Fritz Family Brewers Brings Kölsch Service to Niwot

Every Wednesday this summer season, trays with glasses of recent, pale beer will probably be served constantly from 5 to 7 p.m. at Fritz Family Brewers in Niwot because the brewery introduces a unique means to drink beer with a conventional German Kölsch service.

Although town of Cologne, Germany, has been brewing beer for hundreds of years, the beer we all know right now as Kölsch happened within the late 1800s as Cologne’s reply to the dominant pale lagers of the time. Since 1997, Kölsch has been a protected time period inside the European Union, indicating that the beer is made inside thirty miles of town of Cologne and is strictly outlined as a pale, extremely attenuated, hoppy, filtered, top-fermenting beer.

A typical brewery in Cologne serves solely one beer: Kölsch. Servers constantly fill tall, skinny, 200-milliliter (about 6.8 fluid ounces) glasses often called stanges (“stange” interprets to “rod” or “pole” in German). When a glass is empty, servers instantly pour a recent, full stange. The apply occurs mechanically, and servers add marks on drinkers’ coasters to maintain observe of what number of pours every individual has had. When a drinker is finished, they merely place the coaster on high of the empty stange, letting the server know that it is time to money out.

Despite the historical past and custom behind this model of service, Fritz’s strategy to Kölsch was impressed by a brewery a lot nearer than these in Cologne. Fritz co-founder Kelly Buening spearheaded the undertaking after experiencing an analogous Kölsch service together with her husband, co-founder and brewer Cory Buening, at a bar in Louisville, Kentucky, known as Holy Grale. The small pours meant that the beer was all the time chilly, and it was a good way to hang around with associates, Kelly recollects.

The solely drawback is that conventional German beer, significantly fragile kinds comparable to helles or Kölsch, don’t journey significantly nicely. By the time they’ve been packaged at a brewery, loaded on a ship, carried throughout the Atlantic Ocean and shipped to a stateside vacation spot, the beer within the bottle or keg hardly resembles the unique. “Unfortunately, by the point [traditional Kölsch] arrives from Germany, it’s to the purpose the place any first rate native brewery can seemingly produce one thing higher, because it’s recent,” says Cory.

While the Kölsch service at Fritz was impressed by Louisville (by means of Cologne), the beer itself is straight influenced by Germany. When Cory was head brewer at Snake River Brewery in Jackson, Wyoming, the director of brewing operations had a German pen pal named Guido. “Guido occurred to be a brewer at Reissdorf,” says Cory, citing the long-lasting Kölsch brewery in Cologne. “They would write letters to one another, and finally Guido visited the brewery and would give us tips about how to enhance the Kölsch. He would inform us that it wants to be lighter, drier. So we might mash longer and at decrease temperatures and use a shorter, softer boil.”

The ensuing beer at Fritz, which is fairly shut to Cory’s Snake River recipe, is an excellent ode to Cologne. The brewery used a majority German pilsner malt for the grain, with a bit of little bit of wheat malt. The grain is mashed in steps, serving to to create a really well-attenuated, crisp beer that also has a wonderful mouthfeel and a heap of froth.

The yeast is a German pressure, W177 from Weihenstephan, sourced by Woodland Park-based yeast firm Brewers Science Institute. Cory ferments it initially at 59 levels Fahrenheit for 2 weeks. Then he slowly lowers the temperature over the subsequent week, a couple of levels a day, till it reaches near-freezing temperatures, after which it cold-conditions for 3 further weeks. The result’s a really clear and dry beer, with gentle white-grape notes that complement the old-world Hersbrucker and new-world Saphir hops, each from Germany.

“Many brewers, significantly breweries that concentrate on IPAs and stouts, may brew one single gentle beer, like a Kölsch or a cream ale,” Cory explains. “They’re actually making an attempt to fulfill the Bud Light buyer, the shopper that is available in and asks what the lightest beer they’ve is. Those beers might be wonderful, they are often clear, however there’s normally an absence of ardour. On the opposite hand, you could have brewers which are wanting to supply genuine elements, to obsess over and analysis the methods and processes that go into the beer, which are keen to give the beer the time that it wants and to refine it each subsequent brew. I’m in that second group.”

Fritz Family Brewers is actually not one-dimensional when it comes to German beer. Its Dortmunder-style Export lager already gained gold on the current North American Beer Awards. Outside of typical choices comparable to Dieter, a German-style pils, and Niwot After Dark, a Bavarian dunkel, Fritz will debut a pale lager known as Summerfest for its first anniversary on July 23.

The accolades for the one-year-old Fritz come as no shock: Cory has a protracted historical past of profitable beer awards, primarily over his almost twenty years because the brewer at Snake River. He additionally had a hand in award-winning brews at Kentucky’s Gravely Brewing, which he helped begin together with his brother-in-law prior to founding Fritz. In truth, Cory is among the winningest brewers within the historical past of the Great American Beer Festival.

For the brand new Kölsch service, the brewery ordered shut to 400 conventional stange glasses, which serve a twin objective: They’re now additionally getting used for small pours of standard beers. Unlike at breweries in Cologne, drinkers right here have the choice to order non-Kölsch beer off Fritz’s menu throughout Kölsch service if they need. And whereas breweries in Cologne have a fame for curt service, Fritz’s take comes with the down-to-earth demeanor that Colorado breweries are recognized for.

The issue of serving prospects normally will increase because the taproom fills up, however the brewery has truly discovered the other to be true throughout Kölsch service. There is one devoted server for the particular providing, and with a robust circulate of shoppers taking part, that individual can constantly fill glasses, ship them to tables to substitute the empties and repeat.

Just a couple of weeks in, the service is already fairly widespread, and no less than one native brewer who got here in through the inaugural May 18 service talked about utilizing it as an inspiration for their very own occasion, the Buenings say. Several prospects conversant in the service in Cologne additionally commented on the authenticity, each within the taste of the beer and the way it’s served. The new service at Fritz might very nicely be the beginning of a development in Colorado.

Fritz Family Brewers is positioned at 6778 North 79th Street in Niwot and is open from 3 to 9 p.m. Monday by means of Thursday, 3 to 10 p.m. Friday, midday to 10 p.m. Saturday and midday to 9 p.m. Sunday. Kölsch service is on the market on Wednesdays from 5 to 7 p.m. For extra data, go to places/fritz-family-brewers-kolsch-service-14217846

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