Craft Beer

DR Colorado Meet Up


finalIts finally happening! The first annual DR Colorado Meet Up!!!
On June 3rd plan on being at Havana Manor Louisville starting at 3:00 P.M. and going until closing. (Location information for the shop is available at the bottom of this page.) Not only are we getting the hospitality of such a nice facility BUT we are also fortunate enough to have Illusione Cigars there to party with us and of course their rep will be offering member specials throughout the day so be sure to have your patches and coins on you.IMG_0937

This event will also be a BYOB so make sure you bring food and whatever you like to drink to share with everyone and lets make this a great time. We look forward to seeing everyone out there and having a few cigars with the family. As always even though this is an official DR member event non-members are always welcome to come and join the fun and get to see what we’re all about. See you there!!!


Havana manor Louisville @havanamanor on Instagram
1124 W Dillon Rd
Ste 4 Louisville, CO 80027
(303) 666-6134


Florida DR Crawfish Boil 2017

Mark your calendars everybody because it’s almost that time of year again. The time for the DR crawfish boil. This year its happening on April 29th at DR HQ S&M Smoke Shop in Fort Pierce. It starts at 5:00 and goes until we feel like stopping. As usual we’ll be supplying the food you bring the booze!

This year we are happy to have Moya Ruiz to be the cigar sponsor for this event and Nelson himself just might be stopping by to party with us. As always there will be great cigar giveaways, raffles and discounts on products. Last year was a great event and we are hoping to make this event even better. Look forward to seeing you all there again.

As always there is a ton of space at Steve and Missy’s and the humidor is always stocked for us!

Here’s the address and phone number for the event:

1001 S US Highway 1
Fort Pierce, FL — 34950
772 801-5104

Swallowed by the Sea Monster

Ballast photoFolks, put on your sea legs! This week I am reviewing Sea Monster Imperial Stout by Ballast Point Brewing of San Diego.

While fishing around for a dark beer, I was lured in by the bright color of an anglerfish. At that moment, I wasn’t sure if I was hunter or the hunted. So I defaulted in confidence that I was the hunter, reeled in a bottle of this Sea Monster, and hurried home to give it a shot.

Upon opening the beer I got hit with pleasant scents of coffee and light chocolate. When I poured the beer into my glass, I wished I had my eyes shined like Riddick, because this monster poured pitch black. At the top of the glass, caramel brown foam formed, giving it a very attractive dual tone appearance.

When this beer first hit my lips, I was immediately taken aback. The scent definitely matched the flavor. Coffee and chocolate were the first things I recognized followed by a slight bitter finish. I relaxed and enjoyed it to the very last drop. That was until I noticed I was a little too relaxed. I ran back to the bottle and looked for the ABV. That’s when I knew, I was the hunted. At a healthy 10% ABV, this Sea Monster had me right where it wanted me. Yet, I had no regrets.

Overall this is a good beer for all of us dark beer lovers out there. Proceed with caution on this one. It will not be an all-night beer but, it is definitely a good beer to have 1-2 of without over doing it.

Ruffians I recommend you go pull this Sea Monster from the “drink”. Just don’t let it drink you. Cheers


Rating: 4 ½ / 5  Pints

ABV: 10%

Brewery: Ballast Point Brewery


Flying Dog Brewery’s Pearl Necklace

IMG_0282Pearl Necklace is an American stout brewed with local Rappahannock River Oysters. Flying Dog originally started Pearl Necklace as a seasonal brew but launched it into the market year round in May of 2012. In the production of this beer Flying Dog has partnered with Oyster Recovery Partnership (ORP) and proceeds from this beer are donated to them to help restore oysters in the Chesapeake Bay. In addition to helping the ORP in their mission they also managed to make a great tasting stout.

The color of this beer was as dark as expected, close to that of cola or mud. It left a nice dingy colored head about 1.5 fingers think that lingered for a respectable amount of time. The smell of malt was clearly present along with that of coffee and a hint of sea air in the background.

The flavor was full and complex but not heavy. It started with a rich dark chocolate flavor that shifted to coffee and nut flavors with a hint of honey. Only at the end was there a small amount of brine flavor. The carbonation was what I would consider to be average, which kept the feeling of the beer light on the tongue giving a good balance from the full flavor. A good amount of lacing could be noticed on the glass while drinking as well.

As stouts go this is a well crafted beer. Not only is it pleasing to the nose, but also has a drinkability that won’t limit you to just one or two beers. In addition to it being a good beer it is actually doing something good in their community by helping the ORP. It would be hard to find a reason to not recommend this beer.


Brewer: Flying Dog Brewery


ABV: 5.5%

Rating: 4.7 out of 5 pints.

Photo by @syndie_marie

Left Hand Brewing’s Good Juju

IMG_0294Good Juju is one of Left Hand’s seasonal brews. It’s based of off a standard pale ale but has organic ginger added to it. I’ve enjoyed most of the beers by Left hand and happen to really enjoy ginger so I decided to give it a try and I wasn’t disappointed.

The over all look of this beer was a clear but dark copper. There was an average amount of carbonation, which gave the beer about a finger high head that quickly subsided. Minimal lacing could be noted on the glass during drinking. On the nose it had a full scent of hops with a rich amount of ginger.

I took the first sip reluctantly not knowing what to expect and was pleasantly surprised by the flavor. It was full but not heavy, with sweetness from the malt and touch of bitterness. The ginger allowed for a crisp and clean finish and made this an easy beer to drink.

For a spiced beer this was very enjoyable. It was easy to drink multiples of this beer and they consistently tasted great. The aroma given off provides for a greater drinking experience and enhances the beers flavor. If you’re in the mood for a light but flavorful beer this is the direction you should head.


Company: Left Hand Brewing


ABV: 4.5%

Rating: 4.3 out of 5 pints

Sweet Water’s 420 Extra Pale Ale

IMG_0290While Sweet Water’s 420 Extra Pale Ale’s name first conjures images of those like Jay and Silent Bob, it gets its name from the day it was brewed. Originally created on April 20th 1997 it gets it’s amusing title.

Since 420 Extra Pale Ale is part of Sweet Water’s year round selection and their most popular so I picked up a sixer at the local liquor store and give it a try. It poured nicely with about two fingers worth of head at the end. There was an average amount of carbonation so the head vanished rather quickly. Do to the average carbonation the lacing on the glass was apparent but still minimal.

The color was a light gold to strawberry blonde. It has a full aroma of hops with hints of jasmine and a light citrus odor. The taste is light and clean, with the hops at the front and a bitter finish. Hidden in the mix is a light floral flavor, citrus and the taste of cut grass. Sweet Water describes it as “A tasty West Coast Style Pale Ale with a stimulating hop character and a crisp finish.”

There’s no shortage of Pale Ales out there and with most of them having no noticeable difference between them, it is nice to find one that has a fuller flavor to it. 420 would go nicely with most any activity and most foods. If you haven’t tried this beer yet I recommend giving it a try.


Brewer: Sweet Water Brewing Company

ABV: 5.4%

Rating: 4.1 pints out of 5

Hotter Than Helles Lager

IMG_0148Cigar City Brewing’s “hotter Than Helles Lager” is part of their year round beer selection. I had been interested in trying it for a while now and decided to pick some up last week. I wasn’t sure what to expect out of it since lagers tend to be rather uneventful and quite honestly, boring. What I found was a beer that was neither of these things.

While the word “hell” is a German adjective meaning “light”, “blonde”, “pale”, etc., the word “helles” is a noun meaning “bright” or “a light one”. Given the color of the beer this is a very apt name for it. The color is very light, I would describe it as pale blonde. There is a lighter than normal carbonation to this beer which makes it even easier to drink leaving almost no head after pouring. The lower carbonation does inhibit foam though so expect no real lacing on the glass.

Cigar City Brewing describes the smell as grain, hay and honey, however, in addition, I also notice elements of fresh cut grass and a fair amount of sour lemon.

The flavor is fresh and light. The lower carbonation comes into play again creating a very light mouthfeel to the beer. Quoting Cigar City again they describe the taste as having a malty backbone with hay and honey. I did find that there is a good amount of bready malt flavors but they were offset by a decent amount of hops giving it quite a bit of bitter citrus flavor with a clean enjoyable finish.

With all the boring lagers out there it was nice to have one that at least had some complexity to it. I’m not saying this is going to replace any full-bodied beers you enjoy drinking but for a lager it’s a good. If you’re looking for something to drink on a hot day or something light and refreshing while mowing the lawn (cheers for that Ryan) this is your beer.


Brewer: Cigar City Brewing

ABV: 5%

Rating: 3.75 out of 5 pints.