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Bootlegger’s Society launches inaugural Durango Beer Week, Sept. 16-24

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Bootlegger’s Society launches inaugural Durango Beer Week, Sept. 16-24


Beer, beer everywhere, and plenty of it to drink.

The Bootlegger’s Society, the local consortium of Durango’s four award-winning craft brewers, launches the inaugural Durango Beer Week. Festivities, which include Durango’s official Oktoberfest, are set for Friday, Sept. 16 through Saturday, Sept. 24, 2011.

Ska Brewing Co., Steamworks Brewing Co., Carver Brewing Co. and Durango Brewing Co. originally came together as the Bootlegger’s Society in 2003 with a mission to raise the awareness and understanding of craft beer by rallying around the needs of the community. The Bootlegger’s Society is a qualified not-for-profit under the Community Foundation of Southwest Colorado.

            “Durango continues to be the Napa Valley of craft beer,” said Dave Thibodeau, Ska Brewing co-founder. “With Steamworks and Ska both celebrating anniversaries this September, and with the Bootleggers now organizing Oktoberfest, we decided to go all out. Durango loves its craft beer.”

The week officially kicks off with Steamworks’ 15th Anniversary Beer Dinner, to be held on the brewpub’s back deck, Sept. 16, 7 p.m. Celebrating Steamworks as a “gastropub,” Chef Sean Clark will offer a five-course meal matched to the artisan brews of Brewmaster Ken Martin. Cost is $40 per person, and reservations are available by calling 970.259.9200.

“Chef Sean has taken a leading role nationally in pairing fine foods and craft beers,” said Kris Oyler, Steamworks co-founder. “The menu, which includes Cuban Pork, Yorkshire Pudding and Braised Plantain, and Smoked Elk Tenderloin with Palisade Cherry Gastrique, is fantastic. Of course, so are the Steamworks’ award-winning beers paired with each course.”

Durango’s official annual Oktoberfest is set for Saturday, Sept. 17, 11 a.m. to 4 p.m. on Main Avenue between 9th and 10th Streets. Proceeds from the event will benefit the Women’s Resource Center.

“The event will include all the traditional Oktoberfest activities such as a stein hoisting competition and a bratwurst eating contest,” said Erik Maxson, Carver Brewing Co. head brewer. “Plus the Bootleggers will collaboratively brew an authentic Oktoberfest beer to be tapped at the event.”

Food vendors, children’s activities and live music throughout the day from the Alpiners, Midnight Backhand and Moreland & Arbuckle are also planned. Durango Herald Arts & Entertainment Editor (and beer aficionado) Ted Holteen will serve as master of ceremonies.

Durango Beer Week continues with a variety of activities, including a Beer Brunch at Carver’s, a bike tour of the breweries, and a Brewathalon at Durango Brewing. [Note: A preliminary Durango Beer Week line-up follows this overview release.]

“The Ska Brewing Co. 16th Anniversary Party on Sept. 24 concludes Beer Week with an all-out celebration,” said Thibodeau, of the event to be held at Ska World Headquarters, 4-9 p.m. “We’ll feature craft beers from 20 regional breweries and dance to the music of the nationally-renown ska band The Toasters.”

            For further information on Durango Beer Week, visit www.realbeer.com.