In north Denver there is are certain areas that most people will drive by without thinking twice. Like in the Stapleton area where outside of the shopping center the only people that visit are the warehouse workers that surround that area. But within all the warehouses lies some hidden gems, and that is no more true than off 39th and Peoria where in a small building facing I-70 houses one of Denver’s newest microbreweries. With a small but personal tap list, a friendly staff that will educate you on their beers, and also one of the newer microbreweries to open their tap room in Denver it is no wonder why Caution Brewing should be at the top of anybodies list to visit.
While this may be one of the most difficult breweries to find in the Denver area whether it is following the arrowed signs in the ground to the tap room, or once you find the tap room there is no lit sign to attract customers it is all worth it once you sit at the bar stool. The environment inside matches the environment outside being surrounded by warehouses. Whether it is the concrete floors, the small bar area, few tables, or the pallets of ingredients lining the wall. There is no patio, instead a garage door is opened to allow fresh air in. The menu is simple with all the beers in information on them written on a simple chalkboard next to the taps. This is one of the few breweries where the production area and brewing equipment is not visible. But there is one thing that is certain about Caution, and that is the beer is both unique and flavorful, and trying just one is not easy.
What started off as a beer at his parents Chinese Noodle House has now become the signature beer at this small brewery, and that is the Lao Wang Lager. A light lager with a very subtle malt taste but the real flavor comes from a blend of Asian spices. Made famous from the secret blend of spices used at the Lao Wang Noodle House in Denver, this beer is extremely complex, and has a distinct spice not in its flavor. The true flavor remains a mystery and a family secret, but that does not change the popularity and great flavor that this beer provides. If light beers are your flavor of choice but you do not want something spicy, Caution also offers the Wild Blonde Ale. A light ale that is made unique through the addition of rice that adds some depth of flavor, and a slight citrus note. Very light and refreshing this beer will not disappoint, and is perfect to sip on any days.
If light beers are good but dark beers are what you are craving, and supporting local ingredients is your passion then the next pint you enjoy should be none other than the Honey Matrimony hone brown ale. Not only are the malts grown in Alamosa, Colorado and the wildflower hone harvested in Evans, Colorado but the two ingredients together create a balanced beer, that is both balanced and refreshing. Each ingredient comes through from the hops and the malts, but they are balanced out through the addition of the honey. There is a slight sweetness but the beer is not sweet, because of the bitterness from the hops, and the malts add that depth of flavor to round out this brown ale. Truly delicious, and all local, what could be better in a Colorado beer?
One thing that is true of all Colorado breweries is that they cater to the hop lovers out there, and that is just as true at Caution as the offer not one, but two different IPAs. For a traditional take on an IPA sip on none other than the Hippity Hops Chrysanthemum IPA. Featuring three different styles of hops during the boil but also introducing chrysanthemum flowers and Chinese Rock brown sugar this beer has all the distinct flavors of an IPA but its bitterness is cut with the floral notes, and a subtle sweetness. The hops are still the primary flavor, and the additional ingredients come through in the aftertaste creating a clean tasting brew. Now if you are a fan of IPAs but want something slightly more adventurous than how about the Big Bunny Cascadian Dark Ale? A standard dark IPA dry hopped with Cascadian hops the question is what makes this beer unique? The answer is simply that the hops are roasted, and that simple act adds so much complexity and depth of flavor. Currently it is the most hoppy beer offered at Caution but it is still as easy and smooth to drink as anyone on the menu. The roasted flavor comes through but does not dominate the flavor; it all comes to one in a harmonious beer.
It’s hard to believe that in such a small location in a large warehouse district there is a brewery that produced such bold flavored beers. In such a variety to choose from and a fearless approach to experimental flavors it is no wonder that Caution has developed such a loyal following. The only question is what is next for this small brewery, and how big can they become with their unique brews? So the next time you are in the Northfield area ignore the large chain bars, and drive a few miles east to enjoy the offerings at Caution.
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