BREW NEWS: New brewer at Aurora’s Coda, new brews elsewhere


AURORA | Aurora has a new brewer, but it’s someone who should be a familiar face to anyone familiar with the city’s beer scene.

David Olson holds a bottle of sour beer up to the window to see the dregs at the bottom on Saturday Dec. 12, 2015 at Coda Brewing. Photo by Gabriel Christus/Aurora SentinelDave Olson took over as the head brewer at Coda Brewing Co. last month after former brewer and founder Luke Smith left the company.

Olson is no stranger to Coda, having served as Smith’s assistant since early 2014, and as a volunteer there before that. In fact, Via Chicago, one of Coda’s more-popular brews, was Olson’s creation.

While he likes hoppy brews, Olson said that won’t necessarily be Coda’s focus with him at the helm.

“I like all kinds of beers, which I guess is probably every brewer’s response,” he said.

As for changes to the brewery north of the Anschutz Medical Campus, Olson said he wants to try more Belgian styles, as well as some sours. Music will remain an integral part of the brewery, he said, and they will continue to have live music. But Olson said rather than focus on having bands play at the brewery, and making a beer just for that show, he hopes to work with bands to brew beers inspired by the band that they can serve at other venues.

Dry Dock Brewing Co. this month released their final brew in their 2015 signature series, the Cascara Imperial Stout. The brew was released at North Dock in early January and should be available at liquor stores and South Dock in the middle of the month, according to the brewery.

The Cascara is whiskey barrel-aged and has added cascara, the dried fruit of coffee berries.

“The notes of the Cascara blend well with the chocolate, vanilla, and marshmallow notes in the Imperial Stout,” said North Dock Head Brewer Alan Simons, who created this Signature Series beer, in a statement.

And speaking of barrel-aging, fans of the style can’t say the folks at Launch Pad Brewing Co. didn’t warn them that the new brewery had big plans on the barrel-aging front.

Back in October, when he poured his first batch of Soyuz Russian Imperial Stout into a barrel from  Denver’s Laws Whiskey House, owner and brewer David Levesque said he hoped that would be just the start of Launch Pad’s barrel-aging efforts.

That seems to have come to fruition.

Just this week, Levesque said on Twitter that he is aging their Imperial Rye in a rye whiskey barrel from Laws, and that they recently got a red wine barrel from Creekside Cellars that they may use to age barleywine in.

Copper Kettle Brewing Co. has a few new brews this month. First, last week, they re-released their Big DIPA, a double IPA aged in bourbon barrels. Next week, on Jan. 22, they release their Rye IPA, a spicy American IPA with a mellow hop flavor and a rye finish.