Finding Wisdom and Experiences in a Craft Beer Journey

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What do you get when a brewer and a chef come together? Sounds like a joke told in a bar, right? Wayne and Laura are no joke. And the beers they create are no jokes, either. Specializing in high ABV beers, you might think they have set out to get you snockered. Well, their goal is just the opposite of that. It’s time to appreciate the finer side of craft beer. It’s time to experience it.

Meet Wayne and Laura of Burns Family Artisanal Ales

Life lessons from brewing beer is a real thing, especially when you meet Wayne Burns (aka High Octane Wayne) and Laura Worley from Burns Family Artisan Ales. Partners in both business and life, these two met over a beer that was supposed to be coffee and, as they say, the rest is history. We’ll let them tell that tale.

Laura Wayne Ken April Burns Denver Colorado
Laura, Wayne, Ken, and April

Growing Up Alongside the Beer

Both have been in the industry for decades. And with that comes growth and experience. Their knowledge and palates have grown up as they have have gotten older and wiser. It’s not usually polite to talk about age, but these two understand that with age comes deeper connections and wisdom. And believe me, their connections and wisdom show in their brilliant beverages from low ABV to high ABV beer styles and everything in between. Laura is both a chef and a brewer. Combine that with her Certified Cicerone status and Wayne’s exceptional knowledge of both the art and science behind brewing (he’s been doing it since 1992), the beer from Burns Family Artisan Ales isn’t just beer. It’s an experience.

“One of my biggest advantages as a professional brewer is that I’m old.”

Wayne Burns

At Burns You Experience Beer!

And Wayne and Laura are experts in making it an experience. Coming from their early stages of not really liking beers – which in the late 80s/early 90s were all basically industrial light lagers – to realizing that beer doesn’t have to be a means to an end – drinking whatever to get drunk. Beer, like wine and fine spirits, can be exquisite and flavorful, made to be sipped. Brewed to be celebrated for whatever it is you have deemed a celebration.

“Make whatever it is that you’re doing, whatever reason that you’ve got for popping that bottle, make that your special celebration experience. Anything can be elevated as long as we create a beverage that is elevated, and that is what we do.”

Laura Worley

High ABV Beers – AKA Exceptional Beers – Needed Now

You won’t want just any beer when listening to Wayne and Laura tell their stories. You’ll want to find something that celebrates flavors and wakes your senses up. Something that makes you pay attention to what is going on in the bottle and creates a desire to experience beer, not just drink it. After you’ve found that perfect beer (just pay a visit to Burns and pick up a bottle to go – no searching needed), prepare for a conversation that will leave you feeling wise beyond your years. You may even find out that getting older isn’t quite so bad, especially if you have the beers that age with you, celebrating every moment of life along the way.

Burns Family Artisan Ale High ABV Beer Denver Colorado
Brilliantly Exceptional Beers at Burns

Oh, the Beers We Experienced!

All from Burns Family Artisan Ales. We bought bottles for later, too!

  • I Hate Shopping – Black IPA (7% ABV)
  • GenieLogical Series V9 Blackberries & Clover – Mixed Culture American Wild Ale (8.1% ABV)
  • Belgian Quad – Belgian Style Quadrupel (10.1% ABV)
  • Spirit of the Season – Cognac Barrel Aged Imperial Stout (14.7% ABV)
  • Auld Lang Syne – Brandy Barrel Aged English Barleywine (16.1% ABV)

Stay Connected

Burns Family Artisan Ales
2505 West 2nd Avenue, Unit 13
Denver, CO 80219

Burns Family Artisan Ales
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Want More?

Visit More Denver Breweries

When in Denver, there is no way you can visit just one brewery. Be sure to check out our RiNo Beer Guide for more excellent breweries in the Denver area.


Pairing Beer and Food

Speaking of the finer side of beer, it’s time to pair your food with beer, just like many people do with wine. We’ve got the guide for you.


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“Ken and April do a fantastic job of mixing the culture of beer and adventure into something akin to a fine barrel-aged sour. They are wise beyond their years. Loving this podcast and it will be on our weekly playlist for SURE!”

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Shout Outs:

Wayne and Laura, you two went above and beyond to make our visit to Burns Family Artisan Ales an experience. We know that’s what you strive for, and you met that and then some. The beers you have created are phenomenal and are most definitely an experience. We will be back for more. Thank you so much for sharing your story with us. It was an honor!

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