B.J.’S RESTAURANT & BREWHOUSE may be the country’s best chain brewpub, commencing operation as a deepdish pizza parlor in Santa Ana, California, during the nineties. Boulder’s green-exteriored version at Pearl Street Mall had small outdoor patio, front dining space, back area bar (with several beer banners and rear kettle tanks), exposed ducts, and loft dining, August ‘07. Upper tier had more kettles plus wood barrels for casking.
Drank sourly citric lemongrass-parched Kolsch-styled BJ’s Brewhouse Blonde, tangy apple-pear-grapefruit-spiced wood-dried Cascade-hopped IPA-like Piranha Pale Ale, biscuit-y caramel-malted Irish-styled Jeremiah Red Ale, and rancid lemon-soured veggie-rotted chocolate-powdered honey-dripped Drop Light Pilsner with wife and long-time pal, Phil Calitre. Better were sweet ‘n sour candied canteloupe-blueberry-peach-ripened cherry-cranberry-tart Berries & Cream and lactic milk chocolate-y malt-sugared black cherry-pureed Tatonka Imperial Stout. Dry cocoa-soured tar-tobacco-backed PM Porter retained easy crossover appeal.