The Rock Cut team shares a common goal of providing the most exceptional experiences possible for our guests. We consider ourselves part of a family and hope you will, too! If there is anything about your time with us that could use improvement, please let any team member know or email our ownership team at email@example.com. Your feedback is incredibly valuable to us and we hope you’ll help us as we continually strive for excellence.
Meet our team below!
Matt Heiser, Founding Owner & Head Brewer
How’d you get to Estes Park?
I grew up with a love of the outdoors and the mountains. Estes is an ideal basecamp for adventures and exploration in the Rockies. As I looked for where to go next after college, having friends out here made it an easy choice.
What’s your favorite thing about the area?
The outdoors always. But I’ve been here 20 years now, and it’s the friends I’ve made here, the community and the small town feel of Estes that have made it my home.
What you do when you’re not at Rock Cut?
If you know me, then you realize this question doesn’t really apply. On those rare days though, I treasure time away with my wife, hiking or fishing in Rocky, and of course getting out to see what the rest of the Colorado Craft scene has to offer.
And most importantly, what’s your favorite Rock Cut beer?
They’re all my children, but luckily they don’t have feelings, so… from our standard lineup, the Tyndall Porter was the second beer we brewed and has been at the top of my list from the start. I do really enjoy our cellar program though and there have been so many one-off beers that have come from barrels that I have trouble narrowing it down. Our first ever barrel-aged smoked beer was fabulous; the Funky Portal (brett IPA) always stands out for me; and we have a few sours still in barrels that I like so much it’s hard to hold back and not serve them right away – I just know they’re still getting better every day.
Kirby Nelson-Hazelton, Owner
How’d you get to Estes Park? Originally from Chicago, I’ve been coming to Estes since I was really little; in fact, I even took my first steps in Glacier Basin Campground in Rocky Mountain National Park. I completed my undergrad at Colorado College in Colorado Springs, then stayed in Colorado Springs and Denver for a couple of years before moving up to Estes in 2011. I wanted to give small, mountain town living a shot and I’m still here! I joined Rock Cut on day three of us being open to the public and I can’t imagine not being part of this incredible brewery family. I love it.
What’s your favorite thing about the area? Being surrounded by nature…nothing beats it. In five minutes I can be at a hiking trail for a quick lunch break or after work adventure. What could be better than that?
What you do when you’re not at Rock Cut? Hike, run, hang out with my awesome family and friends, rescue dogs, and of course, visit Colorado craft breweries with my husband and Rock Cut head brewer, Jordan.
And most importantly, what’s your favorite Rock Cut beer? Our first round of Wooden Buffalo still sticks in my mind; I love just about anything from our cellar program. Oh, and the Canyon Crusher (opposite end of the spectrum) is so thirst quenching and delicious.
Jordan Hazelton, Owner
How’d you get to Estes Park? My family had visited Estes Park for several years before deciding to move here in 1999. I have grown up in Estes and absolutely love this place. It’s a small town for sure, but my wife (Kirby) and I really enjoy living here.
What’s your favorite thing about the area? Of course it would have to be the mountains. I also love how close and accessible Estes is to the rest of the Colorado craft beer scene. Northern Colorado is producing some of the best beer in the country right now.
What you do when you’re not at Rock Cut? What does it mean to not be at Rock Cut? I don’t understand… I hike, frolf, run, play video games, hang out with family and friends, and quality check as much craft beer as possible.
And most importantly, what’s your favorite Rock Cut beer? Anything that’s barrel-aged. Working on our cellar program is one of my favorite parts about my job — we are doing some really cool and innovative things in barrels.
Kate Stephens, Brewer & Beertender
How’d you get to Estes Park? I’ve been visiting Estes Park ever since I was little as my grandparents lived in Glen Haven. After getting my undergrad degree (a super applicable double B.A. in psychology and philosophy), I was looking to move away from my home state, so took the opportunity to move into the family home in the mountains. I remodeled the place a bit and lived there for about a year (2015-2016). My wanderlust ways kicked in again and I moved to Richmond, VA. There, I completed a teacher preparation program and got the east coast experience out of the way. Turns out it wasn’t for me (mostly the humidity), and as soon as my program was complete, I moved back to the mountains. And now, here I am.
What’s your favorite thing about the area? Seemingly endless beauty. Countless hiking spots – I’m certain I could live here the rest of my life and still not fully explore half of what the area has to offer. I also like being able to wander around some cities from time to time without living in one.
What you do when you’re not at Rock Cut? Serve at a local restaurant. Hike. Read. Play cribbage. Kick it with my cat Rick. Spend time with friends and family (if they happen to be visiting). Write short, abrupt sentences. And once in a while, go to a concert or comedy show. In a grander scheme – I like to get out of the country whenever I can.
And most importantly, what’s your favorite Rock Rock beer? Half and half of Galactic Portal and Ptart Ptarmigan.
Wendy Reeves, Social Media & Events
How did you get to Estes Park? My family and I moved to Estes Park in October of 2020 after nearly 2 decades of visiting my family here. My mom is a resident and when we decided to quit our corporate jobs, so we could grow our coaching businesses, we decided to head to The Rocky Mountains!
What’s your favorite thing about the area? It is hard to beat the views! Everywhere you look there is something gorgeous, and I LOVE that!! However, it is the people who truly light me up. I have many memories in Estes, and most of them revolve around relationships that I have made over the years. There is also some killer beer up here!
What do you do when you’re not at Rock Cut? I keep pretty busy! My husband, Kevin, and I have 3 young kids and we are each running, building and growing our own Personal Development Coaching businesses. I am an artist and I have some paintings around town for sale. I adore cooking and baking, so I save plenty of time for those activities. I also like to stay physically active through yoga, walking and hiking in our lovely mountains. Honestly, the times I am at Rock Cut are so beloved to me because I get to dedicate some hours to service, conversation, and human connection.
And most importantly, what is your favorite Rock Cut beer? Do I have to choose just one??! Because I am going to have to name a few… Hop Off The Presses is a major stand out for me. I always tell people that it drinks like a single, and works like a double. It is so bright and clean, yet it will send you on a pathway to sleepy town if you drink a crowler…at home…all on your own. I also dig brett so our Funky Portal and Underlying Granite satisfy my cravings for funky, barrel-aged goodness in a glass. Finally, when I am wanting something dark, barrel-y, and soothing I look no further than Wooden Bison…YUM!
Julian Garrett, Beer Wrangler (sales) & Beertender
How did you get to Estes Park? I first came out to Estes Park and RMNP in 2008 and quickly realized how much Colorado had to offer. When it came time for me to leave Iowa, the first place that came to mind was Estes Park. I moved to Estes with a small car packed to the brim in 2014. Best decision I’ve ever made.
What’s your favorite thing about the area? Endless outdoor opportunities. The biking, hiking and camping right out of my front door is unreal. Another great thing, some of the best breweries in the country are right here in Colorado. Oh yeah, the views are OK too.
What do you do when you’re not at Rock Cut? I like to get outside; mountain biking, hiking, and hanging with my dog Yarrow. If I’m not in Estes Park, I’m most likely camping elsewhere and finding new places to ride and explore.
And most importantly, what is your favorite Rock Cut beer? It’s way too hard to choose just one favorite but I could drink Galactic Portal anytime, anywhere.
Sarah Reynolds, Beertender
How did you get to Estes Park? I originally came to Estes Park in the spring of 2012 for a seasonal outdoor education job. After that I’ve moved back and forth for the last nine years, and most recently moved back April 2021.
What’s your favorite thing about the area? I have a lot of favorite things about this area, so it’s hard to choose just one. I of course love the mountains and the accessibility to hiking and running trails, but for me it’s the community. This is the first place I’ve lived where I truly fit in and have built a strong community.
What do you do when you’re not at Rock Cut? When I’m not at Rock Cut, I enjoy baking, cooking, yoga, being with friends, and walking my dog Luka. I also enjoy being outdoors whether that’s running or hiking a trail, or just soaking up the sun.
And most importantly, what is your favorite Rock Cut beer? Well anyone who knows me would always say it’s Galactic Portal, so much so that I would try others and always go for it. However, since working here I’ve learned to enjoy all the other beers as well, and am currently enjoying the Lemon Ginger Crusher. I’m sure Galactic will find its way back into the starting line up soon.
Dom Rickicki, Beertender
How did you get to Estes Park?
I first came to Estes when I was 19 to work at the YMCA for a summer as a groundskeeper. I kept coming back to Estes for several summers and have largely been a seasonal resident for the last 6 years. In May 2020 I moved back as a year round resident.
What’s your favorite thing about the area?
My favorite thing about Estes is the access to the mountains and the community. Being 15 minutes from the Long’s Peak trailhead is quite excellent, and so are the people. Folks in this town help each other out and I really appreciate that.
What do you do when you are not at Rock Cut?
I mostly go rock climbing, I also work as a climbing guide for KMAC here in town and have been doing that for 4 years. On my rest days I go fly fishing.
Most importantly, what is your favorite Rock Cut beer?
I hate picking favorites, but I could probably drink Enos Pils everyday for the rest of my life and be quite a happy camper.