All taprooms are equal, but some are more equal than others
Therein lies the paradox of Paradox Beer Company's taproom.Yes, Paradox could have just put up a card table with a jockey box and people would have still knocked down the doors, but that's not the way they do things. They're in the business of building a brand, an experience, a culture. Things had to be just right—and Teller County had to say yes.
It had to be done just right
It's been a little over a year since Paradox Beer Company announced they were leaving the confines of their quaint little spot on the shoulder of Highway 24, just on the skirts of Woodland Park. While common thought would put them closer to the big city, the boys(and girls) headed deeper into the Colorado Rockies.Here's where we need to stop the story for a moment.Divide, Colorado is a town of 127 people (officially as of the 2010 census), although many people live in the surrounding areas. It's hard to believe an up-and-coming brewery would go out of their way to seclude themselves further away from possible customers, yet that's exactly what Paradox has done.
It has worked
To the crew who comes into the converted ice-factory every day, opening a taproom was the last thing on their mind. Paradox is now available in eleven states nationwide and most (if not all) of the beer brewed is sold before it ever touches a bottle or cap. Why would they ever want to open up a taproom? Because of the droves of loyal fans who will drive up into the mountains, and seemingly blindly turn off of Highway 24 just for sour beer.Flash forward to today. The taproom is a reality. Paradox has resurrected an old bar from Leadville, CO and blended it in with their own tables and stools. Edison bulb-style string lights give the feeling of a ceiling far lower than the actual roof, as well as bringing an intimate ambiance to the space. If you remember the flashy, sparkly red diner seats from the old space, those have moved to one line looking out over the tasting area. They're the best seats in the house if you ask us.Previously, everything was from bottles or beer engines—that's gone now. Paradox now serves off of an eight tap system, with only one beer engine to serve cask beer. For those of you who may be thinking that's a negative, you're wrong. Now a cask that would have lasted a few days in the previous setup will last a few weeks with their new system. The first thing we tried was a "clean" beer...American Wayward. Bursting with hops and caramel, this beer will quickly remind you that Paradox is as good at making regular beers as they are the crazy wild and sours.We would be selling the space entirely too short if we neglected to mention the incredible peak views and beer garden they're in the process of creating. Right now, picnic tables are available on the patio, but feel free to roam towards Pikes Peak.Paradox Beer Company has created a destination brewery worth visiting whenever the chance arises. If it's too damn hot on the Front Range, head to the hills to drink some Paradox Beer and hang out in the great outdoors.So, I know you're asking: "When can I experience this life changing Paradox Beer taproom?"It just so happens that this weekend would be a good time to see if they've taken the "Closed" sign off their doors. If it says closed, try the next day...you never know. Maybe show up around noon...and we'll probably see you there. We here at Focus on the Beer want to extend a huge congratulations to the Paradox guys and gals who worked tirelessly to build such an incredible experience. Cheers!