Archive for the ‘Events’ Category

It seems like it was just yesterday when we took this picture of Boxing Bear co-owner/head brewer Justin Hamilton atop his new brewhouse, but it was actually five years and many, many beers ago.

Five years does not seem like a long time in any business, but the craft beer world that Boxing Bear Brewing entered into in 2014 has changed an awful lot.

After all, back then the Westside was largely devoid of breweries and off-site taprooms.

“It’s crazy when we opened and then there was (only) the Stumbling Steer at the time,” co-owner/head brewer Justin Hamilton said. “The closest after that was Turtle Mountain. Now we’ve got breweries on every block. There’s a lot more breweries now, but that being said, five years later we’re still doing all right.”

Boxing Bear will celebrate its fifth anniversary with an all-day party this Saturday, with live music, vendors, and food trucks out front.

“Five is a good one,” Justin said. “We’re super excited to be here. It’s been a crazy five. Some places haven’t made it that far, some have made double. It’s just been fun to kind of see how much has changed. It’s been wild.”

(more…)

01e3ddb197b5b4a0748f727ddb151627ef3793f5bd

Beer manager Jordon Jenson talks beer with the Dark Side Brew Crew.

The list of bonafide bottle shops in New Mexico is not a long one. Sure, there are a few tried and true options that we’ve turned to for our various package booze needs over the years. There are, of course, the wine super stores sprouting up everywhere like Neomexicanus hops on a Southwestern bine. But, in terms of serious sud-slingers, New Mexico has been kinda dry, wouldn’t you say?

When I think of the two best places to find beer outside of the breweries in northern New Mexico, I first think of Jubilation in Albuquerque and Susan’s Fine Wine and Spirits in Santa Fe.

0115ca19214c98fbd6549b86521baab12f2542586d

The store is still well-stocked with beer, wine, and spirits to go.

This Friday, Susan’s Fine Wine and Spirits is officially launching their newly finished beer bar, and wine and spirits bar, with a grand opening celebration.

The new bar area, in my opinion, now places Susan’s neatly on the same shelf as many quality bottle shops I’ve wandered into during my travels to beervanas like Portland, Denver, and San Diego.

0130a54eec2fdab2b9ec9552fc7bd1ab2b05cf6f1c

New seating area in Susan’s.

Of course, opening a bar inside a store isn’t a new idea. Whole Foods did it ages ago to pretty fair success. But, what a beer bar does differently inside a serious beer and spirits ‘shoppe,’ is it invites the conversation back to beer and spirits, and elicits the feeling that it’s okay to be excited about the drink again. And, for me, it did exactly that.

In just 10 minutes of sitting at the rail of Susan’s new beer bar, talking beer with beer department manager/store assistant manager Jordon Jensen, about what beers have recently come through Susan’s, and the possibilities of what beers could be coming soon, I soon became gleefully excited about beer again. I couldn’t explain the feeling. It was like a painter re-discovering his love for art, after nearly forgetting that art was much more than a means to keep the lights on.

017f415510cd56d9da5d39e515050117bf29306b97

Jensen serves up a cold one.

“Opening a bar in (Susan’s) was an idea we always had,” Jensen said. “Once we realized we already had the license, it was kind of a no-brainer.”

The idea came from a lot of inquiries about specialty brews that never made it into cans. Having worked for National Distributing Company, Jensen was familiar with brands like Marble, who had a great experimental program, where every week they would put out something unique and fun, and send an email to the distributors.

“We decided the best way we could get these beers to people was by getting them on draft,” he said.

Not only can you get a growler to go, you can have a pint in hand while you shop. The whole place is licensed. Jensen says that beer was the heart of the idea, and it blossomed from that inspiration to create a wine and spirits bar at the other corner of the store.

010b17e00be71e257099336480f77aef700747c9c0

The wine and spirits bar is nicely stocked.

As for the beer side, Susan’s has 10 taps that they’ll be rotating like crazy, with fun local stuff and tough-to-get, out-of-state surprises befitting of a well-stocked bottle shop.

For Friday’s party, Jensen told me that they’ll be featuring 10 local New Mexico breweries, mostly from Santa Fe and Albuquerque, with brewery reps on hand to talk up their products.

The full list is as follows:

  • Second Street Brewery
  • Marble Brewery
  • Ex Novo Brewing
  • Steel Bender Brewyard
  • Taos Mesa Brewing
  • Rowley Farmhouse Ales
  • Bow and Arrow Brewing
  • Tumbleroot Brewery & Distillery
  • Beer Creek Brewery
  • Bosque Brewing Co.

There will be music and snacks, and Jensen said beer will be sold as cheap as they can legally put it in a glass. They even have a deal for a discount off drinks with a food purchase at nearby El Chile Toreado, one of the very best taco trucks in town.

01a4c8e78e7b3c81db4e78d4241e971a7647515047

Santa Fe’s finest bottle shop just got better!

“When Total Wine opened up, we took a decent hit. But, we’re starting to get people back,” Jensen said. “So instead of trying to compete with them, we’re just all about carving our own niche out and excelling within it. It’s the only beer store in town where you can have a beer in your hand while you’re shopping, or you can have a glass of wine while you’re shopping.”

The grand opening party is Friday from 4 to 7 p.m. at Susan’s Fine Wine and Spirits at 1005 South St. Francis Drive, Suite 101.

To Susan’s Fine Wine and Spirits’ continued success, cheers!

— Luke

0172b53bdfa9756b2b830d0e9d1a1237b6a08cec7e

For more Craft Beer info and @nmdarksidebc news, follow me on Twitter @SantaFeCraftBro. Untappd: SantaFeLuke

The party actually starts at 4 p.m., but it’s still gonna be a big one to celebrate 25 years.

One of the big summer events that all of us in the Crew have been looking forward to is the 25th Anniversary Party for Canteen Brewhouse, which starts this Saturday at 4 p.m.

We wanted to make sure we had all the details for everyone. We already knew, from social media posts, that musicians on hand include Felix Y Los Gatos, Chris Dracup, CrazyFool, and Dusty Low. The food trucks in attendance will be Kimo’s Hawaiian BBQ, Pink Ladies, Street Food Institute, and The Blazing Barn. Vendors taking part are Fizzy Bee Beauty, Danny Hart Design, Christopher McAfee, Allegra Howell and Foxy Girl Designs, Erin Leigh Jewelry Design, Sarah Donahue, and Suzy Heer.

On the beer front, Citranova is the official summer anniversary beer, and it will be on tap and for sale in four-pack 16-ounce cans.

All right, that is a start, but we had some additional questions. With no time to meet up, we asked general manager Jamie Schwebach and head brewer Zach Guilmette over email.

Q: Besides what’s already been announced — bands, food trucks, Citranova — what else can we expect on the beer front?

A: We will have Tuttle IPA and Strawberry Basil Gose being rereleased, as well as all of the favorites that are currently on tap, including our house beers and rotating seasonals. For our Mug Club members, we are offering a free sampling of beers that have been aging from 3 to 4 p.m. and will have them available for sale at 4 p.m. (here is looking at you St. Bob’s) at $7 for a 10-ounce pour.

All right, we’ve got barrel-aged imperial stout. This is good. This also means we are gonna Lyft/Uber over. UPDATE: There will be 2010 St. Bob’s, 2012 Barleywine, 2014 St. Bob’s, and 2017 St. Bob’s.

Q: Are there any other pertinent details that people should know not on the Facebook page?

A: The party will be in our parking lot, on the patio and inside. We will have fun games to play and all are welcome (kids, dogs, strollers). Think corn hole, tether ball, four square and double dutch … taking it back.

This means parking will only be on Aztec, so yes, using a ride share or a designated driver to pick you up/drop you off is highly recommended. UPDATE: There will also be parking across the street at A-One Collision, but seriously, don’t drive unless you absolutely have to, especially considering all those barrel-aged beers above.

Q: What is your favorite memory from Canteen/Il Vicino history?

A: Over 25 years there have been many great memories for the three guys that started it all — Rick Post, Greg Atkin, and Tom White. The common thread throughout it all are all the regulars and patrons that have come and raised a pint and many who are still coming everyday! Through only three head brewers in 25 years, starting with Rob Chavez to Brady McKeown and into Zach Guilmette’s hands, the beer and our inclusive atmosphere has been the drive that have kept this brewery alive after a quarter century; that and the indelible assistant Doug Cochran, who just passed the 19-year mark last month. The memories of all the people that have kept this brewery going, from behind the scenes to sharing the stage in the success of multiple World Beer Cups and GABF medals, the Canteen Brewhouse will always be about celebrating the memories of our past as much as creating new ones. We hope everyone can make it for our anniversary party where more memories will be made!

Oh, and if anyone is curious what Doug’s favorite memory was, well, it was when Dougie Style Amber won a gold medal at GABF in 2014.

Canteen has come a long way since the brewing operation started in a cramped room in the back of the Nob Hill Il Vicino in 1994. We have enjoyed being along for at least part of that ride since the Canteen location opened in 2011.

If there are any other questions about this event, you can ask Canteen directly or we can pass along your queries. Otherwise, we will see you all out there Saturday night.

Cheers!

— Stoutmeister

crabpilsposter2019_final-01

Original artwork by Mariah Scee will most definitely find it’s way on another sweet T-shirt, so get it while supplies last!

Back by popular demand!

This Saturday and Sunday (June 15 and 16), Second Street Brewery — Rufina’s annual Crab and Pilsner Festival returns to Santa Fe for a second round, and we’ve never been more excited to get crabs again.

Last year, hundreds of Santa Feans and visitors showed up hungry and thirsty for the first Crab and Pilsner bash in such numbers that they exhausted the entire supply of cold-water-clawed crawlies. Luckily, Rufina is such a spacious, well-run operation that the party never felt too packed, nor did the serving teams ever seem overwhelmed. My friends and I certainly had a shell of a time!

0130c53b0fa24141be879e2139506b1f1527419a57

From last year’s fun event!

“Last year was incredibly successful!” said Second Street creative director Mariah Scee. “The turnout on both Saturday and Sunday exceeded our expectations, and the event went really well on both the crab and the beer fronts. Particularly on the beer side, we had a great variety of pilsners, making it a really fun experience for experienced beer drinkers, and also allowing us to introduce the style to guests who might not have known what pilsner was before the event. We also learned a lot, and are going into this weekend better equipped to handle the volume of people, keep the crab boiling, the plates coming, and flight after flight of pilsners flowing from the bar.”

(more…)

2019-SummerFest-Poster-rev5

Summer, and beer, return to the mountain.

Pajarito Ski Area outside of Los Alamos has a handful of big events throughout the year, and it’s time for another as Summerfest will be held this Saturday.

If you haven’t been up to visit yet, this would be a great time to do so. If summer finally kicks in, you can rest assured that temperatures will be much cooler on the mountain. (I always warn people to be prepared for anything when it comes to the weather, though.) Throw in the natural beauty of the mountain and forest, and it’s a stunning setting for a beer festival.

There will be plenty of things to do throughout the day. There will be a mountain bike race, a disc golf tournament, hiking and biking (made easier by running chairlifts), the band Iron Chiwawa playing classic rock, good food, and yes, plenty of beer. More than a dozen New Mexico breweries will be in attendance, including:

  • Bathtub Row: CojonHaze IPA, Cali Common, Little Bird Blonde, American Wheat
  • Blue Corn: Oatmeal Stout, Gatekeeper IPA, Road Runner IPA, Peach Gose, Lager than Life
  • Lost Hiker: Blonde, Mosaic SMASH, Belgian Rye Pale Ale, Amber
  • Red Door: Unhinged Cider, West Coast IPA, Vanilla Cream Ale, Hopical Storm (Pineapple Milkshake IPA)
  • Red River: Lazy Bear Blonde, Peach Campfire Cream Ale, Desperado Mexican Lager, Catskinner IPA
  • Second Alarm: Porter, Kolsch, IPA (one keg)
  • Second Street: TBA
  • Sierra Blanca: Alien IPA, Green Chile Cerveza, Bone Chiller Brown Ale, and either Desert Pilsner, Vanilla Milk Stout or Cherry Wheat
  • Steel Bender: Skull Bucket IPA, Raspberry Dynamite, Rosy Nosy, Lloyd’s 3 O’Clock Kolsch
  • Taos Mesa: TBA
  • Tractor: Berry Cider, Mustachio Milk Stout, Acreage IPA, plus cocktails Kentucky Mule, StraJarito Tonic, The Vodka Blues
  • Tumbleroot: TBR (Light American Lager), Old School Pale Ale, Hefeweizen, New School IPA, plus a cocktail or two
  • Turtle Mountain: Wooden Teeth, Darker than Darkness Schwarzbier, Maibock, Doppel Equis Steinundator, Table Manners Session Brut IPA, Yum Yum Breeze

We will update this list with specific beers from the breweries as we receive them. The beer portion of the event runs from 1 to 6 p.m. Iron Chiwawa will be playing from 2 to 5, and food will be served at the lodge cafeteria from 11 a.m. to 5 p.m.

Tickets are $20, which we believe entitles you to a souvenir glass and unlimited sampling. Be sure to bring a valid ID, or you won’t get in.

As always, if you’re going to be enjoying the beer, take the free shuttle that runs every half hour from 10 a.m. to 6:30 p.m. from the high school parking lot in town. It’s a several-mile drive up the mountain, so save yourself some gas and possible grief.

For more information, visit: https://www.pajarito.ski/events/summerfest/

Cheers!

— Reid

Truer words were never spoken. Now it’s time to party with Nexus all weekend!

Rather than try to jam it into an already packed Memorial Day weekend, Nexus Brewery is moving up its anniversary party to this weekend. All the feasting, drinking, and fun will take place at all three Nexus locations Friday through Sunday.

“As we move into our eighth year in operation, we are thankful for the support we have received from the community,“ owner Ken Carson said in a press release.

The beer part of the celebration begins today (Thursday) with the return of Beam Me Up Scotty (8.1% ABV, 28 IBU), Nexus’ classic Scottish Wee Heavy. Friday will mark the arrival of a new beer, 8 of 9 Blood Orange American Wheat (5.6% ABV, 21 IBU).

There will be live music, of course, with the Racine Kreyol Band taking the stage Friday at the original location from 6 to 9 p.m. RKB will then head to the Nexus Blue Smokehouse to perform on the patio Saturday from 2 to 5 p.m. The Gershom Brothers will provide the music at the main location Saturday from 1 to 4, followed by Raven Rutherford and her Sweet Potato Pie Band from 6 to 9. The Gershom Brothers will then head over to the Nexus Silver Taproom to perform Sunday from 2 to 5.

As for food, there will be quite a few specials in addition to the classics like chicken and waffles. Shrimp and grits, green chile hush puppies, and strawberry slab pie will be available at the brewery. Nexus Blue and Silver will have gumbo and red beans and rice available for the weekend.

There will also be special eighth anniversary shirts and pint glasses for sale.

“We come to you this eighth year by adding BBQ to our menu in the form of Nexus Blue Smokehouse. This is ‘The Next Generation,’ so to speak,” Carson said. “We have become more than just a brewery, we are a full-fledged restaurant that makes its own beer, and we can stand head-to-head with any brewery or restaurant in Albuquerque. These concepts are created around casual vibes where you can come to socialize with your family and friends. That is what being in the Nexus is about.”

We will raise a pint, and probably a drumstick or two (one fried, one smoked BBQ) to Nexus this weekend.

Cheers!

— Stoutmeister

Starr Brothers has organized a fundraiser to help the family of New Mexico United player Justin Schmidt. (Image courtesy of Starr Brothers)

Sad news came down this week that New Mexico United soccer player Justin Schmidt’s father, Jonathon David Schmidt, was killed in a car crash last weekend in Wyoming. As the brewery with the closest ties with the team, Starr Brothers is hosting a fundraiser for the Schmidt family this Saturday from noon to 6 p.m.

Justin Schmidt is a local player who graduated from Volcano Vista High School. His mother was also in the crash and is currently hospitalized.

During those six hours, 15 percent of all proceeds from beer and food sales will be donated to the Schmidt family. The brewery will have its usual sizable contingent of Liverpool fans on hand at 12:45 for the game against Newcastle, but everyone is invited to come by and contribute.

There will also be a table set up where people can make their own personalized armbands with a message of support to the Schmidt family. Fans will be encouraged to wear them to Sunday’s 5 p.m. game against San Antonio at Isotopes Park.

Before the game on Sunday, there will be live screen printing at the tailgate co-hosted by Starr Brothers and The Curse New Mexico, United’s primary fan club. Any print featuring the logo above purchased by fans will see $5 donated to the family. There will also be a special bucket for direct donations to the family, and anyone who cannot attend Saturday’s fundraiser and/or Sunday’s tailgate can donate directly online here.

Kudos to Starr Brothers, The Curse, and everyone else involved in setting up these fundraisers for the Schmidt family.

Somos unidos!

— Stoutmeister

Toadfest at Little Toad Creek in Silver City is always worth the drive.

The New Mexico Brewers Guild and Little Toad Creek Brewery and Distillery are teaming up for their annual event, Toadfest, this Saturday in Silver City from 2 p.m. to midnight. This free event will feature 21 different beers and ciders from 12 different breweries, all packed into the LTC taproom at 200 N. Bullard Street.

The setup of Toadfest has 10 beers poured on the back patio and the other 11 at the main bar inside. There will also be some live music indoors, and some fun and games in the alleyway behind the taproom (the other side of the alley is actually the creek that runs through the town, making for a lovely afternoon/evening setting). Luke and I got to go to Toadfest back in 2017 and we had a blast, so we highly recommend the drive down. Silver City is a very charming town, and worth the visit anytime of the year.

Guild executive director Leah Black was kind enough to send us the list of the beers/ciders, though we are all still waiting on Boxing Bear to identify which offerings they are sending south. UPDATE: See below.

Patio pours

  • Bosque Open Space Haze
  • Bosque Beyond the Trees (Cider)
  • Canteen Fill in the Blanco (White IPA)
  • Marble Double White Triple Berry
  • Sierra Blanca Green Chile Cerveza
  • Sierra Blanca Alien IPA
  • Steel Bender Compa Los Ranchos Lager
  • Boxing Bear Uppercut IPA
  • Truth or Consequences Cosmic Blonde
  • Rio Bravo Freak Juice (Hazy IPA)

Bar pours

  • La Cumbre Elevated IPA
  • Picacho Peak Green Chile Amber
  • Steel Bender Raspberry Dynamite
  • Canteen High Plains Pilsner
  • Tractor Blood Orange Cider
  • Little Toad Creek Grumpy Old Troll IPA
  • Rio Bravo Squirrel Nuts (Peanut Butter Hazelnut Brown)
  • Boxing Bear Ambear
  • Marble Cerveza
  • T or C Buckhorn IPA
  • Little Toad Creek Copper Cream Ale

For those of you that can go, remember this is an event that benefits the Brewers Guild, as well as our friends at Little Toad Creek. Have a great weekend!

Cheers!

— Stoutmeister

There’s a beer party on Friday and everyone is invited!

It is not often that a beer festival, big or small, sneaks up on us, but that was the case with the Bacon Jam Block Party. This neighborhood event, which will feature four breweries, is set for Friday from 2 to 11 p.m.

The new restaurant Bacon Jam is located on the southeast corner of Girard and Candelaria, and neighbors Palmer Brewery and Left Turn Distilling have been instrumental in helping the owners prepare for this mini-festival, which is free to the public.

“He’s just wanting to have a get-together to introduce his new restaurant, Bacon Jam, to the neighborhood,” Left Turn owner Brian Langwell said of the Bacon Jam owner. “And, let everyone know there’s a bunch of breweries in the neighborhood. … (But) they usually know that. The theory was we’re going to get every brewery in the neighborhood together and do this. We got every brewery except La Cumbre. They didn’t see the need to send someone half a block down the street.”

Rather than block off part of Girard, the party will be contained in the large Bacon Jam parking lot and patio that faces Candelaria.

“We’re going to serve on their patio outside,” Brian said. “The four breweries that are participating are Red Door, Canteen, ourselves Palmer and Left Turn, and Cantero. We’re going to set up our little portable booths out on the patio out there. They’ll do beers and we’ll do cocktails. We’re going to block off the majority of their parking lot out there, have a stage out there and do live music. I know the guy from Bacon Jam is going to do food specials so everybody can try his food.”

If you have driven up Candelaria recently, you might have noticed this spot, which will be the setting for the block party.

The Left Turn/Palmer tasting room will be open during the festival.

“We’re going to be doing really simple stuff (at the festival),” Brian said. “We’re going to have limited staff.”

“If they want the fancy stuff, they can come in here,” Rob Palmer added.

The festival will mark the debut of the new Left Turn bourbon, which is being readied for bottling as soon as the labels arrive, Brian said.

Take note, this is not a free sampling festival. Beer will be sold in pints, only. A portion of the proceeds will go to the charity Warehouse 508.

As for the beers being poured:

  • Canteen: Fill in the Blanco (White IPA), High Plains Pilsner, Boysenberry Wheat, Munich Dunkel
  • Cantero: IPA, Deaf Dog Brown, Brew-ha-rista (Red Chile Stout), Cream Sour
  • Red Door: Rickety Cricket (Green Tea Raspberry Hefeweizen), Lemongrass Pils, Unhinged Cider

“It’s just basically a big block party to introduce Bacon Jam to the neighborhood,” Brian said. “I’m just the guy that did the permits.”

Thanks to Brian and Rob for the quick chat and the helpful info, and of course for wading through those giant stacks of paper to get those permits done.

Cheers!

— Stoutmeister

The calm before the storm … of fun! Marble will celebrate its 11th anniversary with a huge street party this Saturday.

Marble Brewery is growing up fast, with its 11th birthday coming up this weekend. Naturally, being Marble and all, the staff is throwing a huge fiesta for all of its loyal patrons, with additional events and beer releases sprinkled throughout the week.

To get the lowdown on all of it, I sat down with marketing director Geraldine Lucero, who is the keeper of all celebratory knowledge at 111 Marble Avenue.

“We’ve got an event planned every night this week,” she said. “We kicked it off with our Brew Club appreciation party on the deck (on Monday). It was just our way of saying thank you to all of our loyal patrons that have been there. A lot of them have been Brew Club members for a long time. So we just gave them some free food, our way of saying thank you, that we love you, and without them we couldn’t do it. That’s what this whole week is about, saying thank you by giving (our customers) these awesome events to be entertained with.”

The beer dinner is nearly sold out tonight, while the 19.2-ounce cans will go quickly Saturday.

Next up on the event calendar is a first-time beer dinner collaboration between Marble and a popular Nob Hill restaurant.

“Tonight we are doing a beer dinner at Frenchish in Nob Hill,” Geraldine said. “Josh (Trujillo) and I met with Chef Jennifer James and her team. It’s been a weeks now, but we hosted them here to taste some beers and work on a menu. It’s going to be her first beer dinner, I believe. She said it’s a little out of my element, but she’s such a talented chef that I’m really excited to see how the dinner goes tonight. We’re close to that, a close sellout, too. We have a few seats left for that. My goal is to sell out every event this week.”

Call (505) 433-5911 to see if you can still get a reservation. The cost is $75 per person for a four-course dinner that starts at 6 p.m.

“We’re really excited about that,” Geraldine said. “We’re going to feature the last keg of the 111 Rosé that John Heine brewed. We’re bringing eight Marble team members. I’m just really excited. I love beer dinners, I love Jennifer James, and I love Frenchish. I sought them out and asked them to have this beer dinner with us because they’re amazing.”

(more…)