It’s the time of year for barrel-aged beers in Colorado, but not all are turning to the dark side | VailDaily.com
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It’s the time of year for barrel-aged beers in Colorado, but not all are turning to the dark side

WHEAT RIDGE, CO - DECEMBER 16: Shawn Bachman, right and Mike McCray organize and sort a variety of barrels in preparation for shipment at the Rocky Mountain Barrel Company on December 16, 2020 in Wheat Ridge, Colorado. (Photo By Kathryn Scott)

Skyler Weekes holds the zebra striped barrel on its side and leans his nose close to the opening. “Oh man,” he says, “have a smell of that.”

Boozy raisin and vanilla aromas, touched with a soft fruit note, explode from the French oak barrel that aged cognac for 27 months.

All around him, hundreds of barrels and casks are stacked high inside Rocky Mountain Barrel Company’s warehouse in Wheat Ridge. Weekes, the CEO and president, spins in a circle as he points to the different barrels that once held cabernet sauvignon, chardonnay, whiskey, bourbon, rum and more.



This is where great Colorado beers take shape. Half of the barrel broker’s customers are local breweries that use the vessels to age beers that range in style from rich stouts and porters to effervescent sours.

For smaller breweries, which account for the majority in Colorado, the barrels create a means for experimentation and the ability to appeal to consumers who are always chasing new flavors.



Read more from John Frank, The Colorado Sun.


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