I often find myself wincing at tourists in the grocery stores while shopping at my local grocery store in Summit County. Since I’m not a Colorado Native, I know the feeling of being in a new place, unfamiliar or just unaware to its rules and cultures, so I thought I’d clue you in regarding the rules of alcohol sales before your next ski vacation in Colorado. When you are visiting our fine state and hitting up the grocery store to stock your ski condo’s fridge, you might see the beer in the fridges and think ‘How convenient!’ With a closer look you might wonder, ‘Where is the wine and booze, it’s just beer?’ What you may not know is that Colorado has a law that requires grocery and convenience stores to sell only ‘3.2 Beer’, which is a beer of less than 3.2 percent alcohol by weight or 4.0 percent alcohol by volume; some describe it as lower strength or watered down. Wine and liquor are sold only in the liquor stores, along with the regular strength beer. This may not be a big deal to you, but it’s certainly nice to be aware of what you are buying. Some tourists are honestly probably better off with the lower strength beer anyways since it is being consumed at altitude and has heavier effects than usual. We recommend taking it slow and always drinking alot of water during your stay in the high country.
If you are a craft beer lover, you are definately going to want to go to a liquor store because the selection will be so much better. You will be pleased to see how many amazing craft beer options Colorado produces, from lagers to IPAs to sours or browns! The good news is that most grocery stores conveniently have a liquor store right next door, so you really only need to make one stop. You are also allowed to buy beer and alcohol on Sundays, but most places usually close around 5pm on Sundays.
Summit County is also home to a number of great, smaller breweries, so if you are a beer lover, make sure to plan a stop at at least one of the breweries. Dillon Dam Brewery, Pug Ryan’s and Baker’s Brewery are all located in the Dillon / Silverthorne area which is just 7 miles from Keystone Resort, near I-70. You can also checkout the Outer Range Brewery in Frisco or head to Breckenridge and check out the Breckenridge Brewery or Broken Compass Brewery.
Looking for a cold beer, après-style? The Last Lift Bar is a locals favorite for a cold beer after the mountain or on your lunch break. The Last Lift is located at the Mountain House Base Area and has an awesome upper level patio for those nice sunny days, watching skiers come down the mountain. Another favorite is LaBonte’s Cabin on North Peak, complete with Adirondack Chairs for sun basking and taking a break during your ski day. In River Run Village, check out Kickapoo Tavern, New Moon Cafe or 9280′ Taphouse for a great Colorado beer on draft.
Don’t say we didn’t clue you in on the best place to get your local craft Colorado beer on your Keystone ski trip! Be safe and have fun!
If you are visiting Keystone Wednesdays through Saturdays from January 21, 2015 – February 12, 2015, you should definitely make a reservation to attend one or more tasting sessions at Keystone’s Savor the Slopes. On each day of the event, one of our Keystone Restaurants will hold a ‘tasting’ session that focuses on one of four categories: Food, Wine, Spirits, and Beer. Each sampling session holds a specific theme and is often correlated with the restaurant’s specialties. For example, the Keystone Ranch is holding a ‘Farm to Table’ Night and Der Fondue Chessel is featuring ‘Fondue Beers of the World.’ Some other intriguing sessions are titled ‘History of Colorado wines and Colorado Wine Tastings’ at Keystone Ranch, ‘Craft Beers with Gastropub style bites’ at the Bighorn Bistro and ‘Wild Game’ at the Alpenglow Stube.
This is a great opportunity to visit some of the amazing restaurants we have here in Keystone and have some fun learning and tasting some delicious food and drinks. Savor the Slopes makes for a fun date night or apres-ski activity!
All events start at 4 pm and each tasting event is just $25 per person.
Reservations for the sessions are required, please call 970-496-4386 to hold your spot and for additional information.
Wed., Jan. 21
Der Fondue Chessel
A Taste of Fondue
Thurs., Jan. 22
The Wines of Napa Valley
Fri., Jan. 23
Farm to Table presentation & tasting with Chef Vlass
Sat., Jan. 24
Bighorn Bistro & Bar
Creation of a menu item – The dissection of an entree
Sun., Jan. 25
The Ski Tip Lodge
Hors D’ourves Made Easy with Chef Brian Baker
Wed., Jan. 28
Der Fondue Chessel
Cabernet at its Finest
Thurs., Jan. 29
Fri., Jan. 30
Sat., Jan. 31
Bighorn Bistro & Bar
Craft Beers with Gastropub style bites
Sun., Feb. 1
The Ski Tip Lodge
Trends in Wine Making
Wed., Feb. 4
Der Fondue Chessel
Fondue Beers of the World
Thurs., Feb. 5
Mysteries of Merlot
Fri., Feb. 6
History of Colorado wines and Colorado Wine Tastings
Sat., Feb. 7
Bighorn Bistro & Bar
Craft Cocktails and How to Create Them
Sun., Feb. 8
The Ski Tip Lodge
Ski Tip Infusions: Learn to infuse your own liquors
This Thanksgiving, another brewery will join the ranks of the Colorado Craft Breweries, making The Bakers’ Brewery the sixth brewery in Summit County! Co-founder Cory Forster, former head brewery for Dillon Dam Brewery, is setting up shop in what used to be Village Inn in Silverthorne. Located just off of I-70, the new brewpub is at a great location for grabbing a healthy breakfast before hitting the slopes or a hearty après brew to the finish off the day. The Bakers’ Brewery will use fresh and local ingredients to deliver excellent food to their customers along with, what is sure to be, exceptional craft beers. The plan is to serve breakfast, lunch and dinner, as well as offer on-the-go options from the deli counter- perfect to take along in a backpack on your next hike or day on the slopes. They are excited to focus the food around their fresh homemade breads, soups, and sausages.
In addition to their commitment to providing quality food and beer, The Bakers’ Brewery is dedicated to expand the knowledge of beer and brewing in the county. A small tap will serve a rotating selection of local home brewer’s beers. With a staff dedicated to the craft beer industry, their goal is to encourage interest in home brewing to a larger community. Forster hopes to offer classes in the future, to aid those interested in learning more about craft beer.
With brilliant views of Buffalo Mountain and a cozy cabin vibe, The Bakers’ Brewery will definitely be worth the visit this ski season. To check out their progress and stay updated on the exact date of their Grand Opening, visit their website at www.thebakersbrewery.com.
Savour the Slopes is a new culinary festival this season at Keystone Resort. Every day features samplings of food, wine, and beer from some of Keystone’s signature dining restaurants. Each tasting event is just $20 and they are held at various locations around the resort, starting at 4:30 pm. The events are broken up into three categories: Food from January 18 – 27, Wine from January 28 – February 3, and Beer and Spirits from February 4 -10. See the schedule below for all of the details! Be sure to register early because each tasting has a limited tasting capacity.
FOOD Fri. 1/18: ‘Seafood’, Alpenglow Stube (cap. 30) Sat. 1/19: ‘The Ranch Farm to the Table’, Keystone Ranch (cap. 30) / ‘Ice Carving Demo’, River Run Gondola Plaza (cap. 30) Sun. 1/20: ‘Cooking With Kids’, Edgewater Cafe (cap. 12 children with parents,
ages 6-12) Mon. 1/21: ‘Braised Prepared Tasting’, Black Bear Grill (cap. 25) Tues. 1/22: ‘Meet the Chef’, Ski Tip Lodge (cap. 20) Wed. 1/23: ‘Beer Based Appetizers’, 9280 Taphouse (cap. 30) Thurs. 1/24: ‘Cheese & Chocolate’, Der Fondue Chessel (cap. 30) Fri. 1/25: ‘Wild Game Appetizers’, Alpenglow Stube (cap. 30)/
‘Chocolate Tasting’, Keystone Ranch (cap. 30) Sat. 1/26: ‘Cobbler Tasting & A History of The Ski Tip Lodge’, Ski Tip Lodge (cap. 20) / ‘Oven Baked Techniques’, Der Fondue Chessel (cap. 50) Sun. 1/27: ‘Barbeque Tasting’, Black Bear Grill (cap. 25) /
‘Grilled Steak Tasting’, Bighorn Steakhouse (cap. 30)WINE Mon. 1/28: ‘Wines of Argentina’, 9280 Taphouse (cap. 20) /
‘Delectable Dessert Wine Tasting’, Black Bear Grill (cap. 25) Tues. 1/29: ‘California White Wines’, Bighorn Steakhouse (cap. 30)/
‘A World of Bubbles’, Keystone Ranch (cap. 35) Wed. 1/30: ‘Wines of Burgundy’, Der Fondue Chessel (cap. 40)/
‘Big Reds’, Alpenglow Stube (cap. 40) Thurs. 1/31:‘A Taste of Italy’, Black Bear Grill (cap. 25)/
‘Infinite Monkey Therom Tasting’, Ski Tip Lodge (cap. 20) Fri. 2/1:‘A Tour of Napa Valley’, Alpenglow Stube (cap. 40)/
‘A Taste of Colorado’, Keystone Ranch (cap. 35) Sat. 2/2:‘Meritage, A World of Blended Wines’, Ski Tip Lodge (cap. 20)/ ‘The Misunderstood Malbec’, Der Fondue Chessel (cap. 40) Sun. 2/3:‘California Red Wines’, Bighorn Steakhouse (cap. 30)/
‘Greek Wine Tasting’, Ski Tip Lodge (cap. 20)BEER & SPIRITS Mon. 2/4:‘India Pale Ales’, 9280 Taphouse (cap. 30)/ ‘Tequila & Nachos’, Black Bear Grill (cap. 25) Tues. 2/5:‘Old World Single Malt Scotch Tasting’, Keystone Ranch (cap. 35) / ‘Signature Infused Liquors’, Ski Tip Lodge (cap. 20) Wed. 2/6: ‘Wonderful World of Liquers’, Der Fondue Chessel (cap. 40) / ‘Colorado Beers at Their Finest’, Last Lift Bar (cap. 40) Thurs. 2/7:‘”Shaken Not Stirred” Martini Tasting’, Black Bear Grill (cap. 25) / ‘Colorado Liquor Tasting’, 9280 Taphouse (cap. 30) Fri. 2/8:‘White to Red Port Tasting’, Alpenglow Stube (cap. 40)/
‘”Mix It Up” Mixed Drink Tasting’, 9280 Taphouse (cap. 20) Sat. 2/9:‘”A Mug With Old Friends” German Beer Tasting’, Ski Tip Lodge (cap. 20)/‘”A Time to Warm By the Fire” Signature Hot Drinks’, Keystone Ranch (cap. 35) Sun. 2/10:‘Bourbon at Its Finest’, Bighorn Steakhouse (cap. 30)/
‘Toast the Winter With An Ale Tasting’, Last Lift Bar (cap. 40)
Back for another year, the Summit of Bluegrass and Brews will return to Marina Park in Dillon, Colorado on June 23, 2012 with over 25 Colorado breweries. During the beer tasting event from 1:00-5:00, visitors can enjoy live music by Marty Jones and the Great Unknowns. Tickets to the unlimited beer tasting cost only $30 and benefit the Colorado Brewers’ Guild and the Dillon Business Association. Food vendors will be on site with lots of tasty options.
Following the beer tasting, move down to the Lake Dillon Amphitheatre for a great, FREE concert with the David Grisman Bluegrass Experience! David Grisman has played with Jerry Garcia, Peter Rowan, Bonnie Raitt, Doc Watson, and other renowned artists. His music is a mix of bluegrass, folk, jazz, and international sounds – this is definitely a show you don’t want to miss!
Both the beer tasting and the concerts are outdoors with beautiful views of Lake Dillon and the mountains. Great beer, live music, and beautiful Dillon, Colorado – what more could you ask for?
2012 Summit of Bluegrass and Brews Schedule of Events
Saturday, June 23, 2012
1:00 p.m – 5:00 p.m Brewfest, Savory food vendors $30 per person, must be 21 years of age or older — Marina Park 160 Lodgepole, Dillon, Colorado