Tuesday, June 30, 2009

2009 New Mexico IPA Challenge Dates Released

Ok children, please get out your calendars, and open them to July. Now cross out the 25th, because you will not be available to your work or family. No spreadsheets, no mowing the lawn (do people do that here?) you will be attending the New Mexico IPA Challenge at Il Vicino's Tap Room. The Challenge is a three day event, held at different brewpubs around the state. The first will be at Three Rivers in Farmington on the 21st, followed by Blue Corn in Santa Fe on the 23rd. Saturday the 25th is Albuquerque's day to decide who's IPA is the best. Format stays the same as in previous years. The competition is a blind tasting, with 3 oz. pours from each brewery to sample. Once you decide which you like best, you get a pint of it served in a commemorative glass. Last year's glass was pretty nice, too, though I use 2007's as my everyday drinking glass.
Il Vicino's Tap Room (4000 A Vassar Dr., off Comanche between I-25 and Carlisle)hosts the event for the first time. If you've ever been to the Tap Room, you may wonder just where they are going to fit all these people! There is room inside for about 6 people, and the patio maybe another 20. I hear they are going to close off the parking lot to allow for all the traffic. Good move- now if they can somehow find a way to block out the sun. Drinking outside in the July heat with minimal shade can do interesting things to a person, and though it may be entertaining, it is not always healthy. Bring sunscreen, a hat, water, maybe a canopy...EDIT- talked to Jake at Il Vicino. He says there is going to be a tent. I didn't ask what kind of tent, but I assume it will be a big one. If it only a two person tent, I am willing to play 7 Minutes in Heaven with any of the brewers just to get some shade. Jake also told me that they are probably going to get the event started around 12, a few hours earlier than in years past. Price has stayed at $15 for the last couple of years, but I don't have a confirmation at this time.

I'm excited to see who has the best IPA this year. I have attended since 2005 and there have been different winners each year. 2008 saw Chama River get top honors, 2007 was Turtle Mountain, 2006 Chama River (yeah, I know, Chama won twice, but Ted Rice was head brewer at the time), and 2005's winner was Il Vicino. So Albuquerque has swept the last four years running. Could this be the year for High Desert, or Three Rivers, or one of the other great New Mexico breweries? See you on the 25th to find out!

1 comment:

Jason said...

Crap! I'm out of town that weekend. Will need to pass this on to a friend though.

Thanks for the info!