First review: Locavore Beer Works

Glad you’re here, again! Pull up a chair and grab a pint…

We thought that, until we schedule our next outing, we could review some of the places we’ve already been so far.  So, we’ll start with December, 2018 and our trip to Locavore Beer Works in Littleton, CO. Let’s break it down for you…

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AMBIENCE

This brewery-pub at the corner of Bowles and Platte Canyon is in a little strip mall area off the southeast corner of the intersection. When you walk in, the feel is a little bit industrial, a little bit rustic, and very much welcoming, open plan. There are some long tables to share, and some smaller, round four-seaters. However, considering the open space and high ceilings, this place didn’t feel overly loud. Maybe it was this particular Friday night, early holiday-season crowd, but it never felt like the space was too noisy or echoing to prevent us from hearing our own conversations.

There’s a nice patio facing the parking lot, which has a fire pit but was nevertheless really not an attraction for us in early December. It would be nice to try it in summer, though – especially during a nice late sunset over the mountains, as the patio faces west.

By the way, it appears they allow dogs… 😉

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FOOD

Now, when we go out together, we’re usually looking for food along with our bevvies. In this, Locavore is rich, as they have a partnership with Roberts Italian-American Pizzeria, Restaurant & Deli. In fact, that’s part of Locavore’s MO – their whole point and purpose is supporting local businesses and suppliers. Now you can see where they got their name… 

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Okay, so back to the food. There’s a little kiosk right in the pub where you can order and pay and get a little table stand with a number – and the food is then delivered right to your table from the kitchen next door! No standing in line outside at a food truck (which was nice for this chilly time of year) and the selections were varied. Great appetizers, pizza, and sandwiches work out to be excellent options to pair with the selections on tap.

Which, by the way, are the main feature in this post. The friendly and open vibe and the food are a nice perk of this place, you might be saying — but what about the beer? Well… 

BEER

To start with, Locavore has a great tasting process. It starts when they bring out their six-per taster trays. You can then take your time, flipping through their menu — cards for each beer currently on tap, placed on binding rings. You use a dry erase pen to write the beers you want to try next to each hole in the tray. Your friendly staff member then takes the tray back and fills it with the samples to bring back to the table.

We all have to say, it was nice to have such convenience. No waiting in line while your friends are back at the table chatting it up. The only real line was at the food kiosk, but even that was quick — so Erin missed only a little of the conversation when she went to plug in our orders.

Oh… sorry. Back to the beer. Locavore has a lot of options, and each is described in full — including ingredients — on its menu card. There were, if memory serves, 18 brews on tap, of which we ended up trying 12. That gave us a lot of good options without having to try something we really weren’t into (like the really hoppy stuff — of which they also have lots of options for those of you who do like your beer on the rabbit side). 

Not to say that we didn’t try the hops, by the way. Erin selected a few, as she does, just for the sake of a balanced taster. In fact, we were pretty amazingly balanced for this night out, picking a good variety of most types of beer, considering what was available. 

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This post is going to set our precedent for how we present our tastings. We’ll list what we tried, along with, to the best of our memory, what we thought (calling out specific notes where warranted or for fun). We’ll also list who ended up choosing the beer as their final full pour at the end of the night, and go into a little more detail about why. At least, that’s the plan. Depending on the situation, we might change it up a little…

So, without further ado: for our 12 selections at Locavore, we had:

Loggerhead American Lager (flagship):
We all appreciated this beer, which is a pretty straightforward lager. 

Lilly Hammer IPA (flagship):
As is often the case with IPAs, most of the crew didn’t warm up to it (as we have said, we tend to not enjoy hoppy beers). Erin found the hops to be mostly balanced with the malt. 

Sugar Magnolia Wit (flagship): Becky’s Full Pour 

This sweet, smooth dip was exactly Becky’s speed. A little sweet, a little fruity, and very flavorful while still drinkable. We all enjoyed this taster, and Dave actually considered having it as his full pour, too. The key to it is the slight coriander spice and the orange peel that gives it fruit with just a little complementary tang. And it came with the tallest, most unique glass. 

Blackberry Betty Belgian Wit (flagship): 
Blackberries and very light spice. We found it quite tasty. 

Edward’s Wee Demise Scotch Ale (seasonal): 
We all enjoyed tasting this scotch ale, named for the brief king of Ireland, brother of Robert the Bruce. Edward was drawn and quartered. Ew. Thankfully, this beer does not taste like defeat. 

Black Pearl Barrel Aged Imperial Porter (barrel-aged rarity): Warren’s Full Pour

This beauty is aged in bourbon barrels, and we could tell. Dave actually almost liked it, even though he’s doesn’t go for porters. You can really taste the bourbon influence on this tasty beer. And that’s what Warren liked about it: it didn’t taste like coffee or chocolate; that bourbon essence made it feel almost like a beer cocktail — in a good way.

Cobblestone Brown Porter (seasonal): 
Brown porters are rare, so we definitely wanted to try it. The flavor was good, and it’s robust. 

Bloch’s Bounty Milk Stout (flagship): 
Becky and Erin both enjoyed this milk stout, and Erin might have had it as a final pour if it hadn’t been for… well, you’ll see. Even Warren didn’t mind the relatively light chocolate.

Sister Christian Belgian Blonde Ale (seasonal): Dave’s Full Pour

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Dave always enjoys a good Belgian, and this fit his bill. The honey smoothed it out without being too sweet or cloying, and the tasty malts gave a rich, wheat flavor. Very light on the hops, but still able to hold its own, Dave found it to be just right to go with his tasty pizza and fried mozzarella. Exactly the kind of beer he loves best.

Friend of the Devil Schwarzbier (seasonal): 
This traditional German black lager was fairly clean, with a touch of bitter chocolate.

5th Season Pale Ale (flagship): 
This and the Lilly Hammer turned out to be the hoppiest of the bunch. As a pale ale, most of the group wasn’t into the 5th, but Erin cheerfully finished it.

Santa’s Secret Sauce Spiced Stout (seasonal): Erin’s Full Pour

Erin loves stouts, but also admits to being a sucker for an appropriate seasonal beer. Yes, she sometimes buys based only on the label. But this delicious, chocolatey orange-and-spice stout made it worthwhile. The orange isn’t overpowering, but it is present. And the cinnamon gives it just enough holiday spirit that Erin couldn’t resist.

Side note: at least a couple of us were disappointed that they had tapped out of 8675309, a cream ale. We’ll have to get back there and hope to find it available, as it is one of their seasonal/rotational beers… Same with the Tooth and Ale, a bitter that Erin wanted to try.

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Hey, so there is Locavore — overall living up to their name, with a welcoming, community vibe, and both service and beers that made it a really enjoyable evening. Gotta say, we’d be happy to go back there again soon. But for now, we have more new places to try! So, along with catching up on some other places we’ve already been, we’ll be letting you in on another pub or distillery very soon!

Until then, Prosit!

BWDE

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