B eer is typically considered crisp and refreshing. Usually a happy hour steal or a pick your own six-pack and take home kind of deal. But to some, beer is an art. To these local brewers, beer is more than just the meaning behind “let’s crack a cold one.”
Each of these men have a favorite beer; one that they would consider the best. Alongside them stands their four-legged supporters and who they would consider top dog. It’s with passion and curiosity that we dig a little deeper into what make these brewers and their companions truly ‘best in show.’
Taylor Rees from Spangalang Brewery – Owner
Best in Show | D-Train IPA
Q: What is your favorite snack to have with a pint of beer?
A: We have an unhealthy obsession with pork rinds at the brewery. It’s kind of an unwritten rule that any time
any of us are someplace that sells pork rinds, we must buy a bag for everyone to share.
Q: How did you come up with the name Spangalang Brewery?
A: One of our investors, who also happens to be a musician, recommended the name “Spangalang.” The term
“Spangalang” is a jazz reference, related to jazz drumming, and we chose it because we think it’s a good way
to pay homage to the great Five Points Neighborhood we are lucky enough to be located in. Also, it’s a pretty
fun word to say.
Q: Tell me about your furry companion.
A: After owning large dogs for sixteen years, I ended up “adopting” three smaller dogs when I married my wife.
While I love all three, Amos is the one I connect with the most. He’s around eleven-years-old and he’s as mixed of
a breed as you can get. We have no idea what he is, and neither do our vets. He’s energetic and almost puppy
like at times, often craving attention, but other times he also just likes relaxing near his favorite people and dog
brothers. As for his quirks, he goes nuts when there is a fly in the house and he also loves to eat ice cubes.
Q: What’s your favorite part about owning a brewery?
A: The free beer is very nice.
Q: How many tries does it take to brew the perfect beer?
A: Forty-two tries. Just kidding. I’m not really sure that I’ve ever even brewed the “perfect beer.”
Jason zumBrunnen from Ratio Beerworks – CoFounder
Best in Show | New Wave
Q: Let’s get to know you.
A: I was TIME’s 2006 Person of the Year, I’m a Sagittarius but I don’t believe in astrology and I generally like
punk and rock and also not-so-secretly like Taylor Swift.
Q: How did Ratio Beerworks become the name?
A: I was reading a cool article about the newest movement in the coffee industry, which I also love. It was an
entire article about the ratio of coffee to the water for different brews. It really struck that we have so many
different important ratios in beer brewing too, like our ratio of water to grain is usually 2.61:1. I also loved the
image of the ratio of all the connecting parts of the community that come together to create our brewery.
Q: Tell me about Mr. Levi Honky Tonk.
A: He’s a two-year-old Miniature Schnauzer. He is unusually colored as chocolate parti. His favorite
activities are: pooping in our bedroom, wrestling, licking, licking, licking, and cuddling. Main quirk: spinning in
circles. I would say his personality is categorized as “spunky turd.”
Q: What is your favorite beer to brew and why?
A: I love brewing our huge Imperial Stout called Genius Wizard. It’s such a massive beer that takes two full
mashes of grain just to fill up the kettle once. It’s filled with tons of chocolaty and caramel malts as well as
molasses. We only brew this at one time of the year to come out in December. If we had to brew it year round,
it would probably be my least favorite to brew as it’s actually the biggest pain in the ass!
Q: What do you and Levi Honky Tonk usually do on the weekends?
A: Schnauzers are supposed to be great rat and mouse hunters, but Levi will literally just stare at mice, so we’ve
taken that job off of his list. Levi is actually quite a great hiker. He has hiked Mt. Sanitas in Boulder, and we just
did the approach hike on Mt. Bierstadt. I’m thinking he’ll make his first 14er peak this summer.