Thursday, June 27, 2013

NM's Oldest Celebrates 25

Santa Fe Brewing Company, New Mexico's first microbrewery, celebrates it's 25th year of business this Saturday at the brewery. Beginning at 1 pm, the party will feature food, live musical acts, and Brewers Olympics. This being New Mexico, you can't have a brewery party with music unless one of the acts is a bluegrass band. Santa Fe's got this covered with Paw and the Clinkers. I'd prefer something along the lines of Amon Amarth, but it's not my party. The Brewers Olympics will pit Santa Fe vs. Second Street and Marble in fierce battles including a dolly race, yeast balloon toss, brewers trivia, six pack builder, and keg toss. No odds out of Vegas as of yet. You will also get to be part of the release of Santa Fe's Saison, available in cans, no less! Santa Fe also released bottles of Kriek recently, available in Albuquerque stores but you may as well grab a bottle while at the party, if only to defend yourself against person uncontrollably flailing away to the bluegrass music.

Tuesday, June 25, 2013

Stone Brewing Company's RuinTen

A one-time brew celebrating the tenth anniversary of Stone's Ruination DIPA wasn't enough, apparently, as RuinTen is once again available around town. Ok, so the first time around it had a different name: Ruination Tenth Anniversary IPA. They shortened the name but held nothing back in the hops department- nor the malts, as evidenced by the 10.8% ABV. Though the hop presence is huge in this beer (the recipe uses double the dry hop amounts of regular Ruination!), I'd suggest drinking this as fresh as possible- the high alcohol lends to a sweetness that is only going to get more pronounced. The limited supply (Jubilation has a two RuinTen, limit, $7.99 per bottle) leads me to think that RuinTen may not last long enough here to attain that sweetness- get yours before it is all gone and you turn sour.

Sunday, June 16, 2013

Just in Time for True Blood

It's good to see Albuquerque has received bottles of Ommegang Brewery's Iron Throne, a Blonde Ale brewed in honor of the latest season of Game of Thrones. The latest that just ended, that is. While other markets got the beer in time for last season's premiere, we were a little behind. Kind of like with fixed gear bikes. Caught up plenty with that trend, thanks for asking. Now you can catch up with your TV-themed beers (I still haven't tried the Three Stooges or Monty Python beers, so I'm really far behind), by heading over to Jubilation and picking up one of these for $8.99. Don't forget the mead. Afterwards, shine up that cardboard sword and meet me at the park!

A number of the local breweries have brewed some really nice Saisons, and I plead with them to continue doing this. I look at the green bottles of Saison Dupont on warm liquor store shelves and am still tempted to buy a bottle, having to convince myself that the last bottle tasted like a Heineken Saison. Not the worst, but not what the brewer intended. And I am tempted to buy the beer due to the lack of Saisons available here. Odell has released Celastrina, named for the little baby butterfly frequently found on hop plants in Colorado. The beer is packages in 25.4 oz. bottles, and Jubilation has the 7.5 ABV Saison for $14.99. Hmmm. Hey, there's always Saison Dupont! But at least you know that a dollar from each bottle you buy of Celastrina goes to the Colorado Natural Heritage Program to help funding in research of the Hops Blue butterfly.

This next beer is a little tricky. Sure, it offers you the goodness of a Bourbon Barrel Stout (it's even called that, so it definitely is), but I am used to a base stout that on its has the full-bodied characteristics of an Imperial Stout. The final product after Anderson Valley ages the beer in Wild Turkey barrels comes out to 6.9% ABV. So with a lighter stout, the bourbon flavor is gonna overwhelm you like the smell from a subway (or a Subway®), right? But Anderson Valley kept the beer in barrels for three months, so you can still drink one of these at your next business lunch and still justify that gin martini afterwards. Wait, they only do that on Mad Men? Drink it at home and forget work then; $9.99 for a 22 oz. bottle at Jubilation.

Tuesday, June 4, 2013

Summerfest at Pajarito

Saturday, June 15 is my unofficial start of summer, as the annual Summerfest event returns to Pajarito. This is sure to be the biggest beer fest there to date, with seventeen NM breweries bringing the goods. There will also be wine (for the non-beer drinkers), mead (for the Game of Thrones crowd), and liquor from Santa Fe Spirits (for the I've got to get really fucked up in the middle of the day people). Shuttles will run every half hour from 9 to 5:30, though the fest doesn't begin till noon. Five hours of drinking fun will only cost you $15, and you get to hear the musical stylings of not only Kitty Jo Creek, but also Anthony Leon and the Chain. That's right. The ski lifts will be open for you mountain bikers and people who like to walk around with ski poles in the summer.