawk                
  • Ohara’s Irish Stout

Please let me know if you have any questions about any of our programming or if you will be stopping by to visit and enjoy a craft beer with us. We’d be delighted to see you!

Have a fantastic weekend, and wherever you are I’m sure it will be prime summertime.

 Laura                

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Atwater Beer Buzz July 18


As promised, the weekly email is early in order to send out the menu for the Brewmaster’s Weekend coming up on Friday! Alex Violette, Head Brewer for Upslope Brewing Co., will be in the house on Friday & Saturday talking craft beer with everyone at the Brewmaster’s Weekend events.

Friday at 6:00pm in Atwater, our traditional Small Plates & Craft Beer Pairing will be hosted by Alex Violette and the Atwater on Gore Creek culinary team. Four Upslope craft beers have been the basis and inspiration for custom created small plates to showcase food & craft beer pairings. Each course will be introduced by Alex and the chefs, discussing the brewery, individual beers, inspiration, ingredients, and the overall pairing. The menu will be as follows: 

Upslope Session Pale Ale
Herb Crusted Alaskan Cod
grilled champagne grapes, champagne buerre blanc

 Upslope Craft Lager
All-American Corn Dog
handcrafted mustard, yellow tomato ketchup
fresh peach chutney 

Upslope Belgian Pale Ale
The “TLT”
smoked organic turkey, lettuce, heirloom tomato
Cape gooseberry, chimichurri mayonnaise 

Upslope Imperial IPA
Sweet Onion Popover
grilled peaches, Tillamook sharp cheddar cheese 

We do encourage reservations, so email Laura or call 970/479-1514 to save your seats! It’s $25/person, and a fantastic opportunity. Join us! 

Saturday from 4 – 7pm will be our Meet the Brewmaster event in Fireside Bar. Alex will be pouring a variety of Upslope craft beers and be available for discussion. This is a complimentary event, and both events are open to the public. 

All weekend there will be an Upslope Brewmaster’s Weekend Feature on Upslope Brown, which will be $5. 

Next Wednesday’s Craft Beer Tasting will be Breckenridge Brewery, and we look forward to finding out what Mike “Willy” Wilson will be bringing to show off. I’ll post the offerings on the Atwater on Gore Creek facebook page as usual. 

There aren’t any new items on the craft beer list since Friday, but we have a few items that are getting close to rotating, so stay tuned! 

Flights and Bites continues daily, with 50% off a small plate of your choice with the purchase of a craft draft or craft draft flight. The current flight continues as: 

  • Samuel Adams Summer Ale
  • Steamworks Colorado Kolsch
  • Elevation First Cast IPA
  • Mendocino Eye of the Hawk
  • Ohara’s Irish Stout 

Looking forward to seeing you at our Brewmaster’s Weekend.

Thanks for your support!

Laura Lodge
Craft Beer Program


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Atwater Beer Buzz July 12

Greetings all! 

What an incredibly crazy week! Between Fourth of July fireworks and special events, our Dive in Movies and s’mores, dining specials, pool specials, craft beer specials, craft beer tastings and fantastic weather…it was perfect! Everyone had a wonderful time, and we even got a little bit of rain almost every day to keep the heat balanced. Many thanks to Jack from Crazy Mountain Brewing Co. and Bob from Bonfire Brewing Co. for taking the time to do additional craft beer tastings for us on Friday & Saturday. The guests loved it!

July is moving along quickly, and next weekend is already our July Brewmaster’s Weekend! Make your reservations and mark your calendars to join Alex Violette, Head Brewer for Upslope Brewing Company in Boulder, CO for a weekend of great Upslope craft beer. I held off on this email to give you as much information as possible, and will send next week’s email early so you can have more details. 

The beers that have been selected for the Small Plates & Craft Beer Pairing are:

  • Upslope Session Pale Ale
  • Upslope Belgian Pale Ale
  • Upslope Craft Lager
  • Upslope Imperial IPA

The culinary team sat down with samples of these selections yesterday afternoon, and had a great time tasting & brainstorming about which dishes to create for you around the flavors of the beers…and how to go about it. They are planning to finalize the menu this afternoon, and I will post it on facebook (on the Atwater on Gore Creek page) as soon as it’s complete.

The schedule for this Brewmaster’s Weekend here for your convenience. There is a wedding in Atwater on Saturday, so this is a ‘reverse weekend’ with the Small Plates & Craft Beer Pairing on Friday and Meet the Brewmaster on Saturday.

Small Plates & Craft Beer Pairings
Friday, July 19 

Alex Violette, Head Brewer
Vail Cascade Culinary Team

Atwater on Gore Creek at 6:00pm
Open to the  public, $25 per attendee

*reservations encouraged* 

Food & craft beer pairings like never before!
Take a guided tour through four Upslope craft beers
and the culinary creations prepared
especially for each.


Meet the Brewmaster
Saturday, July 20

 Fireside Bar from 4pm–7pm
Open to the public, no charge

 Sample a collection of Upslope craft beers,
meet & greet with Alex Violette, and
enjoy Upslope specials all weekend long! 

As usual, please feel free to also email me back or call me to hold your seats for the Small Plates Pairing. Saturday’s Meet the Brewmaster is complimentary and runs informally from 4 – 7pm, so feel free to stop in as you can. 

Our Wednesdays have been busy – sometimes crazy – and our attendees have been loving the selection of beers that our generous brewery reps have been bringing. If you haven’t stopped in for one lately, take a few minutes to come through and sample a tremendous diversity of brews. Next Wednesday is going to be a surprise due to a last minute switch, and I will post the information on our Atwater on Gore Creek facebook page. Mark your Wednesday from 4:30 – 6:30 for Fireside Lounge, and take yet another craft beer adventure… with $2 pizza slices to boot. 

This week we have a couple of new products on our craft beer list: 

  • Great Divide Titan IPA, Denver, CO
  • Odell Double Pilsner, Ft. Collins, CO

And our Flights & Bites feature continues with a completely fresh draft line up:         

  • Samuel Adams Summer Ale
  • Steamworks Colorado Kolsch
  • Elevation First Cast IPA
  • Mendocino Eye of the Hawk
  • Ohara’s Irish Stout

So let us know to hold your seat for the Small Plates & Craft Beer Pairing, enjoy the outdoors, and relax with a delicious craft beer on our scenic patio. It’s the perfect time to enjoy the creek, the mountains, the weather, the bike path, and everything else in our backyard!

Wishing you all the best, and perhaps we’ll see you at the Colorado Brewers’ Rendezvous in Salida this weekend. It’s an amazing event hosted by the Colorado Brewers Guild, and it’s set up to be the perfect summer day in the park.

Thank you for your support!

Laura Lodge
Craft Beer Program

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Atwater Beer Buzz July 4

Happy Fourth of July! 

Spectacular weather, amazing fireworks, barbecue, bicycles, parades, concerts…and craft beer! What else could complete that list in a better way? We have red, white & blue specials of all varieties happening in our Pool Cafe, in Atwater & in Fireside Bar as well as special complimentary craft beer tastings for the holiday weekend.

Crazy Mountain Brewing Co. will be here hosting Friday’s (tomorrow) tasting from 4:30 – 6:30pm in Fireside Bar. Just like our Wednesday tastings, there will also be $2 slices of Atwater pizza  and free samples of each of the beers that Jack brings from the brewery in Edwards. 

Bonfire Brewing Co. from Eagle, CO will be here on Saturday (day after tomorrow) to host the same kind of event, same place, same time, complete with complimentary samples, $2 pizza slices and knowledgeable people to visit with about craft beer. Thank you so much, gentlemen! We appreciate all of your support during this crazy holiday period. 

Speaking of Wednesday Craft Beer Tastings, Skylar from Upslope Brewing Co. had a crazy busy tasting yesterday, and was completely cleaned out of his Upslope Lager, Pale and Imperial IPA. He said the mix of people and places they were from was really diverse, and makes the tasting that much more effective. Thanks again to Skylar for his time, product and craft beer knowledge! 

Next Wednesday, July 10th, look for Tracey Kling to be in Fireside showing Great Divide products. Once again, 4:30 – 6:30pm, complimentary samples and $2 pizza slices. I’ll post the products that she’s bringing on our Atwater on Gore Creek facebook page when I know what they will be. 

We had a wonderful weekend with Kevin DeLange and Bill Eye for our first ever Sip, Savor & Brew on Gore Creek weekend. Dry Dock and Prost Brewing Companies hosted this inaugural event, and took our weekend pass holders through a variety of craft beer-centric activities. Following the traditional ‘Meet the Brewmasters’ event on Friday, attendees participated in lively interactive discussions about craft beer with the Brewmasters, indulged in their choice of craft beer floats (Friday) and Devil’s Food Cake pairings (Saturday) for desserts, experimented with various cheese and cured meat pairings, learned about (and tasted) worldly craft beer cultures, and joined a larger group for the Small Plates & Craft Beer Pairing experience. 

It was a ton of fun, educational, and very interesting to learn about craft beer from the many perspectives that were shared throughout the weekend. The Atwater on Gore Creek team brought some excellent food pairings to the table for both the Cheese & Charcuterie seminar and the traditional Small Plates & Craft Beer event. Everyone was excited about their experience, with lots of discussion about joining the group once again for the next Sip, Savor & Brew weekend September 6 & 7th. Many thanks – once again – to Kevin and Bill for bringing a plethora of fantastic beers, taking the time to be here, and sharing their opinions about (and passion for) the craft beer industry as a whole. 

In the meantime, the July Brewmaster’s Weekend is coming up quickly with Upslope Brewing Co., so mark your calendars for July 19th and 20th. This is a “reverse weekend” in that we will be having the Small Plates & Craft Beer event in Atwater on Friday (6pm - $25), and the Meet the Brewmasters event in Fireside on Saturday (4 – 7pm). Alex Violette, Head Brewer, will be joining us for a wonderful weekend of Upslope craft beers and fun discussion. As I know what the beers will be for the Small Plates & Craft Beer Pairing I will certainly share them with you, and I’m sure the menu will be out soon as well. To make reservations, either email me back or call 970-479-7014 for the Atwater team. 

Remember the Atwater Sweepstakes? We have a July winner! Amanda Burton is our winner for a night at the Vail Cascade and two seats at the Small Plates & Craft Beer Pairing event with Upslope Brewing Co. Congratulations Amanda!! To register to win for the August Brewmaster’s Weekend and December Brewmaster’s Weekend, go to Could be the ultimate escape for craft beer!!

New on our craft beer list this week are a few items:

  • Steamworks Colorado Kolsch, Durango, CO (draft)
  • Mendocino Eye of the Hawk, Strong Ale, Ukiah, CA (draft)
  • Ohara’s Irish Stout, Dry Stout, Carlow, Ireland (draft)
  • Avery Salvation, Belgian Golden, Boulder, CO (large format)
  • Samuel Adams Summer Ale, Boston, MA (draft)

With the rotation of the Angry Orchard Cider to Samuel Adams Summer Ale, we complete the draft rotation until the beginning/middle of August. So the complete draft rotation and Craft Draft Flight going forward is:

  • Samuel Adams Summer Ale
  • Steamworks Colorado Kolsch
  • Elevation First Cast IPA
  • Mendocino Eye of the Hawk
  • Ohara’s Irish Stout

Flights and Bites is still going on daily, so your 50% off the small plate of your choice comes with your flight from 3 – 6pm. We look forward to seeing you at one (or all) of the Craft Beer Tastings going on, and will hold your seat for the next Brewmaster’s Weekend when we hear from you.

Happy 4th of July holiday, and thank you so much for your support!

Laura Lodge
Craft Beer Program

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Destination Hotels & Resorts’ “The Study Of…” Culinary Series

Destination Hotels and Resorts’ "The Study Of..." culinary series features an in-depth exploration of ingredients with the chefs of the Destination Culinary Collection.

Vail Cascade, a Vail mountain resort offering premium condominium rentals in Vail, is pleased to feature this mouth-watering dish…DUCK EMPANADAS, created by Jay Spickelmier, Chef at our Vail, Colorado restaurant Atwater on Gore Creek. 

DUCK EMPANADAS By Chef Jay Spickelmier at Vail Cascade Resort

Duck Leg Salt Cure:

  • Kosher Salt – 2 C 
  • Brown Sugar – 1.5 C
  • Corriander – 4 T • Ginger (ground) – 2 Tsp
  • Nutmeg – 2 T
  • Cinnamon – 1 T
  • Smoked Paprika 1 T


1. Season duck legs skin side up in hotel pans. Layer with rosemary, thyme, black pepper and bay leaves
2. Cover and let sit in cooler 24 hours
3. Before cooking, rinse well and allow to air dry.  Cover duck leg meat in rendered duck fat or oil
4. Cover with parchment paper and foil and place in a 250F degree oven for 4.5 hours.
5. Cool and pull duck meat, rough chop duck in pieces
6. Add 1 cup fresh ginger chopped
7. 1 cup fresh garlic chopped
1 cup scallions, thin sliced
8. Fold duck into wrapper and seal closed with a little slurry of flour and water.
9. Flash fry or bake with an egg wash

Chorizo Sofrito

  • Yellow Peppers, Med dice – 3 QTS 
  • Red Peppers, Med Dice – 3 QTS
  • Garlic, Rough Chop – 2 C
  • Sugar – 1 
  • Sherry Vinegar – 2 C
  • White Wine – 2 C
  • Honey – 1 C


1. Render chorizo
2. Add peppers and onion.
3. Sweat, add garlic then sugar
4. Deglaze with sherry vinegar and white wine
5. Reduce  and simmer for about 20 minutes.
6. Garnish with Cilantro

Recipe if for 10 pounds of duck leg


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