We have some busy days ahead of us while we are here in Colorado…so hang on!
Today was the day for tours…three to be exact.
Our first tour was in Boulder (roughly 50 miles northwest) at the Celestial Seasonings factory. Tours started at 10:00 am and since we had 2 other tours we wanted to attend we got there about 9:15 am to be certain to get our first come, first served tickets.
Being there 45 minutes early was actually a good thing as it gave us a chance to sample several teas. Celestial Seasonings offers 90 some teas and we sampled 12 or 15. We’re not much into drinking teas and it showed as there weren’t many either of us cared for. We did find that of all of the different kinds we are able to tolerate the herbal teas over any of the others. I also found that I prefer the ‘zinger’ teas that contain hibiscus as it seems to do away with much of the bitter after taste.
The tour was about 30 minutes long with a 10 minute video before the walking portion. The highlight of the tour was the ‘Peppermint Room’. Peppermint has its own storage room as it is so powerful that if it was stored with the other herbs everything would be peppermint flavored. The room is kept sealed shut so when the door was opened and we were allowed to enter the aroma was so overpowering it made many of us tear up. Michael stayed in the room while our guide gave her spiel but I left and stood outside almost immediately (it was THAT overpowering!). The biggest majority of the group followed my lead and listed from outside.
The tour ended in the gift shop (of course!) and we purchased a couple of different teas (watermelon lime zinger, fruit variety, sample of peppermint and regular tea for iced tea).
By the time we finished the tour it was lunch time so we had lunch at the Celestial Cafe. They offer a salad bar, soup, burgers, sandwiches and several different specials each day. Michael ordered a bistro chicken sandwich while I had soup & salad. It was good and plentiful and we both left with full tummies.
Our next stop was at the Coors Brewery in Golden to tour their facility. We boarded a shuttle bus in the tour parking lot and then went on a brief ride through Golden as our tour guide gave us a few facts about Golden and Coors.
The tour is self-guided and you have the option to use an audio device and listen as a narrator tells you about several different areas along the way. Midway through the tour we came to a small sampling room where we were given the choice of choosing 1 of 2 beers…Coors Light or Coors Banquet. We each took 1 of the offerings and then shared. To no surprise…we didn’t care for either. LOL
At the end of the tour is another tasting room with a lounge and you’re able to get 2 full glasses of beer. Today they were sampling 2 types of Blue Moon, Killian’s Red, Coors Banquet, Colorado Native and a Keystone. They also had soda for anyone under 21 or non-drinkers.
We both tried a Blue Moon (which wasn’t too bad) and Michael tried another that I can’t remember…I’d had enough and had a diet Pepsi. We hung around the lounge for a short while and then moved on to the gift shop where we did some shopping for Zack and Kelsea. We took pictures of the offerings and they told us what they wanted (koozies & a bar mat) and then we headed back to the shuttle bus pick up location which we didn’t have to wait too long for…thankfully.
Our last tour of the day was at Hammonds Candies…one that I was sure I wouldn’t mind tasting! Once again we watched a short video before moving onto the walking portion of the tour. There were only 4 of us on the tour so it was nice and personal. We were able to watch a couple of employees working the candy by hand….stretching it, pulling it and shining it with is pull/stretch. Very cool to watch.
And of course, this tour ended in the gift shop too! We were each given one of their HUGE flavored candy canes (root beer for me, strawberry for Michael) and then our guide also gave us a mango habanero candy cane…yikes…that one scares me!
We also picked out some ‘oops’ candy…candy canes that are broke, taffy that wasn’t quite the right color, chocolate that wasn’t perfect. I was actually very proud of us cuz we didn’t go overboard as we sometimes tend to do!
The best thing about today’s tours? They were all FREE!
We were back home about 4:30 pm and after resting my weary ‘dogs’ a bit I made a quick dinner of spaghetti (frozen sauce is awesome!) and then we rested the remainder of the evening.