Grand Valley residents make beer from scratch in annual competition

Local News

FRUITA, Colo.- One group of Grand Valley residents are experts at making homemade beer, and they’re not full-time brewers.

The Bookcliff Home Brew Club held its annual Iron Brew competition Saturday.

It all went down at Fruita Hop Works, a small hops farm that supplies hops to local breweries and home brewers.

“At Iron Brew we show up, we get a kit, and we don’t know what’s in it,” said Gretchen Breisen, owner of Fruita Hop Works and Bookcliff Home Brew Club member. “We don’t know what kind of hops or malt, and there’s always a secret ingredient.”

That secret ingredient is a combination of sweet potatoes and marshmallows in the spirit of the holiday season. Brewers have to somehow bring the taste of a sweet potato casserole into their batch.

Brewers quickly assembled their batches at the competition, but it will be a few weeks until their beer is ready. The winner will be chosen in a few months when the club meets again for tasting and judging.

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