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Atwater Beer Buzz August 29

Are you ready for Oktoberfest in Vail yet?

It seems like summer just started, but with the kids going back to school and Oktoberfest starting in Beaver Creek this weekend it sounds more like fall is upon us. I’m personally not ready to let summer go, but embracing more Vail hiking and sunshine along with delicious fall craft beer and harvest foods over a long holiday weekend makes it a little easier.

AND we can look forward to Sip, Savor & Brew on Gore Creek: A Culinary and Craft Beer Experience at the Vail Cascade Resort! It’s coming up quickly, September 6 & 7, this next amped up Brewmaster’s Weekend. We’ll be celebrating the season with the Colorado Brewers Guild and three up-and-coming small brewers on the Front Range of Colorado: Bootstrap Brewing Co., Denver Beer Co., and West Flanders Brewing Co. In addition to  Sip, Savor & Brew, you can also enjoy Vail’s first Oktoberfest weekend in Lionshead on Saturday prior to our scheduled programming.

Friday, September 6, starts off Sip, Savor & Brew weekend in the Fireside Bar with our Meet the Brewmaster event. From 4 – 7pm each brewer will be pouring a selection of his/her craft beers and visiting with our guests and locals. Steve & Leslie Kaczeus (Owners/Brewmaster) will be offering their Bootstrap Brewing Co. products from Niwot, CO, Charlie Berger (Owner/Brewmaster) will be tasting Denver Beer Co. beers from Denver, and Brian Lutz (Owner/Brewmaster) will be representing West Flanders Brewing Co. from Boulder, CO. This is a complimentary event that is open to the public, but it also begins the formal programming for the entire weekend.

For those choosing to attend the entire weekend of craft beer events, an informal discussion with John Carlson, Executive Director of the Colorado Brewers Guild, and the guest brewers centering around “Craft Beer: Past, Present & Future” will follow at 8:00pm with a craft beer dessert to wrap up the evening at 9:00pm.

Saturday’s events begin at 2:30pm with three seminars, one hosted by each brewery. Charlie Berger & John Carlson will begin at 2:30pm with “How to Have Fun and Not Brew the Same Beer Twice”. The Denver Beer Co. beers will be also paired with cheese and charcuterie by the Atwater Culinary Team for an additional twist to this seminar.

Continuing the afternoon with “Brewing the Belgians”, Brian Lutz and John Carlson will present the middle seminar more formally in our MountainView Room. Finishing the afternoon will be Steve & Leslie Kaczeus from Bootstrap Brewing Co., showing the audience more about their new brewery with “Craft Beer Culture & Pioneering Entrepreneurism in Niwot, CO”.

The traditional Small Plates & Craft Beer Pairing event will be held, as usual, in one of Vail's top restaurants, Atwater on Gore Creek at 6:00pm. This is also an a la carte event, and you can make reservations to attend this event without purchasing a pass for the entire weekend of craft beer events in Vail. There is a $25/person charge for four food pairings created by the Atwater on Gore Creek Culinary Team to match the four craft beers presented. Each beer will be introduced by its brewer, and each course by a member from the culinary team for a complete guided tour through culinary wonderland. Such a treat!

Once again on Saturday evening, those participating in the entire weekend will be involved in an informal discussion and enjoy a craft beer dessert to wind down the evening. The discussion topic is targeted to be “What Makes Colorado Different?”, although these discussions tend to follow a direction all their own.

If you would like to participate in the entire weekend of activities, I have attached information about lodging packages – which are really quite a good deal – as well as the weekend event package without lodging, which is $69/person. There are two pages to the flyer, and the second page is the weekend schedule. As mentioned in the flyer, you’re welcome to reach out to me for further information,  to reserve your spot for the weekend – or just for the Small Plates Pairing event. It’s going to be a fantastic experience!

In other craft beer news, our Wednesday Craft Beer Tasting was quite well-received with several beers from Odell Brewing Co. presented for complimentary consumption. Brian Dillon poured Odell 90 Shilling, St. Lupulin, IPA and Cutthroat Porter to a host of excited folks. I think the St. Lupulin edged most everything out with rave reviews, but there was a lot of positive commentary all around. Many thanks to Brian and Joe at Orrison for making that all happen!

Next week Kelly Garoutte will be hosting her first Deschutes Wednesday Craft Beer Tasting, and we’re pleased to have her join us. I will certainly let you know what she will be pouring on the Atwater on Gore Creek facebook page, and we’ll look forward to seeing you between 4:30 and 6:30 in the Fireside Bar for more treats…plus tasty Cajun snack mix and 20% off all of our Small Plates!

New on our craft beer list this week are two seasonal specialties:

  • New Belgium Brewery Pumpkick, Ft. Collins, CO                
  • Epic Imperial Pumpkin Porter, Salt Lake City, UT/Denver, CO (large format)

And our Flights and Bites daily feature, which is kinda Happy Hour from 3 – 6pm, is offering the same draft rotation as last week’s, although it’s still in the middle of rotating more products:

  • Steamworks Colorado Kolsch                
  • Samuel Adams Octoberfest                
  • Great Divide Rumble IPA                
  • Mendocino Eye of the Hawk                
  • Ohara’s Irish Stout

We wish you a wonderful long holiday Labor Day weekend in Vail, and we’ll look forward to your visit for a craft beer or two on our beautiful patio or enjoying our 3 for $30 dinner special in Atwater on Gore Creek.

Enjoy the sunshine!

 Laura

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Atwater Beer Buzz August 23

Welcome to the USA Pro Cycling Challenge!

The tour has been rotating around our Vail Valley world for the past few days, with bicycles and excitement everywhere! Many of the cyclists are staying here with us, which is very cool. Today includes time trials in Vail Village, which would be fantastic to experience! 

Last weekend we had an incredible Brewmaster’s Weekend with Breckenridge Brewery, visiting with Todd Usry and his family. Meet the Brewmaster was pretty crazy on Friday, with a steady crowd looking to sample all of the Breckenridge products and visit with Todd & Terry. The Small Plates & Craft Beer Pairing received rave reviews…with every course receiving accolades for the pairings created by the Atwater on Gore Creek Culinary Team. Kudos to Chefs Todd, Jay & Adam for the menu and to Todd for his selection of Breckenridge craft beers to present. It simply was magical! 

The Oktoberfest weekends in Vail and Beaver Creek are just around the corner, and so is our autumn Sip, Savor & Brew on Gore Creek! The Sip, Savor & Brew weekend that we held in June received fantastic feedback, so we hope to see many of you September 6 & 7 for a weekend of craft beer. John Carlson, Executive Director of the Colorado Brewers Guild, will be hosting the weekend with special guest Brewmasters from West Flanders Brewing Co., Denver Beer Co., and Bootstrap Brewing Co. You can also enjoy Vail’s Oktoberfest on Saturday prior to the craft beer seminars if you like! 

Vail Cascade Resort has put together a fantastic weekend package for Sip, Savor & Brew events, featuring two nights of lodging plus two passes to all Sip, Savor & Brew weekend events for $330. There is no resort fee for this weekend package, and you can receive a complimentary lodging upgrade with your SOCIAL membership! (  If you don’t need lodging, you can experience the full weekend for only $69. 

Featured Brewmasters for this full weekend of craft beer are: 

  • Brian Lutz, Owner/Brewmaster, West Flanders Brewing Co.
  • Charlie Berger, Owner/Brewmaster, Denver Beer Co.
  • Steve & Leslie Kaczeus, Owners/Brewmaster, Bootstrap Brewing Co.

Each will be presenting a seminar and participating in seminars, discussions, Meet the Brewmaster, and the traditional Small Plates & Craft Beer Pairing. I expect discussions will be lively and interesting with this lineup! Here’s the full weekend schedule: 


“Meet the Brewmasters” open tasting in Fireside
4:00 – 7:00pm

Informal discussion: “Craft Beer: Past, Present, Future”
8:00 – 9:00pm

Craft beer dessert to wrap up evening                                              


Activity opportunity

How to Have Fun & Never Brew the Same Beer Twice
2:30 – 3:15pm   

Charlie Berger, Denver Beer Co./ John Carlson, CBG
3:30 – 4:15pm:  Brewing the Belgians

Brian Lutz, West Flanders Brewing Co./ John Carlson, CBG
4:30 – 5:15pm:  Craft Beer Culture & Pioneering Entrepreneurism in Niwot

Steve & Leslie Kaczeus, Bootstrap Brewing Co.
6:00 – 7:30pm:  Small Plates & Craft Beer Pairing

Informal discussion: “What makes Colorado different?”
8:00 – 9:00pm

Craft beer dessert to wrap up evening


Activity opportunity/travel day

If you need further information or have any questions about Sip, Savor & Brew, please do not hesitate to reach out to me by email or by phone. My contact information is below. 

Wednesday Craft Beer Tastings continue to be very well-attended with excited guests and locals, both. Arlo poured a terrific selection of Ska craft beers this week, including Ska Mexican Logger, Special ESB, Modus Hoperandi, Vernal Minthe Stout, True Blonde Dubbel, Nefarious Ten Pin Porter, and Decadent Imperial IPA. Many thanks to Arlo for his time, expertise and products!

Next Wednesday Brian Dillon will be pouring Odell Brewing Co. goodies for attendees from 4:30 – 6:30pm in Fireside. Look forward to Odell 90 Shilling, St Lupulin, IPA, and Cutthroat Porter, as well as our Cajun snack mix and 20% off Small Plates during the tasting. It’s always a terrific way to get past the middle of the week!

New on our craft beer list this week are:

  • Great Divide Rumble IPA, American IPA aged in Oak, Denver, CO (draft)
  • Lost Abbey Ten Commanments, Ale with Honey, Raisins & Rosemary, San Marcos, CA (cellar) 

Flights & Bites continues daily from 3 – 6pm, offering 50% off the Small Plate of your choice when you purchase a Craft Draft Flight. The flight is in the process of rotating, and currently offers the following selection: 

  • Steamworks Colorado Kolsch
  • Samuel Adams Octoberfest
  • Great Divide Rumble IPA
  • Mendocino Eye of the Hawk
  • Ohara’s Irish Stout

Thank you, as always, for your support of our Craft Beer Program. We look forward to seeing you on Wednesdays and at September’s Sip, Savor & Brew!

Laura Lodge
Craft Beer Program

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Atwater Beer Buzz August 13


Just a quick update with the complete & final information for the Breckenridge Brewmaster’s Weekend this coming weekend. Print/view the flyer and Small Plates & Craft Beer Pairing menu.

Breckenridge Agave Wheat
Jalapeno Gremolata Crusted Peach
bread cheese, agave tequila sauce 

Breckenridge Autumn Ale
Plum Stuffed Duck Breast
saffron faro risotto, cacao nib stone fruit sauce 

Breckenridge 471 IPA
American Kobe Carpaccio
sautéed wild chanterelles, pecorino al tartufo bianchetto 

Breckenridge Vanilla Porter
Rocky Road Ice Cream Soufflé
Fried Justin’s Almond Butter PB&J

To make your reservations for the Small Plates event at Atwater on Gore Creek, you can email Laura, or or call her directly at 970-479-1514. The event begins at 6pm, and is $25/person for the menu, complete with guided tour by Todd Usry, Brewmaster & Director of Brewing Operations for Breckenridge Brewery. You’ll also hear from the Vail Cascade Culinary Team between each course, describing both inspiration and ingredients. Note that we can adjust the menu for special dietary requirements. Please let us know in advance if there is anyone in your group that needs something different.

Friday’s Meet the Brewmaster event is complimentary, and is held from 4 – 7pm in the Fireside Bar. It’s a great opportunity to try several other beers from Breckenridge and visit both with the Brewmaster and other craft beer aficionados.

Remember that Bonfire Brewing Co. will be here on Wednesday from 4:30 – 6:30pm, also in Fireside for our complimentary Wednesday Craft Beer Tasting Series. The 20% discount on Small Plates has been quite well-received for this event, as has our Cajun snack mix. Next Wednesday, Ska Brewing Co. will be hosting the Wednesday Craft Beer Tasting, and we'll post Arlo’s offerings in advance on the Atwater on Gore Creek facebook page, as well as the Bonfire beers.

This week nothing new has hit the craft beer list yet, but Samuel Adams Octoberfest will be rotating into the draft lineup today or tomorrow in place of the Samuel Adams Summer Ale.

Best wishes for an outstanding week, and we look forward to seeing you at the Breckenridge Brewmaster’s Weekend events!

Thanks so much for your support!

Laura Lodge
Craft Beer Program

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Attend Sip, Savor & Brew Craft Beer Weekend in September and Your Taste Buds will Thank You

From suds to sustenance, Vail Cascade Resort provides the ideal mountain venue for refreshment and adventure at altitude. Designed to be educational and experiential, Sip, Savor & Brew on Gore Creek is a weekend for craft beer aficionados looking to learn more about the art of brewing craft beer, beer styles and culinary pairings from the experts themselves.

Join us for our second Sip, Savor & Brew on Gore Creek September 6-7, 2013, featuring Colorado Brewers Guild with West Flanders Brewing Co., Denver Beer Co., and Bootstrap Brewing Co. and your taste buds will thank you!

Friday, September 6th             

  • 4:00–7:00pm: “Meet the Brewmasters” open tasting in Fireside Bar
  • 8:00–9:00pm: Informal discussion, topic tbd
  • 9:00pm: Craft beer dessert     

Saturday, September 7th              

  • 2:30–3:15pm: Brewmaster’s Seminar I - Charlie Berger, Denver Beer Co.
  • 3:30–4:15pm: Brewmaster’s Seminar II - Brian Lutz, West Flanders Brewing Co. 
  • 4:30–5:15pm: Brewmaster’s Seminar III - Steve & Leslie Kaczeus, Bootstrap Brewing Co.              
  • 6:00–7:30pm: Small Plates & Craft Beer Pairing  
  • 8:00–9:00pm: Informal discussion, topic tbd  
  • 9:00pm: Craft beer dessert

Sip, Savor & Brew Hotel Lodging Package: Turn a great event into an extended weekend with a Sip, Savor & Brew package* with rates starting at $330 (double occupancy). This Vail lodging package includes:  

  • Two nights of accommodations at Vail Cascade  
  • Two passes to all craft beer events for the weekend  
  • All Colorado Brewers Guild SOCIAL members receive a complimentary lodging upgrade (available upon check-in).  

To book a Sip, Savor & Brew lodging package*, refer to promo code VCSSB13 when calling 800-282-4183 or booking online.  

Sip, Savor & Brew Weekend Pass: Guests interested in attending the Sip, Savor & Brew sessions without lodging can purchase a weekend pass for only $69.  

For more information about our craft beer program at Vail Cascade or our Sip, Savor & Brew on Gore Creek weekend, please call 970-479-7014.

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Big Beers, Belgians & Barleywines Festival Returning to Vail Cascade

Every January, craft brewers from around the nation convene in Vail to share their liquid art at the Big Beers, Belgians & Barleywines Festival. Regarded as one of the most prestigious craft brew events in the nation, Big Beers at Vail Cascade Resort is known for the impressive roster of craft beer industry celebrities it attracts each year. 

Slated for Jan 9-11, 2014 at Vail Cascade Resort, Big Beers, Belgians & Barleywines will feature a variety of opportunities to rub elbows with avant-garde brewmasters, owners and enthusiasts including a Welcome Reception, Brewmasters’ Dinners, educational seminars, and the Big Beers Homebrew Competition. The highlight of the festival is the Commercial Tasting event, which showcases more than 250 craft beers, most poured by the owner or Brewmaster of the brewery themselves.

For a complete listing of weekend events, featured brewmasters, seminars and presenters visit the event's website or sign up for the Big Beers Facebook group page. Updates, news and brewmaster confirmations will be communicated via these channels on a regular basis.

The Big Beers Festival offers discounted lodging in Vail at several sponsoring Vail properties including the Vail Cascade Resort and discounted equipment rental at Charter Sports, located inside the Vail Cascade Resort. For more information, visit the website at For more information about the Vail Cascade Resort and their craft beer program, visit, and for more information about the Vail Valley Charitable Fund, please visit

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Atwater Beer Buzz August 9

Greetings from the land of wildflowers!

The consistent showers have paid off with fantastic fields of beautiful color, which make for outstanding hiking. The Vail International Festival of Dance is underway with amazing performances from dancers all over the world, and summer is at its peak. This time of the year is the glorious reason that so many Vail locals move here permanently!

Breckenridge Brewmaster’s Weekend is coming up quickly on the 16th & 17th, and the menus are undergoing their final review. As soon as they are forwarded to me I’ll be sure to post them to the Atwater on Gore Creek facebook page, and I can promise you it’s going to be a delicious event! The menu brainstorming session was terrific. Here is the schedule of events for the weekend: 

Meet the Brewmaster
Friday, August 16 

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

Sample a collection of Breckenridge craft beers,
meet & greet with Todd Usry, and
enjoy Breckenridge specials all weekend long!

Small Plates & Craft Beer Pairings
Saturday, August 17

 Todd Usry, Brewmaster
Vail Cascade Culinary Team

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

*reservations encouraged* 

If you’d like to hold your seats for the Small Plates & Craft Beer Pairing on Saturday, please either email Laura or call 970-479-1514.  We expect it to be a busy weekend. 

This Wednesday’s Craft Beer Tasting was really busy, and Laura rocked out the Boulder Beer samples without pause for the entire two hour period. The guests really enjoyed the diversity of Boulder products that were available, including Sweaty Betty, Hazed & Infused, Buffalo Gold, Mojo IPA, Hoopla & Flashback. Many thanks to Laura for her time, energy, knowledge and great products! 

Next Wednesday’s Craft Beer Tasting host will be Bonfire Brewing Co from Eagle, CO at the usual 4:30 – 6:30pm time.  We will also post the list of craft beers that will be poured on facebook as soon as we know what they will be. We are experimenting with a new Wednesday Tasting format, replacing the $2 pizza slices with 20% off Atwater Small Plates and some funky Cajun snack mix. Please let us know what you think!

New on the craft beer list this week is:

  • Big Sky Trout Slayer, Wheat Ale, Missoula, MT

Flights & Bites continues daily from 3 – 6pm with 50% off small plates with the purchase of a Craft Draft Flight. The draft selection will begin rotating once again starting next week, but for now we are holding with the same rotation:

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

Remember that we have our 3 for $30 special going on in Atwater as well as a 20% locals discount on entrees…and a fantastic patio overlooking Gore Creek & Vail Mountain.

I’ll send next week’s email out early with the Breckenridge Small Plates & Craft Beer Pairing menu, and in the meantime have a fantastic summer weekend!

Laura Lodge
Craft Beer Program


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Atwater Beer Buzz August 1

Happy IPA Day! 

I hope you are all celebrating this auspicious holiday with your favorite IPA, or fantastic craft beer of some sort. If this nationwide event has escaped your notice, you can learn more about it via here. We’re celebrating here at the Vail Cascade with promotional pricing on all of the IPAs on our current list in Atwater and Fireside. What fun!

Plans are unfolding for our next Brewmaster’s Weekend with Breckenridge Brewery on August 16 & 17th. Todd Usry, who wears many hats at the brewery including Brewmaster and Director of Brewery Operations, has chosen the four beers that will be paired for the Small Plates & Craft Beer Pairing event on Saturday the 17th  at 6pm. Although the culinary team hasn’t tackled this pairing mission yet, here are the beers that will be on your placemat:

  • Breckenridge Agave Wheat
  • Breckenridge 471 IPA
  • Breckenridge Autumn Ale (just packaged today!)
  • Breckenridge Vanilla Porter

Just as soon as the menu is finalized, we'll pass it along! To reserve your seats for this Small Plates guided tasting, you can either email or call Laura at 970-479-1514 – or call the Atwater hostess at 970-479-7014. It’s $25/person for four courses, co-hosted by Todd Usry and the Vail Cascade Culinary Team.        

Wednesday’s Craft Beer Tasting Series with Nic Blake from Eddyline was steady with lots of happy people wandering up from the pool, in the front door, down from their rooms…you name it! Eddyline River Runner Pale Ale, Jolly Roger Black Lager and Wild Raspberry were available for everyone to sample, and the summertime vibe continued through the sessionable beers to the stickers and koosies (how do you spell them?). Many thanks to Nic for his time, energy, tasty beers, and passion for his mission.

Next Wednesday Laura McLane will be here with Boulder Beer Co., and she’s planning a cool variety pack for you all to sample your way through. The tentative plan includes Boulder Sweaty Betty, Hazed & Infused, Buffalo Gold, Mojo IPA, and possibly some Hoopla. We’ll create some hoopla regardless, but that promises to be an adventure to run down the line. Mark your calendars for 4:30 – 6:30pm in Fireside Bar for the next tasting chapter!

New on our craft beer list this week is:

Jolly Pumpkin Oro de Calabaza, Belgian Strong Golden Ale, Dexter, MI (cellar list) 

Flights & Bites continues daily with 50% off of the small plate of your choice when you purchase a Craft Draft Flight. The draft system has been hampered by some cooling system repairs for the last day or so, but will be back up tomorrow. The current line up is as follows:

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

Enjoy that tasty IPA, and we’ll be back with more craft beer information next week!

Thanks so much for your support.

Laura Lodge
Craft Beer Program

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