Almost every ski town worth its salt has a local brewery or two manned by brewers—almost always skiers or boarders themselves—who make a point to pay homage to the sport with their unique beers. After all, it can’t be a coincidence that dozens of medal winners at the Great American Beer Festival have come from mountain towns.
In honor of the 2022 GABF, taking place in Denver from Oct. 6-8, 2021, here are five of our favorite beer-and-resort pairings to keep an eye out for during your travels this season. In other words, don’t even think about ordering that Bud or PBR when you can imbibe local.
Best Ski-Town Beer Pairings for the 2021-’22 Season
Face Down Brown Ale
- Resort: Telluride Ski Resort, Colo.
- Brewery: Telluride Brewing Co.
Considering the type of killer San Juans views that skiers regularly drink in from all around Telluride Ski Resort, the name of this beer can be appreciated for its irony. After all, you can’t see those epic vistas if you’re face down. So enjoy this rich English and American brown-ale hybrid, just don’t drink so many that you end up like the skier on the label.
Earned It IPA
- Resort: Jackson Hole Mountain Resort, Wyo.
- Brewery: Snake River Brewing
With more than 4,000 vertical feet and an open-gate backcountry network with more than 3,000 acres of skiable terrain, Jackson Hole has some of the steepest, longest skiing in the nation. If you hike to Cody Bowl or hit the skin tracks in the famed Hobacks, crack open an Earned It IPA afterward, a New England-style IPA made for those who really know how to earn their turns.
Red Chair Northwest Pale Ale
- Resort: Mount Bachelor, Ore.
- Brewery: Deschutes Brewery
Known for its heavy and wet, yet abundant, snowfall, Mount Bachelor is located near the Central Cascades and is the sixth-largest ski resort in the nation. There’s no better brewery to pair with this resort than Bend’s own Deschutes. The Red Chair NWPA pays homage to the region’s great skiing and Bachelor’s iconic red chairlifts with a citrus-inspired IPA.
Ski the East
- Resort: Killington Ski Resort, Vt.
- Brewery: Long Trail Brewing Co.
Like most East Coast skiers, Killington‘s diehards embrace the resort’s extensive terrain and finicky conditions, relishing the opportunity to shred its seven distinct peaks. Long Trail’s limited-edition Ski the East brew celebrates the Eastern skiing spirit with this medium-bodied IPA that incorporates notes of papaya, stone fruit, and just the right dose of malt to add an extra zing to your hop turns.
Yard Sale Winter Lager
- Resort: Alta Ski Area, Utah
- Brewery: Uinta Brewing
Alta‘s steep and deep terrain keeps experts in a constant state of salivary anticipation. Boasting an average of 575 inches of snow each season, it’s easy to see why. But don’t be fooled: You will be worked over after a day blasting through steep pow on High Rustler. Address those sore muscles with a Uinta Yard Sale Winter Lager, with soothing caramel and honey notes that go down easily right when you need it the most.
More Beers for Skiers
Two Brews that Complement Your Pre-Season Training and Celebrate the End of Summer
This Atlanta-Based Brewery is a Sweet Addition to Colorado’s Après-Ski Scene
Have Breakfast For Après With This Flapjack-Inspired Beer
These Non-Alcoholic Bevvies Won’t Screw Up Your Skiing the Next Day