Time again to Rendezvous in Snowmass at craft beer festival | AspenTimes.com

Time again to Rendezvous in Snowmass at craft beer festival

Former Snowmass craft beer festival returns with more tastings, experiences

Katherine Roberts
Special to The Aspen Times
Woods Boss Brewing of Denver was among the breweries at the Snowmass Rendevous Craft Beer Festival on June 9, 2018.
Austin Colbert/The Aspen Times

The artist formerly known as a straight-up, craft beer festival — Snowmass Rendezvous — returns Saturday. Now in its eighth year, this time it’s bigger, better and has more ’vous for you. So, what does that mean, exactly?

What started out nearly a decade ago as “a fun escape to the mountains for Front Rangers and a cool way to bring Front Range beers up to Snowmass for all the locals to try” has evolved into a full day of beer, wine, distillery tastings, experiences, gear demonstrations and live music, according to Keanan Stoner, creative director for Two Parts, the Denver-based company behind the bash.

The event, which spans across Snowmass Village from Base Village up to the Snowmass Mall, kicks off with a “Pre-Vous” event on Friday night from 5-9 p.m. Tickets are not required, and it will be a “pay as you go situation” with food and drink vendors and live music by Claire Heywood, who is also the opening act for Saturday’s Fanny Hill concert — the last of the 2022 summer season.

But, before the finale comes the festivities. For a $40 ticket (available at snowmassrendezvous.com), tasters can get their commemorative glass and check out unlimited tastings at approximately 15 drink-focused booths. There are also around 10 gear demo and experiential vendors, as well as a couple of DJs situated around the Village Mall. Ticket holders can play around at the Birdieball booth, for example, which has “giant inflatables that you can chip at. You can sip, you can shop, you can experience a lot with background music the whole time,” Stoner said.

Other vendors include local haunts, like Aspen Brewing and Woody Creek Distillery, and Front Range favorites Call to Arms and Great Divide. Bristlecone, Basalt Bike and Ski, Corbeaux, Strafe and Taylor Creek will also have booths on site, so beer tasters can be gear testers. In addition, the Rendezvous team plans to partner with the restaurants around Base Village and the mall to encourage food specials or quick bites, which will complement the event.

“The pretzel necklace is also an option,” Stoner noted.

But, the tastings can also be serious stuff, according to Rose Abello, tourism director for Snowmass.

“If you’re into cider or craft beer, these events provide incredible opportunities to get an education,” she said. “I know someone who literally takes a moleskin and takes notes. It’s the same way people approach Food & Wine.”

Food & Wine but with music. Stoner also said that this year’s event will have an even more celebratory feeling, as the later date allows Rendezvous revelers to end the tasting with that aforementioned Fanny Hill finale, a concert headlined by The Velveteers.

“They’re rockers from Boulder that have blown up over the years. Their most recent album was produced by Dan Auerbach of the Black Keys, so it will be a fun, rocking way to end the event,” Stoner said.

The event, which in the past has been presented at the tail-end of the Ragnar Trail Colorado race, moved to later in the season in 2021 due to a variety of scheduling reasons, and the teams ended up liking the format.

“It never gets stale,” Abello said.

And she’s not talking about your pretzel necklace.

Steve Nolan of Grist Brewing Company out of Highlands Ranch pours a beer at the Snowmass Rendezvous Craft Beer Festival.
Anna Stonehouse/Snowmass Sun
Nick Popkey of Lyon’s Oskar Blues Brewery at the Snowmass Rendezvous Craft Beer Festival.
Anna Stonehouse/Snowmass Sun |
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