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Brewfest Review: Collaboration Fest 2017

Collaboration Fest is a brewer community driven festival that brings craft beer lovers together along with the breweries and their beers!

Mile High Brew Review attended Collaboration Fest 2017 which was extremely fun in the 4th year of the festival. However, this year's event was not without it's flaws.

Collaboration Fest took place on March 25th, 2017 at the National Western Complex in Denver, Colorado. The festival features breweries collaborating on special beers created for the event. Some brewers offered the beers at their breweries as a preview to the festival and get a full pint of the brews. With over 150 breweries participating, there were plenty of beers for you to try along with the country music and food offerings. 

The beers themselves offered a range of different styles but several extremely hop forward beers. While I was happy with almost all of the beers I tried, there was definitely alot of hoppy beers around and I would have loved additional styles of beers. One stand out beer for me was the Seedstock Brewery and Half Penny Brewing collaboration, The Lichtenhainer! It was  a smokey, sour beer style that I have never heard of before but was one of the more interesting beers I tried that night. 

Along with Seedstock and Half Penny's Lichtenhainer, I enjoyed other beer offerings from several breweries participating. Joyride Brewing Company and Little Machine Beer's West Side is the Blessed Side was a Belgian Tripel beer that was blessed by Father Wes of St. Dominic's Church and made in two different styles. One was made with red grapes and one with white to symbolize the communion wine.

While the beers were good, the venue had some problems in the first year at this location for the festival. Lots of beer festivals are loud and take place in smaller venues but Collaboration Fest was one of the loudest beer events I have been to. The band, while great, was lost within the sea of noise produced by the beer loving crowd. Along with the noise, the beer lines were a bit long. Also, because the venue staffed alot of the brewery stands and food court, several beers were tapped out quickly due to large pours along with some reports from festival goers that several staff members actively showed they did not want to be there with attitudes. 

Collaboration Festival was a great success in my book as it only had a few minor pitfalls that were overcome by the beers I had! If you enjoy craft beer and are fans of different breweries coming together, this is the fest for you! If you can't handle huge crowds and loud areas, outdoor beer festivals may be for you (all though some are loud and huge as well!) 

We are excited to go to next years event to try all the new breweries concoctions and see the improvements of this event as it continues to evolve! If you would like to learn more about Collaboration Fest, check out our videos with some of the breweries and people that make it possible!