After re-reading the blog and remembering how hilarious we were, mine and Lisa’s determination to drink was renewed, and we decided that it was time to come out of winter hibernation and hit a brewery. And seeing as a new brewery was opening down south, we thought that would be a good place to start.
Copper Kettle Brewery is owned and operated by husband-and-wife team Kristen Kozik, the manager, and Jeremy Gobien, the brewer. They had been homebrewing for several years, with such a positive response to their beers that they decided to open their own brewery.
(For anyone that’s ever worked with their spouse I hope you realized that it is a horrible idea and bailed before you ended up single and/ or unemployed. Sadly for these two they didn’t, and now have to combine two of the what could be possibly the worst things in your life togeher: marriage and work. It could only be worse if they had their kids there too. –Lisa)
Located in an unsuspecting business park, we weren’t sure what to expect walking inside. In the past, it seems like most start-up breweries are more on the casual, bare bones side- meaning that there’s not much to see besides the basics of tables, chairs, a bar and taps. So we were pleasantly surprised at the décor of Copper Kettle. The space was fairly big, with lots of tables, and a very pretty copper bar that probably cost more than any one item in my entire house.
Behind the bar were shelves stocked with pint glasses and growlers, all with CK’s logo. The bartenders all had matching shirts which in NO WAY helped that EVERY person working had a twin! Doppelgangers galore! (We spent half the evening playing ‘Guess Which Ones are the Owners’ which was harder than it seems because everyone looked the same. –Lisa).
This phenomenon became more clear later when we later found out that rather than hire real bartenders they flew in all their siblings and siblings begrudged spouses, and moms that didn’t actually drink beer to work for them for the night. (Although it was really cute when Jeremy’s mom told us how excited she was, and how she used to try his beers he brewed in the garage.)
Overall, the place was impressive- in an “our golden retriever has a more golden coat coat than your golden retriever” kind of way. Clearly there was some serious cash and planning that went into opening the brewery, and so we had high expectations for the beer. (I mean c’mon, the brewer has a PhD. Nine years of schooling better make you be able to do something other than pay off student loans for the rest of your life. –Lisa)
The beer selection was pretty expansive for a startup. There were six beers to try, and several more that would be available on tap the following weekend. We were disappointed that the Mexican Chocolate Stout wouldn’t be available until the 30th, but figured that it gave us a fantastic reason to come back.
It should also be mentioned that the beers came with place cards as if you were at a wedding. This also meant that they could easily be switched up (which they were) to trick you into thinking you were drinking a beer that you actually weren’t.
With the classy décor and wall decorations, this bar makes you feel like you just walked into someone’s living room who lives in the Westwoods/Ralston Valley area. You know, the type of people who have a sitting room AND a living room (or den, as they would call it, because that’s where the TV and unsightly children’s toys go).
Looking around, we felt out of place. In general, most of the time I feel like the type of person who wears nerdy glasses that are slightly askew and randomly has spaghetti, lettuce or some other sort of food in my hair. And that wasn’t the type of people there.
Everyone around us seemed to be in their late 20s-early 30s, and VERY suburban. These were clearly the type of people who had left their 2.5 children at their brand new, cookie-cutter house with a babysitter to enjoy a night out (and be home comfortably by 11). These were the type of people who wouldn’t have an apartment, but instead a “loft” and enjoy art gallery openings and running.
This was a couple that was the quintessential patrons that night. Note the Columbia outerwear and their generic looks. As we took secret pictures, we created an elaborate backstory for them.
We decided their names were Dave and Sara, and that they had been married for about 5 years. He works in accounting, and she is a legal assistant. They own a dog-most likely a medium-sized mutt- that they got at an animal shelter. They recently moved to Aurora, because they want to start a family in the next year or so, and wanted a house for the kids to grow up in.
There were tours of the brewery, and by tours, we mean that people were lurking by the brewery door, and then the owner was kind of showing them around with a really excited look on his face.
Kristin, one of the owners (but made clear on the website that she is second in command to her husband), stopped by and asked how the beers were. Instead of asking a bunch of witty and cool questions and telling her that we thought it was awesome that they opened such a nice brewery, we instead panicked and incoherently mumbled until she walked away (probably regretting opening a brewery because weirdos were attending her opening).
Now, for the beers, which all had German names, which was delightful. Except for the Hefeweizen, because they are NEVER delightful.
Bavarian Hell’s Helles- This was a golden blonde lager, but we felt that the name was misleading. You would think that something with “hell” in the name would leave you feeling like you’d been punched by your beer. In this case, it was more of a casual lager.
“I’m giving it a four. And I don’t normally give blondes 4s.”
“That’s what she said.”
Lisa- 4 boobs
Julia- 3 boobs
Dusseldorf Altbier- This was a very bitter beer.
“Normally I would only give it 3 boobs, but because it has an unlau, I’m giving it a side.
2 and a side boob
Summer Ale- This ale was a light colored beer with an orange and coriander flavor. The best way to describe it is that it was a better tasting Blue Moon. Like a Blue Moon after you squeeze 2-3 oranges into it.
Copper Mezzina Ale- This beer was definitely interesting. We expected it to taste a little like sucking on a penny, which it didn’t at all. Instead, the aftertaste kept changing.
Saison Savoreaux- This is the beer that was the winner of the home brew contest. If that’s the case, I don’t even want to know what the other entries tasted like. This is their version of a hefeweisen, which meant that we hated it. It tasted like cloves and bananas and sweaty armpit, as was expected. We seriously don’t know why EVERY SINGLE BREWERY insists on making this type of beer.
“I don’t really know how to properly pronounce the name. But it doesn’t matter, because I won’t ever be ordering it again.”
OTHER AWESOME THINGS TO NOTE:
- Copper Kettle has a monthly brewer’s club. It’s simple- every time you buy a beer, you get a punch on a card, and then once you have enough punches you get your own glass, beer discounts, and invitations to exclusive events, like getting to try the beers early. This is the first time we’ve seen a small brewery do something like this and we thought it was a great idea.
- One of the bartenders heard us making gagging noises as we drank the Saison, and he asked us what was wrong, then offered to get us a different beer if we didn’t like it.
- Then he looked confused when we yelled at him and told him that we were going to finish it, even if it made us want to die.