Tuesday, July 22, 2014
It was a master work of timing that the first full weekend for Joyride Brewing - the Edgewater brewery that opened just one week ago - coincided with the Dragon Boat Festival across the street at Sloan's Lake. Neighborhood residents streamed in, kids occupied nearly every table and the community got the taste of its first brewery anyone can remember.
And that taste is an overall enjoyable one. Joyride, the creation of three homebrewers who decided to go pro, doesn't have any beer that will knock you back from the table. It does, however, have a couple of well-crafted efforts that will make you appreciate what more could be coming.
The best of those is the Antelope Amber, a surprisingly hoppy (50 IBU) addition to the style made with five premium malts and four types of American hops. It presents a good mix of pineapple sweetness with a malt base that absorbs the flavors rather than dominating them.
Also eye-catching is the Ice Cutter Kolsch, a technically proficient interpretation of the classical German style that offers a crisp hot bite. In the hot weather this weekend, this is as much as one could have requested to be thirst-quenching.
The more traditional hoppy styles - the Cougar Pale Ale and the 4.2 percent ABV Lil' Edge Pale Ale - both have a softly hopped feel that should welcome in the casual drinker but could let down hopheads in the crowd. And the Belgian Wit, a summer seasonal, was a let-down, offering a dull, unfiltered beer that seemed more like a cloudy hefeweizen.
But Joyride holds promise, and it holds a couple of great summer sippers already. That, combined with its excellent location on the corner of 25th and Sheridan, should make this a worthwhile stop for everyone wanting to explore the new craft brew tastes of the Denver area.