Stranahan’s Colorado Whiskey Tour

So Coloradans like their booze. If you come here and go to a liquor store, you will see a lot of homegrown alcohol. Sure, we’re famous for our beer (Coors! New Belgium! Breckenridge! So┬ámany more!), but we also have wine, mead, vodka, whiskey, tequila …

One of the more famous whiskeys we have here is Stranahan’s. They start the distilling process like a bourbon, but finish it like a whiskey (or something like that) so it’s a Colorado straight whiskey, something completely unique.

The brainchild of a Woody Creek man and a volunteer firefighter, Stranahan’s is located in the old Heavenly Daze brewery on Kalamath St. and visible off I-25. The stuff is popular (most liquor stores can’t keep it on the shelves) and yet the whole operation is small enough that you can do tours and, if you can win their lottery, help bottle it yourself.

I’m not a big whiskey drinker (I’ve shot it, but I don’t like it), but Brandon is. So, on Labor Day, he signed us up for a tour and we went with our friends Genevieve and Jeremy. Since I don’t particularly care about the booze, I took pictures.

I will say, however, that the tour was highly informative and they got deep into the science of making whiskey, which was really cool. Totally didn’t dumb it down at all. Plus the smells weren’t as bad as they are in breweries (I. Hate. Hops.), so that was a plus.

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Brandon in the bar before the tour.

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Barrel room.

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Tasting glass.

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Riding the barrel.

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Whiskey still life.

(Thought the sepia filter worked out awesome for these.)

USA Pro Cycling Challenge

A little over a week ago, the USA Pro Cycling Challenge took place all over Colorado. As someone now interested in cycling races and the like (and Colorado stuff – woo!), I wanted to go see a stage of the race last year, but it didn’t work out with work. This year, I had off the last day of the race, which also happened to be the Denver time trial.

So, last Sunday, I rode from my place in the Tech Center downtown to 17th Street to watch the race. I figured 17th would be a good vantage point because riders, after winding around downtown, came up 17th, did a little loop in City Park and came back down 17th en route to the finish near the Capitol. Therefore, you’d get to see riders twice.

There were a lot of riders and a lot of people watching the race. I particularly enjoyed watching this stage because, as a time trial, most of the cyclists rode time trial bikes … essentially the bikes triathletes use, aerobars and all. Therefore, happy, happy bike porn for me. It was also awesome watching how fast those guys were cranking – the stage winner, Taylor Phinney from Boulder, ended up averaging well over 30 mph.

Obviously I took pictures.

 
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Sprinter leader Tyler Farrar.

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Taylor Phinney.

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Most Aggressive Rider (and Stage 6 winner) Rory Sutherland.

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King of the Mountains, Jens Voight.

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Best young rider, Tejay Van Garderen

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Pro Challenge winner, Christian VandeVelde.

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Crowd on 17th watching the race.

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Leader (at that point), Levi Leipheimer.