There was just enough news piling up to require a short notebook this week. The NM Brewers Guild released the list of 30 participating breweries in this summer’s NM IPA Challenge. We also have news on some of the new breweries coming to our state, plus a couple notes on American Craft Beer Week.
Thirty breweries will enter, only one will leave (with the trophy)
With more than 70 operational breweries in New Mexico, the annual IPA Challenge cannot possibly accommodate everyone in the state. There are 30 spots available for the preliminary round, so the Guild simply offered them up on a first-come, first-served basis this week (save for the defending champion, which always gets an automatic bid).
The NMIPAC will start off with the preliminary round July 14 in Albuquerque, followed by rounds in Taos on July 18, Santa Fe on July 21, and then back to Albuquerque on July 28. The host breweries have not been named yet.
Here are the preliminary round participants, with past championships in parentheses for those that have won.
- Blue Corn (2013)
- Bombs Away (first time participant)
- Bosque (2014, 2015)
- Bow & Arrow
- Boxing Bear (2016, 2017)
- Canteen (2004, 2005, 2009, 2010, 2011, 2012)
- Cloudcroft (first time participant)
- Flix Brewhouse
- High Desert
- La Cumbre
- Little Toad Creek
- Quarter Celtic
- Red Door
- Red River (first time participant)
- Rio Bravo
- Santa Fe
- Second Street
- Starr Brothers
- Taos Mesa
- Three Rivers
- Toltec (first time participant)
For those wondering about the missing years, Chama River (R.I.P.) won in 2006 and 2008, while Turtle Mountain won in 2009, but is not participating this year.
Other notable breweries not participating include Abbey, Bathtub Row, Boese Brothers, Cazuela’s, Desert Valley, Dialogue, Enchanted Circle, Milton’s, Picacho Peak, Rowley Farmhouse Ales, Sierra Blanca, Spotted Dog, Steel Bender, and Tumbleroot.
When the host breweries have been named, we will let everyone know.
American Craft Beer Week is back
In case you missed it, and if you don’t check into Untappd, you have probably have, but American Craft Beer Week is happening right now. There aren’t really any local events going on around New Mexico, mostly because a good chunk of the state’s breweries are gearing up for ABQ Beer Week, which starts a week from today.
The main goal of ACBW this year is to get people to seek out breweries that have adopted the Independent Craft Beer logo. You can find the list of New Mexico breweries by going here and searching by our state. Most of the craft breweries here have adopted the logo.
If you would like to have a little more fun, you can always print out the ACBW bingo card. For those who enjoyed running all over town for the Beer Passport last month, this one might be for you.
New brewery updates
There have not been too many additions to our list, but there is some news on openings.
- Well now, after months of being a total mystery, Elkins Brewing in Grants has a Facebook page. Not only that, but it has either opened or is awfully close to opening. Located at the Lavaland RV Park off Exit 85 of Interstate 40, Elkins is right by the entrance to El Malpais National Monument. Per the Facebook page, Elkins was scheduled to open Tuesday, but there is no official confirmation that it did open. The plan was to have an American IPA, English IPA, Blond Ale, Rye Ale, Gose, and Imperial Stout on tap. One or more of us from the Crew will head out there soon enough to check it out. Welcome to the scene, Elkins!
- Another brewery now in possession of an active small brewer license is Bonito Valley Brewing in Lincoln. So when will this small-town brewery open? Bonito Valley has announced that its grand opening weekend will be August 3-5. If you are not heading up to Denver for the LA Galaxy-Colorado Rapids game that weekend like some of our friends (the power of Zlatan compels them), then this might make for a nice alternative trip if you need to get out of ABQ.
- A restaurant in Las Vegas, B3-BBQ, Burgers & Beer, has a pending small brewer license, which give that town its first local craft since New Mexico Craft Brewing closed down years ago (and was later reborn down here in ABQ as Desert Valley).
- It sure looks like Red River Brewing will be open this weekend (we await an official notice), but even if it’s not, head to town for the Bacon & Brews festival this Saturday. Brandenburg Park will host the event from noon to 5 p.m. Participating breweries will include Abbey, Comanche Creek, Enchanted Circle, Red River, Santa Fe, and from all the way down in Ruidoso, Lost Hiker. There will also be wine, games, music, and more.
That is all from us for now. If you know of any news we have missed about breweries in New Mexico, please contact us via social media or at email@example.com.