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Tuesday, May 15, 2012

Mother's Day Expedition to Oskar Blues

Alternately titled - "F*ckin Catalina Wine Mixer!"

     So, some of you may have been to Oskar Blues before.  Some haven’t.  It’s really an incredible concept, and their two Colorado locations (Lyons and Longmont - Soon in Boulder!!!) are both a site to behold.  To say this place was packed would be a horrendous understatement.  Not in a bad way of course, because the staff was able to efficiently move people in and out as best they could.  I’d be WAY more concerned if they were empty on Mother’s Day.  Just two of us for lunch, and a 25 minute wait, so we saddled up to the bar to wait it out. Not sure where to start with this place, because it has so much to offer...

     How about being serenaded by an Elvis impersonator when you walk in - or having that same Elvis pass out roses to all the moms and grandmas in the restaurant in between sets for Mother’s Day.  Oh boy, did the ladies ever swoon!  It’s these little things that elevate some Brewpubs over others in the Customer Experience department, and Oskar Blues has this down to a science. 

     20 minutes flew by.  This place has better people watching than an airport at peak travel time, and the d├ęcor is just plain fun.  Tap handles from a huge variety of breweries line the bar ceiling.  Vintage music posters and photos line the wood walls.  Oh, and the best part…the beer list.  I think I lost ten minutes of my life in an unconscious state just looking it over. (from

Seriously?  How cool is that?  Granted, we hit it at a special time when they were teaming up with Ska Brewing - also a great brewery, by the way - and although I won’t review it here, I did taste their Big Shikes Orange Blossom Imperial Pilsner (outstanding!).   

     So we sat down, Kelli B. was our server, and despite the fact she was terribly busy, absolutely made time for every one of her customers.  Pretty amazing really.  We weren’t really sure what we wanted to drink, so we just asked her – turns out she was a fountain of knowledge, and suggested two beers.  Red Knuckles Lager and the 15th Anniversary Abbey Ale.

Red Knuckles (Red) Lager

      A pretty original beer.  Kelli explained - and yes, I'm paraphrasing here - that brewers are pretty much allowed to experiment with whatever they want.  Sometimes they strike gold, and experiments are moved to wider production, as was the case with this beer.

     Deep red to ruby in color with good clarity, this beer arrived with a strong head.  The aroma was a combination of pungent caramel goodness and slight hoppiness.   Very interesting in terms of taste – a complex mix of molasses, strong malt and a toastiness that is hard to describe.  All balanced perfectly with soft citrusy hop flavor, and mellow carbonation.

    Really a fantastic beer and I’m glad I stopped in.  Except for the guy sitting next to us.  Reminded me of a modern day pompous Zach Morris from Saved by the Bell.  Kinda like in the picture below - only older, with shorter, greasier hair and a tucked in Sport Shirt.  At least he didn’t pop his collar… C’mon man.

And lastly, a picture of the Brewpub in Longmont:

You Wish You Were Here!

Happy Craft Beer Week from Microbrew Maps!!



  1. Love it. Awesome as usual Jeremy.

  2. Jeremy, what a fantastic review! You are an engaging writer. Now, I definitely want to check the place out... but can I borrow your eyes? ;)