DENVER — Golden Road Brewing Co. unveiled their latest commercially available beer on Thursday, at the Kitchen in Denver, CO. Partnering with Oskar Blues (Longmont, CO.) they're kicking off the first day of the Great American Beer Festival with a joint tap takeover and paired tasting menu. We got the latest on the new brew, their reception outside the Los Angeles community, and what it means to be participating in the GABF for the first time.

Burning Bush IPA is the second in Golden Road's custom IPA series and will be on shelves in L.A. and O.C. Whole Foods, along with a handful of independent retailers, in coming weeks.

The beer is a Smoked Imperial IPA with 8% ABV and about 70 IBUs (international bitterness units.) Coinciding with wildfire season in Southern California, the beer reflects smoke and flames in flavor, color — and even packaging. Printed on the can is a depiction of the 2007 Griffith Park Wildfire that came within spitting distance of Tony Yanow's home.

Brewmaster Jon Carpenter first presented the beer to Golden Road founders Meg Gill and Yanow over a year ago, at the time the brewpub opened. Yanow describes the smokey, hoppy beer as “esoteric,” with a rare combination of flavor profiles. “It's hard to make smoked beers drinkable,” he says, “but we think it's pretty smooth.” The original brew was on tap last year but ran dry in a few days and was sought out by regulars for the following six months. Gill added, “in terms of popularity, it spread like wildfire.” Forgive us.

Golden Road was welcomed into the Colorado brewing community first with a fundraiser, during which they joined local favorite Avery Brewing Co., followed by the shared event with Oskar Blues. Yanow has been pleased with the brewery's Rocky Mountain reception. “Everyone has been so warm and enthusiastic about our participation. Our confidence is boosted and the positive reaction has been really rewarding.”

While the founders have visited the festival in previous years, this is their first year behind the booth. “Presenting Golden Road in the GABF means playing on a bigger stage,” says Yanow. “It doesn't mean we will start distributing here, but it's gratifying to earn the respect of such a geeky community.” With the awards ceremony Saturday morning, we can only hope the geeks are in our corner.

See also:

Meg Gill: I Wish They All Could Be California Beers

Golden Road Brewing Introduces Craft Beer Cans to L.A. County

Golden Road and Oskar Blues; Credit: Erika Bolden

Golden Road and Oskar Blues; Credit: Erika Bolden

Want more Squid Ink? Follow us on Twitter or like us on Facebook. Follow Erika live at the GABF on twitter @Erikabolden.

Advertising disclosure: We may receive compensation for some of the links in our stories. Thank you for supporting LA Weekly and our advertisers.