We are eschewing our usual format, well somewhat, to give Blues & Brews some extended coverage this Sunday. The mondo festival usually concludes Beer Week, but as scheduling would have it this time around, it all goes down today. Brace (and pace) yourselves for the fun of Day Four of ABQ Beer Week 2014.

Blues & Brews is the biggest event during Beer Week and it happens on Day Four.

Blues & Brews is the biggest event during Beer Week and it happens on Day Four.

Today’s smaller, but still awesome, events

What: New Belgium Revival Beer Brunch. Where: Nob Hill Bar & Grill. When: noon to 3 p.m. Cost: Unknown. Details: It’s the second annual pairing of various New Belgium beers, plus Snapshot Beermosas, with NHBG’s tasty food items. For more details, including cost, call (505) 266-4455. Why you should go: Fill up those bellies before you trek over to Blues & Brews.

What: Lagunitas Special Beer Tapping. Where: Two Fools Tavern. When: 4 to 7 p.m. Cost: No cover charge. Details: Lagunitas’ popular Cappuccino Coffee Stout will be on tap for your drinking pleasure. Why you should go: If you can’t make it to Blues & Brews, there are worse ways to spend your Sunday afternoon than at Two Fools with a good beer and good food.

What: Stone Tap Takeover. Where: Sister Bar, downtown on Central below Anodyne. When: 4 to 10 p.m. Cost: No cover charge. Details: There will be a number of Stone beers on tap at Sister all night. We do not know which styles will be present. Why you should go: Sister has a great beer selection already, so go check out what else can be added to their lineup. Plus, it’s Sunday, so the downtown brochacho/hipster numbers should be at a manageable level.

And now the Blues & Brews preview

Where: Sandia Casino. When: 2 to 8:30 p.m. Cost: General admission tickets are $25 in advance, $30 at the door.

Brace yourselves for 51 different breweries (and cider-ies, is that a word?) pouring samples for your drinking pleasure. After last year’s toasty B&B at Isleta Amphitheater, this time around it’s back to the nice, cool, comfort of Sandia’s huge ballroom. Now, we know what you really want out of us: What the heck is on tap? Going off the official program, these are the beers that are supposed to be present. We’re not gonna list ’em all here, just some of the new (or newer) ones that you can’t always find on tap around ABQ. Take note, as always, that these lists are subject to change. Plenty of breweries (or distributors) say one thing, then another shows up, or a beer just disappears. Please do not kill the messenger (me, though I should be safe at the wedding in Naperville) if a beer you really, really wanted to try does not show up.

Oh, and Mad River, Marble, and Sandia Chile Grill did not provide a list of beers to the ABQ Beer Week staff. Just think of them as the cool surprise breweries!

  • Alaskan: Nothing new listed, though if you’ve never had the excellent Freeride American Pale Ale, now is your chance.
  • Angry Orchard: Go with Elderflower; if nothing else you can morph it into elderberries and talk like the Frenchmen in “Monty Python and the Holy Grail.”
  • Back Alley: The Berliner Weisse is not a style commonly found in America.
  • Big Sky: Just the old favorites Moose Drool and Pygmy Owl, a session IPA.
  • BJ’s: A name like Hoppy Scotsman demands an investigation. That is just not a hoppy style of beer.
  • Blue Moon/Shock Top: Oh, Coors, you keep trying to fool people into thinking these are microbrews.
  • Boston Beer (Samuel Adams): Blueberry Hill Lager, Belgian Session, Porch Rocker, White Lantern, these are all the beers in the current spring seasonal pack, or so Franz Solo said. Now you can figure out if you want to actually buy the 12-pack or not.
  • Boulder Beer: Seriously, if you have not had Shake Chocolate Porter yet, you are missing out.
  • Bridgeport: Hopefully they bring their Bear Hug stout this time. It was announced for Hopfest but never showed last fall.
  • Cazuela’s: Just the regulars, and no sign of the World Beer Cup medal-winning Beer for My Horses oatmeal stout.
  • Chaucer’s Meadery: Get medieval!
  • Deschutes: If you’ve somehow never had a Black Butte Porter, try it now. Otherwise, nothing new.
  • Dukes of Ale: Don’t forget to stop by their booth to see what’s the best home brew around. You get to vote on multiple different styles.
  • Durango: Just the usual, but if you’ve never had the Dark Lager, get it.
  • Goose Island: Nothing new listed.
  • Grain Hopper: The Rio Rancho homebrew shop has brought some of its own beer, including something called Wood Chipper Ale. Give it a try.
  • Green Flash: Who can resist a beer named Hop Odyssey Black IPA?
  • Il Vicino: They’ve busted out some more of the epic Panama Joe Coffee Stout!
  • Johnny Appleseed: If you love ciders, this event will love you back this year.
  • Kellys Brewpub: They’re bring their new Session IPA and … that’s all that’s listed.
  • Kona: The new Castaway IPA will be available. No other beers listed.
  • Lagunitas: The new Nighttime (Black IPA) will be on hand.
  • Left Hand: Just the usual.
  • Magic Hat: If you are on Untappd and still haven’t gotten your Dream Machine IPL badge, here’s your chance.
  • Mother Road: Look, a new brewery for B&B! The Flagstaff institution is bringing three of its most popular styles — Lost Highway Black IPA, Roadside American Ale, and Gold Road Kolsch Style Ale.
  • New Belgium: Nothing new.
  • New Mexico Craft Brewing Co.: The guys from Las Vegas are bringing down five beers and a cider. We’ve already been told the Sebastian Canyon Foreign Extra Stout is a monster. Take it down like you’re Godzilla and it’s a MUTO.
  • Odell: If you’ve never had the unique Loose Leaf Pale Ale, made with experimental hops, now is your chance. It’s … different, but not in a bad way.
  • Omission: If your gluten-free friend is tired of ciders, hand ’em an IPA.
  • Oskar Blues: Five of the usuals, but come on, you just want to get the empty can on the necklace to wear around like all the cool kids.
  • Pagosa: Franz and Mrs. Solo seriously love this place. Hopefully they’re bringing more than just the Power Day IPA that’s listed.
  • Pyramid: That other IPL special badge on Untappd? You can earn it up here.
  • Red Hook: KCCO Black Lager is the lone beer they’ve brought down.
  • Rio Grande/Sierra Blanca/Isotopes: The Moriarty-based bunch will have their usual array of beers, including the GABF medal-winning Sierra Blanca Nut Brown.
  • Santa Fe: There will be four regulars, plus a TBA seasonal. Maybe it’ll be something unique from their Small Batch Series.
  • Santa Sidra Artisnal Hard Cider/Stella Cidre: Two more cider companies. If you have a gluten-free friend, this is definitely the festival to bring him/her to.
  • Shiner: Ruby Redbird? That’s it? Oy.
  • Sierra Nevada: Nothing new.
  • Ska: Three of their regulars, though Decadent imperial IPA is worth trying if you’ve never had it before.
  • The Stumbling Steer: They added some coffee to their Imperial Stout. You might need the pick-me-up.
  • Tractor: Five of their regulars, including the Double Plow Oatmeal Stout, winner of this year’s Brew Crew Stout Challenge.
  • Turtle Mountain: New brewer Tim Woodward is bringing his creations outside Rio Rancho for the first time. McDay’s Cream Ale, Resurrection IPA, Ryjuventation Amber Ale, and Liz and Nico’s Legacy Porter will all be on hand.
  • Widmer Bros.: Hey, Upheaval IPA. Another badge-awarding beer on Untappd.
  • Woodchuck: Two more ciders for your enjoyment. So … many … ciders. I guess they’re trendy again?

Everyone have fun at Blues & Brews, just please be responsible. Call a cab or even spend the night if you have to.

Now just hope that this wedding I’m going to has some Three Floyds. Or maybe Goose Island Bourbon County beers. Or New Glarus. Or Great Lakes. Or pretty much any awesome beers from around the region that I can’t get in ABQ. It needs to have these to make up for the fact I’m missing B&B for the first time!

Now, if you’ll excuse me, I have to go practice doing that one thing I rarely ever do: tie a tie. Stupid confounding Windsor knots!


— Stoutmeister



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