The good folks up at the Taos Ski Valley know there is more to life than just skiing and snowboarding. There is beer, and it is good, and it brings people to the valley even after the snow melts.

Down there at the bottom of that ski lift is the Taos Ski Valley, where they will be holding the Spring Beer Festival.

Down there at the bottom of that ski lift is the Taos Ski Valley, where they will be holding the Spring Beer Festival.

To celebrate the change of seasons, the Taos Ski Valley is playing host to the Spring Beer Festival this Saturday from 4:30 to 7 p.m. For $25, you get a commemorative mini-beer mug and unlimited samples from multiple in-state and out-of-state breweries. There were also be three (maybe four) eateries on hand to make sure you are not drinking too much on an empty stomach — Rhoda’s, Bavarian, Sabroso, and hopefully Stray Dog will be on hand.

The entire event will be followed by the birthday celebration for Taos Ski Valley founder Ernie Blake, with fireworks, a torch parade, and more.

As for the beer, 12 breweries will head up on their own, while Premier Distributing will bring beers from five of their clients to the event. The out-of-state breweries signed up for the event are California’s Stone Brewing, plus Colorado’s Boulder Beer, Left Hand, New Belgium, and Oskar Blues.

The joint was jumping at the last beer festival at Taos Ski Valley. (Photo courtesy of Jim Cox)

The joint was jumping at the last beer festival at Taos Ski Valley. (Photo courtesy of Jim Cox)

Due to a time crunch caused by my sports coverage this week, I was not able to get a hold of all the in-state breweries attending the event in regards to what beers they are bringing.

Abbey Brewing — the monks will likely bring some of their top sellers, such as Monks’ Wit, Monks’ Ale, and if everyone is lucky, that wonderful Tripel Special Reserve that they showcased at WinterBrew.

Eske’s — they had not yet finalized their list, but the best guess for their lineup will include standard-bearers like Seco Stout and Green Chile Beer, plus there is the Mesa Red IPA, Dead Presidents Cherry Ale, and Naked Ape, an apricot ale. It does appear Eske’s has all points on the flavor spectrum — hoppy, malty, sweet, spicey — covered with this potential lineup.

High Desert — they currently have 10 beers on tap in Las Cruces, but it’s unknown which of those are coming north. On the lighter side they have a Wheat, Peach Wheat, Bohemian Pilsner, Steam, and an Amber. Darker/heavier beers include IPA, Anniversary IPA, Rye Beer, Imperial Stout, and a Barley Wine.

Enjoy the delectable Stout Americano, Taos patrons!

Enjoy the delectable Stout Americano, Taos patrons!

Marble — brewer Kyle Rudeen will be bringing Farmhouse 111, Stout Americano, Double IPA, and either the Reserve or the Barley Wine. Yeah, basically Marble is bringing some of its biggest, most flavorful beers to Taos to challenge the palates of locals and tourists alike.

Santa Fe — as per usual, the big guns are being brought out, including the current seasonal, Irish Red Ale. Also on hand will be Happy Camper IPA, Imperial Java Stout, Saison ’88, and Black IPA. They will also bring some bottles of Chicken Killer for the barley wine lovers.

Taos Ale House — the local guys are bringing up Mosaic Imperial IPA, Mosaic Lollipop Pale Ale, Brook Trout Brown, and the always wonderful Simple Porter. If anyone gets a chance to try their other beers, please let us know. We need to make a Brew Crew Taos Trek III in the near future.

Taos Mesa — efforts to reach them were again unsuccessful. Among the beers currently on tap at TM, some that the Crew would like to try include the Amarillo Rojo and Imperial Honey Oat Porter. Different Crew members have enjoyed the Superstitious Stout, Notorious ESB, and Big Brown. Hopefully some of these will be on hand Saturday.

Premier Distributing’s clients are Alaskan, Goose Island, Odell, Tractor, and Woodchuck. Expect bottles from some of the beers you can currently find at Jubilation, like Alaskan ESB, Odell Runoff Red IPA, Tractor Farmer’s Almanac IPA, and more.

We hope everyone up in Northern New Mexico enjoys this event. The folks at Taos Ski Valley are already planning future events, including an Oktoberfest. Keep supporting craft beer in all corners of our state!

Cheers!

— Stoutmeister

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