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13 foodie beers to help you drink a full meal at Collaboration Fest

When the Collaboration Beer Fest comes to The Westin Westminster hotel (10600 Westminster Blvd.) on March 30, drinkers will have more than 130 different beers to choose from.

These aren’t your run-of-the-mill recipes that can be easily found in a liquor store. The whole premise of Collab fest, as the name suggests, is to pair up breweries to make something unique. The lineup of mostly Colorado operations always rises to the occasion, turning out wild and wacky flavors alongside underrated styles.

This year, brewers appeared to lean into the culinary traditions of beer, producing more than a dozen food-inspired and food-infused recipes. Heck, you could practically drink a whole meal in beers. Now there’s an idea!

Here are 13 beers to help you “eat” your way through Collaboration Fest. Tickets, which cost $40-$85, are now on sale at



Prepare your palate for the impending culinary adventure with a cleanser of sorts. Woods Boss Brewing Co. (Denver) and Angry James Brewery (Silverthorne) teamed up to make a kumquat pale ale that promises a citrusy punch.


To make a beer inspired by this classic Indian favorite, brewers at Mountain Toad Brewing (Golden) and Coal Mine Ave Brewing Co. (Littleton) followed a samosa recipe from a friend in India. They started with roasted potatoes as the mash base, then added ajwan, cumin, ginger, chiles and other spices to make a savory California Common-esque spiced beer.


Thai soup

The idea to make a Thai-inspired sour Kölsch came from a perceived typo. Someone from New Terrain Brewing Co. (Golden) saw one of Denver Beer Co.’s Princess Yum Yum tap handles and mistook it for saying “tom yum.” That was enough inspiration for the breweries to collaborate on a soup-flavored beer using lemongrass, kaffir lime leaves, ginger juice and dried chiles.


Beets and mushrooms

Don’t forget to drink your veggies! Two22 Brew (Aurora) and Fiction Beer Co. (Denver) made that task easy with a Belgian blonde ale infused with roasted beets and local pink oyster mushrooms. Brewers expect it to be earthy, floral, mildly peppery and, of course, pink in color.

Not much of a mushroom person? Try the beet-infused saison from Phantom Canyon Brewing Co. (Colorado Springs) and Evergreen Brewery. It’s also a pink drink.


Potatoes aren’t commonly used in American brewing, but El Rancho Colorado (Evergreen) and Steep Brewing and Coffee (Keystone) are embracing the German style Kartoffelbier, which features them prominently. Kartoffel means “potato” in German, and this beer will be a lager.

Reverence Brewing Co. and Sleeping Giant Brewing Co., both in Denver, also celebrate the Irish variety of potato by using it in an India pale ale.



In the era of pastry stouts, dessert beers are hardly a novelty. But brewers are leveling up the creativity for Collaboration Fest. Denver outfits Call to Arms Brewing Co. and Joyride Brewing Co., for example, created a mango mochi lager using Jasmine rice, sake yeast and a healthy helping of tropical fruit.

Churros and tiramisu

Craving something more decadent? Try the tiramisu-churro stout from Downhill Brewing (Greenwood Village) and Los Dos Potrillos Cervecería (Parker), which includes a kick from the addition of bourbon barrel-aged coffee.

Ice cream

Two22 Brew (Aurora) and Vail Brewing Co. didn’t just make an ice cream-inspired beer. For their Belgian golden strong ale, the breweries added Ben & Jerry’s Cherry Garcia alongside fruit-forward hop varieties to offer drinkers notes of cherry and fudge in every sip.

Cotton candy

Lastly, LUKI Brewery (Arvada) and Downhill Brewing (Greenwood Village) attempted to delight the inner child with a raspberry-cotton candy Kölsch.



Drink-flavored drinks? How about that? Pair your bubbly “meal” with a beer designed to resemble the Coquito cocktail, made by 6 and 40 Brewery (Lakewood) and Mountain Toad Brewing (Golden). The Puerto Rican libation features rum and spiced coconut. This spiced witbier, too, includes cinnamon, coconut and a hint of liquor from being aged on rum barrel oak staves.

Jagged Mountain Craft Brewery (Denver) and Public Offering Brewing Co. (Denver) didn’t share much about the Paper Plane CocktALE they’re making, but its namesake drink is beloved among whiskey fans. The Paper Plane cocktail is a riff on the classic Last Word and typically features bourbon, amaro, Aperol and lemon juice.

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