Posts Tagged ‘Blue Grasshopper’

These guys are gonna be the next brewery to open in Albuquerque this Friday!

All of us in the Crew figured we would have a nice, relaxing June after ABQ Beer Week ended. Then, a new brewery opened. And, another one. And, another one. It has left a lot of people’s heads spinning, trying to remember what is open, and what is still on deck. To help out everyone else, and maybe even to help ourselves, we present the great guide of everything that has opened since about May 20, will be open soon, and what is much further down the road.

ALREADY OPEN

Ex Novo Brewing, Corrales: If you have not been to this most excellent NM version of the popular Portland, Oregon brewery, you are missing out. Its beers are now popping up at bars and restaurants around town, and you can pick up six-packs and four-packs, but really, you should drive up Corrales road a ways and enjoy the most excellent taproom that is adjacent to the big production brewery. It is right across the street from the fire station and Corrales Bistro Brewery (which does not, alas, brew its own beer). Just please remember to adhere to the strict 30 MPH speed limit.

Enchanted Circle Brewing Taproom, San Mateo and Osuna: The Angel Fire brewery’s taproom also opened during Beer Week. They have a full kitchen, and all the beers from up north. They are tucked into the same shopping center as Amy’s Donuts, right near Cliff’s amusement park.

Blue Grasshopper Brewing Taproom, Second Street and Summer: The latest addition to the Wells Park brewing scene is almost a carbon copy of the other two Blue Grasshopper locations, and that is just fine. Enjoy a wood-fired pizza and a huge beer list (mainly guest taps). They are still working on building the brewery in the other half of the building.

Hops Brewery Taproom, Los Ranchos: Located at 7226 Fourth Street, north of Osuna/south of Paseo del Norte, this charming little spot has a lot of beer, not much parking (carpool, please), and a limited food menu, but it often has food trucks pulling up for special occasions.

Thirsty Eye Brewing, Broadway and Gold: The neighborhood pub for EDo (East Downtown) is now open, serving coffee starting at 7:30 a.m. and beer in the afternoon/evening. We got a full preview of this spot from the good group of people who have made it a reality at 206 Broadway SE.

La Reforma Brewery, San Mateo and Alameda: We got to chow down in advance of the opening of this brewery in the old Bosque taproom space at 8900 San Mateo. The taqueria food, done Mexico City-style, is excellent, the beers are tasty, and as a result we think this is gonna be a popular joint for a long time to come.

Brew Lab 101, Rio Rancho: We did a full preview a while back, but now this long-awaited addition to the RR scene has opened as of Tuesday night. Featuring beer and cider, it is just west of Turtle Mountain on Southern, past the post office and before you get to Joe’s Pasta House. Speaking of which, you can bring in food from there and other local establishments so that you do not drink on an empty stomach.

ALMOST BUT NOT QUITE OPEN

Black Snout Brewhouse, Juan Tabo and Menaul: The good news is that we will be able to move these guys to the open list as of Friday night. The grand opening is set, so make sure to head on over and tell us what you think of the beers, the space, the whole thing. One of our writers is planning on a review to run early next week, just in case you want us to test the waters first.

Quarter Celtic Brewpub Taproom, Juan Tabo: Just around the corner from Black Snout, the QC taproom is very close to opening. How close? We just got invited to a soft opening/trial run for the spot. It should be ready for everyone well before July 4 rolls around.

FURTHER DOWN THE ROAD

Among those breweries still in the planning/built-out stages are the B2B Garden Brewery, on Comanche just west of Wyoming; Turquoise Trail Brewing, on Central near Juan Tabo; Hausammann Brewhaus, on Central across from UNM; Looking Glass Spirits & Long Lost Brewing, on Sixth Street just a few blocks south of Bow & Arrow; Desert Valley Brewing’s taproom on San Mateo, just a block south of where Enchanted Circle opened; and Tractor Brewing’s taproom in Los Lunas.

Breweries outside the ABQ metro area still on the docket include 575 Brewing (Alamogordo), Boogie’s Brewery & Distillery (Deming), Lauter Haus Brewing (Farmington), Piedra Blanca Brewery (White Rock), Public House 28 (Anthony), and off-site taprooms from Boese Brothers (Los Alamos), Icebox (Northeast Las Cruces), Lost Hiker (Downtown Ruidoso), Picacho Peak (Alamogordo), Red Door (Roswell), and Truth or Consequences (Las Cruces). Oh, and then of course there are the new Bosque taprooms coming to Santa Fe and Las Cruces (yes, a third one), but those do not have pending licenses yet with the State of New Mexico.

Got all that? We will do our best to keep you continuously updated. In the meantime, enjoy the new ones, support the old ones, and just in general have fun with the vast variety of breweries that we have across New Mexico.

Cheers!

— Stoutmeister

The new Hops Taproom in Los Ranchos is ready for its grand opening this weekend.

Now that I am back at work (yay, money), the beer news is starting to pile up, so let us get to a few pertinent items.

First, though, in a moment of self-promotion, I will be giving a free talk about the history of brewing in Albuquerque this Saturday at 10:30 a.m. at the Special Collections Library, which is located on the northwest corner of Central and Edith, directly across from the Artichoke Cafe. I will have copies of Albuquerque Beer: Duke City History on Tap for sale ($20, cash only), and this talk will include the story of how an Old West shootout impacted the first Southwest Brewery in 1884.

Moving along …

Here a taproom opening, there a taproom opening

We already chronicled how the third Blue Grasshopper location at Summer and Second Street opened its doors during ABQ Beer Week. It was far from alone among new offsite taprooms holding soft openings.

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It sure looks like a Blue Grasshopper. (Photo courtesy of Darlaina Chapman)

Over the weekend, the Crew was made aware that Blue Grasshopper had opened its third location down in the Wells Park neighborhood. This will eventually be home to their brewing operation, replacing the small space at the original taproom in Rio Rancho.

Located at Summer and Second Street (specifically 1401 Second NW), we took a very early look last year while it was still under construction. The taproom portion is now ready for business. AmyO talked to the general manager of the Westside ABQ location and found out that the total space amounts to about 10,000 square feet, with half of that for the taproom.

Visitors to the taproom told us that it has the same pizza-led menu, with a wood-fired oven in place. There are about 50 taps of beer from all around the state.

Owner Greg Nielsen sent us a message that the grand opening will be the weekend of June 8-9, after ABQ Beer Week is over. Until then, please enjoy these photos from two of AmyO’s friends who visited over the weekend.

Some nifty artwork already adorns the walls. (Photo courtesy of Darlaina Chapman)

The bar area around the pizza oven. (Photo courtesy of Brian Polansky)

There is plenty of space to move around. (Photo courtesy of Brian Polansky)

The stage area for live music. (Photo courtesy of Brian Polansky)

Looking from the bar toward the entrance. (Photo courtesy of Brian Polansky)

We will have a full story on the new site soon, once we are also done with Beer Week coverage. Thanks to AmyO for tracking down much of this info.

Cheers!

— Stoutmeister

Say hello to the forthcoming Thirsty Eye Brewing, under construction now at Broadway and Gold. (Photo courtesy of Thirsty Eye)

It is a relatively quiet week out there, spring winds aside, so it felt like a good time to dust off the old beer notebook.

New brewery updates

We keep waiting for the number of forthcoming breweries to dwindle down, but that has not happened yet. There are currently five breweries with active small brewer licenses around the state which have yet to open their doors, another nine with pending licenses, and a handful of places adding a brewing license to an existing business.

  • 575 Brewing, Alamogordo (pending): This new brewery is being built from the ground up, with foundation construction having commenced on April 19 at 234 W. 8th Street.
  • B2B Garden Brewery, Albuquerque (pending): We do not have any updates on this space, located on Comanche just west of Wyoming.
  • Beer Creek Brewing, outside Santa Fe (pending): Our last trip out there found that business was going well and the brewing system was finally in place. For now, stop by and enjoy a pizza, guest beers, and even some collaboration beers made at other local breweries.
  • Black Snout Brewhouse, Albuquerque (active): The Crew will be stopping in early next week, which means that this brewery is nearly ready to open its doors on Menaul just east of Juan Tabo.
  • Boogie’s Brewery and Distillery, Deming (pending): There are no new updates for this long-awaited successor to Mimbres Valley Brewing.
  • Brew Lab 101, Rio Rancho (active): The projected timetable is for a late May opening. For more info, see our last story.
  • Ex Novo Brewing, Corrales (active): The first test batches are now running in the brewery hall, while renovations continue on the adjacent taproom building across the parking lot. We expect to return soon for a final preview story.
  • La Reforma Brewing, Albuquerque (active): The goal of opening in early June in the old Bosque location, on San Mateo north of Alameda, has not changed.
  • Lauter Haus Brewing, Farmington (pending): Progress continues on this new brewery, spearheaded by former Three Rivers head brewer Brandon Beard. The fun news? They have purchased some vintage arcade games for the taproom.
  • Looking Glass Spirits & Long Lost Brewing, Albuquerque (pending): We finally dug up an address for this newcomer, which will be located at 1803 Sixth Street NW, just three blocks south of Bow & Arrow. There is still no social media with which to follow the progress, so we will remain patient.
  • Piedra Blanca Brewing, White Rock (pending): We have no updates at this time on this brewery located in the town next to Los Alamos.
  • Public House 28, Anthony (pending): Other than the fact that this newcomer has already joined the NM Brewers Guild, we have no new info. It will be located outside Anthony at 10108 Highway 28.
  • Rail Brewery, Santa Fe (pending): We have no new updates.
  • Thirsty Eye Brewing, Albuquerque (active): The Crew has made contact with the owners and we hope to make our first trip over to 206 Broadway Blvd. SE sooner than later. You can follow their progress on Facebook.
  • Turquoise Trail Brewing, Albuquerque (pending): We have no new updates on this brewery, located on Central near Juan Tabo.

In addition to those breweries with pending or active licenses, we did learn more about the mysterious Context Brewing that popped up on the Brew to Do list that we wrote about recently. It is apparently the brewery going into a space at 816 Third Street NW. Former Brewers Guild executive director John Gozigian tipped us off to a possible brewery going into that space, but again, there is no pending license yet, so it figures to be a ways off.

New taproom updates

The home of the future Truth or Consequences Brewing taproom in Las Cruces. (Photo courtesy of T or C Brewing)

Yes, there are also more off-site taprooms still in the pipeline. Because of course there are, right?

  • Blue Grasshopper, Albuquerque (pending): Located in Wells Park, we wrote on this one before, and when there is more news to share, we will head back. We assume a license for the brewery half of the building is still in the works.
  • Boese Brothers, Los Alamos (pending): Our man Reid still has not figured out where this taproom is going to be located.
  • Desert Valley, Albuquerque (active): Progress continues on Wyoming near Comanche, which is where this taproom is replacing the former Red Door spot.
  • Desert Valley, Albuquerque (pending): Wait, what? There are two DV taprooms in the works? Yes, we have now confirmed a second one is indeed happening at 5231 San Mateo Blvd. NE. Located a block south of Osuna and the next taproom listed below, this space was under construction/renovation the last time we drove by.
  • Enchanted Circle, Albuquerque (active): The last batch of construction photos show the bar is in place, and states that the taproom is about two weeks away from being ready for opening at Osuna and San Mateo, in the shopping center on the northwest corner of the intersection.
  • Icebox Brewing, Las Cruces (pending): Even though the main brewery opened only recently, an off-site taproom is already in the works, though its exact location has not been revealed.
  • Picacho Peak, Alamogordo (pending): We have no new updates on this first off-site taproom for the Las Cruces brewery.
  • Quarter Celtic, Albuquerque (active): Construction continues apace up on Juan Tabo between Menaul and Indian School, but no opening date has been set.
  • Truth or Consequences, Las Cruces (pending): Yes, T or C is heading south to Las Cruces for its first off-site taproom, as that city is suddenly filling up fast. It will be located on East Lohman, not too far west from Interstate 25.

We will do our best to keep everyone up to date on all of these forthcoming places, as well as keeping an eye on the news at the existing places. May is going to be one heck of a busy month, including the Blazin’ Brewfest in Las Cruces (which will now be preceded by the new Las Cruces Beer Week!) on May 17 and then ABQ Beer Week, which begins May 23. Throw in some expected openings from some of the places above, and there will be no rest for the weary Crew this coming month.

Cheers!

— Stoutmeister

The Pining for Breakfast Maple Brown at Red Door joins the pantheon of wonderful dessert beers in town.

The weekend was humming along at such a nice pace, and then the Steelers went out and f@#$ed it all up for me. It’s hard being a sports fan, but these days it’s easy being a beer lover. My weekend actually kicked off back on Thursday with trips to Marble Downtown and Marble Heights to interview a number of staff members for an upcoming Look Back/Look Ahead Series article. Naturally, I also got to partake in a few beers, because that’s the reward in advance for the hours of upcoming transcription.

First up, Ye’ Olde Ale is a delicious concoction made in collaboration with the Marble Beers in Manchester, England. A proper, 9.7-percent ABV English strong ale was aged in port wine barrels, with a little bit of brettanomyces thrown in for fun. The result is a complex beer that, in many ways, probably should not work together, but the warming alcohol and thick malt mixes wonderfully with the funky brett and sweet wine flavors. Also available were the Northside IPA and Alpha Acid Trip (Triple IPA), both of which had many of the best characteristics of what I still love in the style, with a piney touch to go with the more fruity and floral hops, plus enough of a malt backbone to keep them from drying out the palate. I also had more Reserve Ale, which has already run its course in bottle form, but remains on tap for now. It is a delightful batch this year, so if you have not had it, you are dead to me. (Just kidding. Well, maybe.)

From there, I grabbed a friend and headed over to Red Door for the release of the new Pining for Breakfast Maple Brown. I have had my fair share of maple-infused stouts in recent years, but for a lighter beer in color and mouthfeel, this brown held up well and did not allow the maple to turn it into a sugar bomb. The folks at New Mexico Piñon Coffee supplied the beans that brought in a nice coffee character to help balance everything out. Red Door has been churning out some quality seasonals for a while now, so make sure to snag a pint of this one and raise it high in honor of head brewer Matt Meier and his staff.

For Friday night, I trekked to the west side to catch up with a good friend and finally indulge in a long overdue pizza-and-beer night. We found room at the bar at the Blue Grasshopper location off Coors. While a number of the beers I wanted to drink had run out, the remainder (Boxing Bear’s Body Czech, La Cumbre’s BEER and Dunkelweizen) were more than enough. Throw in some really good pizza and even better company (thanks, Jess!), and it was a good night.

I picked up a trifecta of excellent brews from a beer-trading friend (thanks, Majin!) and stayed in on Saturday, a little too worn out from work to venture beyond the confines of home. As for Sunday, well, at least I didn’t punch the TV or anything. How a team blows a 23-7 lead at home is beyond me.

As for the rest of the Crew, two of them ended up joining forces for part of their weekend, while another ventured out of town for one of her favorite annual festivals.

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That red building back there is the future home of Blue Grasshopper’s brewery and taproom in the Wells Park neighborhood.

The brewing conditions at the original Blue Grasshopper Brewery and Pub in Rio Rancho have always been more than a bit cramped. That will be changing in the future, but not through any expansion of that location. Instead, Blue Grasshopper is building a full-sized brewery in a renovated warehouse on the corner of Summer and Second Street in the Wells Park neighborhood.

I stopped by to visit brewer Peter Apers, who is overseeing the construction, on a smoky morning a couple weeks ago. (Remember the compost fire in the South Valley? Yeah, those were some unpleasant conditions to drive into.) Peter gave me a quick tour of the half of the 10,000 square-foot building that will be home to a taproom and a kitchen. The construction/demolition that day was largely focused on the half where the brewery will go.

“We needed a place to brew beer,” Peter said. “Neither of our places over there (on the West Side) really have the room. Rio Rancho can benefit from a full kitchen, so we need to get that brewing system out of there.”

The small brewhouse will become the pilot brewery at the new location, right on the north side of the bar/taproom area where customers can watch the brewers at work.

“This will be our pilot brewing system section,” Peter said. “We’re going to bring that small brewery over from Rio Rancho. We’ll do our recipe development here. The big space that you saw next door is going to be our main (brewing) area.”

The new brewhouse has not been ordered yet, but it could be one of the biggest in town.

“It’s still open for discussion, anywhere between 24 and 48 (barrels), but time will tell,” Peter said. “We’ll see how our beers are developed here and how that justifies growing that quick. If not, we’ll just do a co-op in there and put in a brew system we can co-op with the smaller brewers, give them a chance to go bigger. We have the space.”

A shot from earlier in the summer, courtesy of Blue Grasshopper, showing the ongoing interior construction.

Blue Grasshopper will still carry a large swath of beers from across the state. Peter said the cold room they are building can hold around 200 kegs, with the expectation of 100 beers on tap at any time.

“We’re going to represent all the brewing in New Mexico,” he said. We’re trying to get as many of their beers as we can. That’s been the whole idea from the beginning.

“The more beer you put on tap, the more space you need. It’s tough for our existing places to make that switch. They don’t the space to put in the (bigger) cold rooms, or the time to tear it all apart. It’s a bit premeditated.”

There will be a full kitchen on the south side of the taproom area to support all of that beer.

“This area also needs food,” Peter said. “There’s a lot of breweries here, but there’s really no food. For (Rio Bravo and Tractor) it was an afterthought, and it’s tough to do. Here we do it (in advance).”

Blue Grasshopper will also have a sizable patio on the east side of the building facing Second Street. As for the opening date, that is a long way from being set.

“We’re somewhere in the middle,” Peter said. “We’re taking it easy, baby steps. We’re in no hurry.”

There are still issues with the surrounding neighborhood that are beyond the control of Blue Grasshopper and the other nearby breweries. Peter said he hopes over time that the City of Albuquerque will be able to come with an actionable plan to deal with those issues.

“I think this area has tremendous potential as a brewery district, and it’s affordable,” he said. “That’s why we’re taking our time because (the City) is still trying to figure out how to grow this area, so to speak … figure out the infrastructure, all that stuff.”

The Crew will be sure to keep track of the ongoing progress for Blue Grasshopper. Thanks to Peter for the quick tour and interview.

Cheers!

— Stoutmeister

Manager Skip Galarneau is the man who keeps the original Blue Grasshopper location hopping.

Editor’s note: With ABQ Beer Week in the rear view mirror, we are finally getting back to our Unsung Heroes Series. We asked each of the breweries around town to nominate one or more employees who go above and beyond, but don’t necessarily get the recognition of the owners and head brewers/brewmasters. Today, we meet up with the man the owners of The Blue Grasshopper said saved their Rio Rancho location while they were busy opening up their new taproom near Coors and Montano. — Stoutmeister

Kenneth ‘Skip’ Galarneau is currently the bar manager at The Blue Grasshopper Brew Pub in Rio Rancho, and when I sat down with him, I had one goal in mind (OK, aside from drinking a good beer), and that was to understand what defines an unsung hero. What is the essence of being an unsung hero? I started by asking Skip about his past and how he had found his way to the present.

“In ’99 I started working at Turtle (Mountain Brewery), April of ’99, it was like a couple of weeks after it opened. I was just about to turn 21 and it was a good time to get a job at a brewery,” Skip said.

At this point I interrupted Skip with a bunch of questions about the early days of Turtle Mountain. I won’t bore you with that, but rather skip (no pun intended) ahead.

“I took a break over there and went to the coast in Newport, Oregon,” Skip said. “I worked at the Rogue Brewery out there … cooking again over there at the bayfront taproom. It was cool … just thousands of fish and chips and they had pizza over there, too, (plus) burgers, just a huge variety of food. That was awesome.

“Came back to town when my little brother was getting out of school and he actually got a job at Turtle, also, as did my older brother, Adam. He’s now a regional manager over at Bosque. We’re beer nerds, sort of, we just love the restaurant industry. It kind of puts us in touch with the people. I like Rio Rancho and working at Turtle helped me get to know most of the community out here and I grew up here, too.”

It was during Skip’s 11 years at Turtle Mountain that he realized what he enjoyed most about working in a restaurant was getting to know his guests and taking care of them. This became the focus of his career and he carried it with him to his next job, which was at yet another local institution.

“I worked over at The Range for five years after that, shaking drinks over at the Bernalillo location,” Skip said. “How I kinda got pulled from The Range over here was (I wasn’t living here at the time), it’s close to my family and close to where I wanted to live. I like Rio Rancho and I like the people out here. I feel really comfortable. And, you pretty much got a great view of everything. Live music six nights a week, though. That was pretty much the pull for me. And, a bunch of great beer on tap. The guest beers were the key to this place, I think. Because, you can totally advertise everybody that’s New Mexico. Now that I have a little bit more pull in the beer order I can get exactly what people want. I listen and then I deliver. We just try to pull the best stuff.”

The vibe of Blue Grasshopper is what drew Skip to seek a job there.

Just as he did at Turtle Mountain, Skip started in the kitchen and quickly proved himself before finding his way out to the customers.

“They were open for a year when I got here in April of last year,” Skip said. “I started off as the kitchen manager. They were looking for some kitchen help. I walked in here and it looked like a baby old Turtle (Mountain), and I was like damn, I might have to work here. I came in here, I saw the setup — lots of beer on tap. It was an open mic night that night. I played a few songs. Everything was like a really good vibe, so a couple weeks later I started, and my second day they made me kitchen manager.”

One way to describe Skip’s migration from the back of the house to the front of the house is to say that his passion for food is far too great to be contained in the kitchen, and therefore he must be able to take it out to the guests. Skip has his own philosophy when it comes to the role of food at a taproom, and it’s hard to disagree with him.

“As a server it makes me feel nervous about serving alcohol when you don’t have a lot of food on-hand that really kicks ass and makes people compelled to order, not because they need something to eat, but because it’s delicious,” Skip said. “You’ve taken care of a human need, you know. That’s part of hospitality is taking care of all the human needs — food, drink, shelter, love.”

I took a cue from AmyO (thanks!) and asked Skip why he thought he had been chosen as the unsung hero. It almost seems like this question should be a requirement for this series.

“Basically I just like the work,” he said. “I’ll work hard wherever I’m working, I just hope it’s worth it, and it’s worth it because of the Rio Rancho people. Why was I picked? I just work hard.”

Skip has a big say in what beers are selected as guest taps.

Of course, Skip didn’t give himself enough credit. Being an unsung hero is more than hard work. It’s the intangibles. It’s the passion that he has for what he does, how it inspires his coworkers, and how it translates to a better experience for his customers. Like the way he is always eager to work with the staff on improving their skills, yet is never afraid to be shown up.

“I’m not in the kitchen anymore, but I’m always ready to get down there and show people some method and how to just do some little tweaks and get a little faster,” Skip said. “I love watching other people maybe that aren’t even from the industry do something that I think is amazing, and stealing their shortcuts, and put it in my pocket, and be like, thank you, you don’t even know what you did for me. You know? Because, you never know where you’re going to get that extra knowledge … and then you’re like, we’re going to do it that way from now on.”

Stop in at Blue Grasshopper Brew Pub sometime for a beer and maybe some music, or just to say hi to Skip. If you are lucky you might catch him on stage.

“I love musicians,” Skip said. “I play and sing. Occasionally, I’ll sit in and play on somebody’s break or I’ll sit in with a band and sing some songs or something like that.”

The Brew Crew thanks Skip for his work in our local craft brew industry and wishes him the best of luck going forward in his career.

Cheers!

— deezbeers

There are so many damn beers at the new Blue Grasshopper Taproom on Coors.

There are so many damn beers at the new Blue Grasshopper Taproom on Coors.

A recent date-day Saturday found us embracing the old cliché of dinner and a movie. Except we did it backwards and watched a movie first, then had dinner. When the movie is a great one (Hidden Figures, I highly recommend it) at the superb theater brewery that is Flix Brewhouse and then dinner is at the brand new Blue Grasshopper taproom practically across the street on Coors, the experience is elevated beyond any formula.

During the movie, I had a solid Holy Mother of Quad and a Rebel Yell Porter, along with my buttery popcorn. It still amazes me how they manage to pick up empty glasses and bring orders without me even noticing the servers. My boyfriend and I probably saw only two or three movies total in theaters in 2016 (prior to the Flix opening), but since they opened, we have already been to Flix four times.

Blue Grasshopper was packed. Despite little advertising, this new location is booming. There are some of the usual hiccups, but they did not diminish our date experience. There are about 80 local beers currently on tap; however, Blue Grasshopper does not have any of theirs on tap at this location right now. The food menu is larger than I remember it being at the original taproom in Rio Rancho.

The number of taps is a good thing, and it is also overwhelming. You have to order by number, because that’s the only way the beertender can find it. If you forget what number your beer is while you wait to have your order taken, it’s pretty difficult to locate it again under pressure. Alas, the beer is not quite cold enough in my opinion. This is an issue I have seen before at other places with that many lines. Also, the patron sitting next to me at the bar complained his food order of a Reuben sandwich and fries was too cold. Our order of nachos came out quickly despite the crowd, but although the cheese (sauce) was warm, the shredded meat was not. Despite that, they were a unique interpretation of a pub staple and quite filling.

We left before the music started, so I do not know if the acoustics in the new, larger space are as good as the original location. I know at the Rio Rancho Blue Grasshopper they take acoustics very seriously. As we walked out just after 7:30, there was a line of people waiting for seating. All tables were occupied and our seats at the bar immediately filled as soon as we stood up. It appears this location is certainly filling a requirement in that part of town.

Hint, hint, all you craft beer fans looking for date ideas!

Love to all,

— AmyO

Oh, yeah, there is another one coming.

Farewell to Firkin, we hardly knew ye.

In case anyone missed it on social media over the weekend, the long-rumored demise of The Firkin BrewHouse and Grill came to pass, as their own Facebook page communicated the following:

To all of our loyal and wonderful customers, unfortunately I must state that the Firkin BrewHouse and Grill is closed. More info will follow with an official announcement from the owners. Thank you all for your patronage.

The Crew reached out to the owners for comment, but four days later, we have not heard back, nor do we really expect anything. Hey, it’s human nature to try to move quickly past the bad and refocus on the good. We wish them all luck in their future endeavors, whatever those may be.

It is rare these days when breweries close, though it does happen from time to time. If one counts Marble’s opening in 2008 as the start of the current boom, in that span only four other breweries — Hallenbrick, Bad Ass, Stumbling Steer, Broken Bottle — have closed in the Albuquerque area. As per usual, though, any closing creates some sort of “Is the bubble finally bursting?” type of story or comment online.

No, the bubble is not bursting.

The majority of the breweries in the ABQ area are doing just fine, thank you. None of them have had the type of ugly ownership dispute like Firkin did. When four people open a brewery, and it becomes two versus two before even six months have passed, it is not a good sign, needless to say.

Of course, there are plenty who would argue that Firkin was doomed from the beginning. It seemed to have everything lined up against it.

For a new brewery to succeed, it usually needs to be A) in a heavily foot-trafficked area such as downtown or Nob Hill, B) on a major commuter thoroughfare, C) in a brewery-laden area, but offering up something different beer-wise (not just theme-wise) than the other breweries in this area, or D) in an area with no other competing breweries. Comparing it to other breweries that opened in early 2016, Sidetrack is succeeding because it is downtown. Bow & Arrow is succeeding because lots of folks drive up and down 6th Street. Dialogue is succeeding because of its unique beer lineup. Starr Brothers is succeeding quite a ways away from any other notable brewery.

Firkin, on the other hand, was on an isolated street that did not connect to either nearby Comanche or Candelaria, in an industrial area with two award-winning powerhouse breweries (Canteen and La Cumbre) while offering up nothing particularly different in terms of its beer. Conceptually, a Prohibition era-themed brewery was not a bad idea, it was just located in the wrong place. That led to money problems, which led to the ownership dispute, which ultimately led to its untimely demised.

Albuquerque is still a metro area of 900,000 people with some 30 breweries. No, it does not have a great business rating, or a high per capita income, but there are still room for more breweries, and there will be more growth from the existing breweries.

Craft beer in New Mexico is just fine. This is just another minor blip on the screen.

New breweries update

Hops Brewery now has signage up on the front of its Nob Hill location on Central just west of Carlisle. We will head over there to talk to the owner when someone (me) is done submitting the final images and pages for a certain book.

Beer and a movie, anyone? (Photo courtesy of Flix Brewhouse)

Beer and a movie, anyone? (Photo courtesy of Flix Brewhouse)

Flix Brewhouse is still under construction on the West Side, but they have begun brewing their first batches of beer. Brewer Will Moorman and I have been in touch and once other parts of the building are done in about two weeks, the Crew will take a tour of the forthcoming movie theater with its own brewery. As for the beers we could make out from the labels on the Facebook photo of the taps, Satellite Red IPA, Lupulus IPA, Luna Rosa Wit, Umbra Chocostout, 10 Day Scottish Ale, Golden Ale, and Beer of the Dead (Brown Ale) appear to be on deck.

Blue Grasshopper told us that they hope to have their new taproom, on Coors north of Montano, open before the end of the year. We will have more on this for their upcoming entry in our Look Back/Look Ahead Series, which should be kicking off soon.

Drylands Brewing is now officially under construction in Lovington. Southeast New Mexico is still devoid of craft beer outside the existing places in Artesia (Desert Water and The Wellhead), Carlsbad (Milton’s), and Portales (Roosevelt). It is a little bit surprising that Lovington, best known as the hometown of Brian Urlacher, is getting a brewery before the much larger Hobbs or Roswell, but maybe the small town realized the value of beating those bigger towns to the punch.

Quick beer reviews

Again, if you are not following us on social media, you might have missed all the new beers I was able to get to this weekend. More await, of course, but there were too many intriguing newbies, old favorites, and a special one-off to not get out on the town.

A barrel-aged Scotch ale was sighted amid the chaos at Palmer Brewery's grand opening.

A barrel-aged Scotch ale was sighted amid the chaos at Palmer Brewery’s grand opening.

As always, these are my opinions, I am fully aware others may think the exact opposite. Please share your own thoughts on these beers once you have tried them as well.

  • La Negra, La Cumbre: This is the best version of the barrel-aged imperial stout yet. Grab two bombers, one to drink, one to age. Creamy yet boozy yet smooth yet thick, it is a wonderful batch.
  • Cockness Monster, Palmer: The grand opening was a zoo on Saturday, but luckily just as I walked inside I ran into brewer Rob Palmer. He poured me a 13-ounce glass of the rum-barrel-aged version of his Scotch ale. The rum did not overpower the beer, nor the other way around. It just blended beautifully, a good sipping beer amid the chaos. Congrats to Palmer on the opening.
  • Nitro Chai Chocolate Porter, Nexus: Before dinner arrived, I made sure to sample this fresh batch. The good news is the chai does not drown out the beer. On nitro, though, the beer almost came off as a little too thin on the mouthfeel. I would love to try it on CO2 some day. (Hint!)
  • Turkey Drool, Tractor: This is an annual fall favorite, and oh lordy, it did not disappoint. It starts off subtle, then does a mini-circle pit of spices and flavors on your palate. Let it warm just a tad for full effect. As someone else said, it’s everything good about Thanksgiving dessert in a glass.
  • Vanilla Mocha Double Porter, Red Door: Coffee! So. Much. Coffee! At least at the outset, so this is another one to let warm up a bit. The vanilla and mocha flavors are there, too, but the coffee is strong as can be. If nothing else, the small pour had me wide awake in time for that freaky storm to finally reach the brewery from the Lobo football game.
  • Clark IPA, Quarter Celtic: Before venturing off to help Franz Solo brew a beer (and by help I mostly mean stand there and drink and comment on our football teams’ terrible outings), we both visited QC for their New England-style hazy IPA. Breweries like Trillium, The Alchemist, and more have made this juicier, less bitter style of IPA quite popular in the Northeast, and now QC has brought it to the Southwest. We adored this beer. If you have loved some of the sweeter, maltier IPAs that Bosque has been specializing in of late, you will love this, too.

Now, if the breweries would just slow down a bit on releasing these outstanding beers so I can catch up … they won’t, will they? A beer writer’s work is never done.

Cheers!

— Stoutmeister

Greetings, New Mexico craft beer lovers. Stoutmeister here with The Week Ahead in Beer. This column covers all the breweries in Bernalillo and Sandoval counties, with Santa Fe’s four breweries and a pair of newcomers, one down in Socorro and the other in Los Alamos, also joining the party.

Stoutmeister puts on his serious face to handle The Week Ahead in Beer.

Stoutmeister puts on his serious face to handle The Week Ahead in Beer.

As more and more breweries keep opening around this wonderful state of ours, this weekly column keeps getting bigger and bigger. On average, it now has more than 5,000 words per week. In an effort to get things back under control for a bit, I am going to streamline it all to a degree. Fear not, the most important thing below — what is on tap at each brewery — will not change. Rather than go into multiple mini beer descriptions, each entry will describe one highlighted beer per edition. Most of the time it will be the newest beer on tap. Beyond that, you will now see Live Music as an entry, plus Other Events for non-musical goings on, such as art competitions, poetry contests, charitable endeavors, and so on. Where applicable, we will also post a link to the most recent story on said brewery where you can get more news. Hopefully in making this all a little less cluttered, we will all benefit.

Now that we can get back to regular business, there are four special beer release parties over the next four days. Rejoice. Or repent. Your choice. First up, tonight (Wednesday) marks the return of Marble’s awesome Imperial Stout. They only bottled 1,000 of ’em, plus what’s on tap, so it will go fast. Enjoy a special, secret pairing from Rustic Food Truck downtown from 5 p.m. until supplies run out. Then on Thursday, head to Red Door for the return of the Strong Scotch Ale. All pours are $3.50 all day. Friday marks the debut of Brass Monkey, a chocolate orange stout, at Tractor Wells Park (Beer Farmer Co-op members can get a sneak preview tasting Thursday at 5:30 p.m. at Wells Park if they RSVP to jeremy@getplowed.com). Then on Saturday, Boese Brothers unveils Double Dead Red, which comes with a special food pairing from Gold Street Caffe of red chile-rubbed chicken tenders and sweet potato fries.

On the new beer front this week, beyond those, Albuquerque Brewing has a Dunkelweizen. Pank Dank!, a fruit-infused American wheat, is at Bosque. Rye PA and Dark American Lager are back at Canteen. An epic Imperial Stout, Zach’s parting gift to Chama River, is available. Winterfest Marzen debuts at Rio Bravo.

Up in Santa Fe, Second Street has a fresh batch of Railrunner Pale Ale. Over in Los Alamos, Bathtub Row sent us their first update in a while. Needless to say, there are many new beers on tap, including Barrel-Aged Imperial Stout, Juniper Pale Ale, Hindsight Doppelbock, Asian White IPA, and two old returning favorites in the Red Hammer Ale and Big House Belgo.

Continue reading for all the news that is fit to blog for the week of January 11.

To break down each “capsule,” I listed the brewery (with Web page linked), its phone number and hours of operation. Under “Beers” are the new or seasonal beers on tap for this week.

Albuquerque metro area breweries

Alien Brew Pub — (505) 884-1116

(Mon–Thurs 11 a.m.–midnight, Fri–Sat 11 a.m.–2 a.m., Sunday 10 a.m.–midnight)

Beers: Call the number above for details on any small-batch beers currently available. They change frequently. The rest of the lineup is from the Sierra Blanca/Rio Grande family of beers.

Albuquerque Brewing Co. — (505) 797-1842

(Mon–Fri 3-10 p.m., Sat 11 a.m.-10 p.m., Sun noon-8 p.m.)

Beers: High Plains Drafter Blonde, Duke’s Pale Ale, Handlebars Stout, Dunkelweizen. The Handlebars is available on CO2 and nitro.

Happy Hour/Discounts: Monday–Saturday, 3 to 6 p.m.; Sunday, all day

Back Alley Draft House — (505) 766-8590

(Sun–Weds 4 p.m. to 10 p.m., Thurs–Sat 4 p.m. to midnight)

Beers: Honey Common, Latir Pale Lager, Berliner Weisse, Braggot, Lando’s Lager. Lando’s Lager honors the great Billy Dee Williams as a proper malt liquor.

Happy Hour/Discounts: Sundays are Service Nights at Back Alley, with $2 off all beers for service industry workers. Bring your server’s ID and you will be rewarded. All beers are $1 off on Tuesdays.

Bistronomy B2B/Lobo Beast 101 — (505) 262-2222 (B2B), (505) 247-2116 (Lobo)

(B2B: Mon–Tues 4-9 p.m., Weds noon-9 p.m., Thurs–Sat noon-9:30 p.m., Sun noon-9 p.m.; Lobo: open every day 4 p.m. to close)

Beers: House IPA, Cherry Stout, Coconut Porter, Raz Wheat, Red Rye, Brown Ale, Rye Noon, Very Chai Christmas, Cerveza Chile Verde (B2B only), Galaxy Pale Ale (Lobo only), Pepper Saison (Lobo only).

The Blue Grasshopper — (505) 896-8579

(Noon to 11 p.m. most days, call for more info)

Beers: Call the brewpub for an updated listing.

Live Music: Bands perform from 6 to 9 p.m. every Tuesday through Saturday. Click the link for the schedule.

Boese Brothers Brewery — (505) 382-7060

(Hours: Mon–Thurs 3 p.m.–midnight, Fri 3 p.m.–2 a.m., Sat noon–2 a.m., Sun noon–10 p.m.)

Beers: Patriot Porter, La Onza White Ale, Old Shonie Scottish Ale, Dr. Strangehop XPA, Duke City Lager. The Dr. Strangehop XPA (6.5% ABV) offers up a wonderful mix of the piney Willamette and more floral Mosaic hops.

Happy Hour/Discounts: Boese will have a happy hour from 3 to 7 p.m., Monday through Friday, with $3 pints. You can also get $3 pints all day Tuesday and $6 growler fills all day Wednesday.

News: They are still working on building their website. You can follow them on their Facebook page.

Bosque Brewing Company — (505) 750-7596 (main brewery), (505) 508-5967 (Nob Hill Public House), (575) 571-4626 (Las Cruces Taproom)

(Main brewery on San Mateo: Mon–Thurs 11 a.m.–10 p.m., Fri–Sat 11 a.m.-midnight, Sun noon-8 p.m.; Nob Hill: Mon–Weds 11 a.m.-11 p.m., Thurs 11 a.m.-midnight, Fri–Sat 11 a.m.-1 a.m., Sun noon-11 p.m.; Las Cruces: Sun–Thurs noon-11 p.m., Fri–Sat noon-midnight)

Beers: Scale Tipper IPL, Dry Stout, Citra S.M.A.S.H., Pank Dank!, Railyard Rust California Common. All three Bosque locations are now up to date. The new Pank Dank! (6.2% ABV, 12 IBU) is a fruit-infused American wheat ale.

Happy Hour/Discounts: Bosque has a happy hour running from 3-6 p.m. Monday through Thursday and all day on Sunday. Look for special menu items and get $1 off your favorite pints.

Boxing Bear Brewing Company — (505) 897-2327

(Sun-Thurs 11 a.m.-10 p.m., Fri-Sat 11 a.m.-11 p.m.)

Beers: Body Slam Imperial Pilsner, Fist Pump Pumpkin Ale, Chocolate Milk Stout, Bear-El Aged Stout, Crystal S.M.A.S.H., Iron Lung Smoked Porter, Sucker Punch DIPA. The Sucker Punch (8.5% ABV, 110 IBU) is back for another run on tap and this time in bombers. You can buy them at the brewery or at fine establishments such as Jubilation.

Happy Hour/Discounts: Every day at lunchtime (11 a.m. to 3 p.m.), for just $10 you can get a pint and a panini of your choice.

Events: Geeks Who Drink will now be held every Wednesday from 8 to 10 p.m. at Boxing Bear.

Canteen Brewhouse — (505) 881-2737

(Sun–Thurs noon–10 p.m., Fri–Sat noon–midnight)

Beers: Cherry Blossom Wheat, Sweet Sandarine Porter, Schwarzbier, Black Hops IPA, Panama Joe Coffee Stout, Rye PA, Dark American Lager. The Porter, Schwarzbier, Black Hops, and Panama Joe are all part of this year’s edition of Solstice Blackout. Get a sample tray of all five for $5 or you can purchase individual pints, while supplies last.

Live Music: Sunday—Dusty Low, 3 to 6 p.m.; Tuesday—Alex Maryol, 6 to 9 p.m.

Cazuela’s Seafood & Mexican Grill — (505) 994-9364

(Open daily 8 a.m.-10 p.m.)

Beers: Papacabra (Double IPA), Acapulco Gold (Mexican Lager), Chupacabra IPA, Piedra del Fuego Stoned Cream Ale, Beer for My Horses (Oatmeal Stout), Inebriator (Doppelbock), Kilt Kicker (Smoked Scottish), Calabaza (Pumpkin Ale), Festival (Oktoberfest).

Chama River Brewing Company — (505) 342-1800

(Sun–Thurs 11 a.m.–11 p.m., Fri–Sat 11 a.m.–midnight)

Beers: Imperial Stout, Sun Dog Kolsch, Bambina Milk Stout, Juniper Berry Braggot. The big, beautiful Imperial Stout was the final beer brewed by Zach Guilmette before he left to take over as head brewer at Canteen.

Distillery 365 — (505) 221-6281

(Mon-Thu 3-9 p.m., Fri 3-10 p.m., Sat noon-10 p.m., Sun 11 a.m.-8 p.m.)

Beers: 365 ESB, Lone Pine Pilsner, Faulty Barrel-Aged Ale, Happenstance All-Day Blonde. The All-Day is the first in a new series of beers created by Distillery 365’s new brewing partners.

Events: 10 Drink Minimum will host a Cards Against Humanity night every Wednesday at 7 p.m.

This Friday, Distillery 365 will host Arts, Blues, Spirits, featuring an art show and live music by D’Santi Nava from 7 to 10 p.m.

Sundays from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m., Distillery 365 has a build-your-own bloody mary bar. You can purchase three bloodies for just $20.

Kaktus Brewing — (505) 379-5072

(Bernalillo hours Mon-Thu 2-9 p.m., Fri-Sat 11:30-10 p.m., Sun 11:30-9 p.m.)

Beers: Dunkel, 1492 IPA, Smoke and Fire Porter, ESB, Coffee-roasted Schwarz Bier, Helles Lager, Peppermint Stout, Red Ale, Imperial Stout. The behemoth Imperial Stout (11% ABV) is only available at the brewery in Bernalillo. When it arrives at the Nob Hill taproom, we will let everyone know. But hurry, because we might drink it all up.

Happy Hour/Discounts: Kaktus has several new weekday specials including $3 pints on Monday, $9 growlers on Tuesday, $6 bison nachos on Wednesday, and $8 Frito pie and beer on Thursday.

Events: The Desert Darlings belly dancers perform from 6 to 8 p.m. on almost every Sunday in Bernalillo. If you’ve never seen the Desert Darlings in person, you’re missing out.

Every Sunday in Bernalillo, Kaktus is hosting a brunch special from 11:30 a.m. to 3 p.m., with breakfast pizzas and drink specials.

La Cumbre Brewing — (505) 872-0225

(Open every day at noon)

Beers: Ryeot on Rye, La Roja Grande, Gracias Por Fumar (on nitro), Grange’s Session IPA, It’s Not EVEN Brown. The Ryeot on Rye is an amped-up, barrel-aged version of their popular Red Ryeot. It will not last long, so get over and try some before it’s gone.

Live Music: Saturday—The Bus Tapes, 7 to 10 p.m.

Other Events: Yoga is back at the taproom every Sunday at 10:45 a.m.

Lizard Tail Brewing — (505) 717-1301

(Mon–Weds noon-9 p.m., Thurs–Sat noon-midnight, Sun noon-7 p.m.)

Beers: Call the brewery for an updated list.

Happy Hour/Discounts: Lizard Tail’s happy hour runs seven days a week from 3 to 6 p.m. You get $1 off food, flights, and pints.

Events: Lizard Tail will host Geeks Who Drink every Tuesday at 8 p.m. Every Thursday will now feature karaoke from 8 to 11 p.m.

Marble Brewery — (505) 243-2739

(Mon–Sat noon–midnight, Sun noon–10:30 p.m.)

Beers: Both locations — Reserve Ale, White Out, Double IPA, El Mysterio, Imperial Stout; Downtown only — Imperial Red; Westside only — none. El Mysterio is back on tap at both locations. It is a blended, barrel-aged mix of Oatmeal Stout, Imperial Red, and Barleywine.

Events: Brewery tours occur at the Downtown Pub every Thursday at 5:30 p.m.

Live Music: Tonight (Wednesday)—Aaron Stephens, 6 to 9 p.m.; Saturday—Elwood, 6 to 9 p.m.

News: There is no music at the Westside Taproom while they undergo renovation and expansion. Look for the new stage to be ready in March.

Nexus Brewery — (505) 242-4100

(Mon–Thurs 11 a.m.–9:30 p.m., Fri–Sat 11 a.m.–10 p.m., Sun 11 a.m.–8:30 p.m.)

Beers: Equinox, Hoppy Wheat, U.S.S. Simcoe, Salted Caramel Stout. The recent release party for the Salted Caramel Stout was packed to the rafters; trust us, the beer was worth it. There is less than half the original 7.2 barrels remaining, so hurry over ASAP.

News: Note Nexus’ new hours listed above.

UPDATED >>> Happy Hour/Discounts: Monday–Friday, 3 to 5 p.m., get $5 off appetizers

Pi Brewing at Nicky V’s Neighborhood Pizzeria — (505) 890-9463

(Sun–Thurs 11 a.m.–9 p.m., Fri–Sat 11 a.m.–10 p.m.)

Beers: Cardinal Sin Red, Robust Porter, Pi Vapor, Kama Citra IPA, English Summer Ale, Pre-Prohibition Pilsner, Belgian Pumpkin Ale, Winter is Coming. No, Winter is Coming is not just to make you all yearn for the return of Game of Thrones, is a peppermint porter that will keep you into the holiday mood.

Ponderosa Brewing Co. — (505) 639-5941

(Sun 11 a.m.–10 p.m., Mon–Sat 11 a.m.–11 p.m.)

Beers: (Regular) Ghost Train IPA, Rip Saw Red, Crosscut Kolsch, Bellamah Brown, American Wheat; (Seasonal) Zaftig, Stage One IPA, Bohemian Pilsner, Spanglish. We are working on getting contact info for Ponderosa’s new brewer, and thus an updated list.

Red Door Brewing — (505) 633-6675

(Mon–Thurs 11 a.m. to 11 p.m., Fri 11 a.m. to midnight, Sat 7 a.m. to midnight, Sun 11 a.m. to 10 p.m.)

Beers: Cosmos Porter, Ryeson Sun Saison, Anniversary Double Red, Dark Side DIPA. No, they did not name the Dark Side DIPA (10.3% ABV, 100+ IBU) after us, but we still went and drank some of this mosh pit of piney hops.

Live Music: Tonight (Wednesday)—AG-3 Live, 7 to 9 p.m.; Monday—The Draft Sessions Open Mic, 7 to 9 p.m.

Other Events: Saturday morning will mark another round of Beer and Breakfast, with Barclays Premier League soccer on the telly! From 7 to 10 a.m. you can gather with friends for some food truck-supplied goodies with a pint of beer.

Rio Bravo Brewing Company — (505) 900-3909

(Mon–Thu noon–10 p.m., Fri–Sat noon–11 p.m., Sun noon–9 p.m.)

Beers: Rio Bravo Amber, Karl’s Hefeweizen, Dirty Rotten Bastard IPA, Snakebite IPA, Black Angus Stout, Road Runner Red, Duke City Pils, Oktoberfest, Old Town Porter (regular and barrel aged), Barley Wine (regular and barrel aged), Winterfest Marzen. A fresh batch of the hugely popular Old Town Porter (7.6% ABV, 55 IBU) is in the works.

Live Music: Tonight (Wednesday)—Mishmash Miscellany Assortment Open Mic, 7 p.m.; Thursday—Joe Teichman, 6 p.m.; Friday—Clark Andrew Libbey, 4 p.m., and The Bus Tapes, 6:30 p.m.; Saturday—The Surf Lords, 6:30 p.m.

Other Events: Rio Bravo will now have karaoke every Tuesday from 6 to 10 p.m.

Sandia Chile Grill — (505) 798-1970

(Mon–Sat 8 a.m.–8 p.m., Sun 8 a.m.–6 p.m.)

Beers: Call the brewery for an updated list.

Sidetrack Brewing — (505) 288-6468

(Mon–Tues closed, Weds–Thurs 4–8 p.m., Fri 4–10 p.m., Sat 1–10 p.m., Sun 1–6 p.m.)

Beers: Pub Ale, RailHead Red, 3:10 to Belen Brown, Dark Engine Stout, Switchgear IPA 1, Switchgear IPA 2. The Pub Ale (5.1% ABV, 30 IBU) is listed as an English mild, but has far more flavor than most examples of that style. It has a chewy, almost biscuity quality from the malts and English yeast.

Tractor Brewing Company — (505) 433-5654 (Nob Hill Tap Room), (505) 243-6752 (Wells Park)

(Nob Hill is open Sunday-Wednesday noon to midnight, Thursday noon to 2 a.m., Friday-Saturday noon to 2 a.m.; Wells Park is open Monday-Thursday 3 p.m. to close, Friday-Sunday 1 p.m. to midnight.
 Last call 30 minutes before close. 
No package after midnight.
 Brewery tours Saturday at 1 p.m.)

Beers: Berliner Weisse, Dark Horse Lager, Desert Dweller IPA, Pear Berry Cider, Tupac Cali Red, Barnstorm Ale, Luna De Los Muertos, Scotcholate Scotch Ale, The Ruggles, Barn Burner Pale Ale (Wells Park only), Et Tu Brute Cider (Wells Park only), Lil Cease Session IPA (Nob Hill only). The burly Luna De Los Muertos (8.5% ABV), a thick, mean Russian Imperial Stout, is always a winter highlight for Tractor.

Live Music (Wells Park): Thursday—pLOUD: The Silver String Band, 8 p.m.

Live Music (Nob Hill): Tonight (Wednesday)—Solos on the Hill: Kyle Wayne Ruggles, 8:30 p.m.; Saturday—Setting the Tone: Jeff Jones, 5 p.m.

UPDATED >>> Other Events: Art Fusion for a Cause returns tonight (Wednesday) at 7 p.m. at Wells Park.

The In the Mix Series is back Saturday at Wells Park with DJ Wae Funx spinning at 9 p.m.

Every Monday at Wells Park you can now find Mondays on the Mic hosted by Adam Hooks starting at 7 p.m.

Kamikaze Karaoke is back at Wells Park on Tuesday at 7 p.m.

Also, every first Monday of the month at both Tractor locations is Beer for a Better Burque night. For every pint you buy $1 can go to one of four charities that have partnered with Tractor. You can also opt to purchase a special growler with the logo of your favorite charity.

You can grab your own musical instrument and head to Nob Hill for the ultimate jam session. Tractor Tune Up, hosted by the Virginia Creepers, is now an official event happening every Monday starting at 7:30 p.m.

Also, every Monday at Nob Hill features each of Tractor’s canned beers on sale for just $2.

Turtle Mountain Brewing Company — (505) 994-9497

(Kitchen hours: Mon–Tues 11 a.m.-8:30 p.m., Wed–Thurs 11 a.m.-9 p.m., Fri–Sat 11 a.m.-9:30 p.m., Sun 10:30 a.m.-8:30 p.m. Reminder: TMBC closes early when business dictates. Please call.)

Beers: Altbier, All Peached Up, Arsenal Porter, O Tannenbaum. TMBC’s winter warmer, O Tannenbaum (5.6% ABV, 24 IBU), was brewed with fresh ginger and spruce tips.

News: 22-ounce bombers of Wilde Jagd, Turtle Mountain’s first bottled beer, are still for sale at the brewery. Unsure if you want to buy one? Let Franz Solo tell you why you need this beer.

Santa Fe breweries

Blue Corn Brewery — (505) 438-1800

(Daily 11 a.m.–10 p.m.)

Beers: Bock Door Man, Stranger Than Fiction, Gulden Woelf. The most recent addition is the Gulden Woelf (8.8% ABV), a massive Belgian golden that acts more like a quad.

News: Next up on the beer docket is a coffee cream stout.

Events: Blue Corn is hosting Ingrained, a local craft beer and food fest on Saturday. For $35 per person, from noon to 2 p.m. you can try foods from six different eateries paired with beers from seven different breweries — Blue Corn, Bathtub Row, Chama River, Bosque, Duel, Second Street, and Santa Fe. Call the number above to make reservations.

Duel Brewing Company — (505) 474-5301

(Mon–Sat open at 11 a.m., Sun open at 1 p.m.)

Beers: Bad Amber, Manikin (Scotch Ale), Marcel (Witbier), Fiction (IPA), Fantin (Double Pale Ale), Titian (Golden Strong), Grunewald (Imperial Porter), Dark Ryder (Dark Strong), Stille of the Night (Belgian Dark Sour), Cezanne Denouement (Fall Saison), Ara Pacis (Barrel-Aged Imperial Golden Sour), Study Series: Session 1 (Golden Hopped Session), Study Series: Session 2 (Dark Hopped Session), Hair of the Wolf (Experimental), Goya Imperial Stout. Hair of the Wolf (7.7% ABV), a beer to benefit the local arts collective Meow Wolf, is back for a second run.

Happy Hour/Discounts: Happy-hour Monday through Friday 4-6 p.m. (discounts for all draft beer), Growler Saturdays ($3 off growler fills).

News: Duel is opening an Albuquerque taproom that will be more than twice the size of the mother facility in Santa Fe. We’re on the case to get you all the details about the downtown location and its projected opening date.

Santa Fe Brewing Company — (505) 424-3333

(Main taproom: Mon–Sat 11 a.m.–10 p.m., Sun 2-8 p.m.)

Beers: Black IPA, Chicken Killer, Santa Fe Gold, Belgian Dubbel (ECS), Adobe Igloo 2.0 (Winter Warmer), La Bete Noire, Snowflake DIPA. The fourth entry in the ECS (Ever Changing Series) is now available on tap and in bombers in the form of Belgian Dubbel.

Happy Hour/Discounts: $1 off growler refills in the tasting room on Mondays. $2 pint Tuesdays at the Eldorado Taphouse. On Wednesday, there is a $2 pint special in the tasting room. On Thursday, there will be $1 off growler refills at the Eldorado Taphouse.

Second Street Brewery — (505) 989-3278 (Railyard), (505) 982-3030 (original location)

(Mon–Thurs 11 a.m.–10 p.m., Fri–Sat 11 a.m.–11 p.m., Sunday noon-9 p.m.)

Beers: Kolsch, IPA, Cream Stout, Rod’s Best Bitter, Railrunner Pale Ale, Vienna Country Lager, LVL Stout, Equinox IPA, Chinook Pale Ale.

Live Music (Original location): Friday—Bill Hearne; Saturday—Swing Soleil

Live Music (Railyard): Friday—Moscow Mules; Saturday—Les Gens Bruyants

Other Events: Every Tuesday night, the Railyard location will have Open Mic Night hosted by Ben Wright. Every Thursday night, Geeks Who Drink will be at the Railyard at 8 p.m.

Other breweries you need to visit

Bathtub Row Brewing — (505) 500-8381

(Mon–Weds 2–10 p.m., Thurs 2–11 p.m., Fri–Sat noon–11 p.m., Sun noon–10 p.m.)

Beers: Hoppenheimer IPA, Barrel-Aged Imperail Stout, Wit Rock, Hindsight Doppelbock, Juniper Pale Ale, Big House Belgo, Red Hammer Ale, Asian White IPA. The Red Hammer is a beast of a double red which we originally enjoyed back at Bathtub Row’s grand opening last summer.

Events: Bathtub Row hosts an Open Mic Night every Thursday at 6 p.m.

Twisted Chile Brewing — (575) 835-2949

(Mon–Thurs 11 a.m.–9 p.m., Fri–Sat 11 a.m.–10 p.m., Sun noon-8 p.m.)

Beers: Pilabo Pale Ale, Zia Pilsner, 790 IPA, Hose Co. 1 Red Lager, Venom IPA, TCBC Porter, Twisted Black IPA, McFadden’s Scotch.

* * * *

That’s all for this week! If you have any questions or comments, leave them below or contact us on our Facebook page.

Cheers!

— Stoutmeister