Brewery Spotlight: Comrade Brewing
Updated: Sep 10
Launched in 2014 by David Lin and Marks Lanham, Comrade Brewing is often noted as one of Denver and Colorado’s masters of the India Pale Ale style, home of the flagship Superpower IPA. If they weren’t already considered “cult-followed” by 2019, the coveted Small Brewery of the Year award that Comrade achieved at the 33rd Great American Beer Festival® certainly solidified that status.
“Fermly provides easy-to-use quantitative analysis of our beers,” says Lin, who explains that QA/QC is especially critical on Comrade’s three year-round beers: Yellow Card Blonde Ale, REDCON Irish-Style Red Ale and Superpower IPA.
“We initially started off with Fermly to see if our technical brewing produced consistent results. There are a lot of variations in the different lots of hops and malt and try to make sure we're making brewing adjustments to compensate for the new raw material specifications,” Lin continues. “Consistency is very important for our flagship beers. We want to make sure when our beer is served around the Denver metro area, we're delivering on the customer's expectations and they know they can expect great quality beer every time, regardless of the time of year or which bar/restaurant they order it from.”
Flagships aside, Comrade has been able to use Fermly’s independent lab services to improve their beer quality across the tap list. The ABV of Comrade beers varied up to 0.5% from batch to batch before they called us. “Through ABV testing and brewing processes, that variation is now less than 0.25% ABV,” Lin says.
When a brewery decides if they should dump a beer if it doesn't meet their standards, Lin explains, “the saying kind of goes something like if you think you can't dump a beer because it's too expensive, you'll find out how expensive it is to not dump it. The small QA/QC investment we've made has paid for itself hundreds of times over.”
Images courtesy Traverse Image