Our story started in December of 1990 with a small homebrewers kit. Dick Doore, the co-founder of Left Hand, received the kit as a Christmas present from his brother. According to Dick, “it was all downhill from there.” His obsession with home brewing led him back to Colorado in August of 1993, where he met up with a former Air Force Academy college buddy and soon-to-be Left Hand co-founder, Eric Wallace. In November, home became a former meat packing plant, nestled next to the St. Vrain River near downtown Longmont. We named our brewery Left Hand, after Chief Niwot (meaning left-handed), an Arapaho chief whom wintered his tribe in the Boulder Valley area of Colorado.
With $27 in the bank account, we brewed our first batch of beer, Sawtooth Ale, our original flagship and longtime Colorado favorite. In 1994 we attended our first Great American Beer Festival with zero expectations. Our expectations were quickly blown away with Sawtooth winning gold, Black Jack porter winning bronze and JuJu Ginger receiving an honorable mention.
In 1995 we returned to GABF for the second time. The rush of winning was repeated when Black Jack porter took home gold. Our beer was only available in bombers and draft at the time, but 6-pack bottles were appearing on the market. With our beer going in to bombers it was necessary to shrink the logo to fit on the bottle crown. Quickly we realized that the original logo wouldn’t work at the smaller size. From this simple design challenge our iconic red left hand logo was emerged.
With the change in the craft beer scene, we took the leap to install our first bottling line. We also built a new cooler building (which is now our current brewhouse). In 1998 we also merged with Tabernash Brewing from Denver.
In 1998, Dick took a trip to Africa where he was inspired by a local sweet stout. When he returned he created a recipe and the first batch of Milk Stout was brewed in the summer of 1999. 2002 saw more physical growth at the brewery, with the addition of the current tasting room building. On the first night of the 2011 Great American Beer Festival, Left Hand changed craft beer history forever with the introduction of Milk Stout Nitro in a bottle. Left Hand was both the first American and the first craft brewery to master the science of bottling a nitrogen beer without a widget. In 2017, Left Hand is back at it again making history with the first ever US production run of a US made nitro widget can. This US widget looks like a small top hat that is adhered to the bottom of the can which provides a consistent nitrogen release from the bottom up. This has shown to provide superior results because it ensures an even and consistent release of nitrogen throughout the beer when opened. Now nitro fans can take the beer on the go and drink a perfectly smooth and creamy Milk Stout Nitro right from the can.
Left Hand Beer Company website >>
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Taxes and fees not included
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