Horse and Dragon Brewing Company

Horse and Dragon Brewing CompanyHorse and Dragon Brewing Company is one of the newest kids on the block. Fort Collins is starting to boom with new brewery business and in order to make it a new brewery has to bring their A game. Horse and Dragon does just that by combining great beer, a love for biking, and a unique, eco-friendly sense of style.

Having opened just this past May, it has already seen tremendous support throughout the community. Local bars carried kegs of their beer before the brewery’s doors even opened. Their first keg sold to The Mayor of Old Town back in April and kicked in a few short hours after being tapped.

That’s pretty impressive!

No doubt some of that support and launch success was helped by their active local involvement and social media presence during the year leading up to their opening (let this be a lesson breweries, more social media presence is always beneficial).

This is a family run brewery owned by husband and wife, Carol and Tim Cochran, along with the help of their two daughters. The head brewer is Linsey Cornish, who used to brew over at Odell.

These folks aren’t joking around; they are serious about making beer and establishing themselves in Fort Collins.

I’ve been to Horse and Dragon twice now and very much enjoy this new addition to our beer scene. The first time I went, I did get a little lost on my way out as the brewery is nestled back in among some warehouse spaces. One too many wrong turns had me searching for their bright red building.

In reality it’s not that difficult to find: head east on Lincoln Street and take the first left past Link, which is Commerce Drive. Follow Commerce all the way until it ends at Racquette Drive and you’ll see the brewery off to the right. You can’t miss it!

There are parking spaces located in front and along the side of the building. Not a ton of parking, but both times that I’ve been there I have not had trouble finding a spot.Table at Horse and Dragon Brewing

The atmosphere at the brewery is calm and relaxing. The interior has a focus on wood and metal, providing a rustic yet welcoming vibe. They combine the west with the far east, lots of wood throughout mixed with green bamboo plants lining the windows. Zen with a side of cowboy.

The sign above the taps is a large horse silhouette while the bar has a carved dragon along it.
You can tell a lot of thought and time went into creating the taproom. Even their sampler “tray” is a little wooden box with their logo burned on to it. Very cool!

There is also a small outdoor seating area right behind the bar where patrons can sit and sip their drinks.

Horse and Dragon Menu Board

Horse and Dragon features a wide variety of beers, from light crisp summer ales to dark coffee stouts. There’s a style for everyone and I guarantee that you’ll have no trouble finding something you will enjoy.

They currently have six beers on tap along with three other “speciality” beers. You can get a taster box of the standard six for $8 and then add on any or all of the specialty beers for $2 a taster. It’s a pretty good deal! The speciality beers are more experimental in nature to see what generates a good response and what they might consider for potential seasonal beers.

The six standard beers in the taster box were:

  • Almost Summer Ale : Light and clean
  • Flagstone Copper Ale : A little more malty but with slight hop finish
  • Whistle Blast Honey Brown: A lovely malty brown ale with a slight sweet finish
  • H & D Stout: A little light on the mouthfeel but a smooth stout
  • Picnic Rock Pale Ale : More hop forward, clean with a bitter finish
  • L3 IPA : Definitely for the hop lovers, bitter grapefruit

And I tried two speciality beers:

  • Agitated Aardvark: Full of hops and good for those seeking a bitter taste
  • Sad Panda: Light coffee stout, sort of like creme brulee

Horse and Dragon Taster BoxMost of their beers come in at a sessionable ABV. Sad Panda, a coffee stout, is their highest ABV beer and that tops out at 7.6% which, all things considered, isn’t that high.

Despite being new, Horse and Dragon makes some solid beers and I can only see them getting better and experimenting more along the way. The beers have a good bit of complexity and depth. This can be tricky to pull off with beers that have that lower ABV, but Horse and Dragon does this well.

I have two current favorites right now: Almost Summer Ale and Sad Panda. Almost Summer is a summer style ale that is light and crisp. It’s perfect for hot days and summer evenings. It reminds me of sunshine and fresh cut grass.

Sad Panda is a coffee stout that packs a vanilla punch. The mouthfeel on this stout is a little on the thin end, but the flavors are done very well. Strong vanilla with a slight hint of coffee. The coffee isn’t overpowering nor is it bitter; a very smooth coffee stout.

Fort Collins is definitely a bike friendly community and there is no question this brewery supports biking. They have custom-made bike trees outside the brewery along with bike related items inside. One such item is a map that indicates routes and biking distance between some of the local breweries.

Horse and Dragon Bike RacksFor those that are from out of town doing a bike tour or those looking to bike more, this information is quite useful. They also sell a wooden growler box just for bikes! It’s a similar design to their taster box.

If you haven’t been out to Horse and Dragon yet, I definitely think you should head over and have some beer. There are several places around town that carry their beer, but take my advice and experience the taproom first.

Taproom hours are, 7 days a week from Noon-6pm. That’s a small window, so hopefully at some point they will consider extending their weekend hours just a bit.

Horse and Dragon Brewing Company
124 Racquette Drive, Fort Collins, Colorado

t: HorseDragonBrew

f: Horse and Dragon Brewing Company


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Author:Andrea Ratulowski

Andrea Ratulowski is a long time blogger over at Food Embrace. She lives in Fort Collins with her husband and two rescue dogs. She loves great food and feels that beer is always the right choice.