Butcherknife Brewing in Steamboat to participate in Simultaneous Collaboration Brew
Steamboat Springs — As the crew at Butcherknife Brewing Co. in Steamboat Springs starts to heat mash tuns and mill grain Thursday morning to make a saison, they won’t be alone. Five other breweries across Colorado will be following the same recipe, using the same ingredients and starting at the same time as part of a simultaneous, collaborative brewing event.
Beer enthusiasts can follow along on social media beginning at 8 a.m. Thursday using the hashtag #SimultaneousBrew.
The event is the brainchild of Tim Myers, owner of Strange Craft Beer Co. in Denver, and is the first of its kind in Colorado and maybe even the country, according to a news release.
Butcherknife Brewing Co. co-owner Mark Fitzgerald said Tuesday that they’ve only been brewing on the new 30-barrel system at their building up Elk River Road for about a month and a half and it’s great to be welcomed into the community of brewers in such a powerful way.
While Fitzgerald and his partner Nate Johansing might have only fired up their large-scale system in the past couple months, it’s been a long time coming for Butcherknife Brewing Co. Fitzgerald officially registered the business with the state in 2009 and has been working since then to make the Steamboat brewery a reality.
Butcherknife’s Blonde X, a heavily-hopped American blonde ale with 4.2 percent alcohol by volume, now is available on a select few taps across Steamboat, and the first patrons will step foot into their taproom Friday evening as part of a Young Professional’s Network event.
In addition to the Blonde X, Butcherknife plans to have Amputator, a pale ale, and The Bridge, a Belgian specialty, as their staple brews that will be produced and distributed year round.
Fitzgerald said they’ve put together a schedule for the rest of the summer that lays out which of the three standard beers will be brewed every other week along with specialty brews and experiments for the intervening weeks.
For the Simultaneous Saison, each participating brewery should end up with a subtly different beer despite using the same basic recipe and ingredients as they make it their own during the process, Fitzgerald said.
They’ll all have a chance to sample each others’ work during the 18th annual Colorado Brewers Rendezvous on July 12 in Salida. Because of the size of Butcherknife’s setup, it will account for more than 50 percent of the total volume of the saison that is brewed.
Fitzgerald said the simultaneous brew is a chance for them to prove their process and test themselves.
“I don’t know that we’ll get crazy with this,” he said. “We might. We feel free to experiment.”
There’s a lot of downtime on a brewing day, Fitzgerald said, and he’ll be sharing some of the process through social media during the day.
The saison will be made available to Butcherknife’s accounts in Steamboat, so it could start showing up on local restaurant taps in July.
Unless Steamboat residents make the trip to Salida next month, they might not have the opportunity to test all six versions of the saison, but Fitzgerald said he hopes people do share feedback if they taste some of the others.
“We’ll see how it turns out,” Fitzgerald said. “It’s going to be fun to see how we all do it.”
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