Posts Tagged ‘Kaktus Brewing’

Greetings everyone, Stoutmeister here with the second post in the Look Back/Look Ahead Series for 2014-15. Our La Cumbre story ran last week. As the year draws to a close, rather than just write up a single summary review of the last 12 months in beer, I decided to take what free time I have and go talk in person to breweries in the ABQ area to get their thoughts on both the year that was and the year to come. I’m not going to put up any sort of schedule for this series, and it will likely extend beyond December and into January with other Crew members chipping in as well.

Kaktus' patio is one of the most popular spots around New Mexico to drink beer in the summer.

Kaktus’ patio is one of the most popular spots around New Mexico to drink beer in the summer.

Kaktus Brewing Co. just wrapped up their first full year up the road in Bernalillo. Despite being one of the smallest breweries in the state in terms of production, Kaktus managed to crank out a lot of unique and popular beers while keeping everyone cozy in their one-of-a-kind taproom.

“We’ve been open for one year and two or three months, roughly,” owner Dana Koller said. “2014 was our first full year and it was fantastic, better than what we expected. We’ve been obviously refining recipes, getting our equipment down pat, everything was running smoothly. Now we’re looking forward to adding some nice additions to our menu, like our food menu as well as our beer menu. So we’re pretty excited about that.”

Opening and operating a successful brewery can always be a challenge, but it is one that Dana, brewer Mike Waddy, and brewing mentor Mark Matheson have been able to navigate in year one.

Kaktus' beers pulled in four medals, one gold and three silvers, at the annual State Fair Pro-Am.

Kaktus’ beers pulled in four medals, one gold and three silvers, at the annual State Fair Pro-Am.

“I think really if there was any challenges it was more internal than external,” Dana said. “Just figuring out things with the equipment or the layout of our floor plan as we get more and more busy. Just kind of being inventive about that. Everything is going kind of the way we planned.”

Those plans included Kaktus entering its first beer competition, the annual State Fair Pro-Am, and coming away with a gold medal in the German Wheat and Rye Beer category for Bannaweizen, plus silver medals for ESB in English Pale Ale, London Porter in Porter, and Cream Stout in Stout.

“We submitted our first beers to the State Fair, won four awards there, so those were our first award-winning beers,” Dana said. “We’re just going to keep moving from there, because we’re not a bottling brewery. The majority of breweries that are opening now immediately are competing in distribution. We looked to not do that. We just wanted to be your classic community brewery and really just focus on making Bernalillo a proud place to have one of the best beers in the state.”

That approach, combined with Kaktus’ location and overall ambiance, have given the brewery a different crowd than what is seen around Albuquerque.

Any brewery that employs the lovely Desert Darlings, plus our own E-Rock (far left) and our buddy Frank is a good place to hang out.

Any brewery that employs the lovely Desert Darlings, plus our own E-Rock (far left) and our buddy Frank is a good place to hang out.

“Our crowd I would say is typically going to be 35 years of age and older, and families,” Dana said. “For the most part, I think we do harness a completely different clientele than a lot of the other breweries. It’s families or couples, not a lot of single people. It’s kind of a little bit of an older crowd. Which is great for us. But again, during the summer, we pull in people from Santa Fe and Albuquerque because of our location, we’re kind of a center point. We pull in people from both sides. At that point, if we’re doing music especially, we pull in a little bit of everybody.”

Keeping the entertainment as varied as possible has helped as well.

“When we’re thinking entertainment we’re thinking culturally,” Dana said. “And so we did bring in the (Desert Darlings) belly dancers every Sunday. Then we also the first Saturday of every month we host flamenco dancing. Along with the flamenco we usually invite the Guava Tree, which is Cuban-style sandwiches. They come down and do their grill and offer a different set of food, which is really fun. So that kind of switches things up a little bit.

“Where we’re trying to focus our entertainment is definitely a little more performance-driven than it is music-driven. Granted, people play music as a performance, but a little more activity is what we like. We are looking to expand our back patio and do an outdoor concert series in the future, something different like country music to change it up a little bit.”

Another photo of the Desert Darlings, because why not?

Another photo of the Desert Darlings, because why not?

Subtle improvements on tap for 2015

As much as the beers themselves can be considered seasonal, so can an entire brewery.

“It seems to be that Kaktus is going to be definitely more of a summer place than a winter place, because of our patio, the KOA Kampground being next door, things like that,” Dana said. “We’re planning on pulling in some business from Placitas by being a little inventive in how we do that. We actually just made our first batch of cider. We’re doing it the traditional way which considers it a wine. So we went ahead and got our wine license, which was just approved a couple weeks ago. So we should be hanging that license before the end of December, I’m hoping. Definitely by the end of January. That will allow us to serve ciders as well as beers.

“To complement the ciders we decided to bring in pizza as well. So you can see just got our new pizza oven. So we’re going to be doing some nice gourmet, definitely not your traditional pepperoni and sausage. It will be more gourmet-style with duck and elk and some vegetarian options, eggplant and green olive, things like that.”

Kaktus always wins the award for the most unique chairs of any brewery.

Kaktus always wins the award for the most unique chairs of any brewery.

Due to their small brewing output, Kaktus largely stayed away from the beer festival circuit, though that will change somewhat in the coming year.

“We’re definitely going to try to get involved where we can,” Dana said. “The thing for us is because we’re not bottling, it’s really in our best interest because we’re a nano-brewery, the festivals where people are just giving away tastings is a little bit more difficult for us. We will get there eventually, but we’re just not there yet. The festivals we’re goign to be focusing on are the ones where we can get full pints in people’s hands and let them enjoy a full pint versus just a small tasting.”

One big plan for Kaktus involves a certain Irish holiday in the early spring.

“We just rented the Rail Yards, so we’re going to sponsor the largest St. Patty’s Day event in Albuquerque,” Dana said. “It’s going to be March 17 on St. Patty’s Day. We’re hoping to fill the place with 900 people. We’ll be obviously the main focus as far as beer goes. But we’re going to create some community events on our own to get the word out about our brewery.”

Beyond that, Kaktus just hopes to continue to grow organically, getting the word out that there is good craft beer in a small town like Bernalillo just like Albuquerque to the south and Santa Fe to the north.

You can still hang out on Kaktus' patio, even in the winter months.

You can still hang out on Kaktus’ patio, even in the winter months.

“I’m most excited for 2015 where we’re going to grow our business,” Dana said. “It’s definitely the cider, offering a little bit more food kind of encourages people to come down this way, (and) the St. Patty’s Day event. And after that if everything goes well, we are kind of throwing around the idea of a (second) small taproom. But we’re kind of just taking our time with that. We want to make sure we do more here than open another place. It’s all good. We felt like we’ve grown 25 to 50 percent, which is our goal (again) next year.”

Thanks to Dana for taking some time to sit down and chat, and for the beer samples (it was an early interview, so I wasn’t ready for pints yet). I do recommend the Peppermint Stout, which has a nice balance between the peppermint and roasted malt flavors; Gunslinger Cherry Wood Smoked Brown, a rather unique beer that has some spicy hints around the edges; and the newly refined Red Ale, which sits about midway between Marble’s hoppy Red and Il Vicino’s malty Irish Red.

If everything actually goes to plan this week, we will have additional stories in this series from Bosque, Tractor, Ponderosa, and possibly more. Enjoy this wonderful week of good beer!

Cheers!

— Stoutmeister

Greetings, New Mexico craft beer lovers. Stoutmeister here with the reunified edition of The Week Ahead in Beer. This column covers all the breweries in Bernalillo and Sandoval counties, with Santa Fe’s four breweries and one newcomer down in Socorro also joining the party. We tried hard to keep the state edition going, but without participation from the breweries outside the I-25 corridor, it was futile.

Stoutmeister puts on his serious face to handle The Week Ahead in Beer.

Stoutmeister puts on his serious face to handle The Week Ahead in Beer.

IPA Day and International Stout Day are just a couple of the big beer celebration holidays that have emerged in recent years. Today (Wednesday) is National Lager Day, celebrating an underrated beer style. Part of the reason that lagers are not as honored as their ale counterparts is an issue of time. Lagers take longer to ferment than ales, so it can be tough for smaller breweries constantly cycling through their beers to reserve a fermenter for extra time. Nonetheless, a lot of breweries around the ABQ and Santa Fe areas have still managed to keep at least one or more lagers on tap. Bosque Lager has joined the regular rotation there, replacing Kindling Golden Ale. Kaktus’ brewing system was actually a German lager system, so they almost always tend to have one or more lagers on tap. Among the new kids, Ponderosa currently has three lagers on tap, including a Schwarzbier, a Dunkel, and a new Imperial Rice Lager (see more below in their entry). It’s the middle of the week, so take a moment, slow it all down, and enjoy a nice lager to mellow out.

And for everyone wondering why we’re not leading with La Cumbre’s fourth anniversary party (this Saturday!), I will have a separate story on not just that event but a full review of 2014 and a preview of 2015 for one of ABQ’s most iconic breweries. Barring anything unexpected, look for that story Thursday.

On the new beer front, there is a wide variety of styles popping up. Bosque has replaced IPA 57 with IPA 65, while also adding the Prospector Milk Stout. Boxing Bear is jumping on the sweet stout train with their Chocolate Milk Stout. Canteen has busted out a new pilsner, PLZ PLZ. Kaktus is feeling festive with Holiday Peppermint Stout. La Cumbre’s Mind Phoq, a coffee pale ale, is one of the more unique beers you can try. Nexus is channeling their inner Trekkie with Warp 10 Golden Strong. Tractor has hopheads covered with Winter Hop IPA and malt lovers covered with Chocolate Milk Stout.

Up in Santa Fe, Blue Corn has Snow Advisory, a winter warmer. Duel’s monstrous Goya Imperial Stout will debut Friday on tap and in bombers at the brewery (we hope they’ll send some bottles down to Jubilation, too, but no word on that yet). Second Street’s Anniversary Ale should be on tap for their 18th anniversary dinner this weekend.

Continue reading for all the news that is fit to blog for the week of Dec. 8.

To break down each “capsule,” I listed the brewery (with Web page linked), its phone number and hours of operation. Under “Beers” are the new or seasonal beers on tap for this week.

Albuquerque metro area breweries

ABQ Brew Pub — (505) 884-1116

(Mon–Thurs 11 a.m.–midnight, Fri–Sat 11 a.m.–2 a.m., Sunday 10 a.m.–midnight)

Beers: Petrus Aged Ale, Petrus Aged Red. Petrus Aged Ale and Red are high alcohol barrel-aged sours from a family-owned brewery in Flanders. Several times a year, ABP serves up the latest creation by local brewing hero and winner of the Samuel Adams Longshot competition, Ben Miller, or seasonal releases by Monks Brewing.

Back Alley Draft House — (505) 766-8590

(Hours 4 p.m.-11 p.m. daily)

Beers: Soroche IPA, Pre-Prohibition Malt Tonic, Ladron’s Peak. In case you missed it, we recently interviewed BADH’s new brewer, Brandon Venaglia. There are some exciting times coming, including a possible expansion. The Pre-Prohibition Malt Tonic is a dark American lager that’s based on a 110-year-old recipe and will now become a regular beer at BADH.

Events: Sundays will now be Service Nights at Back Alley, with $2 off all beers for service industry workers.

Bosque Brewing Company — (505) 750-7596

(Mon–Thurs 11 a.m.–10 p.m., Fri–Sat 11 a.m.-11 p.m., Sun noon-8 p.m.)

Beers: PSA (Pumpkin Spice Ale), Kindling Golden Ale, Olde Bosky Porter, Cottonwood Anniversary Ale, IPA 65, Prospector Milk Stout. The Cottonwood is a big old double red ale, similar to but still different than Marble’s Imperial Red; there’s more malt backbone here, a little less hop bite, but it’s still excellent. Also back on tap is an old favorite in the Olde Bosky Porter. The Bosque Lager will now be on tap year round, replacing the Kindling, which moves to the seasonal list (this is much as Driftwood Oatmeal Stout replaced Olde Bosky earlier this year). The new IPA 65 is a slight variation on the IPA 57. I got to try the Prospector Milk Stout when it debuted last Friday. It’s smooth as silk and a little less sweet and more robust than most milk stouts. It still retains a lot of stout character, which is a nice change from the more Left Hand-influenced versions.

Cask: The IPA 65 will be on cask this Friday.

News: Construction continues on Bosque’s new taproom, the Bosque Public House, located on Girard just south of Central. Bosque has also signed a lease on a new taproom in Las Cruces, located in the former Mimbres Valley space across from New Mexico State at the corner of University Ave. and Espina St.

Bosque has a happy hour running from 3-6 p.m. Monday through Thursday and all day on Sunday. Look for special menu items and get $1 off your favorite pints.

Boxing Bear Brewing Company — (505) 897-2327

(Sun-Thurs 11 a.m.-10 p.m., Fri-Sat 11 a.m.-11 p.m.)

Beers: Paw Swipe Pale Ale, Hairy Mit Hefe, Standing 8 Stout, Ambear Ale, Uppercut IPA, Oso Otono, Chocolate Milk Stout. Last week Boxing Bear put the Chocolate Milk Stout on cask and it sold out by 7 p.m., the first time that has ever happened with a cask, one of the servers told us. Now that it’s on tap it should last longer than a few hours, but you can tell already how popular this beer is with folks. Oso Otono, an oatmeal lager, looks like a standard ale in color but tastes like a robust brown. Another recent addition is Punkelweizen, a pumpkin/dunkelweizen hybrid. Their Facebook page described it as “liquid banana bread.” Other recent additions to the lineup are the Standing 8 Stout (6.3% ABV, 45 IBU) and Ambear Ale (5.2% ABV, 35 IBU).

Cask: Paw Swipe Pale Ale dry-hopped with Galaxy will be the featured firkin this Friday.

News: Boxing Bear now has a happy hour. 10-, 16-, and 22-ounce beers are all discounted from 3 to 6 p.m. Monday through Thursday. Growler Happy Hour then runs from 6 p.m. to close on those nights. Get $2 off a growler fill and $1 off a half-growler (they call ‘em “squealers”).

Also, every day at lunchtime (11 a.m. to 3 p.m.), for just $10 you can get a pint and a panini of your choice.

Events: Every Wednesday is now Karaoke Night at Boxing Bear. It runs from 6 to 10 p.m.

The Cali Shaw Duo will perform Friday from 6 to 9 p.m.

Broken Bottle Brewery — (505) 890-8777

(Mon–Weds 4-11 p.m., Thurs-Fri 4 p.m.–midnight, Sat noon–midnight, Sun noon–10 p.m.)

Beers: Drunken Hobo Milk Stout, Tom Selleck Ale, Rip Van Winkle Vanilla Stout, Nacho Brau. The Drunken Hobo will soon replace the Mulligan Stout in the regular lineup, or so Franz Solo was told when he visited recently. The Nacho Brau is another of Franz’s favorite seasonals. Get over to BBB before he drinks it all up.

Events: B3 has $3 beers every Tuesday from open to close. On Wednesday, B3 will be hosting their open mic from 8-10 p.m., with signups starting at 7:30 p.m. Check out B3’s karaoke night every Thursday starting at 8 p.m.

Canteen Brewhouse — (505) 881-2737

(Sun–Thurs noon–10 p.m., Fri–Sat noon–midnight)

Beers: Fog Nozzle Smoked Marzen, The Highlander Scottish Ale, PLZ PLZ, Irish Red, Rye PA, American Stout, Wine Barrel-Aged Belgian Golden, White Shine (White Wine), Tequila IPA. The Tequila IPA (8.3% ABV, 100+ IBU) was aged in tequila barrels for eight months and is now ready for public consumption. A recent addition to the taps is Fog Nozzle (5.7% ABV, 22 IBU), a rauchbier, which has all the smoky goodness you need for this sudden drop in temperature. The Highlander (5.2% ABV, 25 IBU) is a tasty Scottish ale, and yes, you can shout “there can be only one!” when you drink it. Just not too loud, don’t want to startle the wait staff and have them drop a beer or anything.  The White Shine (9.75% ABV, 50 IBU) is a big old wheat wine that has some unique flavors. The Rye PA (7% ABV, 50 IBU) and the American Stout (7.4% ABV, 60 IBU) have been around a while, so get them while you can before they run out. I got to try the American Stout while interviewing brewer Brady McKeown about the name change to Canteen Brewhouse. It’s a big, bold, thick, mean-as-hell-yet-totally-lovable stout. It’s my kind of stout, and that’s saying something. The PLZ PLZ (6.5% ABV, 25 IBU) is a new pilsner.

News: The other barrel-aged beers in the back, waiting to be tapped, are American Stock Ale in rum barrels and Panama Joe Coffee Stout in bourbon barrels.

Cazuela’s Seafood & Mexican Grill — (505) 994-9364

(Open daily 8 a.m.-10 p.m.)

Beers: Papacabra (Double IPA), Panama Red, Acapulco Gold (Mexican Lager), Hefeweizen, Chupacabra IPA, Piedra del Fuego Stoned Cream Ale, Beer for My Horses (Oatmeal Stout), Inebriator (Doppelbock). E-Rock and I had a chance to sample the Piedra del Fuego (5% ABV), which we both recommend. According to Cazuela’s menu: “This cream ale uses red-hot stones to super caramelize the sugars, creating a nutty, toffee-like flavor.” The Inebriator (8% ABV) and the Papacabra (9.7% ABV) are the biggest beers in the lineup.

Events: Cazuela’s now features a live guitarist every Friday.

News: Cazuela’s Beer for My Horses won a bronze medal in the oatmeal stout category at the World Beer Cup in Denver and also captured a gold medal in the stout category at the 2014 State Fair Pro-Am.

Chama River Brewing Company — (505) 342-1800

(Sun–Thurs 11 a.m.–11 p.m., Fri–Sat 11 a.m.–midnight)

Beers: Face Time Porter, Red River Ale, Old Town Oat Brown, Coney Pale Ale. The Red River (5.7% ABV, 33 IBU) is an ESB. The Old Town (5.6% ABV, 25 IBU) looks light in color but not in its dry, roasted flavor. The Face Time (6% ABV, 40 IBU) is a smooth, delectable porter. Let it open up a bit and taste even more flavors. The Coney Pale Ale (5.5% ABV, 45 IBU) is the most recent addition to taps, made with Mosaic and Falconer’s Flight hops.

News: Head brewer Zach Guilmette has revamped the recipe for Chama’s Jackalope IPA to give it a stronger kick and tastier palate. Franz Solo and I also highly recommend you try the revamped Sleeping Dog Stout. It’s creamy and burly and sweet and roasted … it’s got everything you want in a stout.

Kaktus Brewing — (505) 379-5072

(Hours Mon-Thu 2-9 p.m., Fri-Sat 11:30-10 p.m., Sun 11:30-9 p.m.)

Beers: Oatmeal Stout, Gunslinger Cherry Smoked Brown, Helles Lager, ESB, Red Ale, German Alt Lager, Jabberwocky IPA, London Porter, Holiday Peppermint Stout. Kaktus has seen a massive turnover in beers recently with the Oatmeal Stout, Helles Lager, ESB, Red Ale, and London Porter returning to taps. The newest beers to try are the Gunslinger Cherry Smoked Brown and the Holiday Peppermint Stout. Located at 471 South Hill Road in Bernalillo, Kaktus is one of the state’s newer breweries. It is a small, casual place, similar to Blue Heron in appearance and comfort factor. Kaktus owner Dana Koller said fans can expect the nanobrewery to go through its most popular styles quickly, though they will always have something new and exciting available as a replacement.

Events: Kaktus has several new weekday specials including $3 pints on Monday, $9 growlers on Tuesday, $6 bison nachos on Wednesday, and $8 Frito pie and beer on Thursday.

The Desert Darlings belly dancers will perform from 6 to 8 p.m. on Sunday. If you’ve never seen the Desert Darlings in person, you’re missing out.

News: For the remainder of the year, all growler refills at Kaktus are just $8. Talk about happy holidays!

La Cumbre Brewing — (505) 872-0225

(Open every day at noon)

Beers: Lazy Sunday, Mind Phoq, C3-PA, Gracias Por Fumar. The Gracias Por Fumar was aged in wine barrels and is available on tap and in bombers. Mind Phoq, a coffee pale ale, is an experimental new beer. It uses an Ethiopian light roast from Prosum Roasters and is lightly hopped to showcase the coffee flavor. As LC said on their Facebook page, “It’s so good it will blow your mind!” Another recent addition is the C3-PA (6.2% ABV, 43 IBU), a pale ale brewed with Cascade, Centennial, and Chinook hops. The Lazy Sunday, a session IPA, is back on tap for the first time since April. Oh, and don’t panic about Project Dank and Red Ryeot no longer appearing here as seasonals. They are now part of La Cumbre’s regular lineup.

Events: La Cumbre’s fourth anniversary party will run all day Saturday. We’ll have a full preview Thursday as well as news about what’s to come for La Cumbre in 2015.

Lizard Tail Brewing — (505) 717-1301

(Sun–Weds 9 a.m.–11 p.m., Thurs–Sat 9 a.m.–midnight)

Beers: German Blonde Ale, Berliner Weisse, Belgian Abbey, IPA, Amber, Oatmeal Brown, India Black Ale, Rye Stout, Porter, Dubbel, Biscochito Brown. Both Brandon and I have had chances to visit Lizard Tail, which is one of the newest breweries in town, located in the shopping center on the southeast corner of Eubank and Montgomery. They specialize in malt-forward beers. The German Blonde (5.5% ABV, 20 IBU) is a good place to start. The Berliner Weisse (4.3% ABV, 8 IBU) is not nearly as sour as most of its genre. The Belgian Abbey (6.8%, 25 IBU) is a good example of its style. The IPA (6.8% ABV, 70 IBU) has a good mix of Mosaic, Warrior, and Galaxy hops. The Rye Stout (5.5% ABV, 35 IBU) has a nice flavor but lacks body. The first batch of Oatmeal Brown (4.2% ABV, 25 IBU) needed some work, but I got to sample the second batch that will be on tap soon and it’s improved. The Honey Pale Ale (6.3% ABV, 35 IBU) has run out for a little while, but it will be back soon. The Porter (5.6% ABV, 35 IBU) is a semi-smoky, thick beer that goes perfectly with the cooler weather. The Biscochito Brown (8.5% ABV, 25 IBU) is not overly sweet. The Lizard Tail staff said the next batch will be a little maltier.

News: Lizard Tail’s happy hour runs seven days a week from 3 to 6 p.m. You get $1 off food, flights, and pints.

Events: Lizard Tail will host Geeks Who Drink every Tuesday at 8 p.m.

Marble Brewery — (505) 243-2739

(Mon–Sat noon–midnight, Sun noon–10:30 p.m.)

Beers: Double White, Double IPA, Imperial Red, Nitro Pub Ale, Pumpkin Noir, Reserve Ale, White Out. A fairly recent addition is White Out (9% ABV), a burly Belgian-style ale. The popular Pumpkin Noir is nearing the end of its run. The Nitro Pub Ale is what Boddington’s was meant to taste like. It’s a creamy little delight. This year’s batch of Reserve Ale is a cacophony of flavors. Both it and the Brett IPA (which is not on tap) are available for sale in bombers at Marble and up at Jubilation. There is also the rotating “black handle,” which tends to feature some impressive “secret” beers. The Double White and Imperial Red brought home gold medals from GABF.

Cask: Check out Marble’s cask (a.k.a. “real” ale) selection on tap every Friday at the Downtown Pub.

Events: Brewery tours occur at the Downtown Pub every Thursday at 5:30 p.m.

Nexus Brewery — (505) 242-4100

(Sun–Thurs 11 a.m.–10 p.m., Fri–Sat 11 a.m.–midnight)

Beers: Dry Stout, Equinox Spiced Brown Ale, 2013 Barley Wine, Warp 10 Golden Strong. Brewer Kaylynn McKnight cranked out one returning seasonal in the Equinox, which is back by popular demand, and popped an aged keg or two of the Barley Wine. We’ve been able to get over there and try the Dry Stout and came away quite impressed. The Dry Stout is bold and thick, the kind of burly beer you want in the winter (or year-round if you’re like us). New to taps is the Warp 10 Golden Strong, an English-style golden ale.

Events: Nexus serves up Happy Hour All Day on Tuesday featuring $3 pints. Also on Tuesday, Nexus will be hosting their comedy open mic, Young Dumb and Full of Comedy, starting at 7:30 p.m. in the Sun Room.

While “The Walking Dead” is done until early 2015, you can still play Walking Dead pinball in Nexus’ community room. It’s one of four pinball machines now available for some nostalgic fun.

Pi Brewing at Nicky V’s Neighborhood Pizzeria — (505) 890-9463

(Sun–Thurs 11 a.m.–9 p.m., Fri–Sat 11 a.m.–10 p.m.)

Beers: PiPA, West Coast Red, Bourbon Vanilla Porter, Lost Grain English Summer Ale, Pre-Prohibition Pilsner. While Pi Brewing is not open to the public yet, they are able to brew and serve their beers next door at Nicky V’s. The IPA and West Coast Red are both good hoppy beers. We’ll keep tabs on when Pi itself opens. For now, grab a pint and some tasty Italian food. The PiPA will now be a regular beer, replacing the Unchallenged IPA. The scrumptious Bourbon Vanilla Porter is back, replacing the Robust Porter.

Ponderosa Brewing Co. — (505) 639-5941

(Sun 11 a.m.–10 p.m., Mon–Sat 11 a.m.–11 p.m.)

Beers: Ghost Train IPA, Rip Saw Red, Crosscut Kolsch, Sawmill Stout, XPA1 Pale Ale, Helles Lager, Double IPA, Dunkel, Chocolate Pumpkin Porter, Schwarzbier, Breakfast Stout, Imperial Rice Lager. Ponderosa is located at 1761 Bellamah NW, which is just east of Rio Grande and due north of the NM Natural History Museum, in the bottom floor of a swanky-looking apartment/retail complex. The Imperial Rice Lager (7% ABV) was brewed as a tribute to Marble’s Ted Rice, whose staff has helped Ponderosa in their early months of existence.

News: The next batch of brews will include Dunkelweizen, Helles Hefeweizen, and Ella Single Hop Pale Ale.

Red Door Brewing — (505) 633-6675

(Mon–Thurs 2 p.m. to midnight, Fri–Sun noon to midnight)

Beers: (Regular) Gateway Blonde Ale, Roamer Red, Threshold IPA, Paint it Black Milk Stout, Unhinged Cider, Trapdoor Wheat. (Seasonal) Strong Scotch Ale. The first Red Door seasonal, Strong Scotch Ale, debuted recently. We stopped by and wrote up a quick review and we’ve been back since to enjoy it again. Brewer Wayne Martinez said he hopes to have more seasonals on tap before the end of the year. After a short absence, the powerful Unhinged Cider (7.9% ABV) is back on tap as well.

News: Take note of Red Door’s new weekday schedule for the winter months as they will now open at 2 p.m. instead of noon. Weekend hours remain the same.

Sandia Chile Grill — (505) 798-1970

(Mon–Sat 8 a.m.–8 p.m., Sun 8 a.m.–6 p.m.)

Beers: Irish Red, Rattlesnake IPA, Smoked Stout. We’re going to dispatch E-Rock (he needs a new assignment) to re-establish our lines of communication with Sandia Chile Grill.

News: Congrats to SCG on sweeping all three medals in the mead category at the 2014 State Fair Pro-Am, while also claiming a silver medal for Barb’s Barrel Hefeweizen.

The Stumbling Steer — (505) 792-7805

(Sunday-Wednesday 11 a.m.-midnight, Thursday-Saturday 11 a.m.-2 a.m.)

Beers: Bang Up Blonde, Hefferweizen, Pig Sticker Pale, Iron Horse IPA, Rawhide Red, Boneyard Brown, Hop Trough (Double IPA), Soiled Dove (Imperial Stout), Black IPA. While the brewery is being built in the back of the Steer, all of their house beers are being brewed off-site, but still using brewer Kirk Roberts’ recipes. The DIPA and the Stout are limited to two per customer, due to their high alcohol content (10% and 9.5% ABV, respectively). The Black IPA is the current seasonal beer, plus there are often one or two cask beers. We recently had their Bacon Bourbon Stout and Green Chile IPA on cask. Franz Solo loved the latter.

Tractor Brewing Company — (505) 433-5654 (Nob Hill Tap Room), TBA (Wells Park)

(Nob Hill is open Monday-Wednesday 3 p.m. to midnight, Thursday 3 p.m. to 2 a.m., Friday-Saturday 1 p.m. to 2 a.m., Sunday 1 p.m. to midnight; Wells Park is open Monday-Thursday 3 p.m. to close, Friday-Sunday 1 p.m. to midnight.
 Last call 30 minutes before close. 
No package after midnight.
 Brewery tours Saturday at 1 p.m.)

UPDATED >>> Beers at Nob Hill: Little Red Rye-ding Hood, Turkey Drool, Mustachio Milk Stout, Javi Light Lager, Jack the Sipper, Winter Hop IPA, Chocolate Milk Stout.

Beers at Wells Park only: Berry Cider. All of the Nob Hill seasonals are also at Wells Park, which has 24 total taps (Tractor’s five regular beers have two taps apiece). We love us some Turkey Drool (8% ABV) this time of year. It’s a brown ale with all sorts of holiday-themed spices and other added ingredients. This year’s batch is arguably the best yet. The Little Red (5.8% ABV) has a malty rye kick. Jack the Sipper (7% ABV) is Tractor’s take on a spiced pumpkin ale. The new Winter Hop IPA (6.4% ABV, 70 IBU) uses a blend of fragrant hops and caramel malts for a unique twist on the popular style. The Chocolate Milk Stout should tide over your sweet tooth.

News: Congrats to Tractor and their Mustachio Milk Stout, which won in the Best of Albuquerque competition from ABQ the Magazine.

Mustachio’s bigger, meaner brother, Luna de los Muertos Russian Imperial Stout, is aging in the back, including some in a barrel. Oh, man, that could kill us … but we’d die happy.

Events: Art Fusion for a Cause returns to Wells Park tonight (Wednesday) at 8 p.m. There will be live music, poetry, art, and more. For $5 you can enter a raffle to take home some sweet prizes.

Tonight (Wednesday) at Nob Hill, the Solos on the Hill series resumes with Eryn Bent performing at 8:30 p.m. If you miss Eryn Bent tonight, she is the featured performer in the pLOUD music series Thursday at 8 p.m. at Wells Park.

The In the Mix series is back Saturday at Wells Park as Cloudface performs at 9 p.m.

I’ll Drink to That returns to Wells Park on Sunday from 4 to 7 p.m. with a dozen vendors for a holiday market and a dozen performers to entertain you while you shop and drink.

Both Tractor locations will be closed Monday for the staff holiday party.

Tuesday will see the return of Beer & Bellies Community Belly Dance Show at 7 p.m. at Wells Park.

Also, every first Monday of the month at both Tractor locations is Beer for a Better Burque night. For every pint you buy $1 can go to one of four charities that have partnered with Tractor. You can also opt to purchase a special growler with the logo of your favorite charity.

Turtle Mountain Brewing Company — (505) 994-9497

(Kitchen hours: Mon–Tues 11 a.m.-8:30 p.m., Wed–Thurs 11 a.m.-9 p.m., Fri–Sat 11 a.m.-9:30 p.m., Sun 10:30 a.m.-8:30 p.m. Reminder: TMBC closes early when business dictates. Please call.)

Beers: (House) McDay’s Cream Ale, Oku Amber, Parasol White IPA, Hopshell IPA, Piedra Lisa Porter, Heidelberg Helles. (Seasonal/specialty) Cascade Session Pale Ale, Uberaltbier, A Little Somethin’ Pumpkin, Rio Grande Tortoise Black IPA. To help us out for now and the future, brewer Tim Woodward broke down what will be the regular beers on tap (under House) and the current list of seasonals. That’s a pretty solid regular lineup. I personally really enjoyed the Porter and Amber, the latter of which trumps most of its genre in terms of flavor. The Heidelberg Helles (5.1% ABV, 25 IBU) has rejoined the regular lineup for good, or so Tim hopes. A Little Somethin’ Pumpkin is served on nitro. The most recent addition to the lineup is the Rio Grande Tortoise Black IPA, a collaboration brew with Bosque that was created for a recent beer dinner. Now it’s on tap for everyone to enjoy.

Santa Fe breweries

Blue Corn Brewery — (505) 438-1800

(Daily 11 a.m.–10 p.m.)

Beers: Snow Advisory, Monks Mesa (Belgian Blonde), Meltdown Chocolate Porter, Rakau Single Hop IPA. The Monks Mesa (4.5% ABV, 15 IBU) is a Belgian blonde table beer. The Meltdown used no less than 25 pounds of cocoa nibs. The Rakau, using a powerful New Zealand hop, is now on tap. New to the lineup is Snow Advisory (7.5% ABV, 17 IBU), a winter warmer.

News: Next up in the beer list is a White DIPA.

Events: Thursday at the Brewer’s Table Holiday Party is this week starting at 6 p.m. It costs $20 and reservations are required. For more info click the Facebook link here.

Duel Brewing Company — (505) 474-5301

(Sun 11 a.m.–8 p.m., Mon–Tues 11 a.m.–10 p.m., Wed–Sat 11 a.m.–midnight)

Beers: Bad Amber, Fiction (IPA), Fantin (Double Pale Ale), Marcel (Witbier), Whistler (Blonde), Dark Ryder (Dark Strong), Grunewald (Imperial Porter), Goya (Imperial Stout). The lineup got a shakeup with some big beers joining the rotation. Dark Ryder and Grunewald check in at 11-percent ABV, while Goya (15.9% ABV) is a monster of a beer. It will be available on tap and in bombers at the brewery this Friday.

Events: The life drawing session is $25 and is held each Sunday morning from 11-1 (although they are not open to the drinking public till 1 p.m. on Sun). You get the beverage of your choice, a Brussels-style waffle made with their own yeast and beer and then served with a Grunewald Syrup. Everyone then draws from a nude model. People can sign up through the website or call the brewery to reserve a spot.

Santa Fe Brewing Company — (505) 424-3333

(Mon–Sat 11 a.m.–10 p.m., closed on Sunday)

Beers: Double White IPA, Deviator Doppelbock, Full Mast Kilt Scotch Ale, Black IPA. The first beer in the new Ever Changing Series is a Double White IPA, which Luke of the Brew Crew bullpen recently reviewed. The Kriek, which won a bronze medal at GABF this year, is on sale around the state in bombers, though it is no longer on tap.

Events: $1 Off Growler Refills in the Tasting Room on Mondays. $2 pint Tuesdays at the Eldorado Taphouse. On Wednesday, there is a $2 Pint Special in the SFBC Tasting Room, and the Sangre de Cristo Craft Brewers’ Meeting will be held at 6:30 p.m. at the Tasting Room as well on the third Wednesday of every month. On Thursday, there will be $1 Off Growler Refills at the Eldorado Taphouse.

News: SFBC will soon be opening a taproom in Albuquerque. Here are all the details that Luke, our Santa Fe correspondent, could find. It sounds promising.

Second Street Brewery — (505) 989-3278 (Railyard), (505) 982-3030 (original location)

(Mon–Thurs 11 a.m.–10 p.m., Fri–Sat 11 a.m.–11 p.m., Sunday noon-9 p.m.)

Beers: Kolsch, International Pale Ale, Cream Stout, Imperial Porter, Boneshaker Bitter, Fulcrum IPA, Berliner Weisse, Anniversary Ale. The new International Pale Ale and Imperial Porter make their debuts this week, while the Pivotal IPA is back after a short absence. With the shift to December, some holiday beers are also on the way. The Anniversary Ale will see its recipe tweaked and will now feature a blend of Millennium, Columbus, Chinook, Citra, and Comet hops. The Festivus Ale will be due out around Dec. 18 in time for the next Cask-n-Curry Night. Also coming soon will be Trebuchet Imperial IPA, which completes a “trilogy” with Pivotal and Fulcrum IPAs. The Hull Melon Pilsner will also return for those who need a break from big hops. The Anniversary Ale should be on tap this weekend.

Events: Second Street’s 18th anniversary party is this Friday and Saturday. For $55 you get a prix fixe dinner with four courses. You also get a commemorative glass filled with the beer of your choice.

Also this weekend, Pollo Frito performs Friday night at the original location and Cloacas performs Saturday. Shows at the Railyard will feature Watermelon Mountain Jug Band on Friday and Greg Daigle on Saturday.

Every Wednesday night, both SSB locations host Game Night. SSB has game boards and dominoes or bring your own … oh yeah, they also have discounted pitchers!

Other breweries you need to visit

Twisted Chile Brewing — (575) 835-2949

(Mon–Thurs 11 a.m.–9 p.m., Fri–Sun 11 a.m.–11 p.m.)

Beers: Pilabo Pale Ale, 790 IPA, Quebradas Sunrise Amber, German Pilsner. Twisted Chile has been open for a while as a restaurant, but as the name might imply, they are also brewing their own beer on site. Located in Socorro at 115 Abeyta St. W, they are the first brewery there to brew on site since Socorro Springs outsourced their brewing to Eddyline in Colorado. I got to head down there recently and enjoyed all the beers I sampled. Kudos to Twisted Chile for bring quality craft beers back to a town that needed ‘em. The newest beer on tap is the pilsner. They haven’t come up with a catchy name yet, but the staff seems to already be in love with this new style.

News: The popular Venom XL IPA will be back soon.

Events: Twisted Chile has specials running during Monday and Thursday Night Football every week.

* * * *

That’s all for this week! If you have any questions or comments, leave them below or contact us on our Facebook page.

Cheers!

— Stoutmeister

As we did for Santa Fe a couple weeks ago, we do now for the ABQ metro area. The Crew, and for once this is a multi-person endeavor, has set forth and compiled a list of breweries’ merchandise to give you a handy guide for your holiday shopping. Hey, you can’t always just buy people beer. I mean, you could, but sometimes you want a gift that lasts longer than it takes to down a growler of Turkey Drool. So to help out everyone, rather than force you to go to multiple breweries or skip from website to website to Facebook page to Twitter feed, we have put everyone’s beer merch lists together in this one place.

You’re welcome. We’re always up for pints as thank yous if you see any of us out and about.

Without further adieu, here’s what we all compiled. For the record, it went like this so you know who to ask for if something below is inaccurate or missing in action: Adam (Bosque and Lizard Tail), AmyO (Blue Grasshopper, Cazuela’s, Turtle Mountain), Brandon (Ponderosa), Franz Solo (Boxing Bear, Broken Bottle, Stumbling Steer), and Stoutmeister (Canteen, Chama River, La Cumbre, Marble, Nexus, Red Door, Tractor). Back Alley Draft House and Sandia Chile Grill do not have any merch, though both hope to get some in 2015.

The breweries are listed in alphabetical order.

Blue Grasshopper

Rio Rancho’s newest brewpub is still awaiting their first batches of beer. Right now they have one T-shirt, white with the logo on it, and some growlers, though those are plain and do not yet have the logo. They hope to have more merchandise, and beer, in the near future. You can only buy the shirts at the pub.

All the Bosque merch you can view in a single photo. (Courtesy of Bosque's Facebook page)

All the Bosque merch you can view in a single photo. (Courtesy of Bosque’s Facebook page)

Bosque

Bosque has a range of T-shirts branded with their regular beers available for $20, military and trucker hats also for $20, women’s fit work shirts for $35, growlers, stickers and patches all for $5, and a range of gift cards. We were told they have just added beanies, pullover hoodies, and thermal shirts, prices TBA. All of this is available for purchase on their website or at the taproom, though the newest items are not yet online. We’re definitely fans of the X-Men-like Scotia Scotch Ale logo and the new hoodies.

All the glassware you need this holiday season.

All the glassware you need this holiday season.

Boxing Bear

The west side’s newest brewery has plenty of gear hanging above the bar. They have black, white, and gray T-shirts for $18 ($20 for 2XL, $21 for 3XL), black hats for $14 or $30, and black hoodies for $35 ($40 for 2XL). There are growlers ($5), half-growlers ($3.50), and pint glasses ($5) for sale as well. The ultra-popular stainless steel mini-keg growlers ($40) are available for purchase. They don’t have a way to buy the merch off their website (yet), but you can take a look at it all here. And in the spirit of the holiday season, Boxing Bear is having a coat and blanket drive. The coats will be donated to Joy Junction while the blankets are for animals and will be donated to Animal Humane. Drop them off today (Friday) and grab a pint of the Chocolate Milk Stout with vanilla bean and cocoa nibs on cask. Dear lord that sounds ridiculously decadent.

Feel rustic with these ceramic mugs from Broken Bottle.

Feel rustic with these ceramic mugs from Broken Bottle.

Broken Bottle

The folks at BBB have quite the array of merchandise. In addition to T-shirts ($15) in various colors — plus long-sleeve shirts for $20 — they have hats ($20), logo pint glasses ($4), and of course growlers. If you need help carrying your half-growlers, you can get a Boston carrier for $10. It holds two half-growlers and is perfect for getting your beer home from the brewery when you don’t have a passenger in your car to hold on to them. BBB also has swanky ceramic mugs for when you’re feeling rather medieval when drinking at home. Blast some Amon Amarth and toast to the Norse gods.

Canteen's new growler is one of the best of its genre.

Canteen’s new growler is one of the best of its genre.

Canteen

They’re still bringing in new gear to replace the old Il Vicino stuff. They have special fleece sweatshirts ($45) for the winter months with sizes from XS to XL. T-shirts are available in both black (unisex) and gray (both men’s and women’s) for $25 in sizes from XS to XXL. Canteen has two styles of hats for $20 in both pre-washed denim and “trucker” style. There are three varieties of growlers available. The standard glass 64-ounce growler is $8.50, with $5.50 beer refills. Pella flip-top growlers cost $16 with $9 refills. Then there’s the new “fire extinguisher” custom powder-coated, double-walled stainless steel, vacuum insulated growlers. Those cost $66 and come with an optional Co2-driven keg attachment for $25.

For more on these special growlers, Bullpen member Reid (who purchased one) sent us this mini-review: “I would say that it’s nearly a perfect growler. It’s insulated (should keep it cold many hours), light, blocks any sunlight, and is pretty easy to open and close. I also have a few other insulated growlers, but they have twist-off caps and can be a pain to open when the pressure inside builds up. This one has a pop-top and shouldn’t have that problem. My only quibble is that once the latches are lifted up, the cap is free to just lift off on its own. If the cap was more permanently affixed to one of the latches, it would be more convenient, plus you wouldn’t have to worry about lining the cap up with the latches in order to close it. But these are minor complaints. I’d say it’s head and shoulders above any other growler I’ve seen.”

Cazuela’s

They hope to have T-shirts in soon, but you’ll have to go to the restaurant to buy them. They do have growlers ($5 empty, $10 filled) with their logo on them. You can also purchase gift cards that can be used for beer and/or food.

Chama River

All right, the info has been tracked down. So Chama has a special holiday gift pack for $45. In it you get four logo glasses with either the Chama logo or Tap the Source or both. In the middle of those glasses is the Tap 3 growler, a metal, insulated growler of goodness. If your cabinets have too many beer glasses already, you can get just a Tap 3 for $28. This is the same special growler sold at Blue Corn in Santa Fe and both Draft Stations. Beyond that, Chama has T-shirts for $12.95, long-sleeve shirts for $28, trucker-style hats for $13 with the Tap the Source logo, and work shirts for $35 that will make you look like Zach and David (but probably not brew like them; it’s not magic).

Kaktus

Right now they only have growlers, unless we’re told otherwise. You can buy a filled growler for $12. We’d assume it’s just $8 or so for the unfilled growler, but really, who buys someone an empty growler? I guess maybe if you’re shipping it out of state or something, otherwise that’s just silly.

We need that Malpais Stout shirt in our lives.

We need that Malpais Stout shirt in our lives.

La Cumbre

All of La Cumbre’s merch is available at the brewery only. Oh, darn, you might have to grab a pint or two when you stop by to pick up a gift. Their T-shirts come in a variety of styles and range from $20 to $25. The Malpais Stout shirt was my personal favorite (natch). Long-sleeve shirts cost $28. La Cumbre has multiple logo glasses. The standard pint glasses cost $5, while the imperial stout glasses are $6, and those tall, lanky hefe glasses are $8. You can buy glass growlers for $10 and mini-growlers for $5. La Cumbre will have special holiday growlers due in next week just in time for the fourth anniversary party (Dec. 13). These stainless steel hydro-flask growlers are insulated to keep your beer cold and fresh for longer than a glass growler. They will cost $50. Oh, and after Gracias Por Fumar became available in bombers this week, next up will be a Belgian-style Tripel in bombers. Jeff is trying to kill us all with these big, beautifully monstrous beers.

A comprehensive look at Lizard Tail's merchandise. (Courtesy of their Facebook page)

A comprehensive look at Lizard Tail’s merchandise. (Courtesy of their Facebook page)

Lizard Tail

Lizard Tail Brewing have the usual range of brewery merchandise available for your holiday shopping needs. T-shirts ($20), hats ($30), growlers ($6 for the growler, +$10 to fill it) and pint glasses ($5), as well as gift cards. Additionally they have recently introduced their Mug Club. Good from purchase until the end of 2015 the membership is $25 for the year and includes $1.50 off pints at the brewery or if you catch them out at any special events. You also receive a pint glass and sticker for signing up. All of this is available at the brewery for purchase.

Marble's merch will put you in the holiday spirit.

Marble’s merch will put you in the holiday spirit.

Marble

In the spirit of the season, Marble has created special holiday gift packs. For $25 you get a bomber of Reserve Ale with Joliesse Chocolate bars. If that’s not enough, their new stainless steel holiday growlers check in at $40 and have a nifty little holiday-themed image on the outside. The new winter hoodies check in at $30 and ladies’ pullovers will be available at the downtown pub next week. Marble has one of the best online merch sites around for all of their year-round gear. Marble has both men’s and women’s T-shirts for $20. They have two varieties of hats for $20, plus Marble sunglasses for $10. Stainless steel 20-ounce tumblers ($10) and leather koozies ($12) will help keep your beer cold. You can also snag a Marble messenger bag for $25. Hey, what better way to carry everything else home? Oh, and don’t forget to mark your calendars, the Imperial Stout Release Party is Dec. 17.

You gotta admit, bravery is required to wear this in public.

You gotta admit, bravery is required to wear this in public.

Nexus

Got the info for here at last. Nexus is taking this whole “ugly sweater” thing to a new level. After having an ugly sweater contest all November, the brewery has created its own ugly sweater. See that picture? Wow. That’s just plain epic. And a little 80’s retro, don’t you think? It almost needs a Pac-Man trying to eat a pint glass. Anyway, the hostess told me that it may be an eye-opener, but it’s also super warm on cold winter nights. If a fashionable young woman like her can buy one, anybody can, right? So it’s got that going for it and it retails for $20. Beyond the ugly sweater itself, there’s also an ugly sweater pint glass for $5 (patrons who went on the “ugly sweater brewery tour” last month got to take one home, now they’re available for everyone). All of Nexus’ gear is available at the brewery only; they do have plans to eventually start selling “swag” through the website, but it’s not ready online just yet. Other year-round merchandise includes hats ($14), V-neck T-shirts ($22), regular T-shirts in power blue, gray, and dark blue ($18), and brewery work shirts ($35). Full growlers cost $5, while the special blue half-growlers are $8.

The merch cabinet at Ponderosa is filling up. (Courtesy of their Facebook page)

The merch cabinet at Ponderosa is filling up. (Courtesy of their Facebook page)

Ponderosa

One of the city’s newest breweries has some merchandise available, though only at the brewery. They have T-shirts in several colors for $20. There are Ponderosa logo pint glasses for $6. And, like most places, they have growlers with their logo on them. In addition to selling items, Ponderosa is also holding a Holiday Toy and Food Drive with Montezuma Elementary School. Bring in toys and/or non-perishable food items to Ponderosa from today through Dec. 16 and you will receive a free order of hand-cut french fries.

Red Door

The new guys on the east side of town were happy to share what’s available. Right now they don’t have any specific holiday-themed merchandise, but they hope to get their stainless steel holiday growlers in for sale in the near future (exact dates are TBA). Red Door does have a gray, zippered sweatshirt for $40 to help keep you warm while you drink cold beer on cold days. There are also men’s and women’s T-shirts for $15. A special red shirt for women only costs $15 as well. New hats are coming in on Tuesday that will retail for $20. Both 64- and 32-ounce growlers sell for $4. Red Door also has gift cards for sale. Expect more gear to arrive in the future. They’re a pretty young brewery to already have as much as they do.

Stumbling Steer

In addition to all the great food, the Steer has gear you can take home. T-shirts cost $18 ($22 for long sleeves). You can get a logo pint glass for $5, or have them fill with beer first and then take the glass home afterward for $7. It’s $5 for a Tullup glass and $8 for a beer fill plus the glass. The Steer has growlers as well. Unfortunately, you have to go to the restaurant to buy everything as there’s nothing online. Wait, did we just say unfortunately? There’s nothing unfortunate about going to the Steer and being tempted by all of their great food and beer.

Tractor's extensive gear selection is visible inside Wells Park.

Tractor’s extensive gear selection is visible inside Wells Park.

Tractor

Tractor is one of the most internet-savvy breweries, so it’s no surprise they have a detailed online store. The winter collection features black zipper front hoodies for $35, special new orange hoodies for $35, ladies’ 3/4 sleeve Get Plowed retro shirts for $17, Sh*t Burquenos Drink long-sleeve shirts for $17, Brian Everett Design shirts for $20, ladies’ long sleeve Real Girls Drink Beer shirts for $17, navy long-sleeve logo shirts for $17, and two other T-shirts for $12. Just about every style of shirt is available for women and men. On the glassware front, you can get logo sample glasses, half-pint glasses, and full pint glasses for just $4 apiece. Full growlers are available at $4 and half-growlers are $5. You can also purchase $25 gift cards. They have reusable Tractor bags for $8 and two styles of hats for $10. And if you’re looking for a little literature, you can buy Carlos Contreras’ book Time Served for $12.95. He’s the gentleman behind the weekly Tractor newsletter and our main contact for all Tractor-related news.

Turtle Mountain

It’s business as usual at Rio Rancho’s favorite hangout. They have growlers and T-shirts (they were out of women’s shirts when AmyO went, but they said they’re getting new ones soon) that you can only buy in person. You can buy gift certificates online here.

* * * * *

And because Brandon is about to become a father for the first time, we asked him to check and see if any in-state breweries have baby/children’s clothing. What do you know, Santa Fe Brewing has “Half Pint” onesies for infants and T-shirts for infants and toddlers. They all cost $16 and are available online. Little Bannon will be dressed well once he arrives in January. Now we just need a brewery around town to make a little black hoodie for the kid so he fits in with all of his new “uncles” in the Crew. (We don’t think Mrs. Solo or AmyO have any hoodies, but we could be wrong on that.)

Got any additional merchandise info? Send it to us via direct message on Facebook, tweet at us @nmdarksidebc, or email us at nmdarksidebrewcrew@gmail.com.

Happy holiday shopping, beer lovers!

— Stoutmeister

Greetings, New Mexico craft beer lovers. Stoutmeister here with the reunified edition of The Week Ahead in Beer. This column covers all the breweries in Bernalillo and Sandoval counties, with Santa Fe’s four breweries and one newcomer down in Socorro also joining the party. We tried hard to keep the state edition going, but without participation from the breweries outside the I-25 corridor, it was futile.

Stoutmeister puts on his serious face to handle The Week Ahead in Beer.

Stoutmeister puts on his serious face to handle The Week Ahead in Beer.

Last week we gave thanks. This week La Cumbre says gracias, as in Gracias Por Fumar. The smoked porter is back and it’s getting released in bottles this time around in addition to going on tap at the brewery Thursday. This is not the GPF you might remember, though, as this batch was barrel-aged for a year. Yeah, La Cumbre is gonna beat us upside the head again with another big, delicious beer. And this is just one of several upcoming special beer release gatherings to help us get through the long days and nights. Also set in stone are La Cumbre’s fourth anniversary party and the release of a barrel-aged English Barley Wine on Dec. 10, followed by Marble’s Imperial Stout release party on Dec. 17. At some point soon we hope to hear when Tractor’s Luna de los Muertos Imperial Stout is coming out, not to mention a certain Dark Side Baltic Porter at Canteen and Obey the Darkside Foreign Export Stout at Chama River.

On the new beer front, it’s rather quiet, but that’s to be expected considering we’re coming off a holiday. Bosque has unveiled IPA 57; no, it does not taste like ketchup. Canteen has brought forth its Wine Barrel-Aged Belgian Golden to the masses after debuting it during a mug club event. Chama River’s Coney Pale Ale rolls into town. La Cumbre also has Mind Phoq, a coffee pale ale, debuting today (Wednesday). Ponderosa keeps on its German-style kick with a new Dunkel.

Up in Santa Fe, it’s even quieter. Blue Corn hopes to have their Winter Warmer available this coming Monday.

Continue reading for all the news that is fit to blog for the week of Dec. 1.

To break down each “capsule,” I listed the brewery (with Web page linked), its phone number and hours of operation. Under “Beers” are the new or seasonal beers on tap for this week.

Albuquerque metro area breweries

ABQ Brew Pub — (505) 884-1116

(Mon–Thurs 11 a.m.–midnight, Fri–Sat 11 a.m.–2 a.m., Sunday 10 a.m.–midnight)

Beers: Petrus Aged Ale, Petrus Aged Red. Petrus Aged Ale and Red are high alcohol barrel-aged sours from a family-owned brewery in Flanders. Several times a year, ABP serves up the latest creation by local brewing hero and winner of the Samuel Adams Longshot competition, Ben Miller, or seasonal releases by Monks Brewing.

Back Alley Draft House — (505) 766-8590

(Hours 4 p.m.-11 p.m. daily)

Beers: Soroche IPA, Pre-Prohibition Malt Tonic, Ladron’s Peak. In case you missed it, we recently interviewed BADH’s new brewer, Brandon Venaglia. There are some exciting times coming, including a possible expansion. The Pre-Prohibition Malt Tonic is a dark American lager that’s based on a 110-year-old recipe and will now become a regular beer at BADH.

Events: Sundays will now be Service Nights at Back Alley, with $2 off all beers for service industry workers.

Bosque Brewing Company — (505) 750-7596

(Mon–Thurs 11 a.m.–10 p.m., Fri–Sat 11 a.m.-11 p.m., Sun noon-8 p.m.)

Beers: Feral IPA, PSA (Pumpkin Spice Ale), Kindling Golden Ale, AdoptEx English Pale Ale, Olde Bosky Porter, Cottonwood Anniversary Ale, IPA 57. The Cottonwood is a big old double red ale, similar to but still different than Marble’s Imperial Red; there’s more malt backbone here, a little less hop bite, but it’s still excellent. Also back on tap is an old favorite in the Olde Bosky Porter. The Bosque Lager will now be on tap year round, replacing the Kindling, which moves to the seasonal list (this is much as Driftwood Oatmeal Stout replaced Olde Bosky earlier this year). The Feral IPA should quench your need for hops. Then there is the IPA 57 (6.6% ABV, 80 IBU), a new brew described as “a bold, aggressive American IPA. A pale malt backbone, accented by touches of wheat, honey, and caramel malts, sets the stage to showcase tropical fruit, pine, and spicy hop aromas and flavors from this hop blend.” For every pint of AdoptEx English PA sold, $1 will be donated to the Adoption Exchange of Albuqueqrue.

Cask: Bosque is taking a short break from doing a cask.

News: Construction continues on Bosque’s new taproom, the Bosque Public House, located on Girard just south of Central. Bosque has also signed a lease on a new taproom in Las Cruces, located in the former Mimbres Valley space across from New Mexico State at the corner of University Ave. and Espina St.

Bosque has a happy hour running from 3-6 p.m. Monday through Thursday and all day on Sunday. Look for special menu items and get $1 off your favorite pints.

Boxing Bear Brewing Company — (505) 897-2327

(Sun-Thurs 11 a.m.-10 p.m., Fri-Sat 11 a.m.-11 p.m.)

Beers: Paw Swipe Pale Ale, Hairy Mit Hefe, Standing 8 Stout, Ambear Ale, Uppercut IPA, Punkelweizen, Oso Otono, Apple Bear Cider. The new kid here is Apple Bear Cider. Oso Otono, an oatmeal lager, looks like a standard ale in color but tastes like a robust brown. Another recent addition is Punkelweizen, a pumpkin/dunkelweizen hybrid. Their Facebook page described it as “liquid banana bread.” Other recent additions to the lineup are the Standing 8 Stout (6.3% ABV, 45 IBU) and Ambear Ale (5.2% ABV, 35 IBU).

Cask: Yup, Boxing Bear is doing a cask. We’ll update this when we find out what it will be this week.

News: Boxing Bear now has a happy hour. 10-, 16-, and 22-ounce beers are all discounted from 3 to 6 p.m. Monday through Thursday. Growler Happy Hour then runs from 6 p.m. to close on those nights. Get $2 off a growler fill and $1 off a half-growler (they call ‘em “squealers”).

Also, every day at lunchtime (11 a.m. to 3 p.m.), for just $10 you can get a pint and a panini of your choice.

Events: Every Wednesday is now Karaoke Night at Boxing Bear. It runs from 6 to 10 p.m.

Broken Bottle Brewery — (505) 890-8777

(Mon–Weds 4-11 p.m., Thurs-Fri 4 p.m.–midnight, Sat noon–midnight, Sun noon–10 p.m.)

Beers: Drunken Hobo Milk Stout, Tom Selleck Ale, Rip Van Winkle Vanilla Stout, Nacho Brau. The Drunken Hobo will soon replace the Mulligan Stout in the regular lineup, or so Franz Solo was told when he visited the other day. The Nacho Brau is another of Franz’s favorite seasonals. Get over to BBB before he drinks it all up.

Events: B3 has $3 beers every Tuesday from open to close. On Wednesday, B3 will be hosting their open mic from 8-10 p.m., with signups starting at 7:30 p.m. Check out B3’s karaoke night every Thursday starting at 8 p.m.

Canteen Brewhouse — (505) 881-2737

(Sun–Thurs noon–10 p.m., Fri–Sat noon–midnight)

Beers: Fog Nozzle Smoked Marzen, The Highlander Scottish Ale, Bender IPA, Irish Red, Rye PA, American Stout, Wine Barrel-Aged Belgian Golden, White Shine (White Wine), Tequila IPA. The Tequila IPA (8.3% ABV, 100+ IBU) was aged in tequila barrels for eight months and is now ready for public consumption. A recent addition to the taps is Fog Nozzle (5.7% ABV, 22 IBU), a rauchbier, which has all the smoky goodness you need for this sudden drop in temperature. The Highlander (5.2% ABV, 25 IBU) is a tasty Scottish ale, and yes, you can shout “there can be only one!” when you drink it. Just not too loud, don’t want to startle the wait staff and have them drop a beer or anything. Bender IPA (6.7% ABV, 85 IBU) was created when they mixed some of The Good Stuff and a Double IPA. The White Shine (9.75% ABV, 50 IBU) is a big old wheat wine that has some unique flavors. The Rye PA (7% ABV, 50 IBU) and the American Stout (7.4% ABV, 60 IBU) have been around a while, so get them while you can before they run out. I got to try the American Stout while interviewing brewer Brady McKeown about the name change to Canteen Brewhouse. It’s a big, bold, thick, mean-as-hell-yet-totally-lovable stout. It’s my kind of stout, and that’s saying something.

News: The other barrel-aged beers in the back, waiting to be tapped, are American Stock Ale in rum barrels and Panama Joe Coffee Stout in bourbon barrels.

Cazuela’s Seafood & Mexican Grill — (505) 994-9364

(Open daily 8 a.m.-10 p.m.)

Beers: Papacabra (Double IPA), Panama Red, Acapulco Gold (Mexican Lager), Hefeweizen, Chupacabra IPA, Piedra del Fuego Stoned Cream Ale, Beer for My Horses (Oatmeal Stout), Inebriator (Doppelbock). E-Rock and I had a chance to sample the Piedra del Fuego (5% ABV), which we both recommend. According to Cazuela’s menu: “This cream ale uses red-hot stones to super caramelize the sugars, creating a nutty, toffee-like flavor.” The Inebriator (8% ABV) and the Papacabra (9.7% ABV) are the biggest beers in the lineup.

Events: Cazuela’s now features a live guitarist every Friday.

News: Cazuela’s Beer for My Horses won a bronze medal in the oatmeal stout category at the World Beer Cup in Denver and also captured a gold medal in the stout category at the 2014 State Fair Pro-Am.

Chama River Brewing Company — (505) 342-1800

(Sun–Thurs 11 a.m.–11 p.m., Fri–Sat 11 a.m.–midnight)

Beers: Face Time Porter, Red River Ale, Old Town Oat Brown, Coney Pale Ale. The Red River (5.7% ABV, 33 IBU) is an ESB. The Old Town (5.6% ABV, 25 IBU) looks light in color but not in its dry, roasted flavor. The Face Time (6% ABV, 40 IBU) is a smooth, delectable porter. Let it open up a bit and taste even more flavors. The Coney Pale Ale (5.5% ABV, 45 IBU) is the newcomer to taps, made with Mosaic and Falconer’s Flight hops.

News: Head brewer Zach Guilmette has revamped the recipe for Chama’s Jackalope IPA to give it a stronger kick and tastier palate. Franz Solo and I also highly recommend you try the revamped Sleeping Dog Stout. It’s creamy and burly and sweet and roasted … it’s got everything you want in a stout.

Kaktus Brewing — (505) 379-5072

(Hours Mon-Thu 2-9 p.m., Fri-Sat 11:30-10 p.m., Sun 11:30-9 p.m.)

Beers: Oatmeal Stout, Gunslinger Cherry Smoked Brown, Helles Lager, ESB, Red Ale, German Alt Lager, Jabberwocky IPA, London Porter. Kaktus has seen a massive turnover in beers recently with the Oatmeal Stout, Helles Lager, ESB, Red Ale, and London Porter returning to taps. The newest beer to try is the Gunslinger Cherry Smoked Brown. Located at 471 South Hill Road in Bernalillo, Kaktus is one of the state’s newer breweries. It is a small, casual place, similar to Blue Heron in appearance and comfort factor. Kaktus owner Dana Koller said fans can expect the nanobrewery to go through its most popular styles quickly, though they will always have something new and exciting available as a replacement.

Events: Kaktus has several new weekday specials including $3 pints on Monday, $9 growlers on Tuesday, $6 bison nachos on Wednesday, and $8 Frito pie and beer on Thursday.

This Friday marks the anniversary of the end of Prohibition, so Kaktus is throwing a party. There will be $3 pints all day, with entertainment kicking off at 5 p.m. from the Desert Darlings and music from Cactus Quintet.

The Desert Darlings belly dancers will perform from 6 to 8 p.m. on Sunday. If you’ve never seen the Desert Darlings in person, you’re missing out.

News: For the remainder of the year, all growler refills at Kaktus are just $8. Talk about happy holidays!

La Cumbre Brewing — (505) 872-0225

(Open every day at noon)

UPDATED >>> Beers: Peek-a-Boob Porter, Lazy Sunday, Mind Phoq, C3-PA, Gracias Por Fumar. The Gracias is back with a Thursday release party (see above). Mind Phoq, a coffee pale ale, is an experimental new beer. It uses an Ethiopian light roast from Prosum Roasters and is lightly hopped to showcase the coffee flavor. As LC said on their Facebook page, “It’s so good it will blow your mind!” A recent addition is the C3-PA (6.2% ABV, 43 IBU), a pale ale brewed with Cascade, Centennial, and Chinook hops. The Lazy Sunday, a session IPA, is back on tap for the first time since April. The Peek-a-Boob Porter was made for charity, as $1 from every pint sold will go to the local YWCA to benefit early breast cancer awareness. Oh, and don’t panic about Project Dank and Red Ryeot no longer appearing here as seasonals. They are now part of La Cumbre’s regular lineup.

Events: Sunday morning yoga is back at La Cumbre this weekend. Starting at 10:45 a.m., get all nice and stretched out before football and pints. It’s just a $5 donation.

Lizard Tail Brewing — (505) 717-1301

(Sun–Weds 9 a.m.–11 p.m., Thurs–Sat 9 a.m.–midnight)

Beers: German Blonde Ale, Berliner Weisse, Belgian Abbey, IPA, Amber, Oatmeal Brown, India Black Ale, Rye Stout, Porter, Dubbel, Biscochito Brown. Both Brandon and I have had chances to visit Lizard Tail, which is one of the newest breweries in town, located in the shopping center on the southeast corner of Eubank and Montgomery. They specialize in malt-forward beers. The German Blonde (5.5% ABV, 20 IBU) is a good place to start. The Berliner Weisse (4.3% ABV, 8 IBU) is not nearly as sour as most of its genre. The Belgian Abbey (6.8%, 25 IBU) is a good example of its style. The IPA (6.8% ABV, 70 IBU) has a good mix of Mosaic, Warrior, and Galaxy hops. The Rye Stout (5.5% ABV, 35 IBU) has a nice flavor but lacks body. The first batch of Oatmeal Brown (4.2% ABV, 25 IBU) needed some work, but I got to sample the second batch that will be on tap soon and it’s improved. The Honey Pale Ale (6.3% ABV, 35 IBU) has run out for a little while, but it will be back soon. The Porter (5.6% ABV, 35 IBU) is a semi-smoky, thick beer that goes perfectly with the cooler weather. The Biscochito Brown (8.5% ABV, 25 IBU) is not overly sweet. The Lizard Tail staff said the next batch will be a little maltier.

News: Lizard Tail’s happy hour runs seven days a week from 3 to 6 p.m. You get $1 off food, flights, and pints.

Events: Every Tuesday at 8 p.m. Lizard Tail will host Geeks Who Drink.

The Jir Project will perform from 8:30 p.m. to midnight this Friday.

Marble Brewery — (505) 243-2739

(Mon–Sat noon–midnight, Sun noon–10:30 p.m.)

Beers: Double White, Double IPA, Imperial Red, Nitro Pub Ale, Pumpkin Noir, Reserve Ale, White Out. A fairly recent addition is White Out (9% ABV), a burly Belgian-style ale. The popular Pumpkin Noir is nearing the end of its run. The Nitro Pub Ale is what Boddington’s was meant to taste like. It’s a creamy little delight. This year’s batch of Reserve Ale is a cacophony of flavors. Both it and the Brett IPA (which is not on tap) are available for sale in bombers at Marble and up at Jubilation. There is also the rotating “black handle,” which tends to feature some impressive “secret” beers. The Double White and Imperial Red brought home gold medals from GABF.

Cask: Check out Marble’s cask (a.k.a. “real” ale) selection on tap every Friday at the Downtown Pub.

Events: Brewery tours occur at the Downtown Pub every Thursday at 5:30 p.m.

Nexus Brewery — (505) 242-4100

(Sun–Thurs 11 a.m.–10 p.m., Fri–Sat 11 a.m.–midnight)

Beers: Saisons Change, Dry Stout, Equinox Spiced Brown Ale, 2013 Barley Wine. Brewer Kaylynn McKnight cranked out one returning seasonal in the Equinox, which is back by popular demand, and popped an aged keg or two of the Barley Wine. We’ve been able to get over there and try the Saisons and Dry Stout and came away quite impressed. The Dry Stout is bold and thick, the kind of burly beer you want in the winter (or year-round if you’re like us). The Saisons Change packs a ton of flavor in every sip. It’s not spicy hot, but it will leave your tongue tingling with a strong Belgian yeast backbone behind the initial bite.

Events: Nexus serves up Happy Hour All Day on Tuesday featuring $3 pints. Also on Tuesday, Nexus will be hosting their comedy open mic, Young Dumb and Full of Comedy, starting at 7:30 p.m. in the Sun Room.

While “The Walking Dead” is done until early 2015, you can still play Walking Dead pinball in Nexus’ community room. It’s one of four pinball machines now available for some nostalgic fun.

Pi Brewing at Nicky V’s Neighborhood Pizzeria — (505) 890-9463

(Sun–Thurs 11 a.m.–9 p.m., Fri–Sat 11 a.m.–10 p.m.)

Beers: PiPA, West Coast Red, Bourbon Vanilla Porter, Lost Grain English Summer Ale, Pre-Prohibition Pilsner. While Pi Brewing is not open to the public yet, they are able to brew and serve their beers next door at Nicky V’s. The IPA and West Coast Red are both good hoppy beers. We’ll keep tabs on when Pi itself opens. For now, grab a pint and some tasty Italian food. The PiPA will now be a regular beer, replacing the Unchallenged IPA. The scrumptious Bourbon Vanilla Porter is back, replacing the Robust Porter.

Ponderosa Brewing Co. — (505) 639-5941

(Sun 11 a.m.–10 p.m., Mon–Sat 11 a.m.–11 p.m.)

Beers: Ghost Train IPA, Rip Saw Red, Crosscut Kolsch, Sawmill Stout, XPA1 Pale Ale, Helles Lager, Double IPA, Dunkel, Chocolate Pumpkin Porter, Schwarzbier, Breakfast Stout. Porter Pounder and I went over for the grand opening recently. Ponderosa is located at 1761 Bellamah NW, which is just east of Rio Grande and due north of the NM Natural History Museum, in the bottom floor of a swanky-looking apartment/retail complex. As for the beers, they are all the initial batches, so expect some modifications/changes going forward. Needless to say we both liked the Stout (5.2% ABV, 22 IBU) the best, but we’re dark beer guys (then again, you could also call us dark beer snobs, so consider that). Porter Pounder liked the XPA1 Pale Ale (5% ABV, 35 IBU), which will always be a rotating single-hop pale ale. The Crosscut Kolsch (4.9% ABV, 25 IBU) is almost like a Kolsch/hefeweizen hybrid. The Ghost Train (6.2% ABV, 75 IBU) needs some work, but the brewer has already identified what went wrong in the first batch and is working on correcting that for the next run. The Double IPA (7.7% ABV, 90 IBU) provides plenty of hops; it was briefly out, but it’s going to be back on tap soon. The Schwarzbier (4.7% ABV, 24 IBU) debuted recently. It’s smooth and flavorful. The new Breakfast Stout (7.3% ABV, 40 IBU) is a smoky, malty, yet smooth beast of a beer. It’s another sign that Ponderosa’s beers are getting better with each batch. The Dunkel is now on tap, replacing the Oktoberfest. There is also word of a “secret beer” due out later this week. Keep an eye on Ponderosa’s Facebook page for details.

News: The next batch of brews will include Dunkelweizen, Helles Hefeweizen, Ella Single Hop Pale Ale, and something called Marbelous.

Red Door Brewing — (505) 633-6675

(Mon–Thurs 2 p.m. to midnight, Fri–Sun noon to midnight)

Beers: (Regular) Gateway Blonde Ale, Roamer Red, Threshold IPA, Paint it Black Milk Stout, Unhinged Cider, Trapdoor Wheat. (Seasonal) Strong Scotch Ale. We were excited to try Red Door ever since they first invited us to visit many months ago. They are now open and their initial batches of beer are all quite good. The Roamer Red (6% ABV) was a favorite for Porter Pounder, sitting midway between hoppy reds like Marble and sweeter reds like the standard Irish variety. The Paint it Black (5.5%) is served on nitro, so it’s criminally smooth. The potent Threshold IPA (6.6% ABV) should appeal to local hopheads. Beware the Unhinged Cider as it checks in at 7.9 percent, but you don’t taste the alcohol. The first Red Door seasonal, Strong Scotch Ale, debuted recently. Don’t worry, we already stopped by and wrote up a quick review. You’re welcome, Albuquerque!

News: Take note of Red Door’s new weekday schedule for the winter months as they will now open at 2 p.m. instead of noon. Weekend hours remain the same.

UPDATED >>> Events: Tiffany Christopher will perform from 8 to 10 p.m. on Thursday.

Sandia Chile Grill — (505) 798-1970

(Mon–Sat 8 a.m.–8 p.m., Sun 8 a.m.–6 p.m.)

Beers: Irish Red, Rattlesnake IPA, Smoked Stout. We’re going to dispatch E-Rock (he needs a new assignment) to re-establish our lines of communication with Sandia Chile Grill.

News: Congrats to SCG on sweeping all three medals in the mead category at the 2014 State Fair Pro-Am, while also claiming a silver medal for Barb’s Barrel Hefeweizen.

The Stumbling Steer — (505) 792-7805

(Sunday-Wednesday 11 a.m.-midnight, Thursday-Saturday 11 a.m.-2 a.m.)

Beers: Bang Up Blonde, Hefferweizen, Pig Sticker Pale, Iron Horse IPA, Rawhide Red, Boneyard Brown, Hop Trough (Double IPA), Soiled Dove (Imperial Stout), Black IPA. While the brewery is being built in the back of the Steer, all of their house beers are being brewed off-site, but still using brewer Kirk Roberts’ recipes. The DIPA and the Stout are limited to two per customer, due to their high alcohol content (10% and 9.5% ABV, respectively). The Crew has already made two separate visits to the Steer to review the beer and food. We enjoyed it all. The Black IPA is the current seasonal beer, plus there are often one or two cask beers. We recently had their Bacon Bourbon Stout and Green Chile IPA on cask. Franz Solo loved the latter.

Tractor Brewing Company — (505) 433-5654 (Nob Hill Tap Room), TBA (Wells Park)

(Nob Hill is open Monday-Wednesday 3 p.m. to midnight, Thursday 3 p.m. to 2 a.m., Friday-Saturday 1 p.m. to 2 a.m., Sunday 1 p.m. to midnight; Wells Park is open Monday-Thursday 3 p.m. to close, Friday-Sunday 1 p.m. to midnight.
 Last call 30 minutes before close. 
No package after midnight.
 Brewery tours Saturday at 1 p.m.)

UPDATED >>> Beers at Nob Hill: Berry Cider, Barnstorm Ale, Little Red Rye-ding Hood, Turkey Drool, Mustachio Milk Stout, Javi Light Lager, Jack the Sipper.

Beers at Wells Park only: La Llorona Dry Hop Amber, Pilsner #15. All of the Nob Hill seasonals are also at Wells Park, which has 24 total taps (Tractor’s five regular beers have two taps apiece). We love us some Turkey Drool (8% ABV) this time of year. It’s a brown ale with all sorts of holiday-themed spices and other added ingredients. This year’s batch is arguably the best yet. The Little Red (5.8% ABV) has a malty rye kick. Jack the Sipper (7% ABV) is Tractor’s take on a spiced pumpkin ale.

News: Congrats to Tractor and their Mustachio Milk Stout, which won in the Best of Albuquerque competition from ABQ the Magazine.

Mustachio’s bigger, meaner brother, Luna de los Muertos Russian Imperial Stout, is aging in the back, including some in a barrel. Oh, man, that could kill us … but we’d die happy.

Events: The Thirsty Thursday music series is back at Wells Park with Carlos The Tall performing at 8 p.m.

The In the Mix series is back Saturday at Wells Park as DJ Flo Fader performs at 9 p.m.

I’ll Drink to That returns to Wells Park on Sunday from 4 to 7 p.m. with a dozen vendors for a holiday market and a dozen performers to entertain you while you shop and drink.

Tuesday will see the return of Poetry and Beer: Open Mic and Slam at Wells Park at 7 p.m.

Also, every first Monday of the month at both Tractor locations is Beer for a Better Burque night. For every pint you buy $1 can go to one of four charities that have partnered with Tractor. You can also opt to purchase a special growler with the logo of your favorite charity.

Turtle Mountain Brewing Company — (505) 994-9497

(Kitchen hours: Mon–Tues 11 a.m.-8:30 p.m., Wed–Thurs 11 a.m.-9 p.m., Fri–Sat 11 a.m.-9:30 p.m., Sun 10:30 a.m.-8:30 p.m. Reminder: TMBC closes early when business dictates. Please call.)

Beers: (House) McDay’s Cream Ale, Oku Amber, Parasol White IPA, Hopshell IPA, Piedra Lisa Porter, Heidelberg Helles. (Seasonal/specialty) Cascade Session Pale Ale, Uberaltbier, A Little Somethin’ Pumpkin, Rio Grande Tortoise Black IPA. To help us out for now and the future, brewer Tim Woodward broke down what will be the regular beers on tap (under House) and the current list of seasonals. That’s a pretty solid regular lineup. I personally really enjoyed the Porter and Amber, the latter of which trumps most of its genre in terms of flavor. The Heidelberg Helles (5.1% ABV, 25 IBU) has rejoined the regular lineup for good, or so Tim hopes. A Little Somethin’ Pumpkin is served on nitro. The most recent addition to the lineup is the Rio Grande Tortoise Black IPA, a collaboration brew with Bosque that was created for a recent beer dinner. Now it’s on tap for everyone to enjoy.

Santa Fe breweries

Blue Corn Brewery — (505) 438-1800

(Daily 11 a.m.–10 p.m.)

Beers: Russian Imperial Stout, Monks Mesa (Belgian Blonde), Meltdown Chocolate Porter, Rakau Single Hop IPA. The Monks Mesa (4.5% ABV, 15 IBU) is a Belgian blonde table beer. The Imperial Stout is a behemoth of a beer that our Santa Fe writer Luke got to enjoy at a recent release party. The Meltdown used no less than 25 pounds of cocoa nibs. The Rakau, using a powerful New Zealand hop, will debut this Friday.

News: Don’t forget, Draft Station ABQ has the Russian Imperial Stout on tap. A few of us went down this past weekend to get some pints. It was just as good as Luke and James promised.

Next up in the beer list are a Winter Warmer, likely due out this coming Monday, and a White DIPA.

Events: Blue Corn’s holiday party is set for December. We’ll have more info as we get closer to the date.

Duel Brewing Company — (505) 474-5301

(Sun 11 a.m.–8 p.m., Mon–Tues 11 a.m.–10 p.m., Wed–Sat 11 a.m.–midnight)

Beers: Danae (Golden Sour Ale), Bad Amber, Fiction (IPA), Fantin (Double Pale Ale), Marcel (Witbier), Whistler (Blonde), Whistler on Wood (Oak-aged Blonde), Titian (Golden Strong), Dark Ryder (Dark Strong), Grunewald (Imperial Porter). The lineup got a shakeup with some big beers joining the rotation. Titian, Dark Ryder, and Grunewald all check in at 11-percent ABV. The Whistler on Wood is a oak barrel-aged version of the blonde ale. It’s only slightly higher (4.2% ABV) than the regular Whistler (4% ABV).

News: The Goya Stout (15.9% ABV) is due out soon. No, that ABV is not a typo. It’s that big. Please, oh please, bottle that and send it down to us via Jubilation.

Events: The life drawing session is $25 and is held each Sunday morning from 11-1 (although they are not open to the drinking public till 1 p.m. on Sun). You get the beverage of your choice, a Brussels-style waffle made with their own yeast and beer and then served with a Grunewald Syrup. Everyone then draws from a nude model. People can sign up through the website or call the brewery to reserve a spot.

Santa Fe Brewing Company — (505) 424-3333

(Mon–Sat 11 a.m.–10 p.m., closed on Sunday)

Beers: Double White IPA, Deviator Doppelbock, Full Mast Kilt Scotch Ale, Black IPA. The first beer in the new Ever Changing Series is a Double White IPA, which Luke of the Brew Crew bullpen recently reviewed. The Kriek, which won a bronze medal at GABF this year, is on sale around the state in bombers, though it is no longer on tap.

Events: $1 Off Growler Refills in the Tasting Room on Mondays. $2 pint Tuesdays at the Eldorado Taphouse. On Wednesday, there is a $2 Pint Special in the SFBC Tasting Room, and the Sangre de Cristo Craft Brewers’ Meeting will be held at 6:30 p.m. at the Tasting Room as well on the third Wednesday of every month. On Thursday, there will be $1 Off Growler Refills at the Eldorado Taphouse.

News: SFBC will soon be opening a taproom in Albuquerque. Here are all the details that Luke, our Santa Fe correspondent, could find. It sounds promising.

Second Street Brewery — (505) 989-3278 (Railyard), (505) 982-3030 (original location)

(Mon–Thurs 11 a.m.–10 p.m., Fri–Sat 11 a.m.–11 p.m., Sunday noon-9 p.m.)

UPDATED >>> Beers: Kolsch, International Pale Ale, Cream Stout, Imperial Porter, Boneshaker Bitter, Rod’s Best Bitter, Fulcrum IPA, Berliner Weisse. The new International Pale Ale and Imperial Porter make their debuts this week, while the Pivotal IPA is back after a short absence. With the shift to December, some holiday beers are also on the way. The Anniversary Ale will see its recipe tweaked and will now feature a blend of Millennium, Columbus, Chinook, Citra, and Comet hops. The Festivus Ale will be due out around Dec. 18 in time for the next Cask-n-Curry Night. Also coming soon will be Trebuchet Imperial IPA, which completes a “trilogy” with Pivotal and Fulcrum IPAs. The Hull Melon Pilsner will also return for those who need a break from big hops.

Events: Saturday is Second Street’s 18th anniversary, though they’re holding off on a party until Dec. 12-13. Check back for more details next week.

That’s all because this Saturday is the For One of Our Own Festival, with proceeds going to fight breast cancer. There will be live music all day at the original location from noon to 11 p.m. There will also be a silent auction. Click on Second Street’s website for more details, or better yet, sign up for their monthly newsletter.

Also this weekend, MV III performs Friday night at the original location. Shows at the Railyard will feature Santa Fe Revue on Friday and Red Racer on Saturday.

Every Wednesday night, both SSB locations host Game Night. SSB has game boards and dominoes or bring your own … oh yeah, they also have discounted pitchers!

Other breweries you need to visit

Twisted Chile Brewing — (575) 835-2949

(Mon–Thurs 11 a.m.–9 p.m., Fri–Sun 11 a.m.–11 p.m.)

Beers: Pilabo Pale Ale, 790 IPA, Quebradas Sunrise Amber, German Pilsner. Twisted Chile has been open for a while as a restaurant, but as the name might imply, they are also brewing their own beer on site. Located in Socorro at 115 Abeyta St. W, they are the first brewery there to brew on site since Socorro Springs outsourced their brewing to Eddyline in Colorado. I got to head down there recently and enjoyed all the beers I sampled. Kudos to Twisted Chile for bring quality craft beers back to a town that needed ‘em. The newest beer on tap is the pilsner. They haven’t come up with a catchy name yet, but the staff seems to already be in love with this new style.

News: The popular Venom XL IPA will be back soon.

Events: Twisted Chile has specials running during Monday and Thursday Night Football every week.

* * * *

That’s all for this week! If you have any questions or comments, leave them below or contact us on our Facebook page.

Cheers!

— Stoutmeister

Greetings, New Mexico craft beer lovers. Stoutmeister here with the reunified edition of The Week Ahead in Beer. This column covers all the breweries in Bernalillo and Sandoval counties, with Santa Fe’s four breweries and one newcomer down in Socorro also joining the party. We tried hard to keep the state edition going, but without participation from the breweries outside the I-25 corridor, it was futile.

Stoutmeister puts on his serious face to handle The Week Ahead in Beer.

Stoutmeister puts on his serious face to handle The Week Ahead in Beer.

The whole “let’s give thanks” bit that writers pull out every year is a bit trite, but heck, why not do that here? Thank you to all of our local breweries for all that they do for us. Sometimes New Mexico is a frustrating place to live. The job market is terrible, our educational system is useless, the politicians are corrupt, the Lobo football team can’t ever seem to win, and dear lord, don’t even get us all started on either the whacked-out weather or the dreadful drivers on our streets and highways. In many ways, our craft beer scene is our escape from all the bad around here. Our brewers work hard, create great beers (they have the GABF medals to prove it, too), and help us get through our dark days and nights. So make sure the next time you’re at a brewery to thank the folks that work there. It’s not always glamorous — trust us, we know after brewing two beers in the last two weeks at Canteen and Chama River — but it is a great profession and we are all lucky to have these folks in our lives.

On the new beer front, it’s a little quiet, but that’s to be expected considering this is a holiday week and all. Boxing Bear’s first non-beer, Apple Bear Cider, is now available. Canteen’s barrel-aged Tequila IPA is now on tap for the general public. Chama River’s Face Time Porter is a beer worthy of assistant brewer David Facey’s name. Kaktus has the new Gunslinger Cherry Smoked Brown available, plus several other classic favorites are back for another run. La Cumbre’s C3-PA was not brewed in a galaxy far, far away, but right here. Tractor’s annual holiday awesomeness, Turkey Drool, is back on tap just in time for Thanksgiving.

Up in Santa Fe, Duel is busting out the big guns with Titian, Dark Ryder, and Grunewald all back on tap, along with Whistler on Wood (see below), plus Goya Stout will return soon. Down in Socorro, a new German-style pilsner is on tap at Twisted Chile.

Continue reading for all the news that is fit to blog for the week of Nov. 24.

To break down each “capsule,” I listed the brewery (with Web page linked), its phone number and hours of operation. Under “Beers” are the new or seasonal beers on tap for this week.

Albuquerque metro area breweries

ABQ Brew Pub — (505) 884-1116

(Mon–Thurs 11 a.m.–midnight, Fri–Sat 11 a.m.–2 a.m., Sunday 10 a.m.–midnight)

Beers: Petrus Aged Ale, Petrus Aged Red. Petrus Aged Ale and Red are high alcohol barrel-aged sours from a family-owned brewery in Flanders. Several times a year, ABP serves up the latest creation by local brewing hero and winner of the Samuel Adams Longshot competition, Ben Miller, or seasonal releases by Monks Brewing.

Back Alley Draft House — (505) 766-8590

(Hours 4 p.m.-11 p.m. daily)

Beers: Soroche IPA, Pre-Prohibition Malt Tonic, Ladron’s Peak. In case you missed it, we recently interviewed BADH’s new brewer, Brandon Venaglia. There are some exciting times coming, including a possible expansion. In the meantime, the new Pre-Prohibition Malt Tonic will debut Friday at 6 p.m. This dark American lager was based on a 110-year-old recipe and will now become a regular beer at BADH.

Events: Sundays will now be Service Nights at Back Alley, with $2 off all beers for service industry workers. There will also be a “Walking Dead” viewing party at 7 p.m. They will have “The Walker” Pizza Special.

Bosque Brewing Company — (505) 750-7596

(Mon–Thurs 11 a.m.–10 p.m., Fri–Sat 11 a.m.-11 p.m., Sun noon-8 p.m.)

Beers: Feral IPA, PSA (Pumpkin Spice Ale), Kindling Golden Ale, AdoptEx English Pale Ale, Olde Bosky Porter, Cottonwood Anniversary Ale. The Cottonwood is a big old double red ale, similar to but still different than Marble’s Imperial Red; there’s more malt backbone here, a little less hop bite, but it’s still excellent. Also back on tap is an old favorite in the Olde Bosky Porter. The Bosque Lager will now be on tap year round, replacing the Kindling, which moves to the seasonal list (this is much as Driftwood Oatmeal Stout replaced Olde Bosky earlier this year). The Feral IPA should quench your need for hops. For every pint of AdoptEx English PA sold, $1 will be donated to the Adoption Exchange of Albuqueqrue.

Cask: Bosque is taking a short break from doing a cask.

News: Construction continues on Bosque’s new taproom, the Bosque Public House, located on Girard just south of Central. Bosque has also signed a lease on a new taproom in Las Cruces, located in the former Mimbres Valley space across from New Mexico State at the corner of University Ave. and Espina St.

Bosque has a happy hour running from 3-6 p.m. Monday through Thursday and all day on Sunday. Look for special menu items and get $1 off your favorite pints.

Boxing Bear Brewing Company — (505) 897-2327

(Sun-Thurs 11 a.m.-10 p.m., Fri-Sat 11 a.m.-11 p.m.)

Beers: Paw Swipe Pale Ale, Hairy Mit Hefe, Standing 8 Stout, Ambear Ale, Uppercut IPA, Punkelweizen, Oso Otono, Apple Bear Cider. The new kid here is Apple Bear Cider. Oso Otono, an oatmeal lager, looks like a standard ale in color but tastes like a robust brown. Another recent addition is Punkelweizen, a pumpkin/dunkelweizen hybrid. Their Facebook page described it as “liquid banana bread.” Other recent additions to the lineup are the Standing 8 Stout (6.3% ABV, 45 IBU) and Ambear Ale (5.2% ABV, 35 IBU).

UPDATED >>> Cask: Yup, Boxing Bear is doing a cask. This Friday is Standing 8 Stout aged with French Oak. Oh, BBBC, you shouldn’t have. But we’re glad you did.

UPDATED >>> News: Boxing Bear now has a happy hour. 10-, 16-, and 22-ounce beers are all discounted from 3 to 6 p.m. Monday through Thursday. Growler Happy Hour then runs from 6 p.m. to close on those nights. Get $2 off a growler fill and $1 off a half-growler (they call ‘em “squealers”).

Also, every day at lunchtime (11 a.m. to 3 p.m.), for just $10 you can get a pint and a panini of your choice.

Broken Bottle Brewery — (505) 890-8777

(Mon–Weds 4-11 p.m., Thurs-Fri 4 p.m.–midnight, Sat noon–midnight, Sun noon–10 p.m.)

Beers: Stray Dog IPA, Cactus Juice, Peculiar Pumpkin Porter, Drunken Hobo Milk Stout, Debacle Pumpkin Ale. Cactus Juice is made with actual prickly pears. The most recent additions to the taps are the Drunken Hobo Milk Stout and the Debacle Pumpkin Ale. Compare that to the Peculiar Pumpkin Porter and see which is the better style.

Events: B3 has $3 beers every Tuesday from open to close. On Wednesday, B3 will be hosting their open mic from 8-10 p.m., with signups starting at 7:30 p.m. Check out B3’s karaoke night every Thursday starting at 8 p.m.

Canteen Brewhouse — (505) 881-2737

(Sun–Thurs noon–10 p.m., Fri–Sat noon–midnight)

Beers: Fog Nozzle Smoked Marzen, The Highlander Scottish Ale, Bender IPA, Irish Red, Rye PA, American Stout, The Good Stuff, White Shine (White Wine), Tequila IPA. The Tequila IPA (8.3% ABV, 100+ IBU) was aged in tequila barrels for eight months and is now ready for public consumption. A recent addition to the taps is Fog Nozzle (5.7% ABV, 22 IBU), a rauchbier, which has all the smoky goodness you need for this sudden drop in temperature. The Highlander (5.2% ABV, 25 IBU) is a tasty Scottish ale, and yes, you can shout “there can be only one!” when you drink it. Just not too loud, don’t want to startle the wait staff and have them drop a beer or anything. Bender IPA (6.7% ABV, 85 IBU) was created when they mixed some of The Good Stuff and a Double IPA. The White Shine (9.75% ABV, 50 IBU) is a big old wheat wine that has some unique flavors. Another recent addition to the lineup is The Good Stuff (5.7% ABV, 70 IBU), a session IPA. The Rye PA (7% ABV, 50 IBU) and the American Stout (7.4% ABV, 60 IBU) are fairly recent additions. I got to try the American Stout while interviewing brewer Brady McKeown about the name change to Canteen Brewhouse. It’s a big, bold, thick, mean-as-hell-yet-totally-lovable stout. It’s my kind of stout, and that’s saying something.

News: The other barrel-aged beers in the back, waiting to be tapped, are American Stock Ale in rum barrels, Belgian Strong Golden in wine barrels, and Panama Joe Coffee Stout in bourbon barrels.

Cazuela’s Seafood & Mexican Grill — (505) 994-9364

(Open daily 8 a.m.-10 p.m.)

Beers: Papacabra (Double IPA), Panama Red, Acapulco Gold (Mexican Lager), Hefeweizen, Chupacabra IPA, Piedra del Fuego Stoned Cream Ale, Beer for My Horses (Oatmeal Stout), Inebriator (Doppelbock). E-Rock and I had a chance to sample the Piedra del Fuego (5% ABV), which we both recommend. According to Cazuela’s menu: “This cream ale uses red-hot stones to super caramelize the sugars, creating a nutty, toffee-like flavor.” The Inebriator (8% ABV) and the Papacabra (9.7% ABV) are the biggest beers in the lineup.

Events: Cazuela’s now features a live guitarist every Friday.

News: Cazuela’s Beer for My Horses won a bronze medal in the oatmeal stout category at the World Beer Cup in Denver and also captured a gold medal in the stout category at the 2014 State Fair Pro-Am.

Chama River Brewing Company — (505) 342-1800

(Sun–Thurs 11 a.m.–11 p.m., Fri–Sat 11 a.m.–midnight)

Beers: Face Time Porter, Red River Ale, Old Town Oat Brown, Chamahawk Xtra Pale Ale. The Red River (5.7% ABV, 33 IBU) is an ESB. The Old Town (5.6% ABV, 25 IBU) and Chamahawk (6% ABV, 60 IBU) just went on tap. The Face Time (6% ABV, 40 IBU) is a smooth, delectable porter. Let it open up a bit and taste even more flavors.

News: Head brewer Zach Guilmette has revamped the recipe for Chama’s Jackalope IPA to give it a stronger kick and tastier palate. Franz Solo and I also highly recommend you try the revamped Sleeping Dog Stout. It’s creamy and burly and sweet and roasted … it’s got everything you want in a stout.

Kaktus Brewing — (505) 379-5072

(Hours Mon-Thu 2-9 p.m., Fri-Sat 11:30-10 p.m., Sun 11:30-9 p.m.)

Beers: Oatmeal Stout, Gunslinger Cherry Smoked Brown, Helles Lager, ESB, Red Ale, German Alt Lager, Jabberwocky IPA, London Porter. Kaktus has seen a massive turnover in beers this week with the Oatmeal Stout, Helles Lager, ESB, Red Ale, and London Porter now returning to taps. The new beer to try is the Gunslinger Cherry Smoked Brown. Located at 471 South Hill Road in Bernalillo, Kaktus is one of the state’s newer breweries. It is a small, casual place, similar to Blue Heron in appearance and comfort factor. Kaktus owner Dana Koller said fans can expect the nanobrewery to go through its most popular styles quickly, though they will always have something new and exciting available as a replacement.

Events: Kaktus has several new weekday specials including $3 pints on Monday, $9 growlers on Tuesday, $6 bison nachos on Wednesday, and $8 Frito pie and beer on Thursday.

The Desert Darlings belly dancers will perform from 6 to 8 p.m. on Sunday. If you’ve never seen the Desert Darlings in person, you’re missing out.

News: For the remainder of the year, all growler refills at Kaktus are just $8. Talk about happy holidays!

La Cumbre Brewing — (505) 872-0225

(Open every day at noon)

Beers: Peek-a-Boob Porter, Lazy Sunday, Ahh Helles Yes, C3-PA. New to taps is the C3-PA, a new pale ale. The Ahh Helles Yes is, as you might guess, a Helles-style lager. The Lazy Sunday, a session IPA, is back on tap for the first time since April. The Peek-a-Boob Porter was made for charity, as $1 from every pint sold will go to the local YWCA to benefit early breast cancer awareness. Oh, and don’t panic about Project Dank and Red Ryeot no longer appearing here as seasonals. They are now part of La Cumbre’s regular lineup.

Lizard Tail Brewing — (505) 717-1301

(Sun–Weds 9 a.m.–11 p.m., Thurs–Sat 9 a.m.–midnight)

Beers: German Blonde Ale, Berliner Weisse, Belgian Abbey, IPA, Amber, Oatmeal Brown, India Black Ale, Rye Stout, Porter, Dubbel, Biscochito Brown. Both Brandon and I have had chances to visit Lizard Tail, which is one of the newest breweries in town, located in the shopping center on the southeast corner of Eubank and Montgomery. They specialize in malt-forward beers. The German Blonde (5.5% ABV, 20 IBU) is a good place to start. The Berliner Weisse (4.3% ABV, 8 IBU) is not nearly as sour as most of its genre. The Belgian Abbey (6.8%, 25 IBU) is a good example of its style. The IPA (6.8% ABV, 70 IBU) has a good mix of Mosaic, Warrior, and Galaxy hops. The Rye Stout (5.5% ABV, 35 IBU) has a nice flavor but lacks body. The first batch of Oatmeal Brown (4.2% ABV, 25 IBU) needed some work, but I got to sample the second batch that will be on tap soon and it’s improved. The Honey Pale Ale (6.3% ABV, 35 IBU) has run out for a little while, but it will be back soon. The Porter (5.6% ABV, 35 IBU) is a semi-smoky, thick beer that goes perfectly with the cooler weather. The Biscochito Brown (8.5% ABV, 25 IBU) is not overly sweet. The Lizard Tail staff said the next batch will be a little maltier.

News: Lizard Tail’s happy hour runs seven days a week from 3 to 6 p.m. You get $1 off food, flights, and pints.

Events: Every Tuesday at 8 p.m. Lizard Tail will host Geeks Who Drink.

Marble Brewery — (505) 243-2739

(Mon–Sat 1 p.m.–midnight, Sun 1 p.m.–10:30 p.m.)

Beers: Double White, Double IPA, Imperial Red, Pumpkin Ale, Pumpkin Noir, Reserve Ale, White Out. New to taps is White Out (9% ABV), a burly Belgian-style ale. The popular Pumpkin Noir is back along with its cousin, the regular Pumpkin Ale. Otherwise it’s a relatively light seasonal list as Marble is at capacity brewing the regular beers for distribution. There is the rotating “black handle,” which tends to feature some impressive “secret” beers. The Double White and Imperial Red brought home gold medals from GABF.

Cask: Check out Marble’s cask (a.k.a. “real” ale) selection on tap every Friday at the Downtown Pub.

Events: Brewery tours occur at the Downtown Pub every Thursday at 5:30 p.m. There won’t be one this week due to the holiday.

Nexus Brewery — (505) 242-4100

(Sun–Thurs 11 a.m.–10 p.m., Fri–Sat 11 a.m.–midnight)

Beers: Saisons Change, Dry Stout, Equinox Spiced Brown Ale, 2013 Barley Wine. Brewer Kaylynn McKnight cranked out one returning seasonal in the Equinox, which is back by popular demand, and popped an aged keg or two of the Barley Wine. We’ve been able to get over there and try the Saisons and Dry Stout and came away quite impressed. The Dry Stout is bold and thick, the kind of burly beer you want in the winter (or year-round if you’re like us). The Saisons Change packs a ton of flavor in every sip. It’s not spicy hot, but it will leave your tongue tingling with a strong Belgian yeast backbone behind the initial bite.

Events: Nexus serves up Happy Hour All Day on Tuesday featuring $3 pints. Also on Tuesday, Nexus will be hosting their comedy open mic, Young Dumb and Full of Comedy, starting at 7:30 p.m. in the Sun Room.

All throughout November, Nexus is having an Ugly Sweater Contest. Post a photo of yourself in the ugliest sweater you can find on Nexus’ Facebook or Twitter feeds and you will have a chance to win a $25 gift card. There are weekly draws.

Nexus is hosting “The Walking Dead” viewing parties every Sunday in the community room at 6 p.m. If you need a break from zombies, they’ve installed four pinball machines in the community room as well.

Pi Brewing at Nicky V’s Neighborhood Pizzeria — (505) 890-9463

(Sun–Thurs 11 a.m.–9 p.m., Fri–Sat 11 a.m.–10 p.m.)

UPDATED >>> Beers: PiPA, West Coast Red, Bourbon Vanilla Porter, Lost Grain English Summer Ale, Pre-Prohibition Pilsner. While Pi Brewing is not open to the public yet, they are able to brew and serve their beers next door at Nicky V’s. The IPA and West Coast Red are both good hoppy beers. We’ll keep tabs on when Pi itself opens. For now, grab a pint and some tasty Italian food. The PiPA will now be a regular beer, replacing the Unchallenged IPA. The scrumptious Bourbon Vanilla Porter is back, replacing the Robust Porter.

Ponderosa Brewing Co. — (505) 639-5941

(Sun 11 a.m.–10 p.m., Mon–Sat 11 a.m.–11 p.m.)

Beers: Ghost Train IPA, Rip Saw Red, Crosscut Kolsch, Sawmill Stout, XPA1 Pale Ale, Helles Lager, Double IPA, Oktoberfest, Chocolate Pumpkin Porter, Schwarzbier, Breakfast Stout. Porter Pounder and I went over for the grand opening recently. Ponderosa is located at 1761 Bellamah NW, which is just east of Rio Grande and due north of the NM Natural History Museum, in the bottom floor of a swanky-looking apartment/retail complex. As for the beers, they are all the initial batches, so expect some modifications/changes going forward. Needless to say we both liked the Stout (5.2% ABV, 22 IBU) the best, but we’re dark beer guys (then again, you could also call us dark beer snobs, so consider that). Porter Pounder liked the XPA1 Pale Ale (5% ABV, 35 IBU), which will always be a rotating single-hop pale ale. The Crosscut Kolsch (4.9% ABV, 25 IBU) is almost like a Kolsch/hefeweizen hybrid. The Ghost Train (6.2% ABV, 75 IBU) needs some work, but the brewer has already identified what went wrong in the first batch and is working on correcting that for the next run. The Double IPA (7.7% ABV, 90 IBU) provides plenty of hops; it was briefly out, but it’s going to be back on tap soon. The Oktoberfest (5.7% ABV, 17 IBU) is an interesting variation on the traditional style; we tasted wheat malts in the mix. The Schwarzbier (4.7% ABV, 24 IBU) debuted recently. It’s smooth and flavorful. The new Breakfast Stout (7.3% ABV, 40 IBU) is a smoky, malty, yet smooth beast of a beer. It’s another sign that Ponderosa’s beers are getting better with each batch.

News: The next batch of brews will include Dunkles, Dunkelweizen, Helles Hefeweizen, Ella Single Hop Pale Ale, and something called Marbelous.

Red Door Brewing — (505) 633-6675

(Mon–Thurs 2 p.m. to midnight, Fri–Sun noon to midnight)

Beers: (Regular) Gateway Blonde Ale, Roamer Red, Threshold IPA, Paint it Black Milk Stout, Unhinged Cider, Trapdoor Wheat. (Seasonal) Strong Scotch Ale. We were excited to try Red Door ever since they first invited us to visit many months ago. They are now open and their initial batches of beer are all quite good. The Roamer Red (6% ABV) was a favorite for Porter Pounder, sitting midway between hoppy reds like Marble and sweeter reds like the standard Irish variety. The Paint it Black (5.5%) is served on nitro, so it’s criminally smooth. The potent Threshold IPA (6.6% ABV) should appeal to local hopheads. Beware the Unhinged Cider as it checks in at 7.9 percent, but you don’t taste the alcohol. The first Red Door seasonal, Strong Scotch Ale, debuted over the weekend. Don’t worry, we already stopped by and wrote up a quick review. You’re welcome, Albuquerque!

News: Take note of Red Door’s new weekday schedule for the winter months as they will now open at 2 p.m. instead of noon. Weekend hours remain the same.

Today (Wednesday) and Friday, Red Door will fill your 64-ounce growler for just $6.50 and 32-ounce growlers for $3.50.

Sandia Chile Grill — (505) 798-1970

(Mon–Sat 8 a.m.–8 p.m., Sun 8 a.m.–6 p.m.)

Beers: Irish Red, Rattlesnake IPA, Smoked Stout. We’re going to dispatch E-Rock (he needs a new assignment) to re-establish our lines of communication with Sandia Chile Grill.

News: Congrats to SCG on sweeping all three medals in the mead category at the 2014 State Fair Pro-Am, while also claiming a silver medal for Barb’s Barrel Hefeweizen.

The Stumbling Steer — (505) 792-7805

(Sunday-Wednesday 11 a.m.-midnight, Thursday-Saturday 11 a.m.-2 a.m.)

Beers: Bang Up Blonde, Hefferweizen, Pig Sticker Pale, Iron Horse IPA, Rawhide Red, Boneyard Brown, Hop Trough (Double IPA), Soiled Dove (Imperial Stout), Black IPA. While the brewery is being built in the back of the Steer, all of their house beers are being brewed off-site, but still using brewer Kirk Roberts’ recipes. The DIPA and the Stout are limited to two per customer, due to their high alcohol content (10% and 9.5% ABV, respectively). The Crew has already made two separate visits to the Steer to review the beer and food. We enjoyed it all. The Black IPA is the current seasonal beer, plus there are often one or two cask beers. We recently had their Bacon Bourbon Stout and Green Chile IPA on cask. Franz Solo loved the latter.

Tractor Brewing Company — (505) 433-5654 (Nob Hill Tap Room), TBA (Wells Park)

(Nob Hill is open Monday-Wednesday 3 p.m. to midnight, Thursday 3 p.m. to 2 a.m., Friday-Saturday 1 p.m. to 2 a.m., Sunday 1 p.m. to midnight; Wells Park is open Monday-Thursday 3 p.m. to close, Friday-Sunday 1 p.m. to midnight.
 Last call 30 minutes before close. 
No package after midnight.
 Brewery tours Saturday at 1 p.m.)

UPDATED >>> Beers at Nob Hill: Berry Cider, Barnstorm Ale, Little Red Rye-ding Hood, Bulls-Eye PA, Javi Light Lager, Jack the Sipper.

Beers at Wells Park only: La Llorona Dry Hop Amber, Pilsner #15, Mustachio Milk Stout, Pilsner #15, 4 Seasons 1 Week Cider, Turkey Drool. All of the Nob Hill seasonals are also at Wells Park, which has 24 total taps (Tractor’s five regular beers have two taps apiece). We love us some Turkey Drool this time of year. It’s a brown ale with all sorts of holiday-themed spices and other added ingredients. Fill your growlers for Thanksgiving. Two of the beers on tap were brewed up for Tractor’s 15th anniversary. The Little Red has a malty rye kick. The Bulls-Eye is a solid IPA. Jack the Sipper (7% ABV) is Tractor’s take on a spiced pumpkin ale.

News: The Luna de los Muertos Russian Imperial Stout is aging in the back, including some in a barrel. Oh, man, that could kill us … but we’d die happy.

Events: The In the Mix series is back Saturday at Wells Park as Cloudface performs at 9 p.m.

Tuesday will see the return of Music for What ALES You — 80’s Night at Wells Park as Casey Mraz performs at 8 p.m.

Also, every first Monday of the month at both Tractor locations is Beer for a Better Burque night, which includes this coming Monday. For every pint you buy $1 can go to one of four charities that have partnered with Tractor. You can also opt to purchase a special growler with the logo of your favorite charity.

Turtle Mountain Brewing Company — (505) 994-9497

(Kitchen hours: Mon–Tues 11 a.m.-8:30 p.m., Wed–Thurs 11 a.m.-9 p.m., Fri–Sat 11 a.m.-9:30 p.m., Sun 10:30 a.m.-8:30 p.m. Reminder: TMBC closes early when business dictates. Please call.)

Beers: (House) McDay’s Cream Ale, Oku Amber, Parasol White IPA, Hopshell IPA, Piedra Lisa Porter, Heidelberg Helles. (Seasonal/specialty) Cascade Session Pale Ale, Uberaltbier, A Little Somethin’ Pumpkin, Rio Grande Tortoise Black IPA. To help us out for now and the future, brewer Tim Woodward broke down what will be the regular beers on tap (under House) and the current list of seasonals. That’s a pretty solid regular lineup. I personally really enjoyed the Porter and Amber, the latter of which trumps most of its genre in terms of flavor. The Heidelberg Helles (5.1% ABV, 25 IBU) has rejoined the regular lineup for good, or so Tim hopes. A Little Somethin’ Pumpkin is served on nitro. The most recent addition to the lineup is the Rio Grande Tortoise Black IPA, a collaboration brew with Bosque that was created for a recent beer dinner. Now it’s on tap for everyone to enjoy.

Santa Fe breweries

Blue Corn Brewery — (505) 438-1800

(Daily 11 a.m.–10 p.m.)

Beers: Russian Imperial Stout, Monks Mesa (Belgian Blonde), Meltdown Chocolate Porter, Rakau Single Hop IPA. The Monks Mesa (4.5% ABV, 15 IBU) is a Belgian blonde table beer. The Imperial Stout is a behemoth of a beer that our Santa Fe writer Luke got to enjoy at a recent release party. The Meltdown used no less than 25 pounds of cocoa nibs. The Rakau, using a powerful New Zealand hop, will debut this Friday.

News: Don’t forget, Draft Station ABQ has the Russian Imperial Stout on tap. A few of us went down this past weekend to get some pints. It was just as good as Luke and James promised.

Next up in the beer list are a Winter Warmer, likely due out around Dec. 8, and a White DIPA, which will be brewed next week.

Events: Blue Corn’s holiday party is set for December. We’ll have more info as we get close to the date.

Duel Brewing Company — (505) 474-5301

(Sun 11 a.m.–8 p.m., Mon–Tues 11 a.m.–10 p.m., Wed–Sat 11 a.m.–midnight)

Beers: Danae (Golden Sour Ale), Bad Amber, Fiction (IPA), Fantin (Double Pale Ale), Marcel (Witbier), Whistler (Blonde), Whistler on Wood (Oak-aged Blonde), Titian (Golden Strong), Dark Ryder (Dark Strong), Grunewald (Imperial Porter). The lineup got a shakeup with some big beers joining the rotation. Titian, Dark Ryder, and Grunewald all check in at 11-percent ABV. The Whistler on Wood is a oak barrel-aged version of the blonde ale. It’s only slightly higher (4.2% ABV) than the regular Whistler (4% ABV).

News: The Goya Stout (15.9% ABV) is due out around the first week of December. No, that ABV is not a typo. It’s that big. Please, oh please, bottle that and send it down to us via Jubilation.

Events: The life drawing session is $25 and is held each Sunday morning from 11-1 (although they are not open to the drinking public till 1 p.m. on Sun). You get the beverage of your choice, a Brussels-style waffle made with their own yeast and beer and then served with a Grunewald Syrup. Everyone then draws from a nude model. People can sign up through the website or call the brewery to reserve a spot.

Santa Fe Brewing Company — (505) 424-3333

(Mon–Sat 11 a.m.–10 p.m., closed on Sunday)

Beers: Double White IPA, Deviator Doppelbock, Full Mast Kilt Scotch Ale, Black IPA. The first beer in the new Ever Changing Series is a Double White IPA, which Luke of the Brew Crew bullpen recently reviewed. The Kriek, which won a bronze medal at GABF this year, is on sale around the state in bombers, though it is no longer on tap.

Events: $1 Off Growler Refills in the Tasting Room on Mondays. $2 pint Tuesdays at the Eldorado Taphouse. On Wednesday, there is a $2 Pint Special in the SFBC Tasting Room, and the Sangre de Cristo Craft Brewers’ Meeting will be held at 6:30 p.m. at the Tasting Room as well on the third Wednesday of every month. On Thursday, there will be $1 Off Growler Refills at the Eldorado Taphouse.

News: SFBC will soon be opening a taproom in Albuquerque. Here are all the details that Luke, our Santa Fe correspondent, could find. It sounds promising.

Second Street Brewery — (505) 989-3278 (Railyard), (505) 982-3030 (original location)

(Mon–Thurs 11 a.m.–10 p.m., Fri–Sat 11 a.m.–11 p.m., Sunday noon-9 p.m.)

Beers: Kolsch, Cream Stout, IPA, Boneshaker Bitter, Rod’s Best Bitter, Red Comet, Old Pecos Porter, Berliner Weisse. The Old Pecos Porter helps kick off Porter Month at Second Street. Red Comet is the other recent addition to taps. The Rod’s Best Bitter is back by popular demand.

Events: Busy & The Crazy 88’s is playing Friday at the original location. Eryn Bent plays Saturday.

Shows at the Railyard include The Shiners Club Jazz Band on Friday and E. Christina Herr & The Wild Frontier on Saturday.

Every Wednesday night, both SSB locations host Game Night. SSB has game boards and dominoes or bring your own … oh yeah, they also have discounted pitchers!

Other breweries you need to visit

Twisted Chile Brewing — (575) 835-2949

(Mon–Thurs 11 a.m.–9 p.m., Fri–Sun 11 a.m.–11 p.m.)

Beers: Pilabo Pale Ale, 790 IPA, Quebradas Sunrise Amber, German Pilsner. Twisted Chile has been open for a while as a restaurant, but as the name might imply, they are also brewing their own beer on site. Located in Socorro at 115 Abeyta St. W, they are the first brewery there to brew on site since Socorro Springs outsourced their brewing to Eddyline in Colorado. I got to head down there recently and enjoyed all the beers I sampled. Kudos to Twisted Chile for bring quality craft beers back to a town that needed ‘em. The newest beer on tap, as in literally it went on tap today (Wednesday) is the pilsner. They haven’t come up with a catchy name yet, but the staff seems to already be in love with this new style.

News: The popular Venom XL IPA will be back soon.

Events: Twisted Chile has specials running during Monday and Thursday Night Football every week.

* * * *

That’s all for this week! If you have any questions or comments, leave them below or contact us on our Facebook page.

Cheers!

— Stoutmeister

Greetings, New Mexico craft beer lovers. Stoutmeister here with the reunified edition of The Week Ahead in Beer. This column covers all the breweries in Bernalillo and Sandoval counties, with Santa Fe’s four breweries and one newcomer down in Socorro also joining the party. We tried hard to keep the state edition going, but without participation from the breweries outside the I-25 corridor, it was futile.

Stoutmeister puts on his serious face to handle The Week Ahead in Beer.

Stoutmeister puts on his serious face to handle The Week Ahead in Beer.

Big beer season continues with Marble’s Reserve Ale Release Party tonight (Wednesday) at all three Marble locations. The Reserve is a strong ale aged in bourbon barrels for a massive cacophony of flavors. This year’s batch “showcases American oak and vanilla, as well as coffee, caramel, and bourbon.” We’d say something clever like “it will do a tap dance on your palate,” but let’s face it, this is going to be more like a circle pit while Slayer blasts “Hate Worldwide” down to the marrow of your bones. Anyway, this all kicks off at 5 p.m., with Joe S. Sausage providing complimentary sausages at the Downtown Pub, while Pastians Bakery will have gingerbread men at the Westside and Santa Fe taprooms. It’s a little too chilly out for live music to be on the stage, but don’t worry, this beer will warm you up.

On the new beer front, it’s a little lighter this week than last for new releases. Back Alley is unveiling its Pre-Prohibition Malt Tonic, plus the original version of Ladron’s Peak is back. Bosque switched things up, moving Bosque Lager to the year-round list while Kindling Golden Ale switches to the seasonal rotation. Canteen’s Bender IPA and The Highlander Scottish Ale went on tap recently. Chama River’s Old Town Oat Brown and Chamahawk Xtra Pale Ale are both out. Red Door’s first seasonal, Strong Scotch Ale, has debuted. Turtle Mountain has their collaboration brew with Bosque, Rio Grande Tortoise Black IPA, now on tap for everyone to try after it debuted during a recent beer dinner.

Up in Santa Fe, Blue Corn is feeling festive with Meltdown Chocolate Porter, plus Rakau Single Hop IPA will be on tap Friday. Second Street has unleashed some new creations in the Red Comet, Old Pecos Porter, and Steam Power, an India Pale Steam. Down in Socorro, Twisted Chile has Pilabo Pale Ale on tap plus Venom XL IPA will soon return along with an as-yet-unnamed pilsner.

Continue reading for all the news that is fit to blog for the week of Nov. 17.

To break down each “capsule,” I listed the brewery (with Web page linked), its phone number and hours of operation. Under “Beers” are the new or seasonal beers on tap for this week.

Albuquerque metro area breweries

ABQ Brew Pub — (505) 884-1116

(Mon–Thurs 11 a.m.–midnight, Fri–Sat 11 a.m.–2 a.m., Sunday 10 a.m.–midnight)

Beers: Petrus Aged Ale, Petrus Aged Red. Petrus Aged Ale and Red are high alcohol barrel-aged sours from a family-owned brewery in Flanders. Several times a year, ABP serves up the latest creation by local brewing hero and winner of the Samuel Adams Longshot competition, Ben Miller, or seasonal releases by Monks Brewing.

Back Alley Draft House — (505) 766-8590

(Hours 4 p.m.-11 p.m. daily)

Beers: Soroche IPA, Pre-Prohibition Malt Tonic, Ladron’s Peak. In case you missed it, we recently interviewed BADH’s new brewer, Brandon Venaglia. There are some exciting times coming, including a possible expansion. In the meantime, the new Pre-Prohibition Malt Tonic will debut Friday at 6 p.m. This dark American lager was based on a 110-year-old recipe and will now become a regular beer at BADH.

Events: Sundays will now be Service Nights at Back Alley, with $2 off all beers for service industry workers. There will also be a “Walking Dead” viewing party at 7 p.m. They will have “The Walker” Pizza Special.

Bosque Brewing Company — (505) 750-7596

(Mon–Thurs 11 a.m.–10 p.m., Fri–Sat 11 a.m.-11 p.m., Sun noon-8 p.m.)

Beers: Feral IPA, PSA (Pumpkin Spice Ale), Kindling Golden Ale, AdoptEx English Pale Ale, Olde Bosky Porter, Cottonwood Anniversary Ale. The Cottonwood is a big old double red ale, similar to but still different than Marble’s Imperial Red; there’s more malt backbone here, a little less hop bite, but it’s still excellent. Also back on tap is an old favorite in the Olde Bosky Porter. The Bosque Lager will now be on tap year round, replacing the Kindling, which moves to the seasonal list (this is much as Driftwood Oatmeal Stout replaced Olde Bosky earlier this year). The Feral IPA should quench your need for hops. For every pint of AdoptEx English PA sold, $1 will be donated to the Adoption Exchange of Albuqueqrue.

Cask: Bosque is taking a short break from doing a cask.

News: Construction continues on Bosque’s new taproom, the Bosque Public House, located on Girard just south of Central. Bosque has also signed a lease on a new taproom in Las Cruces, located in the former Mimbres Valley space across from New Mexico State at the corner of University Ave. and Espina St.

Bosque has a happy hour running from 3-6 p.m. Monday through Thursday and all day on Sunday. Look for special menu items and get $1 off your favorite pints.

Boxing Bear Brewing Company — (505) 897-2327

(Sun-Thurs 11 a.m.-10 p.m., Fri-Sat 11 a.m.-11 p.m.)

Beers: Glass Jaw Double IPA, Paw Swipe Pale Ale, Hairy Mit Hefe, Standing 8 Stout, Ambear Ale, Uppercut IPA, Punkelweizen, Oso Otono. The new kid here is Oso Otono, an oatmeal lager. Another recent addition is Punkelweizen, a pumpkin/dunkelweizen hybrid. Their Facebook page described it as “liquid banana bread.” Other recent additions to the lineup are the Standing 8 Stout (6.3% ABV, 45 IBU) and Ambear Ale (5.2% ABV, 35 IBU). The Glass Jaw is now out in full force.

Cask: Yup, Boxing Bear is doing a cask. We’re waiting to hear what’s up for this Friday.

Events: In advance of the holidays, Boxing Bear is offering a 10-percent discount on all merchandise this Friday.

Broken Bottle Brewery — (505) 890-8777

(Mon–Weds 4-11 p.m., Thurs-Fri 4 p.m.–midnight, Sat noon–midnight, Sun noon–10 p.m.)

Beers: Stray Dog IPA, Cactus Juice, Peculiar Pumpkin Porter, Drunken Hobo Milk Stout, Debacle Pumpkin Ale. Cactus Juice is made with actual prickly pears. The most recent additions to the taps are the Drunken Hobo Milk Stout and the Debacle Pumpkin Ale. Compare that to the Peculiar Pumpkin Porter and see which is the better style.

Events: B3 has $3 beers every Tuesday from open to close. On Wednesday, B3 will be hosting their open mic from 8-10 p.m., with signups starting at 7:30 p.m. Check out B3’s karaoke night every Thursday starting at 8 p.m.

Canteen Brewhouse — (505) 881-2737

(Sun–Thurs noon–10 p.m., Fri–Sat noon–midnight)

Beers: Fog Nozzle Smoked Marzen, The Highlander Scottish Ale, Bender IPA, Irish Red, Rye PA, American Stout, The Good Stuff, White Shine (White Wine). A recent addition to the taps is Fog Nozzle (5.7% ABV, 22 IBU), a rauchbier, which has all the smoky goodness you need for this sudden drop in temperature. The Highlander (5.2% ABV, 25 IBU) is a tasty Scottish ale, and yes, you can shout “there can be only one!” when you drink it. Just not too loud, don’t want to startle the wait staff and have them drop a beer or anything. Bender IPA (6.7% ABV, 85 IBU) was created when they mixed some of The Good Stuff and a Double IPA. The White Shine (9.75% ABV, 50 IBU) is a big old wheat wine that has some unique flavors. Another recent addition to the lineup is The Good Stuff (5.7% ABV, 70 IBU), a session IPA. The Rye PA (7% ABV, 50 IBU) and the American Stout (7.4% ABV, 60 IBU) are fairly recent additions. I got to try the American Stout while interviewing brewer Brady McKeown about the name change to Canteen Brewhouse. It’s a big, bold, thick, mean-as-hell-yet-totally-lovable stout. It’s my kind of stout, and that’s saying something.

News: Canteen posted some pics on Facebook of the beers they are currently barrel-aging in the back. They’ve got Double IPA in tequila barrels, American Stock Ale in rum barrels, Belgian Strong Golden in wine barrels, and Panama Joe Coffee Stout in bourbon barrels.

Events: Mug Club members, get on over to Canteen this Monday from 5 to 8 p.m. and you can sample two of those barrel-aged beers. The Tequila DIPA and Belgian Strong Golden will both be available.

Cazuela’s Seafood & Mexican Grill — (505) 994-9364

(Open daily 8 a.m.-10 p.m.)

Beers: Papacabra (Double IPA), Panama Red, Acapulco Gold (Mexican Lager), Hefeweizen, Chupacabra IPA, Piedra del Fuego Stoned Cream Ale, Beer for My Horses (Oatmeal Stout), Inebriator (Doppelbock). E-Rock and I had a chance to sample the Piedra del Fuego (5% ABV), which we both recommend. According to Cazuela’s menu: “This cream ale uses red-hot stones to super caramelize the sugars, creating a nutty, toffee-like flavor.” The Inebriator (8% ABV) and the Papacabra (9.7% ABV) are the biggest beers in the lineup.

Events: Cazuela’s now features a live guitarist every Friday.

News: Cazuela’s Beer for My Horses won a bronze medal in the oatmeal stout category at the World Beer Cup in Denver and also captured a gold medal in the stout category at the 2014 State Fair Pro-Am.

Chama River Brewing Company — (505) 342-1800

(Sun–Thurs 11 a.m.–11 p.m., Fri–Sat 11 a.m.–midnight)

Beers: Otono Fall Lager, Red River Ale, Old Town Oat Brown, Chamahawk Xtra Pale Ale. The Red River (5.7% ABV, 33 IBU) is an ESB. The Old Town (5.6% ABV, 25 IBU) and Chamahawk (6% ABV, 60 IBU) just went on tap. The Otono Fall Lager is a VMO-style lager, similar to an Oktoberfest.

News: Head brewer Zach Guilmette has revamped the recipe for Chama’s Jackalope IPA to give it a stronger kick and tastier palate. Franz Solo and I also highly recommend you try the revamped Sleeping Dog Stout. It’s creamy and burly and sweet and roasted … it’s got everything you want in a stout.

Kaktus Brewing — (505) 379-5072

(Hours Mon-Thu 2-9 p.m., Fri-Sat 11:30-10 p.m., Sun 11:30-9 p.m.)

Beers: James Blonde, Oyster Stout, Gunslinger Smoked Porter, Harvest Amber, Pumpkin Charlie Brown, Alt German Lager, Jabberwocky IPA, Oktoberfest. The Gunslinger is fairly new and screaming for us to come try it. The Harvest Amber, Oktoberfest, and the popular James Blonde are recent entries, while the Jabberwocky came back recently after a brief absence. Located at 471 South Hill Road in Bernalillo, Kaktus is one of the state’s newer breweries. It is a small, casual place, similar to Blue Heron in appearance and comfort factor. Kaktus owner Dana Koller said fans can expect the nanobrewery to go through its most popular styles quickly, though they will always have something new and exciting available as a replacement.

Events: Kaktus has several new weekday specials including $3 pints on Monday, $9 growlers on Tuesday, $6 bison nachos on Wednesday, and $8 Frito pie and beer on Thursday.

The Desert Darlings belly dancers will perform from 6 to 8 p.m. on Sunday. If you’ve never seen the Desert Darlings in person, you’re missing out.

News: For the remainder of the year, all growler refills at Kaktus are just $8. Talk about happy holidays!

La Cumbre Brewing — (505) 872-0225

(Open every day at noon)

Beers: Peek-a-Boob Porter, Lazy Sunday, Ahh Helles Yes. The Ahh Helles Yes is, as you might guess, a Helles-style lager. The Lazy Sunday, a session IPA, is back on tap for the first time since April. The Peek-a-Boob Porter was made for charity, as $1 from every pint sold will go to the local YWCA to benefit early breast cancer awareness. Oh, and don’t panic about Project Dank and Red Ryeot no longer appearing here as seasonals. They are now part of La Cumbre’s regular lineup.

News: We congratulate La Cumbre Brewing Co. for becoming this year’s National IPA Champion. Project Dank scored the win by edging out 127 other IPAs from around the country, including the likes of the venerable Fat Head’s IBUsive.

Lizard Tail Brewing — (505) 717-1301

(Sun–Weds 9 a.m.–11 p.m., Thurs–Sat 9 a.m.–midnight)

Beers: German Blonde Ale, Berliner Weisse, Belgian Abbey, IPA, Amber, Oatmeal Brown, India Black Ale, Rye Stout, Porter, Dubbel, Biscochito Brown. Both Brandon and I have had chances to visit Lizard Tail, which is one of the newest breweries in town, located in the shopping center on the southeast corner of Eubank and Montgomery. They specialize in malt-forward beers. The German Blonde (5.5% ABV, 20 IBU) is a good place to start. The Berliner Weisse (4.3% ABV, 8 IBU) is not nearly as sour as most of its genre. The Belgian Abbey (6.8%, 25 IBU) is a good example of its style. The IPA (6.8% ABV, 70 IBU) has a good mix of Mosaic, Warrior, and Galaxy hops. The Rye Stout (5.5% ABV, 35 IBU) has a nice flavor but lacks body. The first batch of Oatmeal Brown (4.2% ABV, 25 IBU) needed some work, but I got to sample the second batch that will be on tap soon and it’s improved. The Honey Pale Ale (6.3% ABV, 35 IBU) has run out for a little while, but it will be back soon. The Porter (5.6% ABV, 35 IBU) is a semi-smoky, thick beer that goes perfectly with the cooler weather. The new Biscochito Brown (8.5% ABV, 25 IBU) is not overly sweet. The Lizard Tail staff said the next batch will be a little maltier.

News: Lizard Tail’s happy hour runs seven days a week from 3 to 6 p.m. You get $1 off food, flights, and pints.

Events: Every Tuesday at 8 p.m. Lizard Tail will host Geeks Who Drink.

Marble Brewery — (505) 243-2739

(Mon–Sat 1 p.m.–midnight, Sun 1 p.m.–10:30 p.m.)

Beers: Double White, Double IPA, Imperial Red, Pumpkin Ale, Pumpkin Noir, Reserve Ale. The popular Pumpkin Noir is back along with its cousin, the regular Pumpkin Ale. Otherwise it’s a relatively light seasonal list as Marble is at capacity brewing the regular beers for distribution. There is the rotating “black handle,” which tends to feature some impressive “secret” beers. The Double White and Imperial Red brought home gold medals from GABF.

Cask: Check out Marble’s cask (a.k.a. “real” ale) selection on tap every Friday at the Downtown Pub.

Events: Brewery tours occur at the Downtown Pub every Thursday at 5:30 p.m.

The Reserve Ale Release Party is set for today starting at 5 p.m. (for more, see the intro above).

Nexus Brewery — (505) 242-4100

(Sun–Thurs 11 a.m.–10 p.m., Fri–Sat 11 a.m.–midnight)

Beers: Saisons Change, Dry Stout, Equinox Spiced Brown Ale, 2013 Barley Wine. Brewer Kaylynn McKnight cranked out one returning seasonal in the Equinox, which is back by popular demand, and popped an aged keg or two of the Barley Wine. We’ve been able to get over there and try the Saisons and Dry Stout and came away quite impressed. The Dry Stout is bold and thick, the kind of burly beer you want in the winter (or year-round if you’re like us). The Saisons Change packs a ton of flavor in every sip. It’s not spicy hot, but it will leave your tongue tingling with a strong Belgian yeast backbone behind the initial bite.

Events: Nexus serves up Happy Hour All Day on Tuesday featuring $3 pints. Also on Tuesday, Nexus will be hosting their comedy open mic, Young Dumb and Full of Comedy, starting at 7:30 p.m. in the Sun Room.

All throughout November, Nexus is having an Ugly Sweater Contest. Post a photo of yourself in the ugliest sweater you can find on Nexus’ Facebook or Twitter feeds and you will have a chance to win a $25 gift card. There are weekly draws.

Nexus is hosting “The Walking Dead” viewing parties every Sunday in the community room at 6 p.m. If you need a break from zombies, they’ve installed four pinball machines in the community room as well.

There will be special brewery tours coming up Nov. 22. We’ll have more info as we get closer to the date.

Pi Brewing at Nicky V’s Neighborhood Pizzeria — (505) 890-9463

(Sun–Thurs 11 a.m.–9 p.m., Fri–Sat 11 a.m.–10 p.m.)

Beers: Unchallenged IPA, West Coast Red, Robust Porter, Lost Grain English Summer Ale, Pre-Prohibition Pilsner. While Pi Brewing is not open to the public yet, they are able to brew and serve their beers next door at Nicky V’s. The IPA and West Coast Red are both good hoppy beers. We’ll keep tabs on when Pi itself opens. For now, grab a pint and some tasty Italian food. The new pilsner went on tap last week, replacing the Apricot Wheat.

Ponderosa Brewing Co. — (505) 639-5941

(Sun 11 a.m.–10 p.m., Mon–Sat 11 a.m.–11 p.m.)

Beers: Ghost Train IPA, Rip Saw Red, Crosscut Kolsch, Sawmill Stout, XPA1 Pale Ale, Helles Lager, Double IPA, Oktoberfest, Chocolate Pumpkin Porter, Schwarzbier, Breakfast Stout. Porter Pounder and I went over for the grand opening recently. Ponderosa is located at 1761 Bellamah NW, which is just east of Rio Grande and due north of the NM Natural History Museum, in the bottom floor of a swanky-looking apartment/retail complex. As for the beers, they are all the initial batches, so expect some modifications/changes going forward. Needless to say we both liked the Stout (5.2% ABV, 22 IBU) the best, but we’re dark beer guys (then again, you could also call us dark beer snobs, so consider that). Porter Pounder liked the XPA1 Pale Ale (5% ABV, 35 IBU), which will always be a rotating single-hop pale ale. The Crosscut Kolsch (4.9% ABV, 25 IBU) is almost like a Kolsch/hefeweizen hybrid. The Ghost Train (6.2% ABV, 75 IBU) needs some work, but the brewer has already identified what went wrong in the first batch and is working on correcting that for the next run. The Double IPA (7.7% ABV, 90 IBU) provides plenty of hops; it was briefly out, but it’s going to be back on tap soon. The Oktoberfest (5.7% ABV, 17 IBU) is an interesting variation on the traditional style; we tasted wheat malts in the mix. The Schwarzbier (4.7% ABV, 24 IBU) debuted recently. It’s smooth and flavorful. The new Breakfast Stout (7.3% ABV, 40 IBU) is a smoky, malty, yet smooth beast of a beer. It’s another sign that Ponderosa’s beers are getting better with each batch.

News: The next batch of brews will include Dunkles, Dunkelweizen, Helles Hefeweizen, Ella Single Hop Pale Ale, and something called Marbelous.

Red Door Brewing — (505) 633-6675

(Noon to midnight all week)

Beers: (Regular) Gateway Blonde Ale, Roamer Red, Threshold IPA, Paint it Black Milk Stout, Unhinged Cider, Trapdoor Wheat. (Seasonal) Strong Scotch Ale. We were excited to try Red Door ever since they first invited us to visit many months ago. They are now open and their initial batches of beer are all quite good. The Roamer Red (6% ABV) was a favorite for Porter Pounder, sitting midway between hoppy reds like Marble and sweeter reds like the standard Irish variety. The Paint it Black (5.5%) is served on nitro, so it’s criminally smooth. The potent Threshold IPA (6.6% ABV) should appeal to local hopheads. Beware the Unhinged Cider as it checks in at 7.9 percent, but you don’t taste the alcohol. The first Red Door seasonal, Strong Scotch Ale, debuted over the weekend. Don’t worry, we already stopped by and wrote up a quick review. You’re welcome, Albuquerque!

Sandia Chile Grill — (505) 798-1970

(Mon–Sat 8 a.m.–8 p.m., Sun 8 a.m.–6 p.m.)

Beers: Irish Red, Rattlesnake IPA, Smoked Stout. We’re going to dispatch E-Rock (he needs a new assignment) to re-establish our lines of communication with Sandia Chile Grill.

News: Congrats to SCG on sweeping all three medals in the mead category at the 2014 State Fair Pro-Am, while also claiming a silver medal for Barb’s Barrel Hefeweizen.

The Stumbling Steer — (505) 792-7805

(Sunday-Wednesday 11 a.m.-midnight, Thursday-Saturday 11 a.m.-2 a.m.)

Beers: Bang Up Blonde, Hefferweizen, Pig Sticker Pale, Iron Horse IPA, Rawhide Red, Boneyard Brown, Hop Trough (Double IPA), Soiled Dove (Imperial Stout), Black IPA. While the brewery is being built in the back of the Steer, all of their house beers are being brewed off-site, but still using brewer Kirk Roberts’ recipes. The DIPA and the Stout are limited to two per customer, due to their high alcohol content (10% and 9.5% ABV, respectively). The Crew has already made two separate visits to the Steer to review the beer and food. We enjoyed it all. The Black IPA is the current seasonal beer, plus there are often one or two cask beers. We recently had their Bacon Bourbon Stout and Green Chile IPA on cask. Franz Solo loved the latter.

Tractor Brewing Company — (505) 433-5654 (Nob Hill Tap Room), TBA (Wells Park)

(Nob Hill is open Monday-Wednesday 3 p.m. to midnight, Thursday 3 p.m. to 2 a.m., Friday-Saturday 1 p.m. to 2 a.m., Sunday 1 p.m. to midnight; Wells Park is open Monday-Thursday 3 p.m. to close, Friday-Sunday 1 p.m. to midnight.
 Last call 30 minutes before close. 
No package after midnight.
 Brewery tours Saturday at 1 p.m.)

UPDATED >>> Beers at Nob Hill: Berry Cider, Barnstorm Ale, Little Red Rye-ding Hood, Bulls-Eye PA, La Llorona Dry Hop Amber, Javi Light Lager, Jack the Sipper.

Beers at Wells Park only: Ruby Red Wheat, Pilsner #15, Tractoberfest, Mustachio Milk Stout, Pilsner #15. All of the Nob Hill seasonals are also at Wells Park, which has 24 total taps (Tractor’s five regular beers have two taps apiece). The Tractoberfest is back and this year’s batch is one of the best yet. It’s just a malt blast of happiness. The newest beers on tap were brewed up for Tractor’s 15th anniversary. The Ruby Red Wheat is loaded with grapefruit. The Little Red has a malty rye kick. The Bulls-Eye is a solid IPA. Jack the Sipper (7% ABV) is Tractor’s take on a spiced pumpkin ale.

News: Turkey Drool, an annual NMDSBC seasonal favorite, is in the bright tank and will soon be on tap. The Luna de los Muertos Russian Imperial Stout is also aging in the back, including some in a barrel. Oh, man, that could kill us … but we’d die happy.

Events: The Solos on the Hill series returns at Nob Hill tonight (Wednesday) as Keith Sanchez performs from 8:30 to 10:30 p.m. Joanie and Art’s BBQ will be outside to handle your culinary needs.

The Thirsty Thursday Music Series is back at Wells Park with Leah Leyva and The Band performing at 8 p.m. Kimo’s Hawaiian BBQ will be on site.

This Friday, prepare yourselves for The Darling Old West: A Belly Dance Saloon Show! The lovely and talented Desert Darlings will perform at Wells Park from 7 to 10 p.m. Irrational Pie and Street Food Boulevard will provide sustenance.

A special art opening will be held Saturday at Wells Park. Jodie Herrera’s The Shape I’m In will debut at 6 p.m. Kimo’s will be outside again.

After you check out the art show, head over to the Tricklock Theater Space on Gold and 2nd St. for The Reptilian Lounge — The Early Night. This is a one-night only event in advance of the Revolutions Theater Festival in January. Tractor will pour its beers on site from 8 to 11 p.m. If you’ve never been to a Reptilian Lounge (Sociable!), you’re missing out. Oh, Target Girl …

Also, every first Monday of the month at both Tractor locations is Beer for a Better Burque night. For every pint you buy $1 can go to one of four charities that have partnered with Tractor. You can also opt to purchase a special growler with the logo of your favorite charity.

Turtle Mountain Brewing Company — (505) 994-9497

(Kitchen hours: Mon–Tues 11 a.m.-8:30 p.m., Wed–Thurs 11 a.m.-9 p.m., Fri–Sat 11 a.m.-9:30 p.m., Sun 10:30 a.m.-8:30 p.m. Reminder: TMBC closes early when business dictates. Please call.)

Beers: (House) McDay’s Cream Ale, Oku Amber, Parasol White IPA, Hopshell IPA, Piedra Lisa Porter, Heidelberg Helles. (Seasonal/specialty) Cascade Session Pale Ale, Uberaltbier, A Little Somethin’ Pumpkin, Rio Grande Tortoise Black IPA. To help us out for now and the future, brewer Tim Woodward broke down what will be the regular beers on tap (under House) and the current list of seasonals. That’s a pretty solid regular lineup. I personally really enjoyed the Porter and Amber, the latter of which trumps most of its genre in terms of flavor. The Heidelberg Helles (5.1% ABV, 25 IBU) has rejoined the regular lineup for good, or so Tim hopes. A Little Somethin’ Pumpkin is served on nitro. New to the lineup is the Rio Grande Tortoise Black IPA, a collaboration brew with Bosque that was created for a recent beer dinner. Now it’s on tap for everyone to enjoy.

Santa Fe breweries

Blue Corn Brewery — (505) 438-1800

(Daily 11 a.m.–10 p.m.)

Beers: Russian Imperial Stout, Monks Mesa (Belgian Blonde), Meltdown Chocolate Porter, Rakau Single Hop IPA. The Monks Mesa (4.5% ABV, 15 IBU) is a Belgian blonde table beer. The Imperial Stout is a behemoth of a beer that our Santa Fe writer Luke got to enjoy at a recent release party. The Meltdown used no less than 25 pounds of cocoa nibs. The Rakau, using a powerful New Zealand hop, will debut this Friday.

News: Don’t worry, ABQ, Blue Corn is sending kegs of the Imperial Stout to the Draft Station down here this weekend. Just watch out for the black-clad bearded men storming down the doors. We get first dibs.

Events: Blue Corn’s holiday party is set for December. We’ll have more info as we get close to the date.

Duel Brewing Company — (505) 474-5301

(Sun 11 a.m.–8 p.m., Mon–Tues 11 a.m.–10 p.m., Wed–Sat 11 a.m.–midnight)

Beers: Danae (Golden Sour Ale), Study Series: Brown (Belgian-style Sour Brown Ale), Bad Amber, Fiction (IPA), Synne (Pale Ale), Fantin (Double Pale Ale), Marcel (Witbier), Whistler (Blonde), Manikin Small Scottish-style Dark Ale. Duel brewer Todd Yocham described the latest Study Series entry (5% ABV) like this, “A very malt forward light bodied brown ale, soured with Lactobacillus and accentuated by the fruity esters from our Trappist yeast.” The Fantin (7.5% ABV), which I tried and liked at Pajarito Summerfest, gets this summary, “Aromas of strawberry and pineapple accentuated by our Trappist yeast will keep you wanting more.” The Danae is the newest entry.

Events: The life drawing session is $25 and is held each Sunday morning from 11-1 (although they are not open to the drinking public till 1 p.m. on Sun). You get the beverage of your choice, a Brussels-style waffle made with their own yeast and beer and then served with a Grunewald Syrup. Everyone then draws from a nude model. People can sign up through the website or call the brewery to reserve a spot.

Santa Fe Brewing Company — (505) 424-3333

(Mon–Sat 11 a.m.–10 p.m., closed on Sunday)

Beers: Double White IPA, Deviator Doppelbock, Full Mast Kilt Scotch Ale, Black IPA. The first beer in the new Ever Changing Series is a Double White IPA, which Luke of the Brew Crew bullpen recently reviewed. This week’s Small Batch Saturday beer is Full Mast Kilt. The Kriek, which won a bronze medal at GABF this year, is on sale around the state in bombers, though it is no longer on tap.

Events: $1 Off Growler Refills in the Tasting Room on Mondays. $2 pint Tuesdays at the Eldorado Taphouse. On Wednesday, there is a $2 Pint Special in the SFBC Tasting Room, and the Sangre de Cristo Craft Brewers’ Meeting will be held at 6:30 p.m. at the Tasting Room as well on the third Wednesday of every month. On Thursday, there will be $1 Off Growler Refills at the Eldorado Taphouse.

News: SFBC will soon be opening a taproom in Albuquerque. Here are all the details that Luke, our Santa Fe correspondent, could find. It sounds promising.

Second Street Brewery — (505) 989-3278 (Railyard), (505) 982-3030 (original location)

(Mon–Thurs 11 a.m.–10 p.m., Fri–Sat 11 a.m.–11 p.m., Sunday noon-9 p.m.)

Beers: Kolsch, Cream Stout, IPA, Boneshaker Bitter, Rod’s Best Bitter, Red Comet, Old Pecos Porter, Berliner Weisse. The Old Pecos Porter helps kick off Porter Month at Second Street. Red Comet is the other recent addition to taps. The Rod’s Best Bitter returns by popular demand.

Events: Bill Hearne Trio is playing Friday at the original location. The Alpha Cats play Saturday.

Shows at the Railyard include The Santa Fe Revue on Friday and Swing Soleil on Saturday.

Every Wednesday night, both SSB locations host Game Night. SSB has game boards and dominoes or bring your own … oh yeah, they also have discounted pitchers!

Other breweries you need to visit

Twisted Chile Brewing — (575) 835-2949

(Mon–Thurs 11 a.m.–9 p.m., Fri–Sun 11 a.m.–11 p.m.)

Beers: Pilabo Pale Ale, 790 IPA, Quebradas Sunrise Amber. Twisted Chile has been open for a while as a restaurant, but as the name might imply, they will be brewing their own beer on site. Located in Socorro at 115 Abeyta St. W, they will be the first brewery there to brew on site since Socorro Springs outsourced their brewing to Eddyline in Colorado. I got to head down there recently and enjoyed all the beers I sampled. Kudos to Twisted Chile for bring quality craft beers back to a town that needed ‘em.

News: The popular Venom XL IPA will be back soon, along with an as-yet-unnamed pilsner.

Events: Twisted Chile has specials running during Monday and Thursday Night Football every week. Tonight (Wednesday) is open mic night from 6:30 to 9 p.m.

* * * *

That’s all for this week! If you have any questions or comments, leave them below or contact us on our Facebook page.

Cheers!

— Stoutmeister

Greetings, New Mexico craft beer lovers. Stoutmeister here with the reunified edition of The Week Ahead in Beer. This column covers all the breweries in Bernalillo and Sandoval counties, with Santa Fe’s four breweries and one newcomer down in Socorro also joining the party. We tried hard to keep the state edition going, but without participation from the breweries outside the I-25 corridor, it was futile.

Stoutmeister puts on his serious face to handle The Week Ahead in Beer.

Stoutmeister puts on his serious face to handle The Week Ahead in Beer.

As the weather is about to drop from this weird, balmy level of unusual heat for this time of year to exceptionally cold (polar vortex again), the biggest, meanest beers are beginning to hit taps. A great example of this is Blue Corn’s new Imperial Stout, a monster beer (900 pounds in the mash tun) that will debut Thursday night with a special event. For just $10 (RSVP required, click the link for more info), you can enjoy a pint of Imperial Stout and three small but tasty food items. You can get Doughnut Sliders, doughnut holes made with the stout acting as the buns around some ground beef mini-patties. Then there are the Juniper-Dusted Elk Satays with Prairie Thyme’s Mountain Blackberry Jalapeno Ambrosia Sauce. And finally there are Black Bottom Cheesecake Bites. If you’re still hungry, you can then get 10 percent off your dinner at Blue Corn. All that plus a powerhouse stout? If we didn’t live in ABQ, we’d all be there. As it is, we’re dispatching Santa Fe correspondent Luke to rep the Crew. And to plead with brewer James Warren to send us some Imperial Stout via the ABQ Draft Station as soon as possible.

On the new beer front, it’s a good week for new releases. Boxing Bear has tapped Oso Otono, a fall oatmeal lager. Canteen has Fog Nozzle, a smoked marzen, plus an unnamed IPA they hope to have by the end of the week. Chama River’s Old Town Oat Brown and Chamahawk Xtra Pale Ale are both out. La Cumbre is saying Ahh Helles Yes this week. Lizard Tail’s burly Oatmeal Stout is on tap. Marble has taken some English inspiration for their Nitro Pub Ale. Nexus has brought back Equinox Spiced Brown Ale and a batch of 2013 Barley Wine.

Up in Santa Fe, the folks at SFBC have run out of Oktoberfest, but Black IPA is back and they also have small batches of Deviator Doppelbock and Full Mast Kilt Scotch Ale. We’re still waiting on word back from Second Street.

Continue reading for all the news that is fit to blog for the week of Nov. 10.

To break down each “capsule,” I listed the brewery (with Web page linked), its phone number and hours of operation. Under “Beers” are the new or seasonal beers on tap for this week.

Albuquerque metro area breweries

ABQ Brew Pub — (505) 884-1116

(Mon–Thurs 11 a.m.–midnight, Fri–Sat 11 a.m.–2 a.m., Sunday 10 a.m.–midnight)

Beers: Petrus Aged Ale, Petrus Aged Red. Petrus Aged Ale and Red are high alcohol barrel-aged sours from a family-owned brewery in Flanders. Several times a year, ABP serves up the latest creation by local brewing hero and winner of the Samuel Adams Longshot competition, Ben Miller, or seasonal releases by Monks Brewing.

Back Alley Draft House — (505) 766-8590

(Hours 4 p.m.-11 p.m. daily)

Beers: Soroche IPA, Berliner Weisse, Poth’s Pilsner, Ladron’s con Fuego. In case you missed it, we recently interviewed BADH’s new brewer, Brandon Venaglia. There are some exciting times coming, including a possible expansion. In the meantime, the beer list has not changed yet. The pilsner is based on a pre-Prohibition recipe. It’s a sweet, tasty little treat. This version of the Ladron’s is smoky, as the name might imply.

Events: Sunday’s will now be Service Nights at Back Alley, with $2 off all beers for service industry workers. There will also be a “Walking Dead” viewing party at 7 p.m. They will have “The Walker” Pizza Special.

Bosque Brewing Company — (505) 750-7596

(Mon–Thurs 11 a.m.–10 p.m., Fri–Sat 11 a.m.-11 p.m., Sun noon-8 p.m.)

Beers: Feral IPA, PSA (Pumpkin Spice Ale), Bosque Lager, AdoptEx English Pale Ale, Olde Bosky Porter, Cottonwood Anniversary Ale. The Cottonwood is a big old double red ale, similar to but still different than Marble’s Imperial Red; there’s more malt backbone here, a little less hop bite, but it’s still excellent. Also back on tap is an old favorite in the Olde Bosky Porter. The Lager is back by popular demand. The Feral IPA should quench your need for hops. For every pint of AdoptEx English PA sold, $1 will be donated to the Adoption Exchange of Albuqueqrue.

Cask: We didn’t get a cask update yet. When we do, we’ll post it.

News: Construction continues on Bosque’s new taproom, the Bosque Public House, located on Girard just south of Central. Bosque has also signed a lease on a new taproom in Las Cruces, located in the former Mimbres Valley space across from New Mexico State at the corner of University Ave. and Espina St.

Bosque has a happy hour running from 3-6 p.m. Monday through Thursday and all day on Sunday. Look for special menu items and get $1 off your favorite pints.

Boxing Bear Brewing Company — (505) 897-2327

(Sun-Thurs 11 a.m.-10 p.m., Fri-Sat 11 a.m.-11 p.m.)

Beers: Glass Jaw Double IPA, Paw Swipe Pale Ale, Hairy Mit Hefe, Standing 8 Stout, Ambear Ale, Uppercut IPA, Punkelweizen, Oso Otono. The new kid here is Oso Otono, an oatmeal lager. Another recent addition is Punkelweizen, a pumpkin/dunkelweizen hybrid. Their Facebook page described it as “liquid banana bread.” Other recent additions to the lineup are the Standing 8 Stout (6.3% ABV, 45 IBU) and Ambear Ale (5.2% ABV, 35 IBU). The Glass Jaw is now out in full force.

Cask: Yup, Boxing Bear is doing a cask. We’re waiting to hear what’s up for this Friday.

Broken Bottle Brewery — (505) 890-8777

(Mon–Weds 4-11 p.m., Thurs-Fri 4 p.m.–midnight, Sat noon–midnight, Sun noon–10 p.m.)

Beers: Stray Dog IPA, Cactus Juice, Peculiar Pumpkin Porter, Drunken Hobo Milk Stout, Debacle Pumpkin Ale. Cactus Juice is made with actual prickly pears. The most recent additions to the taps are the Drunken Hobo Milk Stout and the Debacle Pumpkin Ale. Compare that to the Peculiar Pumpkin Porter and see which is the better style.

Events: B3 has $3 beers every Tuesday from open to close. On Wednesday, B3 will be hosting their open mic from 8-10 p.m., with signups starting at 7:30 p.m. Check out B3’s karaoke night every Thursday starting at 8 p.m.

Canteen Brewhouse — (505) 881-2737

(Sun–Thurs noon–10 p.m., Fri–Sat noon–midnight)

UPDATED >>> Beers: Fog Nozzle Smoked Marzen, Irish Red, Rye PA, American Stout, The Good Stuff, White Shine (White Wine). New to taps is Fog Nozzle, a rauchbier, which has all the smoky goodness you need for this sudden drop in temperature. The White Shine (9.75% ABV) is a big old wheat wine that has some unique flavors. Another recent addition to the lineup is The Good Stuff (5.7% ABV, 70 IBU), a session IPA. The Rye PA (7% ABV, 50 IBU) and the American Stout (7.4% ABV, 60 IBU) are fairly recent additions. I got to try the American Stout while interviewing brewer Brady McKeown about the name change to Canteen Brewhouse. It’s a big, bold, thick, mean-as-hell-yet-totally-lovable stout. It’s my kind of stout, and that’s saying something.

News: Canteen posted some pics on Facebook of the beers they are currently barrel-aging in the back. They’ve got Double IPA in tequila barrels, American Stock Ale in rum barrels, Belgian Strong Golden in wine barrels, and Panama Joe Coffee Stout in bourbon barrels.

A new IPA will be out, hopefully, by week’s end.

Cazuela’s Seafood & Mexican Grill — (505) 994-9364

(Open daily 8 a.m.-10 p.m.)

Beers: Papacabra (Double IPA), Panama Red, Acapulco Gold (Mexican Lager), Hefeweizen, Chupacabra IPA, Piedra del Fuego Stoned Cream Ale, Beer for My Horses (Oatmeal Stout), Inebriator (Doppelbock). E-Rock and I had a chance to sample the Piedra del Fuego (5% ABV), which we both recommend. According to Cazuela’s menu: “This cream ale uses red-hot stones to super caramelize the sugars, creating a nutty, toffee-like flavor.” The Inebriator (8% ABV) and the Papacabra (9.7% ABV) are the biggest beers in the lineup.

Events: Cazuela’s now features a live guitarist every Friday.

News: Cazuela’s Beer for My Horses won a bronze medal in the oatmeal stout category at the World Beer Cup in Denver and also captured a gold medal in the stout category at the 2014 State Fair Pro-Am.

Chama River Brewing Company — (505) 342-1800

(Sun–Thurs 11 a.m.–11 p.m., Fri–Sat 11 a.m.–midnight)

Beers: Otono Fall Lager, Red River Ale, Old Town Oat Brown, Chamahawk Xtra Pale Ale. The Red River (5.7% ABV, 33 IBU) is an ESB. The Old Town (5.6% ABV, 25 IBU) and Chamahawk (6% ABV, 60 IBU) just went on tap. The Otono Fall Lager ( is a VMO-style lager, similar to an Oktoberfest.

News: Head brewer Zach Guilmette has revamped the recipe for Chama’s Jackalope IPA to give it a stronger kick and tastier palate. Franz Solo and I also highly recommend you try the revamped Sleeping Dog Stout. It’s creamy and burly and sweet and roasted … it’s got everything you want in a stout.

Kaktus Brewing — (505) 379-5072

(Hours Mon-Thu 2-9 p.m., Fri-Sat 11:30-10 p.m., Sun 11:30-9 p.m.)

Beers: James Blonde, Oyster Stout, Gunslinger Smoked Porter, Harvest Amber, Pumpkin Charlie Brown, Alt German Lager, Jabberwocky IPA, Oktoberfest. The Gunslinger is fairly new and screaming for us to come try it. The Harvest Amber, Oktoberfest, and the popular James Blonde are recent entries, while the Jabberwocky came back recently after a brief absence. Located at 471 South Hill Road in Bernalillo, Kaktus is one of the state’s newer breweries. It is a small, casual place, similar to Blue Heron in appearance and comfort factor. Kaktus owner Dana Koller said fans can expect the nanobrewery to go through its most popular styles quickly, though they will always have something new and exciting available as a replacement.

Events: Kaktus has several new weekday specials including $3 pints on Monday, $9 growlers on Tuesday, $6 bison nachos on Wednesday, and $8 Frito pie and beer on Thursday.

The Desert Darlings belly dancers will perform from 6 to 8 p.m. on Sunday. If you’ve never seen the Desert Darlings in person, you’re missing out.

UPDATED >>> News: For the remainder of the year, all growler refills at Kaktus are just $8. Talk about happy holidays!

La Cumbre Brewing — (505) 872-0225

(Open every day at noon)

Beers: Meridian Pale Ale, Hell Froze Over, Peek-a-Boob Porter, Lazy Sunday, Ahh Helles Yes. The Ahh Helles Yes is, as you might guess, a Helles-style lager. The Lazy Sunday, a session IPA, is back on tap for the first time since April. The Peek-a-Boob Porter was made for charity, as $1 from every pint sold will go to the local YWCA to benefit early breast cancer awareness. Hell Froze Over (5.6% ABV, 42 IBU) is one of the newer kids on the tap list, returning for a second go-around after debuting last fall. It’s a brown ale, which as the name might imply is not something that’s made regularly. If you’re looking for something to sip slowly, Meridian Pale Ale (5.4% ABV, 40 IBU) is available. Oh, and don’t panic about Project Dank no longer appearing here as a seasonal. It is now part of La Cumbre’s regular lineup. And in more good news, Jeff Erway said Red Ryeot will soon return and become a regular beer as well.

News: We congratulate La Cumbre Brewing Co. for becoming this year’s National IPA Champion. Project Dank scored the win by edging out 127 other IPAs from around the country, including the likes of the venerable Fat Head’s IBUsive.

Lizard Tail Brewing — (505) 717-1301

(Sun–Weds 9 a.m.–11 p.m., Thurs–Sat 9 a.m.–midnight)

Beers: German Blonde Ale, Berliner Weisse, Belgian Abbey, IPA, Amber, Oatmeal Brown, India Black Ale, Rye Stout, Porter, Dubbel, Biscochito Brown. Both Brandon and I have had chances to visit Lizard Tail, which is one of the newest breweries in town, located in the shopping center on the southeast corner of Eubank and Montgomery. They specialize in malt-forward beers. The German Blonde (5.5% ABV, 20 IBU) is a good place to start. The Berliner Weisse (4.3% ABV, 8 IBU) is not nearly as sour as most of its genre. The Belgian Abbey (6.8%, 25 IBU) is a good example of its style. The IPA (6.8% ABV, 70 IBU) has a good mix of Mosaic, Warrior, and Galaxy hops. The Rye Stout (5.5% ABV, 35 IBU) has a nice flavor but lacks body. The first batch of Oatmeal Brown (4.2% ABV, 25 IBU) needed some work, but I got to sample the second batch that will be on tap soon and it’s improved. The Honey Pale Ale (6.3% ABV, 35 IBU) has run out for a little while, but it will be back soon. The Porter (5.6% ABV, 35 IBU) is a semi-smoky, thick beer that goes perfectly with the cooler weather. The new Biscochito Brown (8.5% ABV, 25 IBU) is not overly sweet. The Lizard Tail staff said the next batch will be a little maltier.

News: Lizard Tail’s happy hour runs seven days a week from 3 to 6 p.m. You get $1 off food, flights, and pints.

Events: Every Tuesday at 8 p.m. Lizard Tail will host Geeks Who Drink.

Marble Brewery — (505) 243-2739

(Mon–Sat 1 p.m.–midnight, Sun 1 p.m.–10:30 p.m.)

Beers: Double White, Double IPA, Imperial Red, Pumpkin Ale, Pumpkin Noir. The popular Pumpkin Noir is back along with its cousin, the regular Pumpkin Ale. Otherwise it’s a relatively light seasonal list as Marble is at capacity brewing the regular beers for distribution. There is the rotating “black handle,” which tends to feature some impressive “secret” beers. The Double White and Imperial Red brought home gold medals from GABF.

Cask: Check out Marble’s cask (a.k.a. “real” ale) selection on tap every Friday at the Downtown Pub.

Events: Brewery tours occur at the Downtown Pub every Thursday at 5:30 p.m.

The Reserve Ale Release Party is set for next Wednesday, Nov. 19.

Nexus Brewery — (505) 242-4100

(Sun–Thurs 11 a.m.–10 p.m., Fri–Sat 11 a.m.–midnight)

Beers: Saisons Change, Dry Stout, Equinox Spiced Brown Ale, 2013 Barley Wine. Brewer Kaylynn McKnight cranked out one returning seasonal in the Equinox, which is back by popular demand, and popped an aged keg or two of the Barley Wine. We’ve been able to get over there and try the Saisons and Dry Stout and came away quite impressed. The Dry Stout is bold and thick, the kind of burly beer you want in the winter (or year-round if you’re like us). The Saisons Change packs a ton of flavor in every sip. It’s not spicy hot, but it will leave your tongue tingling with a strong Belgian yeast backbone behind the initial bite.

Events: Nexus serves up Happy Hour All Day on Tuesday featuring $3 pints. Also on Tuesday, Nexus will be hosting their comedy open mic, Young Dumb and Full of Comedy, starting at 7:30 p.m. in the Sun Room.

All throughout November, Nexus is having an Ugly Sweater Contest. Post a photo of yourself in the ugliest sweater you can find on Nexus’ Facebook or Twitter feeds and you will have a chance to win a $25 gift card. There are weekly draws.

Nexus is hosting “The Walking Dead” viewing parties every Sunday in the community room at 6 p.m. If you need a break from zombies, they’ve installed four pinball machines in the community room as well.

There will be special brewery tours coming up Nov. 22. We’ll move info as we get closer to the date.

Pi Brewing at Nicky V’s Neighborhood Pizzeria — (505) 890-9463

(Sun–Thurs 11 a.m.–9 p.m., Fri–Sat 11 a.m.–10 p.m.)

Beers: Unchallenged IPA, West Coast Red, Robust Porter, Lost Grain English Summer Ale, Pre-Prohibition Pilsner. While Pi Brewing is not open to the public yet, they are able to brew and serve their beers next door at Nicky V’s. The IPA and West Coast Red are both good hoppy beers. We’ll keep tabs on when Pi itself opens. For now, grab a pint and some tasty Italian food. The new pilsner went on tap last week, replacing the Apricot Wheat.

Ponderosa Brewing Co. — (505) 639-5941

(Sun 11 a.m.–10 p.m., Mon–Sat 11 a.m.–11 p.m.)

Beers: Ghost Train IPA, Rip Saw Red, Crosscut Kolsch, Sawmill Stout, XPA1 Pale Ale, Helles Lager, Double IPA, Oktoberfest, Chocolate Pumpkin Porter, Schwarzbier, Breakfast Stout. Porter Pounder and I went over for the grand opening recently. Ponderosa is located at 1761 Bellamah NW, which is just east of Rio Grande and due north of the NM Natural History Museum, in the bottom floor of a swanky-looking apartment/retail complex. As for the beers, they are all the initial batches, so expect some modifications/changes going forward. Needless to say we both liked the Stout (5.2% ABV, 22 IBU) the best, but we’re dark beer guys (then again, you could also call us dark beer snobs, so consider that). Porter Pounder liked the XPA1 Pale Ale (5% ABV, 35 IBU), which will always be a rotating single-hop pale ale. The Crosscut Kolsch (4.9% ABV, 25 IBU) is almost like a Kolsch/hefeweizen hybrid. The Ghost Train (6.2% ABV, 75 IBU) needs some work, but the brewer has already identified what went wrong in the first batch and is working on correcting that for the next run. The Double IPA (7.7% ABV, 90 IBU) provides plenty of hops; it was briefly out, but it’s going to be back on tap soon. The Oktoberfest (5.7% ABV, 17 IBU) is an interesting variation on the traditional style; we tasted wheat malts in the mix. The Schwarzbier (4.7% ABV, 24 IBU) debuted recently. It’s smooth and flavorful. The new Breakfast Stout (7.3% ABV, 40 IBU) is a smoky, malty, yet smooth beast of a beer. It’s another sign that Ponderosa’s beers are getting better with each batch.

News: The next batch of brews will include Dunkles, Dunkelweizen, Helles Hefeweizen, Ella Single Hop Pale Ale, and something called Marbelous.

Red Door Brewing — (505) 633-6675

(Noon to midnight all week)

Beers: Gateway Blonde Ale, Roamer Red, Threshold IPA, Paint it Black Milk Stout, Unhinged Cider, Trapdoor Wheat. We were excited to try Red Door ever since they first invited us to visit many months ago. They are now open and their initial batches of beer are all quite good. The Roamer Red (6% ABV) was a favorite for Porter Pounder, sitting midway between hoppy reds like Marble and sweeter reds like the standard Irish variety. The Paint it Black (5.5%) is served on nitro, so it’s criminally smooth. The potent Threshold IPA (6.6% ABV) should appeal to local hopheads. Beware the Unhinged Cider as it checks in at 7.9 percent, but you don’t taste the alcohol.

Sandia Chile Grill — (505) 798-1970

(Mon–Sat 8 a.m.–8 p.m., Sun 8 a.m.–6 p.m.)

Beers: Irish Red, Rattlesnake IPA, Smoked Stout. We’re going to dispatch E-Rock (he needs a new assignment) to re-establish our lines of communication with Sandia Chile Grill.

News: Congrats to SCG on sweeping all three medals in the mead category at the 2014 State Fair Pro-Am, while also claiming a silver medal for Barb’s Barrel Hefeweizen.

The Stumbling Steer — (505) 792-7805

(Sunday-Wednesday 11 a.m.-midnight, Thursday-Saturday 11 a.m.-2 a.m.)

Beers: Bang Up Blonde, Hefferweizen, Pig Sticker Pale, Iron Horse IPA, Rawhide Red, Boneyard Brown, Hop Trough (Double IPA), Soiled Dove (Imperial Stout), Black IPA. While the brewery is being built in the back of the Steer, all of their house beers are being brewed off-site, but still using brewer Kirk Roberts’ recipes. The DIPA and the Stout are limited to two per customer, due to their high alcohol content (10% and 9.5% ABV, respectively). The Crew has already made two separate visits to the Steer to review the beer and food. We enjoyed it all. The Black IPA is the current seasonal beer, plus there are often one or two cask beers. We recently had their Bacon Bourbon Stout and Green Chile IPA on cask. Franz Solo loved the latter.

Tractor Brewing Company — (505) 433-5654 (Nob Hill Tap Room), TBA (Wells Park)

(Nob Hill is open Monday-Wednesday 3 p.m. to midnight, Thursday 3 p.m. to 2 a.m., Friday-Saturday 1 p.m. to 2 a.m., Sunday 1 p.m. to midnight; Wells Park is open Monday-Thursday 3 p.m. to close, Friday-Sunday 1 p.m. to midnight.
 Last call 30 minutes before close. 
No package after midnight.
 Brewery tours Saturday at 1 p.m.)

Beers at Nob Hill: Berry Cider, Ruby Red Wheat, Barnstorm Ale, Pilsner #15, Tractoberfest, Little Red Rye-ding Hood, Jack the Sipper.

Beers at Wells Park only: 6% Humidity 9% ABV Cider, 4 Seasons 1 Week Cider, Bulls-Eye PA, Mustachio Milk Stout, Pilsner #15, La Llorona Dry Hop Amber, Javi Light Lager. All of the Nob Hill seasonals are also at Wells Park, which has 24 total taps (Tractor’s five regular beers have two taps apiece). The Tractoberfest is back and this year’s batch is one of the best yet. It’s just a malt blast of happiness. The 4 Seasons 1 Week Cider is a variation of the 6%-9% (these names, oy), slightly sweeter and it’s only 7.2-percent ABV. The newest beers on tap were brewed up for Tractor’s 15th anniversary. The Ruby Red Wheat is loaded with grapefruit. The Little Red has a malty rye kick. The Bulls-Eye is a solid IPA. Jack the Sipper is Tractor’s take on a pumpkin ale.

UPDATED >>> Events: Thursday’s pLOUD Music Series is back at Wells Park with Lunakats performing at 8 p.m.

The Babes and Bullies Calendar Release Party is Saturday at Wells Park from 5 to 9 p.m. That will be followed at 9:30 by the Definition Rare 10th Anniversary Party, a hip-hop event.

Monday at Wells Park, it’s the 2015 Beer Farmer Membership Blowout. Get your membership card (or renew it) and it will be valid for 14 months. You also get entered in a raffle for a membership purchase/renewal. It all kicks off at 3 p.m.

Also, every first Monday of the month at both Tractor locations is Beer for a Better Burque night. For every pint you buy $1 can go to one of four charities that have partnered with Tractor. You can also opt to purchase a special growler with the logo of your favorite charity.

Turtle Mountain Brewing Company — (505) 994-9497

(Kitchen hours: Mon–Tues 11 a.m.-8:30 p.m., Wed–Thurs 11 a.m.-9 p.m., Fri–Sat 11 a.m.-9:30 p.m., Sun 10:30 a.m.-8:30 p.m. Reminder: TMBC closes early when business dictates. Please call.)

Beers: (House) McDay’s Cream Ale, Oku Amber, Parasol White IPA, Hopshell IPA, Piedra Lisa Porter, Heidelberg Helles. (Seasonal/specialty) Cascade Session Ale, Saison du Soleil, Brown Ale for Boobies, Uberaltbier, A Little Somethin’ Pumpkin. To help us out for now and the future, brewer Tim Woodward broke down what will be the regular beers on tap (under House) and the current list of seasonals. That’s a pretty solid regular lineup. I personally really enjoyed the Porter and Amber, the latter of which trumps most of its genre in terms of flavor. The Heidelberg Helles (5.1% ABV, 25 IBU) has rejoined the regular lineup for good, or so Tim hopes. Congratulations to Turtle Mountain on winning our inaugural Oktoberfest challenge. Unfortunately, it’s run out for now. However, they’ve added A Little Somethin’ Pumpkin, which is served on nitro. Yeah, that sounds pretty damn intriguing to us.

Santa Fe breweries

Blue Corn Brewery — (505) 438-1800

(Daily 11 a.m.–10 p.m.)

Beers: Imperial Stout, Monks Mesa (Belgian Blonde). Beer lovers have been draining Blue Corn dry of its seasonals lately, with the Shattered Pumpkin running out this past week. The Monks Mesa (4.5% ABV, 15 IBU) is a Belgian blonde table beer. The Imperial Stout will debut Thursday. See the opening intro for more.

News: Coming soon are a single-hop IPA with Rakau, Meltdown chocolate porter, and a winter warmer.

Events: Blue Corn’s imperial stout will be released with a special party Thursday that will require reservations. Starting at 6 p.m., for $10 you get a pint of stout with three small dishes. Not a bad deal for a beer of that power. Whoo’s Donuts is making donut holes with the stout to serve as the buns for sliders in one of the food specials that will be available.

Duel Brewing Company — (505) 474-5301

(Sun 11 a.m.–8 p.m., Mon–Tues 11 a.m.–10 p.m., Wed–Sat 11 a.m.–midnight)

Beers: Danae (Golden Sour Ale), Study Series: Brown (Belgian-style Sour Brown Ale), Bad Amber, Fiction (IPA), Synne (Pale Ale), Fantin (Double Pale Ale), Marcel (Witbier), Whistler (Blonde), Manikin Small Scottish-style Dark Ale. Duel brewer Todd Yocham described the latest Study Series entry (5% ABV) like this, “A very malt forward light bodied brown ale, soured with Lactobacillus and accentuated by the fruity esters from our Trappist yeast.” The Fantin (7.5% ABV), which I tried and liked at Pajarito Summerfest, gets this summary, “Aromas of strawberry and pineapple accentuated by our Trappist yeast will keep you wanting more.” The Danae is the newest entry.

Events: The life drawing session is $25 and is held each Sunday morning from 11-1 (although they are not open to the drinking public till 1 p.m. on Sun). You get the beverage of your choice, a Brussels-style waffle made with their own yeast and beer and then served with a Grunewald Syrup. Everyone then draws from a nude model. People can sign up through the website or call the brewery to reserve a spot.

Santa Fe Brewing Company — (505) 424-3333

(Mon–Sat 11 a.m.–10 p.m., closed on Sunday)

Beers: Double White IPA, Deviator Doppelbock, Full Mast Kilt Scotch Ale, Black IPA. The first beer in the new Ever Changing Series is a Double White IPA, which Luke of the Brew Crew bullpen recently reviewed. This week’s Small Batch Saturday beer is Full Mast Kilt. The Kriek, which won a bronze medal at GABF this year, is on sale around the state in bombers, though it is no longer on tap.

Events: $1 Off Growler Refills in the Tasting Room on Mondays. $2 pint Tuesdays at the Eldorado Taphouse. On Wednesday, there is a $2 Pint Special in the SFBC Tasting Room, and the Sangre de Cristo Craft Brewers’ Meeting will be held at 6:30 p.m. at the Tasting Room as well on the third Wednesday of every month. On Thursday, there will be $1 Off Growler Refills at the Eldorado Taphouse.

News: SFBC will soon be opening a taproom in Albuquerque. Here are all the details that Luke, our Santa Fe correspondent, could find. It sounds promising.

Second Street Brewery — (505) 989-3278 (Railyard), (505) 982-3030 (original location)

(Mon–Thurs 11 a.m.–10 p.m., Fri–Sat 11 a.m.–11 p.m., Sunday noon-9 p.m.)

Beers: Kolsch, Cream Stout, IPA, Boneshaker Bitter, Pivotal IPA, Schwarzbier, Berliner Weisse. The Schwarzbier is the most recent addition to taps. In addition to their own beers, Second Street has a guest tap that currently features La Cumbre’s Elevated IPA.

UPDATED >>> Events: Pollo Frito is playing Friday at the original location. The Gregg Daigle Band plays Saturday.

Shows at the Railyard include Hot Club of Santa Fe on Friday and Mushi Trio on Saturday.

Every Wednesday night, both SSB locations host Game Night. SSB has game boards and dominoes or bring your own … oh yeah, they also have discounted pitchers!

Other breweries you need to visit

Twisted Chile Brewing — (575) 835-2949

(Mon–Thurs 11 a.m.–9 p.m., Fri–Sun 11 a.m.–11 p.m.)

Beers: KC’s Traditional Irish Stout, 790 IPA, Pumpkin Ale, Quebradas Sunrise Amber. Twisted Chile has been open for a while as a restaurant, but as the name might imply, they will be brewing their own beer on site. Located in Socorro at 115 Abeyta St. W, they will be the first brewery there to brew on site since Socorro Springs outsourced their brewing to Eddyline in Colorado. I got to head down there this week and try their beers (all were quite tasty) and meet the staff. Look for the story to be posted soon!

* * * *

That’s all for this week! If you have any questions or comments, leave them below or contact us on our Facebook page.

Cheers!

— Stoutmeister

Greetings, New Mexico craft beer lovers. Stoutmeister here with the reunified edition of The Week Ahead in Beer. This column covers all the breweries in Bernalillo and Sandoval counties, with Santa Fe’s four breweries and one newcomer down in Socorro also joining the party. We tried hard to keep the state edition going, but without participation from the breweries outside the I-25 corridor, it was futile.

Stoutmeister puts on his serious face to handle The Week Ahead in Beer.

Stoutmeister puts on his serious face to handle The Week Ahead in Beer.

This week marks a personal favorite day of mine as International Stout Day returns this Thursday. As of right now there does not appear to be any special events going on here in New Mexico, which saddens me a bit. (UPDATE: Marble teased on Twitter that they will have “something special” for Stout Day, so I guess I’ll have to go stop by to see what it is.) However, this means it’s just up to you and me, fellow stout lovers, to celebrate this event the best way we know how. Personally, I say the best way to go is this — go grab as many single cans/bottles/bombers of your favorite local stouts, be they regular or imperial, and set them aside at home. Then hit the road and pop into a couple breweries for stouts that are not distributed. Enjoy a couple pints (this might also be in a time to cash in those designated driver points with a good friend) and then head home to enjoy the rest. I recommend blasting heavy metal along the way — something classic like Pantera’s Vulgar Display of Power, Anthrax’s Persistence of Time, or Slayer’s Seasons in the Abyss — while also watching lots of hockey. Sure, there’s some NFL game on between a couple Ohio teams that will inevitably choke away their chances for glory later this year, but trust me, it’s all about stouts, metal, and hockey. And because I know many will ask, my stout recommendations include Bosque’s Driftwood Oatmeal Stout, Boxing Bear’s Standing 8 Stout, Canteen’s American Stout, Cazuela’s Beer for My Horses (oatmeal stout), Chama River’s Sleeping Dog Stout, La Cumbre’s Malpais Stout (available in cans), Marble’s Oatmeal Stout, Nexus’ Dry Stout, Ponderosa’s Breakfast Stout, Red Door’s Paint it Black Milk Stout (on nitro), Stumbling Steer’s Soiled Dove (imperial stout), Tractor’s Double Plow Oatmeal Stout (last year’s NMDSBC Stout Challenge winner) and Mustachio Milk Stout (available in cans). If you’re in Santa Fe, aim for Blue Corn’s Gold Medal Stout (an actual GABF gold medal winner this year), Santa Fe’s Java Imperial Stout, or Second Street’s Cream Stout (if available). For those in Socorro, KC’s Traditional Irish Stout at Twisted Chile is comparable to Nexus’ Dry Stout.

Anyway, while all that is well and good for this week, early next week Bosque and Turtle Mountain are joining forces for a special beer dinner. The TMBC Harvest Dinner will take place Tuesday at 6 p.m. It’s a five-course affair, with each course paired with a special beer from Bosque or TMBC. This event also marks the debut of the first collaboration beer between the two breweries, Rio Grande Tortoise Black IPA. For more info click that link. The cost is $40 per person and there is limited seating, so if you want in on this, contact them right away.

On the new beer front, it’s a lot quieter than last week. Bosque has captured the Feral IPA and also has the AdoptEx English Pale Ale. Canteen has White Shine, a wheat wine. Chama River’s Otono Lager is on tap along with Red River Ale, an ESB. Marble’s new Nitro Pub Ale is set to debut Friday. Tractor has kept the fall theme going with Jack the Sipper, a pumpkin ale.

Up in Santa Fe, Blue Corn brought back AproPeach Saison and Maltyness Monster for a limited time. Santa Fe has Single Nugget Dry Pale Ale. Second Street has brought back their Cream Stout, Boneshaker Bitter, and Pivotal IPA. Down in Socorro, Twisted Chile’s Quebradas Sunrise Amber has risen.

Continue reading for all the news that is fit to blog for the week of Nov. 3.

To break down each “capsule,” I listed the brewery (with Web page linked), its phone number and hours of operation. Under “Beers” are the new or seasonal beers on tap for this week.

Albuquerque metro area breweries

ABQ Brew Pub — (505) 884-1116

(Mon–Thurs 11 a.m.–midnight, Fri–Sat 11 a.m.–2 a.m., Sunday 10 a.m.–midnight)

Beers: Petrus Aged Ale, Petrus Aged Red. Petrus Aged Ale and Red are high alcohol barrel-aged sours from a family-owned brewery in Flanders. Several times a year, ABP serves up the latest creation by local brewing hero and winner of the Samuel Adams Longshot competition, Ben Miller, or seasonal releases by Monks Brewing.

Back Alley Draft House — (505) 766-8590

(Hours 4 p.m.-11 p.m. daily)

Beers: Soroche IPA, Berliner Weisse, Poth’s Pilsner, Ladron’s con Fuego. In case you missed it, we interviewed BADH’s new brewer, Brandon Venaglia, last week. There are some exciting times coming, including a possible expansion. In the meantime, the beer list has not changed yet. The pilsner is based on a pre-Prohibition recipe. It’s a sweet, tasty little treat. This version of the Ladron’s is smoky, as the name might imply.

Bosque Brewing Company — (505) 750-7596

(Mon–Thurs 11 a.m.–10 p.m., Fri–Sat 11 a.m.-11 p.m., Sun noon-8 p.m.)

Beers: Feral IPA, PSA (Pumpkin Spice Ale), Bosque Lager, AdoptEx English Pale Ale, Olde Bosky Porter, Cottonwood Anniversary Ale. The Cottonwood is a big old double red ale, similar to but still different than Marble’s Imperial Red; there’s more malt backbone here, a little less hop bite, but it’s still excellent. Also back on tap is an old favorite in the Olde Bosky Porter. The Lager is back by popular demand. The Feral IPA should quench your need for hops. For every pint of AdoptEx English PA sold, $1 will be donated to the Adoption Exchange of Albuqueqrue.

Cask: We didn’t get a cask update yet. When we do, we’ll post it.

News: Construction continues on Bosque’s new taproom, the Bosque Public House, located on Girard just south of Central. Bosque has also signed a lease on a new taproom in Las Cruces, located in the former Mimbres Valley space across from New Mexico State at the corner of University Ave. and Espina St.

Bosque has a happy hour running from 3-6 p.m. Monday through Thursday and all day on Sunday. Look for special menu items and get $1 off your favorite pints.

Boxing Bear Brewing Company — (505) 897-2327

(Sun-Thurs 11 a.m.-10 p.m., Fri-Sat 11 a.m.-11 p.m.)

Beers: Glass Jaw Double IPA, Paw Swipe Pale Ale, Hairy Mit Hefe, Standing 8 Stout, Ambear Ale, Uppercut IPA, Punkelweizen. The new kid here is Punkelweizen, a pumpkin/dunkelweizen hybrid. Their Facebook page described it as “liquid banana bread.” Other recent additions to the lineup are the Standing 8 Stout (6.3% ABV, 45 IBU) and Ambear Ale (5.2% ABV, 35 IBU). The Glass Jaw is now out in full force.

Cask: Yup, Boxing Bear is doing a cask. We’re waiting to hear what’s up for this Friday.

Broken Bottle Brewery — (505) 890-8777

(Mon–Weds 4-11 p.m., Thurs-Fri 4 p.m.–midnight, Sat noon–midnight, Sun noon–10 p.m.)

Beers: Stray Dog IPA, Cactus Juice, Peculiar Pumpkin Porter, Drunken Hobo Milk Stout, Debacle Pumpkin Ale. Cactus Juice is made with actual prickly pears. The most recent additions to the taps are the Drunken Hobo Milk Stout and the Debacle Pumpkin Ale. Compare that to the Peculiar Pumpkin Porter and see which is the better style.

Events: B3 has $3 beers every Tuesday from open to close. On Wednesday, B3 will be hosting their open mic from 8-10 p.m., with signups starting at 7:30 p.m. Check out B3’s karaoke night every Thursday starting at 8 p.m.

Canteen Brewhouse — (505) 881-2737

(Sun–Thurs noon–10 p.m., Fri–Sat noon–midnight)

Beers: Irish Red, Rye PA, American Stout, The Good Stuff, White Shine (White Wine). The White Shine (9.75% ABV) is a big old wheat wine that has some unique flavors. Another recent addition to the lineup is The Good Stuff (5.7% ABV, 70 IBU), a session IPA. The Rye PA (7% ABV, 50 IBU) and the American Stout (7.4% ABV, 60 IBU) are fairly recent additions. I got to try the American Stout while interviewing brewer Brady McKeown about the name change to Canteen Brewhouse. It’s a big, bold, thick, mean-as-hell-yet-totally-lovable stout. It’s my kind of stout, and that’s saying something.

News: Canteen posted some pics on Facebook of the beers they are currently barrel-aging in the back. They’ve got Double IPA in tequila barrels, American Stock Ale in rum barrels, Belgian Strong Golden in wine barrels, and Panama Joe Coffee Stout in bourbon barrels.

Cazuela’s Seafood & Mexican Grill — (505) 994-9364

(Open daily 8 a.m.-10 p.m.)

Beers: Papacabra (Double IPA), Panama Red, Acapulco Gold (Mexican Lager), Hefeweizen, Chupacabra IPA, Piedra del Fuego Stoned Cream Ale, Beer for My Horses (Oatmeal Stout), Inebriator (Doppelbock). E-Rock and I had a chance to sample the Piedra del Fuego (5% ABV), which we both recommend. According to Cazuela’s menu: “This cream ale uses red-hot stones to super caramelize the sugars, creating a nutty, toffee-like flavor.” The Inebriator (8% ABV) and the Papacabra (9.7% ABV) are the biggest beers in the lineup.

Events: Cazuela’s now features a live guitarist every Friday.

News: Cazuela’s Beer for My Horses won a bronze medal in the oatmeal stout category at the World Beer Cup in Denver and also captured a gold medal in the stout category at the 2014 State Fair Pro-Am.

Chama River Brewing Company — (505) 342-1800

(Sun–Thurs 11 a.m.–11 p.m., Fri–Sat 11 a.m.–midnight)

Beers: Otono Fall Lager, Red River Ale, Rasp-booby Wheat, Cosmic Dog. This year’s batch of Punkin (7.3% ABV, 25 IBU) just went on tap. The Cosmic Dog (7% ABV, 25 IBU), a coffee stout, and the Rasp-booby (5% ABV, 20 IBU) are recent additions to tap. The latter beer is a raspberry wheat, brewed up to benefit Breast Cancer Awareness month as part of the “Toast for Tatas” campaign. The Otono Fall Lager is a VMO-style lager, similar to an Oktoberfest. The Red River Ale is an ESB. Also coming back soon is the Chamahawk Pale Ale.

News: Head brewer Zach Guilmette has revamped the recipe for Chama’s Jackalope IPA to give it a stronger kick and tastier palate. Franz Solo and I also highly recommend you try the revamped Sleeping Dog Stout. It’s creamy and burly and sweet and roasted … it’s got everything you want in a stout.

Kaktus Brewing — (505) 379-5072

(Hours Mon-Thu 2-9 p.m., Fri-Sat 11:30-10 p.m., Sun 11:30-9 p.m.)

Beers: James Blonde, Oyster Stout, Gunslinger Smoked Porter, Harvest Amber, Pumpkin Charlie Brown, Alt German Lager, Jabberwocky IPA, Oktoberfest. The Gunslinger is fairly new and screaming for us to come try it. The Harvest Amber, Oktoberfest, and the popular James Blonde are recent entries, while the Jabberwocky came back recently after a brief absence. Located at 471 South Hill Road in Bernalillo, Kaktus is one of the state’s newer breweries. It is a small, casual place, similar to Blue Heron in appearance and comfort factor. Kaktus owner Dana Koller said fans can expect the nanobrewery to go through its most popular styles quickly, though they will always have something new and exciting available as a replacement.

Events: Kaktus has several new weekday specials including $3 pints on Monday, $9 growlers on Tuesday, $6 bison nachos on Wednesday, and $8 Frito pie and beer on Thursday.

The Desert Darlings belly dancers will perform from 6 to 8 p.m. on Sunday. If you’ve never seen the Desert Darlings in person, you’re missing out.

La Cumbre Brewing — (505) 872-0225

(Open every day at noon)

Beers: Meridian Pale Ale, Hell Froze Over, Peek-a-Boob Porter, Lazy Sunday. The Lazy Sunday, a session IPA, is back on tap for the first time since April. The Peek-a-Boob Porter was made for charity, as $1 from every pint sold will go to the local YWCA to benefit early breast cancer awareness. Hell Froze Over (5.6% ABV, 42 IBU) is one of the newer kids on the tap list, returning for a second go-around after debuting last fall. It’s a brown ale, which as the name might imply is not something that’s made regularly. If you’re looking for something to sip slowly, Meridian Pale Ale (5.4% ABV, 40 IBU) is available. Oh, and don’t panic about Project Dank no longer appearing here as a seasonal. It is now part of La Cumbre’s regular lineup. And in more good news, Jeff Erway said Red Ryeot will soon return and become a regular beer as well.

News: We congratulate La Cumbre Brewing Co. for becoming this year’s National IPA Champion. Project Dank scored the win by edging out 127 other IPAs from around the country, including the likes of the venerable Fat Head’s IBUsive.

Lizard Tail Brewing — (505) 717-1301

(Sun–Weds 9 a.m.–11 p.m., Thurs–Sat 9 a.m.–midnight)

Beers: German Blonde Ale, Berliner Weisse, Belgian Abbey, IPA, Amber, Oatmeal Brown, India Black Ale, Rye Stout, Porter, Dubbel, Biscochito Brown. Both Brandon and I have had chances to visit Lizard Tail, which is one of the newest breweries in town, located in the shopping center on the southeast corner of Eubank and Montgomery. They specialize in malt-forward beers. The German Blonde (5.5% ABV, 20 IBU) is a good place to start. The Berliner Weisse (4.3% ABV, 8 IBU) is not nearly as sour as most of its genre. The Belgian Abbey (6.8%, 25 IBU) is a good example of its style. The IPA (6.8% ABV, 70 IBU) has a good mix of Mosaic, Warrior, and Galaxy hops. The Rye Stout (5.5% ABV, 35 IBU) has a nice flavor but lacks body. The first batch of Oatmeal Brown (4.2% ABV, 25 IBU) needed some work, but I got to sample the second batch that will be on tap soon and it’s improved. The Honey Pale Ale (6.3% ABV, 35 IBU) has run out for a little while, but it will be back soon. The Porter (5.6% ABV, 35 IBU) is a semi-smoky, thick beer that goes perfectly with the cooler weather. The new Biscochito Brown (8.5% ABV, 25 IBU) is not overly sweet. The Lizard Tail staff said the next batch will be a little maltier.

News: Lizard Tail’s happy hour runs seven days a week from 3 to 6 p.m. You get $1 off food, flights, and pints.

Events: Every Tuesday at 8 p.m. Lizard Tail will host Geeks Who Drink.

This Thursday, guitarist John Martinez will perform.

Marble Brewery — (505) 243-2739

(Mon–Sat 1 p.m.–midnight, Sun 1 p.m.–10:30 p.m.)

Beers: Double White, Double IPA, Imperial Red, Pumpkin Ale, Pumpkin Noir. The popular Pumpkin Noir is back along with its cousin, the regular Pumpkin Ale. Otherwise it’s a relatively light seasonal list as Marble is at capacity brewing the regular beers for distribution. There is the rotating “black handle,” which tends to feature some impressive “secret” beers. The Double White and Imperial Red brought home gold medals from GABF.

Cask: Check out Marble’s cask (a.k.a. “real” ale) selection on tap every Friday at the Downtown Pub.

Events: Brewery tours occur at the Downtown Pub every Thursday at 5:30 p.m.

News: Nitro Pub Ale will debut Friday, according to Marble’s Facebook page.

Nexus Brewery — (505) 242-4100

(Sun–Thurs 11 a.m.–10 p.m., Fri–Sat 11 a.m.–midnight)

Beers: Rye Pale Ale, Saisons Change, Dry Stout, Belgian Dark Strong. Brewer Kaylynn McKnight cranked out three new seasonals in the Saisons Change, Dry Stout, and Belgian Dark Strong. We’ve been able to get over there and try all three and came away quite impressed. The Dry Stout is bold and thick, the kind of burly beer you want in the winter (or year-round if you’re like us). The Saisons Change packs a ton of flavor in every sip. It’s not spicy hot, but it will leave your tongue tingling with a strong Belgian yeast backbone behind the initial bite. The Belgian Dark Strong is almost too sweet; it would go great as dessert after any of Nexus’ awesome food dishes.

Events: Nexus serves up Happy Hour All Day on Tuesday featuring $3 pints. Also on Tuesday, Nexus will be hosting their comedy open mic, Young Dumb and Full of Comedy, starting at 7:30 p.m. in the Sun Room.

Pi Brewing at Nicky V’s Neighborhood Pizzeria — (505) 890-9463

(Sun–Thurs 11 a.m.–9 p.m., Fri–Sat 11 a.m.–10 p.m.)

Beers: Unchallenged IPA, West Coast Red, Robust Porter, Lost Grain English Summer Ale, Pre-Prohibition Pilsner. While Pi Brewing is not open to the public yet, they are able to brew and serve their beers next door at Nicky V’s. The IPA and West Coast Red are both good hoppy beers. We’ll keep tabs on when Pi itself opens. For now, grab a pint and some tasty Italian food. The new pilsner went on tap last week, replacing the Apricot Wheat.

Ponderosa Brewing Co. — (505) 639-5941

(Sun 11 a.m.–10 p.m., Mon–Sat 11 a.m.–11 p.m.)

Beers: Ghost Train IPA, Rip Saw Red, Crosscut Kolsch, Sawmill Stout, XPA1 Pale Ale, Helles Lager, Double IPA, Oktoberfest, Chocolate Pumpkin Porter, Schwarzbier, Breakfast Stout. Porter Pounder and I went over for the grand opening recently. Ponderosa is located at 1761 Bellamah NW, which is just east of Rio Grande and due north of the NM Natural History Museum, in the bottom floor of a swanky-looking apartment/retail complex. As for the beers, they are all the initial batches, so expect some modifications/changes going forward. Needless to say we both liked the Stout (5.2% ABV, 22 IBU) the best, but we’re dark beer guys (then again, you could also call us dark beer snobs, so consider that). Porter Pounder liked the XPA1 Pale Ale (5% ABV, 35 IBU), which will always be a rotating single-hop pale ale. The Crosscut Kolsch (4.9% ABV, 25 IBU) is almost like a Kolsch/hefeweizen hybrid. The Ghost Train (6.2% ABV, 75 IBU) needs some work, but the brewer has already identified what went wrong in the first batch and is working on correcting that for the next run. The Double IPA (7.7% ABV, 90 IBU) provides plenty of hops; it was briefly out, but it’s going to be back on tap soon. The Oktoberfest (5.7% ABV, 17 IBU) is an interesting variation on the traditional style; we tasted wheat malts in the mix. The Schwarzbier (4.7% ABV, 24 IBU) debuted recently. It’s smooth and flavorful. The new Breakfast Stout (7.3% ABV, 40 IBU) is a smoky, malty, yet smooth beast of a beer. It’s another sign that Ponderosa’s beers are getting better with each batch.

News: The next batch of brews will include Dunkles, Dunkelweizen, Helles Hefeweizen, Ella Single Hop Pale Ale, and something called Marbelous.

Red Door Brewing — (505) 633-6675

(Noon to midnight all week)

Beers: Gateway Blonde Ale, Roamer Red, Threshold IPA, Paint it Black Milk Stout, Unhinged Cider, Trapdoor Wheat. We were excited to try Red Door ever since they first invited us to visit many months ago. They are now open and their initial batches of beer are all quite good. The Roamer Red (6% ABV) was a favorite for Porter Pounder, sitting midway between hoppy reds like Marble and sweeter reds like the standard Irish variety. The Paint it Black (5.5%) is served on nitro, so it’s criminally smooth. The potent Threshold IPA (6.6% ABV) should appeal to local hopheads. Beware the Unhinged Cider as it checks in at 7.9 percent, but you don’t taste the alcohol.

Sandia Chile Grill — (505) 798-1970

(Mon–Sat 8 a.m.–8 p.m., Sun 8 a.m.–6 p.m.)

Beers: Irish Red, Rattlesnake IPA, Smoked Stout. We’re going to dispatch E-Rock (he needs a new assignment) to re-establish our lines of communication with Sandia Chile Grill.

News: Congrats to SCG on sweeping all three medals in the mead category at the 2014 State Fair Pro-Am, while also claiming a silver medal for Barb’s Barrel Hefeweizen.

The Stumbling Steer — (505) 792-7805

(Sunday-Wednesday 11 a.m.-midnight, Thursday-Saturday 11 a.m.-2 a.m.)

Beers: Bang Up Blonde, Hefferweizen, Pig Sticker Pale, Iron Horse IPA, Rawhide Red, Boneyard Brown, Hop Trough (Double IPA), Soiled Dove (Imperial Stout), Black IPA. While the brewery is being built in the back of the Steer, all of their house beers are being brewed off-site, but still using brewer Kirk Roberts’ recipes. The DIPA and the Stout are limited to two per customer, due to their high alcohol content (10% and 9.5% ABV, respectively). The Crew has already made two separate visits to the Steer to review the beer and food. We enjoyed it all. The Black IPA is the current seasonal beer, plus there are often one or two cask beers. We recently had their Bacon Bourbon Stout and Green Chile IPA on cask. Franz Solo loved the latter.

Tractor Brewing Company — (505) 433-5654 (Nob Hill Tap Room), TBA (Wells Park)

(Nob Hill is open Monday-Wednesday 3 p.m. to midnight, Thursday 3 p.m. to 2 a.m., Friday-Saturday 1 p.m. to 2 a.m., Sunday 1 p.m. to midnight; Wells Park is open Monday-Thursday 3 p.m. to close, Friday-Sunday 1 p.m. to midnight.
 Last call 30 minutes before close. 
No package after midnight.
 Brewery tours Saturday at 1 p.m.)

Beers at Nob Hill: Berry Cider, Ruby Red Wheat, Barnstorm Ale, Javi Light Lager, La Llorona Dry Hop Amber, Pilsner #15, Tractoberfest.

UPDATED >>> Beers at Wells Park only: 6% Humidity 9% ABV Cider, 4 Seasons 1 Week Cider, Mustachio Milk Stout, Bulls-Eye PA, Little Red Rye-ding Hood, Jack the Sipper. All of the Nob Hill seasonals are also at Wells Park, which has 24 total taps (Tractor’s five regular beers have two taps apiece). The Tractoberfest is back and this year’s batch is one of the best yet. It’s just a malt blast of happiness. The 4 Seasons 1 Week Cider is a variation of the 6%-9% (these names, oy), slightly sweeter and it’s only 7.2-percent ABV. The newest beers on tap were brewed up for Tractor’s 15th anniversary. The Ruby Red Wheat is loaded with grapefruit. The Little Red has a malty rye kick. The Bulls-Eye is a solid IPA. Jack the Sipper is Tractor’s take on a pumpkin ale.

Events: The Solos on the Hill music series is back at Nob Hill tonight (Wednesday) from 8:30 to 10:30 p.m. as Keith Sanchez performs.

The Thirsty Thursday series resumes at Wells Park with Roger Jameson performing starting at 8 p.m.

The Geeks Who Drink Breaking Bad Edition is this Friday at Wells Park from 2 to 4 p.m.

The In the Mix series is back Saturday at Wells Park as DJ Flo Fader performs at 9 p.m.

I’ll Drink to That returns Sunday at Wells Park with a “A Bring What You Can Event.” Bring in some non-perishable food items to donate from 4 to 7 p.m.

Poetry and Beer will have a poetry slam and open mic night Tuesday from 7 to 9 p.m. at Wells Park.

Also, every first Monday of the month at both Tractor locations is Beer for a Better Burque night. For every pint you buy $1 can go to one of four charities that have partnered with Tractor. You can also opt to purchase a special growler with the logo of your favorite charity.

Turtle Mountain Brewing Company — (505) 994-9497

(Kitchen hours: Mon–Tues 11 a.m.-8:30 p.m., Wed–Thurs 11 a.m.-9 p.m., Fri–Sat 11 a.m.-9:30 p.m., Sun 10:30 a.m.-8:30 p.m. Reminder: TMBC closes early when business dictates. Please call.)

Beers: (House) McDay’s Cream Ale, Oku Amber, Parasol White IPA, Hopshell IPA, Piedra Lisa Porter, Heidelberg Helles. (Seasonal/specialty) Cascade Session Ale, Saison du Soleil, Brown Ale for Boobies, Uberaltbier, A Little Somethin’ Pumpkin. To help us out for now and the future, brewer Tim Woodward broke down what will be the regular beers on tap (under House) and the current list of seasonals. That’s a pretty solid regular lineup. I personally really enjoyed the Porter and Amber, the latter of which trumps most of its genre in terms of flavor. The Heidelberg Helles (5.1% ABV, 25 IBU) has rejoined the regular lineup for good, or so Tim hopes. Congratulations to Turtle Mountain on winning our inaugural Oktoberfest challenge. Unfortunately, it’s run out for now. However, they’ve added A Little Somethin’ Pumpkin, which is served on nitro. Yeah, that sounds pretty damn intriguing to us.

Events: See above for Turtle and Bosque’s combined beer dinner that’s set for Tuesday.

Santa Fe breweries

Blue Corn Brewery — (505) 438-1800

(Daily 11 a.m.–10 p.m.)

Beers: Shattered Pumpkin, Monks Mesa (Belgian Blonde), AproPeach Saison, Maltyness Monster. Beer lovers have been draining Blue Corn dry of its seasonals lately, with the Oktoberfest and Alpha Reaper both running out this past week. Shattered Pumpkin (6.5% ABV, 20 IBU) was made with French saison yeast and 20 pounds of locally sourced pumpkin for a unique flavor, but it’s nearly out as well. The new Monks Mesa (4.5% ABV, 15 IBU) is a Belgian blonde table beer. The AproPeach and Maltyness, a Scottish wee heavy, are back in limited amounts as two aged kegs have been tapped.

News: An imperial stout is due out Nov. 13 (they fit 900 pounds into the mash tun, for crying out loud). Also on their way are a single-hop IPA with Rakau, a chocolate porter, and a winter warmer.

Events: Blue Corn’s imperial stout will be released with a special party that will require reservations on Nov. 13. Starting at 6 p.m., for $10 you get a pint of stout with three small dishes. Not a bad deal for a beer of that power. Whoo’s Donuts is making donut holes with the stout to serve as the buns for sliders in one of the food specials that will be available.

Duel Brewing Company — (505) 474-5301

(Sun 11 a.m.–8 p.m., Mon–Tues 11 a.m.–10 p.m., Wed–Sat 11 a.m.–midnight)

Beers: Danae (Golden Sour Ale), Study Series: Brown (Belgian-style Sour Brown Ale), Bad Amber, Fiction (IPA), Synne (Pale Ale), Fantin (Double Pale Ale), Marcel (Witbier), Whistler (Blonde), Manikin Small Scottish-style Dark Ale. Duel brewer Todd Yocham described the latest Study Series entry (5% ABV) like this, “A very malt forward light bodied brown ale, soured with Lactobacillus and accentuated by the fruity esters from our Trappist yeast.” The Fantin (7.5% ABV), which I tried and liked at Pajarito Summerfest, gets this summary, “Aromas of strawberry and pineapple accentuated by our Trappist yeast will keep you wanting more.” The Danae is the newest entry.

Events: The life drawing session is $25 and is held each Sunday morning from 11-1 (although they are not open to the drinking public till 1 p.m. on Sun). You get the beverage of your choice, a Brussels-style waffle made with their own yeast and beer and then served with a Grunewald Syrup. Everyone then draws from a nude model. People can sign up through the website or call the brewery to reserve a spot.

Santa Fe Brewing Company — (505) 424-3333

(Mon–Sat 11 a.m.–10 p.m., closed on Sunday)

Beers: Oktoberfest, Double White IPA, Single Nugget Dry Pale Ale, Black IPA. The first beer in the new Ever Changing Series is a Double White IPA, which Luke of the Brew Crew bullpen recently reviewed. This week’s Small Batch Saturday beer is Single Nugget Dry Pale Ale. The Kriek, which won a bronze medal at GABF this year, is on sale around the state in bombers, though it is no longer on tap.

Events: $1 Off Growler Refills in the Tasting Room on Mondays. $2 pint Tuesdays at the Eldorado Taphouse. On Wednesday, there is a $2 Pint Special in the SFBC Tasting Room, and the Sangre de Cristo Craft Brewers’ Meeting will be held at 6:30 p.m. at the Tasting Room as well on the third Wednesday of every month. On Thursday, there will be $1 Off Growler Refills at the Eldorado Taphouse.

News: SFBC will soon be opening a taproom in Albuquerque. We’re working hard on getting the details about this upcoming endeavor.

Second Street Brewery — (505) 989-3278 (Railyard), (505) 982-3030 (original location)

(Mon–Thurs 11 a.m.–10 p.m., Fri–Sat 11 a.m.–11 p.m., Sunday noon-9 p.m.)

UPDATED>>> Beers: Kolsch, Cream Stout, IPA, Boneshaker Bitter, Pivotal IPA, Schwarzbier, Berliner Weisse. The Schwarzbier is the most recent addition to taps. In addition to their own beers, Second Street has a guest tap that currently features La Cumbre’s Elevated IPA.

Events: Kodama Trio is playing Friday at the original location. Homade Moments plays Saturday.

Shows at the Railyard include Red Racer on Friday and Drastic Andrew on Saturday.

Every Wednesday night, both SSB locations host Game Night. SSB has game boards and dominoes or bring your own … oh yeah, they also have discounted pitchers!

Other breweries you need to visit

Twisted Chile Brewing — (575) 835-2949

(Mon–Thurs 11 a.m.–9 p.m., Fri–Sun 11 a.m.–11 p.m.)

Beers: KC’s Traditional Irish Stout, 790 IPA, Pumpkin Ale, Quebradas Sunrise Amber. Twisted Chile has been open for a while as a restaurant, but as the name might imply, they will be brewing their own beer on site. Located in Socorro at 115 Abeyta St. W, they will be the first brewery there to brew on site since Socorro Springs outsourced their brewing to Eddyline in Colorado. I got to head down there this week and try their beers (all were quite tasty) and meet the staff. Look for the story to be posted soon!

* * * *

That’s all for this week! If you have any questions or comments, leave them below or contact us on our Facebook page.

Cheers!

— Stoutmeister

Greetings, New Mexico craft beer lovers. Stoutmeister here with the reunified edition of The Week Ahead in Beer. This column covers all the breweries in Bernalillo and Sandoval counties, with Santa Fe’s four breweries and one newcomer down in Socorro also joining the party. We tried hard to keep the state edition going, but without participation from the breweries outside the I-25 corridor, it was futile.

Stoutmeister puts on his serious face to handle The Week Ahead in Beer.

Stoutmeister puts on his serious face to handle The Week Ahead in Beer.

Our breweries have been quite friendly of late, and really all year, to various charities in New Mexico. Sometimes they brew a special beer and have a release party, other times they just invite everyone over with a portion of proceeds going to a designated charity. That will be the case again this Saturday when La Cumbre plays host to the Cerveza for a Cause! event from noon to 4 p.m. The Q Active 20-30 Club will receive $1 from every pint sold during this period to distribute to local children’s charities. Yup, you drink beer and it helps kids. The A&J BBQ food truck will be there for your culinary needs, while The Django Rhythm Meat Grinder will perform. There will also be face painting (naturally of a Dia de los Muertos theme) and crafts, plus a brewery tour at 2 p.m. for the first 30 people to sign up. There will also be a silent art auction and a special raffle. So head on over to La Cumbre this Saturday. We kinda doubt we’ll have to twist any arms to get people to attend.

On the new beer front, it’s a promising week. Boxing Bear is mixing up styles again with their Punkelweizen. Canteen has Chronic X2 IPA, plus half barrels of the popular Aztec Lager and award-winning Panama Joe Coffee Stout. Chama River’s seasonal Punkin Drublic is back, with the Otono Lager due up soon. Kaktus is ready for shootout with Gunslinger Smoked Porter. La Cumbre’s Lazy Sunday is back and Red Ryeot is about to return as a permanent fixture in the lineup. Marble is having a release party tonight (Wednesday) for the return of Pumpkin Noir. Pi is going old school with a Pre-Prohibition Pilsner. Ponderosa’s Breakfast Stout will wake you up.

Up in Santa Fe, Blue Corn’s Monks Mesa, a Belgian table beer, is on tap at last. Santa Fe has Deviator Doppelbock, plus Black IPA returns with a release party Saturday. Down in Socorro, Twisted Chile’s Pumpkin Ale and McFadden Scotch Ale are now available.

Continue reading for all the news that is fit to blog for the week of Oct. 27.

To break down each “capsule,” I listed the brewery (with Web page linked), its phone number and hours of operation. Under “Beers” are the new or seasonal beers on tap for this week.

Albuquerque metro area breweries

ABQ Brew Pub — (505) 884-1116

(Mon–Thurs 11 a.m.–midnight, Fri–Sat 11 a.m.–2 a.m., Sunday 10 a.m.–midnight)

Beers: Petrus Aged Ale, Petrus Aged Red. Petrus Aged Ale and Red are high alcohol barrel-aged sours from a family-owned brewery in Flanders. Several times a year, ABP serves up the latest creation by local brewing hero and winner of the Samuel Adams Longshot competition, Ben Miller, or seasonal releases by Monks Brewing.

Back Alley Draft House — (505) 766-8590

(Hours 4 p.m.-11 p.m. daily)

Beers: Soroche IPA, Berliner Weisse, Poth’s Pilsner, Ladron’s con Fuego. We will have an interview with BADH’s new brewer posted soon. There are some exciting times coming, including a possible expansion. In the meantime, the beer list has not changed yet. The pilsner is based on a pre-Prohibition recipe. It’s a sweet, tasty little treat. This version of the Ladron’s is smoky, as the name might imply.

Bosque Brewing Company — (505) 750-7596

(Mon–Thurs 11 a.m.–10 p.m., Fri–Sat 11 a.m.-11 p.m., Sun noon-8 p.m.)

Beers: Oktoberfest, PSA (Pumpkin Spice Ale), The Box IPA, Bosque Lager, Bosque’s Burnin’ Red, Olde Bosky Porter, Cottonwood Anniversary Ale. The Cottonwood is a big old double red ale, similar to but still different than Marble’s Imperial Red; there’s more malt backbone here, a little less hop bite, but it’s still excellent. Bosque’s Oktoberfest is just a malt blast of goodness, not overly sweet nor too dry. The Burnin’ Red, with a new recipe, is back on tap. Also back on tap is an old favorite in the Olde Bosky Porter. The Lager is back by popular demand. The Simcoe IPA has run out, but The Box is more than enough hops to keep you satiated.

Cask: We didn’t get a cask update yet. When we do, we’ll post it.

News: Construction continues on Bosque’s new taproom, the Bosque Public House, located on Girard just south of Central. Bosque has also signed a lease on a new taproom in Las Cruces, located in the former Mimbres Valley space across from New Mexico State at the corner of University Ave. and Espina St.

Bosque has a happy hour running from 3-6 p.m. Monday through Thursday and all day on Sunday. Look for special menu items and get $1 off your favorite pints.

Beers in the future will include a barley wine, ESB, and a new IPA. Plus, Bosque is aging its Scotia Scotch Ales in rum barrels, and they just received a shipment of casks to start doing that as well. We’re a bit excited.

Boxing Bear Brewing Company — (505) 897-2327

(Sun-Thurs 11 a.m.-10 p.m., Fri-Sat 11 a.m.-11 p.m.)

Beers: Glass Jaw Double IPA, Paw Swipe Pale Ale, Hairy Mit Hefe, Standing 8 Stout, Ambear Ale, Uppercut IPA, Punkelweizen. The new kid here is Punkelweizen, a pumpkin/dunkelweizen hybrid. Their Facebook page described it as “liquid banana bread.” Other recent additions to the lineup are the Standing 8 Stout (6.3% ABV, 45 IBU) and Ambear Ale (5.2% ABV, 35 IBU). The Glass Jaw is now out in full force.

Cask: Yup, Boxing Bear is doing a cask. Rejoice! This Friday they have a Dunkelweizen with blackberries and dark chocolate.

Events: Boxing Bear will be having free demonstrations on their brewing system this Saturday from 11 a.m. to 4 p.m. as part of National Learn to Homebrew Day. Reservations are not required.

Broken Bottle Brewery — (505) 890-8777

(Mon–Weds 4-11 p.m., Thurs-Fri 4 p.m.–midnight, Sat noon–midnight, Sun noon–10 p.m.)

Beers: Stray Dog IPA, Cactus Juice, Peculiar Pumpkin Porter, Drunken Hobo Milk Stout, Debacle Pumpkin Ale. Cactus Juice is made with actual prickly pears. The most recent additions to the taps are the Drunken Hobo Milk Stout and the Debacle Pumpkin Ale. Compare that to the Peculiar Pumpkin Porter and see which is the better style.

Events: B3 has $3 beers every Tuesday from open to close. On Wednesday, B3 will be hosting their open mic from 8-10 p.m., with signups starting at 7:30 p.m. Check out B3’s karaoke night every Thursday starting at 8 p.m.

Canteen Brewhouse — (505) 881-2737

(Sun–Thurs noon–10 p.m., Fri–Sat noon–midnight)

Beers: Irish Red, Rye PA, American Stout, The Good Stuff, Chronic X2 IPA, Panama Joe Coffee Stout, Aztec Lager. The Chronic is a big new beer on tap. Both the Panama Joe and Aztec will be on tap for a limited time as there is just a half barrel available of each. A recent addition to the lineup is The Good Stuff (5.7% ABV, 70 IBU), a session IPA. The Rye PA (7% ABV, 50 IBU) and the American Stout (7.4% ABV, 60 IBU) are fairly recent additions. I got to try the American Stout while interviewing brewer Brady McKeown about the name change to Canteen Brewhouse. It’s a big, bold, thick, mean-as-hell-yet-totally-lovable stout. It’s my kind of stout, and that’s saying something.

News: Canteen posted some pics on Facebook of the beers they are currently barrel-aging in the back. They’ve got Double IPA in tequila barrels, American Stock Ale in rum barrels, Belgian Strong Golden in wine barrels, and Panama Joe Coffee Stout in bourbon barrels.

Cazuela’s Seafood & Mexican Grill — (505) 994-9364

(Open daily 8 a.m.-10 p.m.)

Beers: Papacabra (Double IPA), Panama Red, Acapulco Gold (Mexican Lager), Hefeweizen, Chupacabra IPA, Piedra del Fuego Stoned Cream Ale, Beer for My Horses (Oatmeal Stout), Inebriator (Doppelbock). E-Rock and I had a chance to sample the Piedra del Fuego (5% ABV), which we both recommend. According to Cazuela’s menu: “This cream ale uses red-hot stones to super caramelize the sugars, creating a nutty, toffee-like flavor.” The Inebriator (8% ABV) and the Papacabra (9.7% ABV) are the biggest beers in the lineup.

Events: Cazuela’s now features a live guitarist every Friday.

News: Cazuela’s Beer for My Horses won a bronze medal in the oatmeal stout category at the World Beer Cup in Denver and also captured a gold medal in the stout category at the 2014 State Fair Pro-Am.

Chama River Brewing Company — (505) 342-1800

(Sun–Thurs 11 a.m.–11 p.m., Fri–Sat 11 a.m.–midnight)

Beers: Punkin Drublic, The Hound (Amber Ale), Rasp-booby Wheat, Cosmic Dog. This year’s batch of Punkin (7.3% ABV, 25 IBU) just went on tap. The Cosmic Dog (7% ABV, 25 IBU), a coffee stout, and the Rasp-booby (5% ABV, 20 IBU) are recent additions to tap. The latter beer is a raspberry wheat, brewed up to benefit Breast Cancer Awareness month as part of the “Toast for Tatas” campaign. The Hound (6% ABV, 40 IBU) was described as “a roasty fall amber,” but it’s nearly out. The Otono Lager will soon replace it. It’s a VMO-style beer.

News: Head brewer Zach Guilmette has revamped the recipe for Chama’s Jackalope IPA to give it a stronger kick and tastier palate. Franz Solo and I also highly recommend you try the revamped Sleeping Dog Stout. It’s creamy and burly and sweet and roasted … it’s got everything you want in a stout.

Kaktus Brewing — (505) 379-5072

(Hours Mon-Thu 2-9 p.m., Fri-Sat 11:30-10 p.m., Sun 11:30-9 p.m.)

Beers: James Blonde, Oyster Stout, Gunslinger Smoked Porter, Harvest Amber, Pumpkin Charlie Brown, Alt German Lager, Jabberwocky IPA, Oktoberfest. The Gunslinger is new and screaming for us to come try it. The Harvest Amber, Oktoberfest, and the popular James Blonde are recent entries, while the Jabberwocky came back recently after a brief absence. Located at 471 South Hill Road in Bernalillo, Kaktus is one of the state’s newer breweries. It is a small, casual place, similar to Blue Heron in appearance and comfort factor. Kaktus owner Dana Koller said fans can expect the nanobrewery to go through its most popular styles quickly, though they will always have something new and exciting available as a replacement.

Events: Kaktus has several new weekday specials including $3 pints on Monday, $9 growlers on Tuesday, $6 bison nachos on Wednesday, and $8 Frito pie and beer on Thursday.

E-Rock and his friend Stephen will be playing music at Kaktus on Thursday from 7 to 9 p.m. Seems like a pretty darned good time to head up there, try all those beers.

The Desert Darlings belly dancers will perform from 6 to 8 p.m. on Sunday. If you’ve never seen the Desert Darlings in person, you’re missing out.

La Cumbre Brewing — (505) 872-0225

(Open every day at noon)

Beers: Meridian Pale Ale, Hell Froze Over, Peek-a-Boob Porter, Lazy Sunday. The Lazy Sunday, a session IPA, is back on tap for the first time since April. The Peek-a-Boob Porter was made for charity, as $1 from every pint sold will go to the local YWCA to benefit early breast cancer awareness. Hell Froze Over (5.6% ABV, 42 IBU) is one of the newer kids on the tap list, returning for a second go-around after debuting last fall. It’s a brown ale, which as the name might imply is not something that’s made regularly. If you’re looking for something to sip slowly, Meridian Pale Ale (5.4% ABV, 40 IBU) is available. Oh, and don’t panic about Project Dank no longer appearing here as a seasonal. It is now part of La Cumbre’s regular lineup. And in more good news, Jeff Erway said Red Ryeot will soon return and become a regular beer as well.

Events: See our intro for information on Saturday’s Cerveza for a Cause event.

News: We congratulate La Cumbre Brewing Co. for becoming this year’s National IPA Champion. Project Dank scored the win by edging out 127 other IPAs from around the country, including the likes of the venerable Fat Head’s IBUsive.

Lizard Tail Brewing — (505) 717-1301

(Sun–Weds 9 a.m.–11 p.m., Thurs–Sat 9 a.m.–midnight)

Beers: German Blonde Ale, Berliner Weisse, Belgian Abbey, IPA, Amber, Oatmeal Brown, India Black Ale, Rye Stout, Porter, Dubbel, Biscochito Brown. Both Brandon and I have had chances to visit Lizard Tail, which is one of the newest breweries in town, located in the shopping center on the southeast corner of Eubank and Montgomery. They specialize in malt-forward beers. The German Blonde (5.5% ABV, 20 IBU) is a good place to start. The Berliner Weisse (4.3% ABV, 8 IBU) is not nearly as sour as most of its genre. The Belgian Abbey (6.8%, 25 IBU) is a good example of its style. The IPA (6.8% ABV, 70 IBU) has a good mix of Mosaic, Warrior, and Galaxy hops. The Rye Stout (5.5% ABV, 35 IBU) has a nice flavor but lacks body. The first batch of Oatmeal Brown (4.2% ABV, 25 IBU) needed some work, but I got to sample the second batch that will be on tap soon and it’s improved. The Honey Pale Ale (6.3% ABV, 35 IBU) has run out for a little while, but it will be back soon. The Porter (5.6% ABV, 35 IBU) is a semi-smoky, thick beer that goes perfectly with the cooler weather. The new Biscochito Brown (8.5% ABV, 25 IBU) is not overly sweet. The Lizard Tail staff said the next batch will be a little maltier.

News: Lizard Tail’s happy hour runs seven days a week from 3 to 6 p.m. You get $1 off food, flights, and pints.

Events: Every Tuesday at 8 p.m. Lizard Tail will host Geeks Who Drink.

Marble Brewery — (505) 243-2739

(Mon–Sat 1 p.m.–midnight, Sun 1 p.m.–10:30 p.m.)

Beers: Double White, Rescue Craft Draft, Double IPA, Imperial Red, Barley Wine, Pumpkin Noir. The popular Pumpkin Noir is back with a release party (see below). The Rescue Craft is an English-style pale ale. Proceeds benefit the Albuquerque Mountain Rescue Council. Otherwise it’s a relatively light seasonal list as Marble is at capacity brewing the regular beers for distribution. There is the rotating “black handle,” which tends to feature some impressive “secret” beers. The Double White and Imperial Red both brought home gold medals from GABF.

Cask: Check out Marble’s cask (a.k.a. “real” ale) selection on tap every Friday at the Downtown Pub.

Events: The Pumpkin Noir Release Party is tonight (Wednesday) at 5 p.m. David Berkeley will perform on stage from 6 to 9 p.m. With your pint of this pumpkin porter-style beer you can get complimentary Joliesse chocolates, “three artisnal varieties perfectly designed to bring out Pumpkin Noir’s unique spice.”

Brewery tours occur at the Downtown Pub every Thursday at 5:30 p.m.

News: Other beers coming up an English-style pub ale, which may be served on nitro, and an English-style chocolate stout. We’re sensing a theme here …

Nexus Brewery — (505) 242-4100

(Sun–Thurs 11 a.m.–10 p.m., Fri–Sat 11 a.m.–midnight)

Beers: Rye Pale Ale, Saisons Change, Dry Stout, Belgian Dark Strong. Brewer Kaylynn McKnight cranked out three new seasonals in the Saisons Change, Dry Stout, and Belgian Dark Strong. We’ve been able to get over there and try all three and came away quite impressed. The Dry Stout is bold and thick, the kind of burly beer you want in the winter (or year-round if you’re like us). The Saisons Change packs a ton of flavor in every sip. It’s not spicy hot, but it will leave your tongue tingling with a strong Belgian yeast backbone behind the initial bite. The Belgian Dark Strong is almost too sweet; it would go great as dessert after any of Nexus’ awesome food dishes.

Events: Nexus serves up Happy Hour All Day on Tuesday featuring $3 pints. Also on Tuesday, Nexus will be hosting their comedy open mic, Young Dumb and Full of Comedy, starting at 7:30 p.m. in the Sun Room.

Pi Brewing at Nicky V’s Neighborhood Pizzeria — (505) 890-9463

(Sun–Thurs 11 a.m.–9 p.m., Fri–Sat 11 a.m.–10 p.m.)

Beers: Unchallenged IPA, West Coast Red, Robust Porter, Lost Grain English Summer Ale, Pre-Prohibition Pilsner. While Pi Brewing is not open to the public yet, they are able to brew and serve their beers next door at Nicky V’s. The IPA and West Coast Red are both good hoppy beers. We’ll keep tabs on when Pi itself opens. For now, grab a pint and some tasty Italian food. The new pilsner just went on tap, replacing the Apricot Wheat.

Ponderosa Brewing Co. — (505) 639-5941

(Sun 11 a.m.–10 p.m., Mon–Sat 11 a.m.–11 p.m.)

Beers: Ghost Train IPA, Rip Saw Red, Crosscut Kolsch, Sawmill Stout, XPA1 Pale Ale, Helles Lager, Double IPA, Oktoberfest, Chocolate Pumpkin Porter, Schwarzbier, Breakfast Stout. Porter Pounder and I went over for the grand opening recently. Ponderosa is located at 1761 Bellamah NW, which is just east of Rio Grande and due north of the NM Natural History Museum, in the bottom floor of a swanky-looking apartment/retail complex. As for the beers, they are all the initial batches, so expect some modifications/changes going forward. Needless to say we both liked the Stout (5.2% ABV, 22 IBU) the best, but we’re dark beer guys (then again, you could also call us dark beer snobs, so consider that). Porter Pounder liked the XPA1 Pale Ale (5% ABV, 35 IBU), which will always be a rotating single-hop pale ale. The Crosscut Kolsch (4.9% ABV, 25 IBU) is almost like a Kolsch/hefeweizen hybrid. The Ghost Train (6.2% ABV, 75 IBU) needs some work, but the brewer has already identified what went wrong in the first batch and is working on correcting that for the next run. The Double IPA (7.7% ABV, 90 IBU) provides plenty of hops; it was briefly out, but it’s going to be back on tap soon. The Oktoberfest (5.7% ABV, 17 IBU) is an interesting variation on the traditional style; we tasted wheat malts in the mix. The Schwarzbier (4.7% ABV, 24 IBU) debuted recently. It’s smooth and flavorful. The new Breakfast Stout (7.3% ABV, 40 IBU) is a smoky, malty, yet smooth beast of a beer. It’s another sign that Ponderosa’s beers are getting better with each batch.

News: The next batch of brews will include Dunkles, Dunkelweizen, Helles Hefeweizen, Ella Single Hop Pale Ale, and something called Marbelous.

Red Door Brewing — (505) 633-6675

(Noon to midnight all week)

Beers: Gateway Blonde Ale, Roamer Red, Threshold IPA, Paint it Black Milk Stout, Unhinged Cider, Trapdoor Wheat. We were excited to try Red Door ever since they first invited us to visit many months ago. They are now open and their initial batches of beer are all quite good. The Roamer Red (6% ABV) was a favorite for Porter Pounder, sitting midway between hoppy reds like Marble and sweeter reds like the standard Irish variety. The Paint it Black (5.5%) is served on nitro, so it’s criminally smooth. The potent Threshold IPA (6.6% ABV) should appeal to local hopheads. Beware the Unhinged Cider as it checks in at 7.9 percent, but you don’t taste the alcohol.

Sandia Chile Grill — (505) 798-1970

(Mon–Sat 8 a.m.–8 p.m., Sun 8 a.m.–6 p.m.)

Beers: Irish Red, Rattlesnake IPA, Smoked Stout. We’re going to dispatch E-Rock (he needs a new assignment) to re-establish our lines of communication with Sandia Chile Grill.

News: Congrats to SCG on sweeping all three medals in the mead category at the 2014 State Fair Pro-Am, while also claiming a silver medal for Barb’s Barrel Hefeweizen.

The Stumbling Steer — (505) 792-7805

(Sunday-Wednesday 11 a.m.-midnight, Thursday-Saturday 11 a.m.-2 a.m.)

Beers: Bang Up Blonde, Hefferweizen, Pig Sticker Pale, Iron Horse IPA, Rawhide Red, Boneyard Brown, Hop Trough (Double IPA), Soiled Dove (Imperial Stout), Black IPA. While the brewery is being built in the back of the Steer, all of their house beers are being brewed off-site, but still using brewer Kirk Roberts’ recipes. The DIPA and the Stout are limited to two per customer, due to their high alcohol content (10% and 9.5% ABV, respectively). The Crew has already made two separate visits to the Steer to review the beer and food. We enjoyed it all. The Black IPA is the current seasonal beer, plus there are often one or two cask beers. We recently had their Bacon Bourbon Stout and Green Chile IPA on cask. Franz Solo loved the latter.

Tractor Brewing Company — (505) 433-5654 (Nob Hill Tap Room), TBA (Wells Park)

(Nob Hill is open Monday-Wednesday 3 p.m. to midnight, Thursday 3 p.m. to 2 a.m., Friday-Saturday 1 p.m. to 2 a.m., Sunday 1 p.m. to midnight; Wells Park is open Monday-Thursday 3 p.m. to close, Friday-Sunday 1 p.m. to midnight.
 Last call 30 minutes before close. 
No package after midnight.
 Brewery tours Saturday at 1 p.m.)

Beers at Nob Hill: Berry Cider, Ruby Red Wheat, Barnstorm Ale, Javi Light Lager, La Llorona Dry Hop Amber, Pilsner #15, Little Red Rye-ding Hood, Tractoberfest.

Beers at Wells Park only: 6% Humidity 9% ABV Cider, 4 Seasons 1 Week Cider, Mustachio Milk Stout, Bulls-Eye PA. All of the Nob Hill seasonals are also at Wells Park, which has 24 total taps (Tractor’s five regular beers have two taps apiece). The Tractoberfest is back and this year’s batch is one of the best yet. It’s just a malt blast of happiness. The 4 Seasons 1 Week Cider is a variation of the 6%-9% (these names, oy), slightly sweeter and it’s only 7.2-percent ABV. The newest beers on tap were brewed up for Tractor’s 15th anniversary. The Ruby Red Wheat is loaded with grapefruit. The Little Red has a malty rye kick. The Bulls-Eye is a solid IPA.

UPDATED >>> Events: There is no live music at Tractor Wells Park this weekend due to Halloween and Dia de los Muertos, but it will resume Tuesday with Music for What ALES You as Casey Mraz will be performing on the piano from 8 to 10 p.m.

Also, every first Monday of the month at both Tractor locations is Beer for a Better Burque night. For every pint you buy $1 can go to one of four charities that have partnered with Tractor. You can also opt to purchase a special growler with the logo of your favorite charity.

Turtle Mountain Brewing Company — (505) 994-9497

(Kitchen hours: Mon–Tues 11 a.m.-8:30 p.m., Wed–Thurs 11 a.m.-9 p.m., Fri–Sat 11 a.m.-9:30 p.m., Sun 10:30 a.m.-8:30 p.m. Reminder: TMBC closes early when business dictates. Please call.)

Beers: (House) McDay’s Cream Ale, Oku Amber, Parasol White IPA, Hopshell IPA, Piedra Lisa Porter, Heidelberg Helles. (Seasonal/specialty) Cascade Session Ale, Saison du Soleil, Brown Ale for Boobies, Uberaltbier, A Little Somethin’ Pumpkin. To help us out for now and the future, brewer Tim Woodward broke down what will be the regular beers on tap (under House) and the current list of seasonals. That’s a pretty solid regular lineup. I personally really enjoyed the Porter and Amber, the latter of which trumps most of its genre in terms of flavor. The Heidelberg Helles (5.1% ABV, 25 IBU) has rejoined the regular lineup for good, or so Tim hopes. Congratulations to Turtle Mountain on winning our inaugural Oktoberfest challenge. Unfortunately, it’s run out for now. However, they’ve added A Little Somethin’ Pumpkin, which is served on nitro. Yeah, that sounds pretty damn intriguing to us.

Santa Fe breweries

Blue Corn Brewery — (505) 438-1800

(Daily 11 a.m.–10 p.m.)

Beers: Shattered Pumpkin, Oktoberfest, Alpha Reaper (Imperial Red Ale), Monks Mesa (Belgian Blonde). If the Alpha Reaper (9% ABV, 100 IBU) sounds imposing, that’s because it is. A wet-hopped imperial red, it was made with 50 pounds of fresh Chinook hops grown in Colorado. Now good luck keeping “Don’t Fear the Reaper” from getting stuck in your head. Oktoberfest debuted last week and is quite the exceptional beer. It would have contended with Turtle Mountain for the top spot in our Oktoberfest challenge. Both the Reaper and the Oktoberfest are nearly out. Shattered Pumpkin (6.5% ABV, 20 IBU) was made with French saison yeast and 20 pounds of locally sourced pumpkin for a unique flavor. The new Monks Mesa (4.5% ABV, 15 IBU) is a Belgian blonde table beer.

News: An imperial stout is due out Nov. 13 (they fit 900 pounds into the mash tun, for crying out loud).

Events: Blue Corn’s imperial stout will be released with a special party that will require reservations on Nov. 13. Starting at 6 p.m., for $10 you get a pint of stout with three small dishes. Not a bad deal for a beer of that power.

Duel Brewing Company — (505) 474-5301

(Sun 11 a.m.–8 p.m., Mon–Tues 11 a.m.–10 p.m., Wed–Sat 11 a.m.–midnight)

Beers: Danae (Golden Sour Ale), Study Series: Brown (Belgian-style Sour Brown Ale), Bad Amber, Fiction (IPA), Synne (Pale Ale), Fantin (Double Pale Ale), Marcel (Witbier), Whistler (Blonde), Manikin Small Scottish-style Dark Ale. Duel brewer Todd Yocham described the latest Study Series entry (5% ABV) like this, “A very malt forward light bodied brown ale, soured with Lactobacillus and accentuated by the fruity esters from our Trappist yeast.” The Fantin (7.5% ABV), which I tried and liked at Pajarito Summerfest, gets this summary, “Aromas of strawberry and pineapple accentuated by our Trappist yeast will keep you wanting more.” The Danae is the newest entry.

Events: The life drawing session is $25 and is held each Sunday morning from 11-1 (although they are not open to the drinking public till 1 p.m. on Sun). You get the beverage of your choice, a Brussels-style waffle made with their own yeast and beer and then served with a Grunewald Syrup. Everyone then draws from a nude model. People can sign up through the website or call the brewery to reserve a spot.

Santa Fe Brewing Company — (505) 424-3333

(Mon–Sat 11 a.m.–10 p.m., closed on Sunday)

Beers: Oktoberfest, Double White IPA, Deviator Doppelbock, Black IPA, Kriek. The first beer in the new Ever Changing Series is a Double White IPA, which Luke of the Brew Crew bullpen recently reviewed. This week’s Small Batch Saturday beer is Deviator Doppelbock. The Kriek, which won a bronze medal at GABF this year, is back on tap and also for sale around the state in bombers.

Events: $1 Off Growler Refills in the Tasting Room on Mondays. $2 Tuesdays at the Eldorado Taphouse. On Wednesday, there is a $2 Pint Special in the SFBC Tasting Room, and the Sangre de Cristo Craft Brewers’ Meeting will be held at 6:30 p.m. at the Tasting Room as well on the third Wednesday of every month. On Thursday, there will be $1 Off Growler Refills at the Eldorado Taphouse.

Second Street Brewery — (505) 989-3278 (Railyard), (505) 982-3030 (original location)

(Mon–Thurs 11 a.m.–10 p.m., Fri–Sat 11 a.m.–11 p.m., Sunday noon-9 p.m.)

Beers: Kolsch, IPA, Palisade Pale Ale, Schwarzbier, British Mild, Berliner Weisse. The Schwarzbier is new on tap this week. In addition to their own beers, Second Street has a guest tap that currently features La Cumbre’s Elevated IPA.

Events: Jaka will be the featured performer all October for the Thursday Patio Series. Boris & the Salt Licks are playing Friday at the original location. The Troy Brown Trio plays Saturday.

Shows at the Railyard include Catahoula Curse on Friday and Alex Maryol on Saturday.

Every Wednesday night, both SSB locations host Game Night. SSB has game boards and dominoes or bring your own … oh yeah, they also have discounted pitchers!

Other breweries you need to visit

Twisted Chile Brewing — (575) 835-2949

(Mon–Thurs 11 a.m.–9 p.m., Fri–Sun 11 a.m.–11 p.m.)

Beers: KC’s Traditional Irish Stout, 790 IPA, Pumpkin Ale, McFadden Scotch Ale. Twisted Chile has been open for a while as a restaurant, but as the name might imply, they will be brewing their own beer on site. Located in Socorro at 115 Abeyta St. W, they will be the first brewery there to brew on site since Socorro Springs outsourced their brewing to Eddyline in Colorado. As soon as a certain editor’s schedule clears up, I’ll be headed down there to do a formal review.

* * * *

That’s all for this week! If you have any questions or comments, leave them below or contact us on our Facebook page.

Cheers!

— Stoutmeister

Greetings, New Mexico craft beer lovers. Stoutmeister here with the reunified edition of The Week Ahead in Beer. This column covers all the breweries in Bernalillo and Sandoval counties, with Santa Fe’s four breweries and one newcomer down in Socorro also joining the party. We tried hard to keep the state edition going, but without participation from the breweries outside the I-25 corridor, it was futile.

Stoutmeister puts on his serious face to handle The Week Ahead in Beer.

Stoutmeister puts on his serious face to handle The Week Ahead in Beer.

We start this week with news of a brewer change. After running the show for a while now, Addison Poth is leaving Back Alley Draft House. He will be heading out to San Diego, where many more brewing opportunities will await. A new brewer has been named, and both he and Addison will be at the latter’s going away party this Saturday. After many tasty brews in one of ABQ’s hidden gems, we thank Addison for all of his good service to our beer community. Operating on a small system in a place that seems more suited to pizza parties, he has nonetheless produced some solid styles, including the wonderfully unique Ladron’s Peak earlier this year. To help celebrate the end of this little era, Addison brewed up a variation called Ladron’s con Fuego, where they took some actual granite from the real Ladron, heated it up, and put it into the wort. The result, Addison said, was one of the most complex beers he has ever tasted. We can’t wait to head over to try this one, as well as the new Poth’s Pilsner, which was brewed with a pre-Prohibition recipe from the Poth’s and Sons Brewery, which never reopened after Prohibition ended. It should be another unique variation on a traditional style. Good luck to Addison on his new path! We’ll miss you, buddy!

On the new beer front, it’s a fairly quiet week. Broken Bottle has tapped their Drunken Hobo Milk Stout and Debacle Pumpkin Ale. Canteen has The Good Stuff, a session IPA. Kaktus has brought back James Blonde while adding Harvest Amber and Oktoberfest. La Cumbre’s Peek-a-Boob Porter debuts with a release party tonight, plus they have a limited supply of 2013 La Negra imperial stout on tap. Tractor’s Ruby Red Wheat, Little Red Rye-ding Hood, and Bulls-Eye PA all debuted during Saturday’s 15th anniversary party. Turtle Mountain’s A Lil’ Somethin’ Pumpkin is being served on nitro.

Up in Santa Fe, Blue Corn’s Belgian Blonde Table Beer will be out soon. Second Street’s Amber and Berliner Weisse are back. Down in Socorro, Twisted Chile’s potent 790 IPA is back as well.

Continue reading for all the news that is fit to blog for the week of Oct. 20.

To break down each “capsule,” I listed the brewery (with Web page linked), its phone number and hours of operation. Under “Beers” are the new or seasonal beers on tap for this week.

Albuquerque metro area breweries

ABQ Brew Pub — (505) 884-1116

(Mon–Thurs 11 a.m.–midnight, Fri–Sat 11 a.m.–2 a.m., Sunday 10 a.m.–midnight)

Beers: Petrus Aged Ale, Petrus Aged Red. Petrus Aged Ale and Red are high alcohol barrel-aged sours from a family-owned brewery in Flanders. Several times a year, ABP serves up the latest creation by local brewing hero and winner of the Samuel Adams Longshot competition, Ben Miller, or seasonal releases by Monks Brewing.

Back Alley Draft House — (505) 766-8590

(Hours 4 p.m.-11 p.m. daily)

Beers: Soroche IPA, Berliner Weisse, Poth’s Pilsner, Ladron’s con Fuego. See our intro on the upcoming brewer change at Back Alley, plus info on the two new beers, Poth’s Pilsner and Ladron’s con Fuego.

Bosque Brewing Company — (505) 750-7596

(Mon–Thurs 11 a.m.–10 p.m., Fri–Sat 11 a.m.-11 p.m., Sun noon-8 p.m.)

Beers: Oktoberfest, PSA (Pumpkin Spice Ale), The Box IPA, Bosque Lager, Bosque’s Burnin’ Red, Olde Bosky Porter. Bosque’s Oktoberfest is just a malt blast of goodness, not overly sweet nor too dry. The Burnin’ Red, with a new recipe, is back on tap. Also back on tap is an old favorite in the Olde Bosky Porter. The Lager is back by popular demand. The Simcoe IPA has run out, but The Box is more than enough hops to keep you satiated.

Cask: We didn’t get a cask update yet. When we do, we’ll post it.

News: Construction continues on Bosque’s new taproom, the Bosque Public House, located on Girard just south of Central. Bosque has also signed a lease on a new taproom in Las Cruces, located in the former Mimbres Valley space across from New Mexico State at the corner of University Ave. and Espina St.

To staff the new locations, Bosque will be holding a job fair from Nov. 4-6. Send your resume, a brief note about why you want to work for Bosque, and your preferred location to work at and available interview times in one tidy email to employment@bosquebrewing.com. Applications are due this Friday. See their Facebook page for more details.

Bosque has a happy hour running from 3-6 p.m. Monday through Thursday and all day on Sunday. Look for special menu items and get $1 off your favorite pints.

Beers in the future will include a pumpkin ale, barley wine, ESB, imperial red, and a new IPA. Plus, Bosque is aging its Scotia Scotch Ales in rum barrels, and they just received a shipment of casks to start doing that as well. We’re a bit excited.

Boxing Bear Brewing Company — (505) 897-2327

(Sun-Thurs 11 a.m.-10 p.m., Fri-Sat 11 a.m.-11 p.m.)

Beers: Glass Jaw Double IPA, Paw Swipe Pale Ale, Hairy Mit Hefe, Standing 8 Stout, Ambear Ale, Uppercut IPA. Recent additions to the lineup are the Standing 8 Stout (6.3% ABV, 45 IBU) and Ambear Ale (5.2% ABV, 35 IBU). The Glass Jaw is now out in full force. The Oktobearfest has run out, sadly. But a new pumpkin ale is now being brewed.

UPDATED >>> Cask: Yup, Boxing Bear is doing a cask. Rejoice! This Friday they have Uppercut IPA dry-hopped with eight ounces of Equinox hops. Next week, prepare yourselves for a Dunkelweizen with blackberries and dark chocolate.

Broken Bottle Brewery — (505) 890-8777

(Mon–Weds 4-11 p.m., Thurs-Fri 4 p.m.–midnight, Sat noon–midnight, Sun noon–10 p.m.)

Beers: Stray Dog IPA, Cactus Juice, Peculiar Pumpkin Porter, Drunken Hobo Milk Stout, Debacle Pumpkin Ale. Cactus Juice is made with actual prickly pears. New to taps this week are the Drunken Hobo Milk Stout and the Debacle Pumpkin Ale. Compare that to the Peculiar Pumpkin Porter and see which is the better style.

Events: B3 has $3 beers every Tuesday from open to close. On Wednesday, B3 will be hosting their open mic from 8-10 p.m., with signups starting at 7:30 p.m. Check out B3’s karaoke night every Thursday starting at 8 p.m.

Canteen Brewhouse — (505) 881-2737

(Sun–Thurs noon–10 p.m., Fri–Sat noon–midnight)

Beers: Irish Red, Pumpkin Saison, Pumpkin Porter, Mimosa Beer, Rye PA, American Stout, The Good Stuff. New to taps this week is The Good Stuff (5.7% ABV, 70 IBU), a session IPA. The Rye PA (7% ABV, 50 IBU) and the American Stout (7.4% ABV, 60 IBU) are fairly recent additions. I got to try the American Stout while interviewing brewer Brady McKeown about the name change to Canteen Brewhouse. It’s a big, bold, thick, mean-as-hell-yet-totally-lovable stout. It’s my kind of stout, and that’s saying something. If you need to get your fall fun going, the Pumpkin Saison (6.5% ABV, 24 IBU) and Porter (7.2% ABV, 38 IBU) are a good place to start. We lean toward the porter, but, uh, we’ve got “Dark Side” in our name. The Mimosa (4% ABV, 12 IBU) has a wheat base infused with blood oranges.

News: Canteen posted some pics on Facebook of the beers they are currently barrel-aging in the back. They’ve got Double IPA in tequila barrels, American Stock Ale in rum barrels, Belgian Strong Golden in wine barrels, and Panama Joe Coffee Stout in bourbon barrels.

Cazuela’s Seafood & Mexican Grill — (505) 994-9364

(Open daily 8 a.m.-10 p.m.)

Beers: Papacabra (Double IPA), Panama Red, Acapulco Gold (Mexican Lager), Hefeweizen, Chupacabra IPA, Piedra del Fuego Stoned Cream Ale, Beer for My Horses (Oatmeal Stout), Inebriator (Doppelbock). E-Rock and I had a chance to sample the Piedra del Fuego (5% ABV), which we both recommend. According to Cazuela’s menu: “This cream ale uses red-hot stones to super caramelize the sugars, creating a nutty, toffee-like flavor.” The Inebriator (8% ABV) and the Papacabra (9.7% ABV) are the biggest beers in the lineup.

Events: Cazuela’s now features a live guitarist every Friday.

News: Cazuela’s Beer for My Horses won a bronze medal in the oatmeal stout category at the World Beer Cup in Denver and also captured a gold medal in the stout category at the 2014 State Fair Pro-Am.

Chama River Brewing Company — (505) 342-1800

(Sun–Thurs 11 a.m.–11 p.m., Fri–Sat 11 a.m.–midnight)

Beers: Wee Bit Loco, The Hound (Amber Ale), Rasp-booby Wheat, Cosmic Dog. Wee Bit Loco is a new Scottish ale and was our pick as the best malty beer at Septemberfest. The Cosmic Dog (7% ABV, 25 IBU), a coffee stout, and the Rasp-booby (5% ABV, 20 IBU) are recent additions to tap. The latter beer is a raspberry wheat, brewed up to benefit Breast Cancer Awareness month as part of the “Toast for Tatas” campaign. The Hound (6% ABV, 40 IBU) was described as “a roasty fall amber.”

News: Head brewer Zach Guilmette has revamped the recipe for Chama’s Jackalope IPA to give it a stronger kick and tastier palate. Franz Solo and I also highly recommend you try the revamped Sleeping Dog Stout. It’s creamy and burly and sweet and roasted … it’s got everything you want in a stout.

Kaktus Brewing — (505) 379-5072

(Hours Mon-Thu 11:30-8 p.m., Fri-Sun 11:30-10 p.m.)

Beers: James Blonde, Oyster Stout, Honk Ale, Harvest Amber, Pumpkin Charlie Brown, Alt German Lager, Jabberwocky IPA, Oktoberfest. The Harvest Amber, Oktoberfest, and the popular James Blonde are the newest entries, while the Jabberwocky came back recently after a brief absence. Located at 471 South Hill Road in Bernalillo, Kaktus is one of the state’s newer breweries. It is a small, casual place, similar to Blue Heron in appearance and comfort factor. Kaktus owner Dana Koller said fans can expect the nanobrewery to go through its most popular styles quickly, though they will always have something new and exciting available as a replacement.

Events: Kaktus has several new weekday specials including $3 pints on Monday, $9 growlers on Tuesday, $6 bison nachos on Wednesday, and $8 Frito pie and beer on Thursday.

The Desert Darlings belly dancers will perform from 6 to 8 p.m. on Sunday. If you’ve never seen the Desert Darlings in person, you’re missing out.

La Cumbre Brewing — (505) 872-0225

(Open every day at noon)

Beers: Across the Pond, Meridian Pale Ale, Hell Froze Over, 2013 La Negra, Peek-a-Boob Porter. Yeah, they’ve busted out a batch of barrel-aged La Negra, a massive imperial stout worthy of the elder gods. The Peek-a-Boob Porter was made for charity, as $1 from every pint sold will go to the local YWCA to benefit early breast cancer awareness. Hell Froze Over (5.6% ABV, 42 IBU) is one of the newer kids on the tap list, returning for a second go-around after debuting last fall. It’s a brown ale, which as the name might imply is not something that’s made regularly. If you’re looking for something to sip slowly, Across the Pond (6.5% ABV, 65 IBU), a British-style IPA, and Meridian Pale Ale (5.4% ABV, 40 IBU) are available. Oh, and don’t panic about Project Dank no longer appearing here as a seasonal. It is now part of La Cumbre’s regular lineup. And in more good news, Jeff Erway said Red Ryeot will soon return and become a regular beer as well.

Events: Peek-a-Boob Porter gets its own special release party tonight (Wednesday). See La Cumbre’s Facebook page for more details.

News: We congratulate La Cumbre Brewing Co. for becoming this year’s National IPA Champion. Project Dank scored the win by edging out 127 other IPAs from around the country, including the likes of the venerable Fat Head’s IBUsive.

Lizard Tail Brewing — (505) 717-1301

(Sun–Weds 9 a.m.–11 p.m., Thurs–Sat 9 a.m.–midnight)

Beers: German Blonde Ale, Berliner Weisse, Belgian Abbey, IPA, Amber, Oatmeal Brown, India Black Ale, Rye Stout, Porter, Dubbel, Biscochito Brown. Both Brandon and I have had chances to visit Lizard Tail, which is one of the newest breweries in town, located in the shopping center on the southeast corner of Eubank and Montgomery. They specialize in malt-forward beers. The German Blonde (5.5% ABV, 20 IBU) is a good place to start. The Berliner Weisse (4.3% ABV, 8 IBU) is not nearly as sour as most of its genre. The Belgian Abbey (6.8%, 25 IBU) is a good example of its style. The IPA (6.8% ABV, 70 IBU) has a good mix of Mosaic, Warrior, and Galaxy hops. The Rye Stout (5.5% ABV, 35 IBU) has a nice flavor but lacks body. The first batch of Oatmeal Brown (4.2% ABV, 25 IBU) needed some work, but I got to sample the second batch that will be on tap soon and it’s improved. The Honey Pale Ale (6.3% ABV, 35 IBU) has run out for a little while, but it will be back soon. The Porter (5.6% ABV, 35 IBU) is a semi-smoky, thick beer that goes perfectly with the cooler weather. The new Biscochito Brown (8.5% ABV, 25 IBU) is not overly sweet. The Lizard Tail staff said the next batch will be a little maltier.

News: Lizard Tail’s happy hour runs Thursday through Sunday from 3 to 6 p.m. You get $1 off food, flights, and pints.

Events: There will be live music Saturday at 9 p.m. Also, every Tuesday at 8 p.m. Lizard Tail will host Geeks Who Drink.

Marble Brewery — (505) 243-2739

(Mon–Sat 1 p.m.–midnight, Sun 1 p.m.–10:30 p.m.)

Beers: Double White, Rescue Craft Draft, Double IPA, Imperial Red, Barley Wine. The Rescue Craft is an English-style pale ale. Proceeds benefit the Albuquerque Mountain Rescue Council. Otherwise it’s a relatively light seasonal list as Marble is at capacity brewing the regular beers for distribution. There is the rotating “black handle,” which tends to feature some impressive “secret” beers. The Double White and Imperial Red both brought home gold medals from GABF.

Cask: Check out Marble’s cask (a.k.a. “real” ale) selection on tap every Friday at the Downtown Pub.

Events: Brewery tours occur at the Downtown Pub every Thursday at 5:30 p.m.

News: Other beers coming up an English-style pub ale, which may be served on nitro, and an English-style chocolate stout. We’re sensing a theme here …

Nexus Brewery — (505) 242-4100

(Sun–Thurs 11 a.m.–10 p.m., Fri–Sat 11 a.m.–midnight)

Beers: Rye Pale Ale, Saisons Change, Dry Stout, Belgian Dark Strong. Brewer Kaylynn McKnight cranked out three new seasonals in the Saisons Change, Dry Stout, and Belgian Dark Strong. We’ve been able to get over there and try all three and came away quite impressed. The Dry Stout is bold and thick, the kind of burly beer you want in the winter (or year-round if you’re like us). The Saisons Change packs a ton of flavor in every sip. It’s not spicy hot, but it will leave your tongue tingling with a strong Belgian yeast backbone behind the initial bite. The Belgian Dark Strong is almost too sweet; it would go great as dessert after any of Nexus’ awesome food dishes.

Events: Nexus serves up Happy Hour All Day on Tuesday featuring $3 pints. Also on Tuesday, Nexus will be hosting their comedy open mic, Young Dumb and Full of Comedy, starting at 7:30 p.m. in the Sun Room.

Pi Brewing at Nicky V’s Neighborhood Pizzeria — (505) 890-9463

(Sun–Thurs 11 a.m.–9 p.m., Fri–Sat 11 a.m.–10 p.m.)

Beers: Unchallenged IPA, West Coast Red, Robust Porter, Lost Grain English Summer Ale, Apricot Wheat. While Pi Brewing is not open to the public yet, they are able to brew and serve their beers next door at Nicky V’s. The IPA and West Coast Red are both good hoppy beers. We’ll keep tabs on when Pi itself opens. For now, grab a pint and some tasty Italian food.

Ponderosa Brewing Co. — (505) 639-5941

(Sun 11 a.m.–10 p.m., Mon–Sat 11 a.m.–11 p.m.)

Beers: Ghost Train IPA, Rip Saw Red, Crosscut Kolsch, Sawmill Stout, XPA1 Pale Ale, Helles Lager, Double IPA, Oktoberfest, Chocolate Pumpkin Porter, Schwarzbier. Porter Pounder and I went over for the grand opening recently. Ponderosa is located at 1761 Bellamah NW, which is just east of Rio Grande and due north of the NM Natural History Museum, in the bottom floor of a swanky-looking apartment/retail complex. As for the beers, they are all the initial batches, so expect some modifications/changes going forward. Needless to say we both liked the Stout (5.2% ABV, 22 IBU) the best, but we’re dark beer guys (then again, you could also call us dark beer snobs, so consider that). Porter Pounder liked the XPA1 Pale Ale (5% ABV, 35 IBU), which will always be a rotating single-hop pale ale. The Crosscut Kolsch (4.9% ABV, 25 IBU) is almost like a Kolsch/hefeweizen hybrid. The Ghost Train (6.2% ABV, 75 IBU) needs some work, but the brewer has already identified what went wrong in the first batch and is working on correcting that for the next run. The Double IPA (7.7% ABV, 90 IBU) provides plenty of hops. The Oktoberfest (5.7% ABV, 17 IBU) is an interesting variation on the traditional style; we tasted wheat malts in the mix. The Schwarzbier (4.7% ABV, 24 IBU) debuted recently.

News: The next batch of brews will include Breakfast Stout, Dunkles, Dunkelweizen, Helles Hefeweizen, Ella Single Hop Pale Ale, and something called Marbelous. We’re down for a Breakfast Stout at any time of day.

Red Door Brewing — (505) 633-6675

(Noon to midnight all week)

Beers: Gateway Blonde Ale, Roamer Red, Threshold IPA, Paint it Black Milk Stout, Unhinged Cider, Trapdoor Wheat. We were excited to try Red Door ever since they first invited us to visit many months ago. They are now open and their initial batches of beer are all quite good. The Roamer Red (6% ABV) was a favorite for Porter Pounder, sitting midway between hoppy reds like Marble and sweeter reds like the standard Irish variety. The Paint it Black (5.5%) is served on nitro, so it’s criminally smooth. The potent Threshold IPA (6.6% ABV) should appeal to local hopheads. Beware the Unhinged Cider as it checks in at 7.9 percent, but you don’t taste the alcohol. Red Door has been having trouble keeping up with demand, though all six beers were on tap last week.

Sandia Chile Grill — (505) 798-1970

(Mon–Sat 8 a.m.–8 p.m., Sun 8 a.m.–6 p.m.)

Beers: Irish Red, Rattlesnake IPA, Smoked Stout. We’re going to dispatch E-Rock (he needs a new assignment) to re-establish our lines of communication with Sandia Chile Grill.

News: Congrats to SCG on sweeping all three medals in the mead category at the 2014 State Fair Pro-Am, while also claiming a silver medal for Barb’s Barrel Hefeweizen.

The Stumbling Steer — (505) 792-7805

(Sunday-Wednesday 11 a.m.-midnight, Thursday-Saturday 11 a.m.-2 a.m.)

Beers: Bang Up Blonde, Hefferweizen, Pig Sticker Pale, Iron Horse IPA, Rawhide Red, Boneyard Brown, Hop Trough (Double IPA), Soiled Dove (Imperial Stout), Black IPA. While the brewery is being built in the back of the Steer, all of their house beers are being brewed off-site, but still using brewer Kirk Roberts’ recipes. The DIPA and the Stout are limited to two per customer, due to their high alcohol content (10% and 9.5% ABV, respectively). The Crew has already made two separate visits to the Steer to review the beer and food. We enjoyed it all. The Black IPA is the current seasonal beer, plus there are often one or two cask beers. We recently had their Bacon Bourbon Stout and Green Chile IPA on cask. Franz Solo loved the latter.

Tractor Brewing Company — (505) 433-5654 (Nob Hill Tap Room), TBA (Wells Park)

(Nob Hill is open Monday-Wednesday 3 p.m. to midnight, Thursday 3 p.m. to 2 a.m., Friday-Saturday 1 p.m. to 2 a.m., Sunday 1 p.m. to midnight; Wells Park is open Monday-Thursday 3 p.m. to close, Friday-Sunday 1 p.m. to midnight.
 Last call 30 minutes before close. 
No package after midnight.
 Brewery tours Saturday at 1 p.m.)

UPDATED >>> Beers at Nob Hill: 4 Seasons 1 Week Cider, Ruby Red Wheat, Barnstorm Ale, Javi Light Lager, La Llorona Dry Hop Amber, Pilsner #15, Tractoberfest.

Beers at Wells Park only: 6% Humidity 9% ABV Cider, Berry Cider, Mustachio Milk Stout, Little Red Rye-ding Hood, Bulls-Eye PA. All of the Nob Hill seasonals are also at Wells Park, which has 24 total taps (Tractor’s five regular beers have two taps apiece). The Tractoberfest is back and this year’s batch is one of the best yet. It’s just a malt blast of happiness. The 4 Seasons 1 Week Cider is a variation of the 6%-9% (these names, oy), slightly sweeter and it’s only 7.2-percent ABV. The newest beers on tap were brewed up for Tractor’s 15th anniversary. The Ruby Red Wheat is loaded with grapefruit. The Little Red has a malty rye kick. The Bulls-Eye is a solid IPA.

Events: On Wednesday, Tractor will be hosting another Cards Against Humanity night at Wells Park. This is a free event starting at 7 p.m. Food will by served by Nomad’s BBQ.

Geeks Who Drink is now setting up shop at the Wells Park Tap Room every Monday at 8 p.m. Bar cash for winners and bonus questions all night. Wanna see what GWD at Tractor has been up to? Check out the blog! Food will be served by Mystique.

Pints and Politics is back at Wells Park tonight (Wednesday) at 6 with “Know Your Initiatives.” Come learn about the issues and the candidates while enjoying a good pint or two.

Tractor’s pLOUD Music Series at Wells Park continues Thursday with Waylaid performing at 8 p.m. Kimo’s Hawaiian BBQ will provide the food.

Saturday’s In the Mix Series at Wells Park will feature DJ Shakedown performing at 9 p.m.

Turtle Mountain Brewing Company — (505) 994-9497

(Kitchen hours: Mon–Tues 11 a.m.-8:30 p.m., Wed–Thurs 11 a.m.-9 p.m., Fri–Sat 11 a.m.-9:30 p.m., Sun 10:30 a.m.-8:30 p.m. Reminder: TMBC closes early when business dictates. Please call.)

Beers: (House) McDay’s Cream Ale, Oku Amber, Parasol White IPA, Hopshell IPA, Piedra Lisa Porter, Heidelberg Helles. (Seasonal/specialty) Cascade Session Ale, Saison du Soleil, Brown Ale for Boobies, Uberaltbier, A Little Somethin’ Pumpkin. To help us out for now and the future, brewer Tim Woodward broke down what will be the regular beers on tap (under House) and the current list of seasonals. That’s a pretty solid regular lineup. I personally really enjoyed the Porter and Amber, the latter of which trumps most of its genre in terms of flavor. The Heidelberg Helles (5.1% ABV, 25 IBU) has rejoined the regular lineup for good, or so Tim hopes. Congratulations to Turtle Mountain on winning our inaugural Oktoberfest challenge. Unfortunately, it’s run out for now. However, they’ve added A Little Somethin’ Pumpkin, which is served on nitro. Yeah, that sounds pretty damn intriguing to us.

Santa Fe breweries

Blue Corn Brewery — (505) 438-1800

(Daily 11 a.m.–10 p.m.)

Beers: Shattered Pumpkin, Oktoberfest, Scorched (smoked olde ale), Alpha Reaper (Imperial Red Ale). If the Alpha Reaper (9% ABV, 100 IBU) sounds imposing, that’s because it is. A wet-hopped imperial red, it was made with 50 pounds of fresh Chinook hops grown in Colorado. Now good luck keeping “Don’t Fear the Reaper” from getting stuck in your head. Scorched is exactly the big old smoky blast you would expect. Oktoberfest debuted last week and is quite the exceptional beer. It would have contended with Turtle Mountain for the top spot in our Oktoberfest challenge. Shattered Pumpkin (6.5% ABV, 20 IBU) was made with French saison yeast and 20 pounds of locally sourced pumpkin for a unique flavor.

News: An imperial stout is due out Nov. 13 (they fit 900 pounds into the mash tun, for crying out loud), and they have begun brewing a Belgian blonde table beer that will hopefully be ready next week.

Events: Blue Corn’s imperial stout will be released with a special party that will require reservations on Nov. 13. Starting at 6 p.m., for $10 you get a pint of stout with three small dishes. Not a bad deal for a beer of that power.

Duel Brewing Company — (505) 474-5301

(Sun 11 a.m.–8 p.m., Mon–Tues 11 a.m.–10 p.m., Wed–Sat 11 a.m.–midnight)

Beers: Danae (Golden Sour Ale), Study Series: Brown (Belgian-style Sour Brown Ale), Bad Amber, Fiction (IPA), Synne (Pale Ale), Fantin (Double Pale Ale), Marcel (Witbier), Whistler (Blonde), Manikin Small Scottish-style Dark Ale. Duel brewer Todd Yocham described the latest Study Series entry (5% ABV) like this, “A very malt forward light bodied brown ale, soured with Lactobacillus and accentuated by the fruity esters from our Trappist yeast.” The Fantin (7.5% ABV), which I tried and liked at Pajarito Summerfest, gets this summary, “Aromas of strawberry and pineapple accentuated by our Trappist yeast will keep you wanting more.” The Danae is the newest entry.

Events: The life drawing session is $25 and is held each Sunday morning from 11-1 (although they are not open to the drinking public till 1 p.m. on Sun). You get the beverage of your choice, a Brussels-style waffle made with their own yeast and beer and then served with a Grunewald Syrup. Everyone then draws from a nude model. People can sign up through the website or call the brewery to reserve a spot.

Santa Fe Brewing Company — (505) 424-3333

(Mon–Sat 11 a.m.–10 p.m., closed on Sunday)

Beers: Oktoberfest, Double White IPA, Duskin’s Forgotten Rye. The first beer in the new Ever Changing Series is a Double White IPA, which Luke of the Brew Crew bullpen recently reviewed. This week’s Small Batch Saturday beer is Duskin’s Forgotten Rye (9% ABV).

Events: $1 Off Growler Refills in the Tasting Room on Mondays. $2 Tuesdays at the Eldorado Taphouse. On Wednesday, there is a $2 Pint Special in the SFBC Tasting Room, and the Sangre de Cristo Craft Brewers’ Meeting will be held at 6:30 p.m. at the Tasting Room as well on the third Wednesday of every month. On Thursday, there will be $1 Off Growler Refills at the Eldorado Taphouse.

Second Street Brewery — (505) 989-3278 (Railyard), (505) 982-3030 (original location)

(Mon–Thurs 11 a.m.–10 p.m., Fri–Sat 11 a.m.–11 p.m., Sunday noon-9 p.m.)

Beers: Kolsch, IPA, Trappist Strong Ale, Cream Stout, Rauchbier, Amber Ale, Oktoberfest, British Mild, Berliner Weisse. The Amber and Berliner Weisse are back on tap this week. I got to sample the Rauchbier when I took my relatives to SSB for lunch recently; it’s not overly smoky, just smooth and balanced. The Oktoberfest was a big hit at NM Brew Fest and you can never go wrong with the Cream Stout. You can also pick up four-packs of cans of Boneshaker Bitter at the brewery. The good folks from Mother Road Mobile Canning stopped by again to team up with Second Street. We love teamwork when it comes to beer.

Events: Jaka will be the featured performer all October for the Thursday Patio Series. Bus Tapes are playing Friday at the original location. Eryn Bent plays Saturday.

Shows at the Railyard include the Alto Street Band on Friday, Swing Soleil on Saturday, and Shriner’s Club Jazz Band on Sunday.

Every Wednesday night, both SSB locations host Game Night. SSB has game boards and dominoes or bring your own … oh yeah, they also have discounted pitchers!

Other breweries you need to visit

Twisted Chile Brewing — (575) 835-2949

(Mon–Thurs 11 a.m.–9 p.m., Fri–Sun 11 a.m.–11 p.m.)

Beers: KC’s Traditional Irish Stout, Venom IPA, 790 IPA. Twisted Chile has been open for a while as a restaurant, but as the name might imply, they will be brewing their own beer on site. Located in Socorro at 115 Abeyta St. W, they will be the first brewery there to brew on site since Socorro Springs outsourced their brewing to Eddyline in Colorado. As soon as a certain editor’s schedule clears up, I’ll be headed down there to do a formal review.

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That’s all for this week! If you have any questions or comments, leave them below or contact us on our Facebook page.

Cheers!

— Stoutmeister