Beer: Wasatch Pumpkin Ale
Brewery: Utah Brewers Collective
Style: Pumpkin beer
ABV: 4 percent
Pumpkin beer month continues! Huzzah! This week's addition to the best family of vegetable beers around often flies under the radar, but is nonetheless so tasty that it topped our recent list of the nation's best pumpkin ales.
Utah Brewers Collective is the name of the megazord formed by the combination of Wasatch Brew Pub and Squatters Pub Brewery, which were once upon a time known as Schirf Brewing Co. and Salt Lake Brewing Co., respectively.
Schirf Brewing was founded by Greg Schirf, who came to Utah from Milwaukee and, after discovering that Utah was way behind the beer times, opened the state's first brewery in 1986. He called his beers and brewpub Wasatch, named for the mountains east of Salt Lake City. Schirf was also the guy who proposed the bill to make brewpubs legal in Utah to the Legislature in 1988. More than a dozen brewpubs are now thriving in the state thanks to him.
Squatters, founded by Peter Cole and Jeff Polychronis, joined the ranks in 1989, and the two major breweries found themselves in a back-and-forth battle for the title of Utah's best brewery. They combined forces in 2000 to cut costs, increase distribution and better compete with macrobreweries, and though they now share a location in Salt Lake, the Cooperative still produces beers bearing the name of the brewer that created it. Hence, Wasatch Pumpkin Ale.
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