This week, we visited Crab Tree Brewing in Greeley, CO. Our first encounter with Crab Tree was well over a year ago. It used to share a building with our favorite local distillery, Syntax Spirits. We never crossed over to their side, because we noticed a lot of 17 year old kids hanging around, and that creeped us out. We prefer to not be in locales that are regularly busted by the cops. However, they had moved locations, and we are trying to be open-minded on this journey, and so we decided that last night we would give it a go. One of our good buddies, Paul, lives in Greeley, and we dragged him out with us.
As it turns out, Paul is a true connoisseur. I'm hoping he can be our new sidekick, he has some incredible insights into beer. And he and I have the same taste in beer, which is anti-Ammon. Thus, he confirms that I have much better taste in beer than Ammon. Winning!
The Ambiance: Outstanding. The tables and flooring are all constructed from Colorado beetle-kill pine. The light fixtures have a cagey, industrial look. They have nice big tables, and lots of seating space. Also, they offered free popcorn. We ate 4 bowls. It was epic and awesome.
The Beers: We tried all 10. Their beers seemed to almost always finish sweet. Ammon and Paul really liked that about the beers. Our notes about each:
- Head Turner Blonde: Ammon described this as high quality Coors. I call it beer for non-beer lovers. It was not a hit with us.
- Deerfield Ale: A strawberry ale. We decided it tastes like strawberry gushers dissolved in sprite. This is the sweetest, un-beerlike beer we have ever tasted. Good, but undeniably gusher-like. Tasty, though.
- Serenity Amber: Ammon's favorite of the bunch. Both Paul and I were riding the fence on it. Ammon liked how smooth it was, and sweet on the finish.
- Boxcar Brown Ale: I liked this one the best. The finish was a little lacking, though, I felt like it had a strong start, but it wasn't until I had been drinking it for a while that I could enjoy the finish.
- Oatmeal Stout: This was a nice, sweet dark beer. We decided it had notes of Arabica black coffee. Paul is a stout drinker, and he was a fan.
- ESB (Extra Sexy Brewer): We thought this was a miss. I didn't understand this one.
- Rebel Rye IPA: This was pretty tasty. A little bitterness at the start, but with a good finish. Paul and I dug it. Ammon, in his usual IPA hating fashion, didn't like this.
- Otto-Bahn Saison: We took issue with the classification of this beer. We thought it was very clearly a sour ale. And we wish it had a fruit note or something sweet to balance out the sour. Our first impression was "Warheads".
- Barrel Monkey Brown: A barrel-aged brown ale. Paul had the strong impression of cherry cordials, and I would have to agree with that assessment.
- Eclipse Black IPA: I had never tried a dark IPA, and I found the experience satisfying. It was the best of an IPA and a porter, wrapped into one happy brew. Not too bitter, but you could tell it was an IPA-style.
Our Overall thoughts: They are producing some good offerings. I have never before this brewery likened a beer to candy, and we did it 3 times in one tasting. It wasn't overcrowded, and the service at the tasting bar was excellent. They certainly have a beer for all tastes, and I could see us going back. Price-wise, we were pretty happy as well. So thanks for the great time, Crab Tree. Let's do it again.