Finding a comfort zone at local breweries and taprooms

Posted: March 25, 2016 by cjax33 in Beer Polls
So ... much ... space ... nice job, Marble! (Photo courtesy of Marble)

So … much … space … nice job, Marble! (Photo courtesy of Marble)

For those who don’t follow us on social media, we asked for some reader ideas for stories on Thursday, what with the current news lull around our craft brewing scene. One of the best ideas came from our good friend Karim, whose regular hangout is the recently expanded/renovated Marble Westside Taproom. While the rest of us have not been that far west since the renovations have been completed, the pictures alone show a much more spacious, comfortable place to drink good beer.

That got Karim thinking, and then us thinking, which brewery or taproom is the most comfortable place to enjoy a pint in ABQ? And by that token, which places are most in need of a renovation to benefit their customers?

This is not about the beer itself, but rather the environment in which to enjoy the beer. For different people, it can be about different aspects of the experience. For some it is all about the patio space, for others it’s more about indoors. How cozy are the chairs and tables? Are there enough TVs? Too many TVs? Too loud? Too quiet? Obviously this is pretty much the most subjective thing we have ever asked.

For our purposes, we are listing two polls below, both for the ABQ metro area only. For context, we ask you to leave comments on social media, DM us if you’re shy, email us directly (, leave us a comment below the story, or however you want to share your likes and dislikes. If a whole lot of people shower praise on one or more places, we will share it with the brewery or taproom. If a whole lot of people scream “fix that place up!” then we will share that as well.

For the second poll, we are not including any place that has either opened in the last 12 months or been renovated in that span (or in the case of Bosque San Mateo, is about to be renovated in the next few weeks). Thus, it is a bit shorter.

This is your chance to voice your opinion, and we know all of you have lots of opinions you would like to share. Just remember to go beyond simply clicking on the polls and leave us some detailed context! Thank you, and enjoy your weekend!


— Stoutmeister

  1. Chip Murica says:

    La Cumbre definitely needs to be renovated. They could take a note from Marble with their long, thin tables and fit a lot of people in the taproom, while forcing organization. Those barrel-end table tops were cool when it first opened, but I don’t know one person that likes them now.

  2. jwink3101 says:

    If it is just about plushy chairs, then I am really not sure, but when I look for a “comfortable” atmosphere, I consider both the ambiance, noise level, and crowd. For example, Marble feels pretty good but can get so packed that it is hardly enjoyable and stress relieving. I think Boxing Bear does a great job at this. The amount of natural light and the lack of jam packed crowds makes it feel homey. Or at least how I want my home to feel

  3. Desert Chaos says:

    I can get that it may be hard for some places to find a balance between those that like a lively brew-time and those that want to sit in a relaxed quiet atmosphere. Perhaps it’s best if some rooms cater to one or the other instead of trying to be both. The nooks and crannies at Abq Brewing are great – nice quiet spot, and the setup at Duel in Albuquerque is maybe the best I’ve seen at having it both ways – they really did an awesome job there.

    I love the beer at the Canteen but it gets so loud there even before there is live music…then it’s almost intolerable. Sometimes I want to hear music and that’s great, but when I don’t I suppose I can go elsewhere or stay home.

    I think a simple and inexpensive (and versatile) solution for places like Canteen (or Marble) is to have some moveable sound baffle walls…cordon off some section of the room for those that want it a bit quieter. Yeah, we don’t expect it to be whisper-quiet, but just enough to be able to have conversation without shouting.

  4. Nick says:

    Ambient noise plays a big role in whether I find a brewery comfortable. The concrete floors in a lot of local breweries contribute to loud, echo-y spaces. I’d love to see more breweries attach acoustic baffles to the walls and ceiling.

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