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Libations

A Euphoric Brew

Ska's Euphoria tops our list of slope-styled beers this season.

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About a decade ago, the Durango, Colorado-based Ska Brewing Company designed a graphic for a snowboard called “The Euphoria.” The snowboard was such a success, the owners of Silverton-based Venture Snowboards convinced the brewers at Ska to make a Pale Ale of the same name. Even though snowboarders might have designed it, it’s easy to see skiers, monoskiers, ski-bikers, and skibladers enjoying the seasonal brew throughout southwestern Colorado all winter long (just as long as they enjoy a hoppy kick to their post-ski beverage).

“Craft Boards, Craft Beer”

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The Ska Euphoria brew is a delicious winter seasonal ale for hop-enthusiasts who might be intimidated by stouts and dark ales, but still refuse to give into lighter pils or lager beers. There are hints of chocolate in the malt which drives this pale ale, but, clocking in at 58 IBUs, the hops are sitting shotgun, ready to remind you that there is more to savor than the same old IPA during après.

Awarding Our Favorite Winter-Themed Craft Beers

Ska Brewing’s Euphoria

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Brewery Location: Durango, Colorado.

IBUS: 58 // ABV: 6.2%

Style: American Pale Ale

Where the brewery staff spends the winter: Purgatory Resort, Durango, Colorado

SKI Mag Award: 1990s Terrain Park Award. (It’s designed by snowboarders but open-minded skiers will really enjoy it, no twin-tips required.)

Ska Brewing’s Website.

10 Barrel Brewing’s Pray for Snow

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Brewery Location: Bend, Oregon

IBUS: 75 // ABV: 7%

Style: Winter Ale

Where the brewery staff spends the winter: Mt. Bachelor, Oregon

SKI Mag Award: Best way to save the environment while getting a buzz on. (1% of profits are donated to Protect Our Winters, a non-profit combating climate change.)

10 Barrel’s Website.

Bells Brewery’s Winter White Ale

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Brewery Location: Kalamazoo, Michigan

IBUS: 21 // ABV: 5%

Style: Belgian White Ale

Where the brewery staff spends the winter: Timber Ridge, Michigan

SKI Mag Award: “I love summer beers year-round” award. (This is the lightest beer on the list, compared with the dark winter seasonals common elsewhere.)

Bells Brewery’s Website.

Southern Tier’s Old Man Winter

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Brewery Location: Lakewood, New York.

IBUS: 57 // ABV: 7.5%

Style: Old Ale

Where the brewery staff spends the winter: Holiday Valley, New York

SKI Mag Award: Best little brother award. (Southern Tier is known for Pumpking, but Old Man Winter is a much better, if lesser known, ale, especially if you don’t like pumpkin.)

Southern Tier’s Website.

Deschutes Brewery’s Chasin’ Freshies Fresh Hop IPA

deschutes chasin' freshies fresh hop IPA

Brewery Location: Bend, Oregon

IBUs: 65 // ABV: 7.4%

Style: Fresh Hop IPA

Where the brewery staff spends the winter: Mt. Bachelor, Oregon

SKI Mag Award: Smoothest Style on the Mountain (The experimental hop HBC 431 is the smoothest we’ve tasted in a Fresh Hop IPA, lacking the sharp notes found in most PNW IPAs.)

Deschutes Brewery Website.

Melvin Brewing’s Pils-Gnar

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Brewery Location: Alpine, Wyoming

IBUs: 45 // ABV: 5%

Style: German-style Pilsner

Where the brewery staff spends the winter: Jackson Hole, Wyoming

SKI Mag Award: The Gnarliest Pilsner Ever. (Much like a Teton Gravity Research ski movie, this beer is all about getting rad on big mountain lines and crushing cans at the bar soon after).

Melvin Brewing’s Website.