BEER BUBBLE NEWS: New Belgium Brewing cut less than 4 percent of its workforce last week in a round of layoffs that included 25 Fort Collins employees and three Asheville, North Carolina workers. The fourth largest craft brewery in the country said its cutbacks were due to an overall slowing of the craft beer industry, according to The Coloradoan. Positions from support staff to administration and production were affected. Over the past five years, New Belgium planned for growth by opening a new East Coast plant and taproom in Asheville, expanding its Colorado production and presence to Denver, distributing in all 50 states, and hiring across the country accordingly. Nationwide, there are now more than 700 New Belgium employees, and the company emphasized that its layoffs were not due to a decline in business. Meanwhile, New Belgium is still on track for a May opening inside The Source hotel in RiNo. The brewery will open a 10-barrel pilot brewhouse at the hotel, with a barrel aging program on its rooftop and beers served from in-room mini bars and also on-tap in the lobby. [The Coloradoan]
DISTILLING BOOM NEWS: Archetype is now the fourth distillery to open in as many months in Denver, following The Family Jones Spirit House, The Block Distilling, and Denver Distillery. This latest production facility, tasting room, and event space debuted over the weekend in the century-old Kitty’s South building at 119 South Broadway. The building started out as the Webber theater, and it served for more than 20 years as an adult theater under Kitty’s, before sitting vacant for around a decade starting in 2007. That changed on Saturday. Archetype’s owner and head distiller Michael Chapyak is starting out selling vodka and gin bottles. He’ll offer tours and “master classes” on the spirits and how to taste them, while bar manager Simon Nicolian makes cocktails from a more straightforward gin and tonic to one with Lapsang Souchong tea cubes, liquid nitrogen, and smoke distillate. The distillery is open from 4:30 to 9 p.m. on Thursday, Friday, and Saturday.
MORE TACOS NEWS: A local favorite formerly known as Pinche Tacos is opening its third Denver location Friday in Governor’s Park. This latest Tacos Tequila Whiskey is at 215 East 7th Avenue, next door to Mizuna, Vesper, and Bones, and across the street from Max’s Wine Dive and Sushi Cup. Fans of the brand can expect more modern street tacos, daily happy hours, and boozy weekend brunches. Earlier this month, the Highlands location of the business celebrated its fifth anniversary. Tacos Tequila Whiskey got its start as a food truck in 2010 and first opened as a brick-and-mortar in 2011. There are now locations on York Street and 32nd Avenue, as well as another in Phoenix, Arizona. Owner Kevin Morrison opened his latest Denver restaurant Fish N Beer in 2016 in RiNo.