Once again, the little items added up, so for the second week in a row we have a notebook to empty.
NIPAC domination continues
The fourth round of the National IPA Challenge, hosted by The Brewing News, is complete with three of the five remaining New Mexico entries advancing to the quarterfinals. This marks the second year in a row that our state has three of the last eight.
Last year it was La Cumbre’s Project Dank and Canteen’s Exodus along with Bosque’s Scale Tipper. It ended up an all-New Mexico final, with Scale Tipper topping Exodus. This time around, Scale Tipper is still around, joined by Turtle Mountain’s Adrift IPA and Boxing Bear’s Bear Knuckle IPA.
Scale Tipper ousted a heavyweight again in the fourth round, defeating Fat Heads’ Head Hunter IPA. Adrift overwhelmed Karl Strauss’ Aurora Hoppyalis, while Bear Knuckle K.O.’d Barley Brown’s WFO IPA.
Second Street was the only New Mexico brewery not to advance. Both 4 Hour Lunch and Fulcrum were defeated in the main bracket, while Trebuchet went down in the fourth round of the Imperial IPA bracket, eliminating the last local entry in that field.
Bosque’s Southwest Session defeated Stone’s Go To IPA to reach the semifinals of the Session IPA bracket. Next up is another showdown with Fat Heads, in this case against Sunshine Daydream.
As for the main bracket semifinals, only two New Mexico entries can move on, as Adrift and Bear Knuckle will go head-to-head. Scale Tipper will try to avenge 4 Hour Lunch against Lawson’s Finest’s Triple Play IPA. Lawson’s Finest, which is in Vermont, is the only non-Western brewery still alive.
The other quarterfinal matchups are between Colorado and Oregon breweries. Breakside Brewery’s Wanderlust IPA will represent Oregon against Comrade’s Superpower IPA, out of Denver. Barley Brown’s Pallet Jack is the other Oregon entry, taking on Codename: Superfan, the entry from Lafayette, Colorado’s Odd13 Brewing that ousted Fulcrum.
Good luck to all the remaining New Mexico entries!
Tart at Heart tickets are now on sale
Only a few of us in the Crew are big fans of sours or wild ales, but we know a heck of a lot of you out there are huge fans of these unique beers. The good news for you is that last year’s popular sour-centric event, Tart at Heart, is coming back this year at Sister on April 16. It sold out last year, so now is the time to get your tickets in advance.
There are $35 general admission tickets and $45 VIP tickets, with the latter getting you into the event an hour early, plus you get a special T-shirt. There will be at least 20 rare sours and other unique beers from around the country and around the world, plus this year you get unlimited tastings. You can purchase tickets online or you can buy them over at Jubilation or Kelly Liquors on Juan Tabo.
New breweries update for the week
Congrats to Palmer Brewery and Cider House, which now has an active small brewer license. They posted the photo on their Facebook page this week. There is still no official timetable for opening, but Palmer is clearly getting closer to joining the local scene sooner than later.
Working with our friends over at the Albuquerque Journal, we have learned a little more about the mystery of Hops Brewery. It does not look like they will be opening in Nob Hill, but instead down in Los Ranchos. We found an address on 4th Street, though the listed owners of Hops have yet to officially respond to requests for more information. When we hear more, we will let you all know.
The folks up at Enchanted Circle Brewing in Angel Fire also contacted us. They expect to be open by the end of the month. Looks like we’re going on a road trip in April!
On the lookout for more news
If you — yes, you, gentle reader — ever come across something that seems newsworthy about the New Mexico craft beer scene, please let us know. You can reach us on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram (yup, Brandon got that working again), and of course via email (email@example.com). Whether it’s a rumor or something you know to be fact, big or small, from new breweries to expansions to new taprooms or new beers or anything at all, please let us know.
Especially this week, since this here editor is going to be spending an unhealthy amount of time trying to cover the state high school basketball tournament for multiple newspapers.
Come Saturday evening, release the hounds will be uttered. Oh, yes, it will.