Less than half of a percent of all craft breweries in the U.S. are owned by Latinos, which is in stark contrast to the 15-20 percent of beer drinkers who are Latino.
That's what Jose Beteta discovered when he decided to open a brewery in Denver and it’s what inspired him to create Suave Fest. Beteta’s operation, Raíces Brewing Co., opens Saturday and will play host to the festival the same day. He said Suave Fest is the first Latin beer festival in the country.
“What we’re trying to do with Suave Fest is to make people aware that there are these great breweries that exist,” Beteta said. “These are just 10 breweries and they all happen to be here in Colorado but so far we’ve found 40 Latino-owned breweries all over the country, but when you compare it to the bigger number which is over 7,000 craft breweries that’s a very, very small fraction of a percentage. So we definitely need more representation.”
The festival includes not only Latino-owned breweries but also a few that are not Latino-owned but specialize in beer inspired by Latin flavors.
Colorado breweries that are Latino-owned or specialize in Latino-style beer featured in Suave Fest:
- Raíces Brewing Co., 2060 W. Colfax Ave., Denver — makes its grand opening on Saturday for the festival. Beteta said they want to be a cultural hub for Denver’s Latinx community. Their Sun Valley Blonde Ale is described as, “Bright and effervescent, resembling the resurfacing of our neighborhood.”
- Novel Strand Brewing Co., 305 W. 1st Ave., Denver — a boutique brewery in Denver’s Baker district. They opened in 2016 with this mission: “Brew the best beer we can. No gimmicks, no trends, no tricks, no shortcuts, no fads. Just Beer.”
- Lady Justice Brewing, 4375 Eaton St., Wheat Ridge — a Latina brewery out of Mountain View, Colorado with a focus on women empowerment in the craft beer world. All proceeds over cost are donated to organizations dedicated to supporting women and girls.
- Jade Mountain Brewing Co., 1925 S. Rosemary St. Suite A
Denver — Aurora native Sean Guerrero opened this craft brewery after living in China where he said he couldn’t find a decent beer. Jade Mountain creates “full-flavored artisanal ales that incorporate Chinese fruits, spices and teas.”
- Dos Luces Brewery, 1236 S. Broadway, Denver — this beer, made from Colorado blue corn, comes from “pre-Colombian traditions” according to owner Judd Belstock. Their Chicha is an ancient Incan-style drink that dates back 3,000 years.
- Donavon Brewing Co. (production-only) — a family-owned brewery in Arvada that specializes in German-style lager.
- Coal Mine Ave Brewing Co., 9719 W. Coal Mine Ave. Unit A, Littleton — finally a brewery for your dog. Well, kind of. Coal Mine opened last year in Littleton with an off-leash play yard for furry friends.
- Cheluna Brewing Co., 2501 Dallas St. #148, Aurora — this spot in Aurora is billed as the first Latin-owned Mexican craft brewery in Colorado. Their chelas (or beer) are inspired by the taste and culture of Oaxaca, Mexico.
- Boggy Draw Brewery, 3535 S. Platte River Dr. Unit L, Sheridan — owned by Dave "BEEF" Miera who’s been brewing since the ‘80s. You can find a variety of English and German-style ales at this intrinsically Colorado brewery in Sheridan.
- Atrevida Beer Co., 204 Mt. View Ln. #3, Colorado Springs — a brewery from outside the Denver metro area. This Colorado Springs company specializes in Latin-flavors, like the Drunken Churro that’s brewed with cinnamon, spices and agave.