Avery Brewing Company will open its doors on March 5 to its craft brewery brethren to host the 14th Annual Boulder Strong Ale Fest. This notorious event features breweries around the country, bringing craft beers of brawn to one strong holding pen. To make it into the fest, a beer must be 8% ABV or higher and represent something very special from the heart and soul of its creator.
Avery Brewing debuted this festival in 2003 to celebrate this king of beer categories. Now 14 years later, Avery will host over 100 beers at its one-year-old brewing facility in north Boulder, CO.
High octane beers pose a special challenge for brewers, and over the years Avery has gained notoriety in the genre with creations like their 9.2% Hog Heaven Dry-Hopped Barleywine in 1998, their 10-12% The Czar Imperial Stout in 2002, and their 15-18% monster, The Beast, in 2004.
Founder Adam Avery wanted to harness his company’s reputation and do something different from the typical tasting competitions that were so widespread during the early 2000s. In creating Boulder Strong Ale Fest, he was able to bring together his brewmaster counterparts under one roof to drink and enjoy each other’s beers. “The collaborative culture of craft brewers is what makes this industry so special,” says Avery.
Fourteen years later the tradition continues, and attendees will find brewers from around the country sampling beers right alongside them. Avery will host larger, older breweries like Russian River, Green Flash, Dogfish Head, The Bruery, and Lost Abbey, plus younger breweries like Weldwerks, Cerebral, Ratio Beerworks, and Cannonball Creek.
As a sneak peek into the festival’s beer list, Avery has announced that Goose Island is pouring Bourbon County Stout, Ballast Point is sending Victory at Sea, and Firestone Walker is bringing Parabola, crowd favorites that all score a perfect 100 on RateBeer. Allagash is even sending a beer that has never before been poured in Colorado, which they registered in the state specifically for this festival.
Adam Avery is especially honored to host his former employees who moved on to create Call to Arms Brewing, which opened in Denver in July 2015. “The craft brewing industry is a family, and this spirit of camaraderie is as important to me now as it was when we started this festival all those years ago. The quality beer those Call to Arms guys are putting out makes me feel proud.”
Avery Brewing is creating several special beers for the occasion including a Bourbon barrel-aged quad with mulling spices, plus two unusual Double IPAs, one with coffee and one with tea.
The $50 festival entrance fee includes sixteen 3-ounce beer samples and a commemorative glass. The proceeds of this festival benefit local non-profit Get Outside & Learn Something. For event details and tickets, beer lovers can visit Avery’s revamped website, averybrewing.com.