It’s great that we live in the Napa Valley of beer. There are so many options. Pateros Creek Brewing, located on North College, is one company that routinely releases new concoctions. I reviewed one of their mainstays, called The Legends, and three seasonal rotations from their Renegade series.
Stimulator Pale Ale
Alcohol by volume: 5.3 percent
International Bitterness Units: 48
Original Gravity: 1.053
This pale ale made with 20 percent rye malt is part of Pateros Creek’s Legends series. While it smells of hops, it tastes of rye. This beer won’t be mistaken for purer rye beers like Boulevard’s Rye-On-Rye, but there’s enough of the bread flavor to outweigh the bitter Cascade hops. The low ABV and general lightness of the beer makes Stimulator a great patio option now that the snow has melted, and hopefully won’t be back for awhile.
’13 Dark Ale
ABV: 6 percent
Named for the hundred year anniversary of Fort Collins’ blizzard of 1913, this is one of the sweetest beers I’ve ever smelled. The apple and cinnamon aroma is shockingly powerful and enticing. However, the flavor doesn’t exactly follow the nose. The apples are actually sour apples, so be prepared to pucker. But chocolate and vanilla take hold in the finish to round out the dark ale. These qualities combine into a very complex melody and form something that I didn’t want to stop drinking.
Ethiopian Shim Sham
ABV: 6 percent
This maple brown ale infused with Ethiopian Yirgacheffe coffee smells like breakfast. The pleasant coffee and maple aromas would wake anyone up. The Renegade beers convinced me that Pateros knows their noses. One might assume that since it smells like coffee, it might taste bitter like coffee. However, it’s not bitter at all. I found the Stimulator Pale Ale to be more bitter even though it’s lower in IBUs. It mainly tastes of maple syrup, but there’s also hints of blueberry and chocolate. It was as if I was drinking a pancake. Now if only it was socially acceptable to drink beer for the first meal of the day.
ABV: 5.6 percent
Once again Pateros surprised me with their master over aromas as I smelled hibiscus and blackberry in this brew. At first, I tasted berry and citrus flavors, but then my palate was hit with chipotle that lingers with a pleasant burn and notes of peanut. I’ve never had a beer open my sinuses before and it’s rare to have spice like this in a cool drink. It was absolutely exhilarating. If you can’t get enough spice, they also have a Stage Line Chili Porter out now.
I love the experimentation that Pateros Creek Brewing is doing. My palate experienced bitter, sour, sweet and spicy with four different beers. They’re all so unique that I couldn’t pick a favorite. It’s not easy to come by such breadth.
Collegian Entertainment Reporter Jefferson Geiger can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.