Denver Beer Company

College buddies start successful brewery in Denver

1695 Platte St. Denver, CO 80202

303-433-2739 | Visit Website

When college buddies Charlie Berger and Patrick Crawford opened the Denver Beer Company this summer, it was the culmination of over two years of hard work and dedication towards making a shared passion a business reality. The men registered for the Colorado Leading Edge: NxLeveL™ for Start-Ups course in August 2009 and began developing a business plan to open their own brewery. The class proved to be valuable to them in more ways than one.

“I don’t think we’d be anywhere close to where we are now without the Leading Edge class. It definitely kept us on track with writing the business plan. Neither of us had a business background, so we gained all of our business knowledge from the class and one-on-one consulting meetings with the experts at the SBDC.”
Patrick Crawford


They completed the first draft of their business plan that fall, but continued working with the SBDC while tweaking and adding to it over the course of the next year. They raised the $400,000 in capital they needed (plus more!) in just 8 days, secured their desired location in the heart of Denver and began construction. On opening day in August 2011, they served over 1,200 people and made $14,000.

“Charlie and Patrick worked very hard on their business plan and have reaped the rewards by opening, and now running, a successful business. They won both local and statewide awards for their in-depth business plan,” said Marcia McGilley, Executive Director of the South Metro Denver SBDC. McGilley went on to say, “Many of the SBDC consultants who worked with these entrepreneurs have visited the beer garden and enjoyed the pretzels and beer immensely.”

With 10 employees on the payroll, 46 different recipes already created, 750 gallons of beer brewed each week, national recognition for their beer garden, an award-winning batch at the Great American Beer Festival in Denver this fall, and having already surpassed their $350,000 sales goals for the year, the two are now looking to what the future may hold for their company.

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