As our long, cold, gray winter finally—finally—gives way to spring blooms and the promise of a warm summer, it's time to partake in one of Colorado's greatest pleasures: outdoor drinking.
Granted, this is something that the most resilient residents of Coloradan 365 do, but in the summer, when it's warm and the sun breaks through the net awnings and treetops, when the sunsets turn an ordinary orange into a series of ombres, drinking on the terrace is unparalleled pleasure .
And this pleasure has achieved a significant improvement during the pandemic. Due to internal capacity constraints, many restaurants, bars and breweries across the state have moved outdoors. Some were already prepared — Left Hand Brewing Company had been working on its outdoor space since 2019 — while others, like Twisted Pine Brewing Company, used the pandemic as the perfect time to upgrade existing structures and turn nearby parking lots into a beer garden. That means almost every brewery you visit these days will have some kind of patio where you can drink, eat and relax, but here are some must-see spots in the county where you just have to get out.
Avery Brewery Company
4910 Nautilus Ret Nord
The terrace at Avery is huge. There are tables to eat, chairs to relax and a large green area for children and four-legged friends to run around. And good beer is just a step away: over 20 breweries, some of them rarities from the old days, some of them pilots for future implementations and all of Avery's core products. You can look good in the weeds here - just remember to save space on Island Rascal. Old-timers may recognize this passionfruit-infused Belgian wheat ale by its former moniker Liliko'i Kepolo, but a rosé by any other name will still deliver a burst of refreshing carbonation, astringency and tropical flavors. It's the perfect beer when the sun is high in the sky, a gentle breeze is rustling the leaves, and you don't care about anything but this moment.
Three more to try:
Firma Browarna Twisted Pine not only have a terrace for you; They also have beer:Stamp on the terracesession IPA with a low ABV and a dense hop profile. OnSanitas Brewing Co., you can have a drink by the railway tracks, and although it's not a brewery, it isWest End Tavern serves plenty of local beer on its unique roof terrace. It's quite a treat.
Kompania Piwowarska Lewy Hand
1265 Boston Ave.
If you've been to Left Hand Brewing Company, you probably know the sweet patio out front. If you haven't been in a while, you might not know that Left Hand has opened a huge beer garden next door, perfect for drinking in the sun, live music and playing with the dogs. They are open most Thursdays through Sundays, weather permitting, and have food trucks on site and a mobile kitchen. Start with a crushed 1265 Pilsner and work your way up from there.
Four others to try:
main streetPumpehus Brewery sports next to sports bar,Red Zone, and a large terrace perfect for people watching at the weekend with a pintRed Alert Amber. Tall pots includedWibby Brewing'sthe patio will make you forget you're sitting on top of the bone of the long-gone Butterball plantVolksbier Viennais spectacular - and closeBrews 300 sunsmaSolone toffi Imperial Brown Aleon a platter and one of the best hot chicken sandwiches ever. In Prospect New Town in Longmont,primitive beerit has a small outdoor space and a few picnic tables overlooking the park to enjoy all the wild and funky ales. Buy a bottle of something sparkling and enjoy the day.
Mill to the west and down
2755 Dagny Way, No. 101
You're going to Westbound & Down and eat pizza. It doesn't matter if you live in Baseline or County; it's worth going. Try 95th Street pizza with a burrata starter and wash it down with any number of award-winning Westbound beers. Coloradan Mexican Lager is not only crisp and clean with a lively hop profile; chef Casey Taylor uses it in pizza dough.
Two others to try:
If you've had enough of all the pilsner talk - this is a summer drinking guide, after all - jump inCellar West Artisan Alefor something funky, fruity and wild. Maybe a bottleSaison farmhouse? Or maybe apples are your thing. Then go toParent cider surfacefor some of the best views in Boulder County.
Crystal Springs Brewing Co.
Crystal Springs has two locations in Louisville, but only one has the best beer garden. Small town charm on the inside, backyard vibe on the outside, and both pair beautifully with the spicy, tangy, fruity and grainy body of Blood Orange Kölsch.
Two others to try:
Not far from Main Street from Crystal Springs is12 degree brewing, purveyors of Belgium-inspired beers, and it's worth it for the fries andFog at midnightalone. It's on the other side of the tracksGravity brewingand in the back you'll find picnic tables, vegetable pots and some privacy.
MainStage Brewing Company
For years there was only one brewery in this mountain town. So in 2021 MainStage came on the scene. Perhaps the size of its outdoor space was motivated by COVID-19 restrictions, or perhaps it was built to soak up Colorado's outdoor glamor and provide a killer stage for up-and-coming musicians. Either way, it's a great place to spend an afternoon.
The second one to try:
Across the street is the brewery that made Lyon famous,Oskar Blues Grill & Brewery. Truth be told, their indoor dining area is where you want to go. But you can definitely enjoy itG'Knight Imperial Red Aleon the terrace. Such good beer can be enjoyed everywhere.
70 E. First Saint
This one is almost too easy: he steps back into the river for crying out loud. At the moment, the terrace is being renovated, but the construction should be completed by mid-summer. You'll have plenty of time to enjoy the long, hot Colorado days with a juicy Tropical Stay-Cation IPA at 8,000 feet.
Two others to try:
Located in a shopping mall,A very cozy brewery doesn't have an expansive patio, but has some very good beers - give Monk's Phunk Belgian beer brewed with honey.Knotted Root Brewing Companyit has scenic views (who doesn't have scenic views here?) and plenty of irreverent brews.Thick strawberry butter, anyone?
Fritz family breweries
6778 N. 79th St.
Niwot had no luck with breweries. Fritz Family Brewers was founded in 2021 and hopes to change that. And with beautiful excavations, it just might be. While the interior is warm and welcoming, stop here after sunset for some stargazing and a lovely glass pour.
Echo Brewery and Pizzeria
600 Briggs St.
If you thought we were going to overlook Erie, think again. Echo has one of the best patios in the county, hands down. is big; it's on Erie's main street, but secluded enough that cars don't feel on top of you. And the space inside and outside the Echo makes things even better. Plus, they have TVs, so if you're planning on watching the Nuggets game at the end of June, the Echo — with a pint of cold Two Pup Pale Ale — might be the place for you.
Second, to try:
We'd be remiss if we didn't mention itThe Brewery of the Industrial Revolution, 285 Cheesman St. It has the same homey charm you'll find in Crystal Springs. If you've ever drank in small pubs on the outskirts of London, The Industrial Revolution Brewing Company will bring back fond memories.