Starr Bros’ Red Zepplin Review

starr bros red zepplin

starr brothers brewing red zepplin red ale

Red Zepplin – Starr Brothers Brewing

ABV: 7.6% – IBU: 60
Red Ale

Overall Rating 4.5 of 5 Mugs

MrHoppy – 4.5 of 5 mugs

Red Zepplin has a dark copper red color and a clear body topped by a small foamy white head. starr bros red zepplinThe aroma is smokey and heavy on roasted and toasted malts that smells like a sweet cookie. Initial flavor is dominated by the caramel malts and mellows as the hops balance out the finish. More subtle and less pronounced flavors include a brown sugar like sweetness and faint nuttiness. The heavy malt body is well balanced but not over powered by the clean hop finish.

I’m a big fan of more traditional style reds and Red Zepplin hits the mark perfectly for me.  It’s a great balance on a malt forward ale with just enough hops to tingle my senses. I would recommend Red Zepplin to anyone who enjoys malt forward ales such as browns, ambers, and reds.


Starr Bothers Brewing ()


Carver Brewing & Animas Alers ProAm

Carver Brewing Co

Carver Brewing & Animas Alers ProAm Home Brewing Competition 2017

Animas AlersAnimas Aler’s Homebrew Club based in Durango, Colorado are hosting a GABF sanctioned Pro-Am Homebrew Competition with Carver Brewing Company (also in Durango). Entry registrations accepted 03/27/2017 at 12:00 AM, MDT through 06/05/2017 at 12:00 AM, MDT.

Judging Date: 06/16/2017 at 12:00 AM, MDT

This competition is only open to the 4 corner states and we would love to see New Mexico represented!

Register here at

National Home Brew Day 2017

worthogs homebrew

Join Southwest Grape & Grain and Worthogs Homebrew Club in Celebrating National Homebrew Day!

Saturday May 6th – 10:00 am to 5:00 pm!

Home brewers from the Worthogs Homebrew Club will be brewing an All-Grain batch. They will be ready and eager to talk to anyone interested in learning how to brew, answer questions and share their experience!

Location: 2801-N Eubank Blvd. NE, Albuquerque, NM 87112

Quarter Celtic’s Clark IPA Review

Clark IPA Quarter Celtic Brewing

Clark IPA Quarter Celtic

Clark – Quarter Celtic Brewpub

ABV: 6% – IBU: 50
IPA (Juicy New England Style)

Overall Rating 4.25 of 5 Mugs

Barney Gumbel – 4 of 5 mugs

I have been becoming more and more acquainted with the Quarter-Celtic brewery off of San Mateo and Lomas. I was recently hooked when I stopped in for corned beef and cabbage the day after St. Patrick’s Day and boy did they deliver. But I digress; we are here for beer aren’t we?

This time I stopped in try their Clark IPA. This IPA is different from what we are usually offered here in Albuquerque. It is a cloudy East Coast-Style IPA. It is a beautifully hazy orange illuminated gorgeously by the sun pouring in from the countless windows of the taproom. It is bright, citrusy, and pleasant. It offers a huge amount of hop juiciness without the bitterness – as opposed to many southwest style IPAs. It comes in 6.1% allowing more room for flavor complexity. It uses Rahr pale malt, flaked oats and wheat. The flavor is brought by Citra, Mosaic, Galaxy, and little bit of Simcoe. It also uses Lupulin powder, which is extracted from the Lupulin gland of the hop.

Clark is a crispy and refreshing IPA that is uncommon in ABQ and should be tried alongside an item from their fantastic food menu.

MrHoppy – 4.5 of 5 mugs

Clark IPAIt’s name is Clark (AKA SUPERBEER), a soft, mellow and well balanced IPA. Golden orange and very hazy with a small white foamy head served in a traditional pint glass. I really enjoyed this New England style IPA which is heavily dry hopped and much lighter on the bitter end of the scale. It’s a good change of profile and tastes much different than what we think of as a traditional IPA here in NM. Clark puts on display the flavor of the hops without killing you with bitterness.

Clark starts out fairly mellow on the front of the tongue and slowly works it’s way back as the array of hop flavors dance on your palette. Clark is heavy on the knose but aroma dissipates quickly so take a whiff early.  Initial aroma is fruity and floral while the taste is more clean herbal, and citrus. You can really taste layers of hop flavor as the beer warms which adds another layer to the complexity.

I would recommend this beer for anyone looking for a low IBU (bitterness) IPA and to all IPA lovers looking to step out of their comfort zone a bit. I recently tried some of the highest rated NE style IPAs as my family is from NE and sent me a few. I can comfortably say that Clark holds it’s own against it’s East Coast counter parts in the NE IPA arena.


Quarter Celtic Brewpub (1100 San Mateo Blvd NE #50, Albuquerque, NM 87110)

Tart at Heart

tart at heart

With the warm weather comes a change in palette and as a result, a change in beer styles. Sours is an umbrella term to cover a wide variety of different styles of beers that seem to be becoming more popular year by year. I had the opportunity to attend one of Albuquerque’s most exciting beer events: the 3rd annual Tart at Heart which took place at Sister Bar in downtown Albuquerque (407 Central Ave NW, Albuquerque, New Mexico 87102). It featured of 25 different styles of sour and barrel-aged beers.

Upon entry I was given a “Tart at Heart” glass that would accompany me and my “unlimited tastings”. The first thing you are greeted with as a guest of Tart at Heart is a giant bowl of Tums, for pretty obvious reasons. It was both funny and relieving.

I made the rotation around the dance floor where various breweries offered their finest sour and barrel-aged ales.

Top 3 local offerings:

Canteen’s “Social Capital” w/ Orange Peel, Cardamom, and Vanilla Bean

Bright, crisp, and refreshing. It captures Albuquerque’s sun-soaked spring in a bottle. The light satisfaction of a lighter beer with the mouth-watering quality of a sour candy without being too overbearing.

Marble’s “¡Cereza Cerveza!” Aged Cherry Sour

Always delivering quality beer, this beer will not disappoint. Aged in Chardonnay barrels, this beer has a bright and bubbly quality about it. The cherries cause pleasant puckering. I had at least 3 refills of this bad boy.

Dialogue’s “Filth Peddler” Sour Lager

Dialogue has been continuing to impress me with their increasing arsenal of sour/tart beers. This beer is a little more subtle on the tart side to it’s advantage. It finishes nice and smoothly with almost a toasty taste that you might find in their Berliner Weisse or a nice German pilsner. Shining and unpretentious, this beer is not to be missed.

Top 3 National Offerings:

New Belgium’s “La Folie”

A sour brown ale with unmatched complexity. Reportedly from a yeast strain that’s been around since the mid-90’s. This ale packs a nice punch at 7% without taking away at all from the overall flavor profile. Lip-puckeringly tart, sharp, and reminiscent of stone fruit.

North Coast’s “Tart Cherry Berliner Weisse”

Made with Michigan Montmorency cherries, this beer is bright and refreshing and keeps you wanting more. A beautiful color, almost resembling Rosé, this beer is perfect for a warm Spring day.

Firestone’s “Parabola”

This heavy-hitting Russian Imperial Stout (13.1%) is described by Firestone as a “barrel-aged beast” and they could not have described it better. It’s as dark as night and twice as enticing. It is dark, tempting, and sweet with flavor notes of vanilla, dark chocolate, and bourbon undertones. This is a siren of a beer, as it’s smooth and delicious allure can catch up to you quick if you are not careful.

Do not miss this event next year. It is one of the finest organized specialty beer events we are offered in Albuquerque.



Written by  Barney Gumbel

Social Capital

Social Capital 1

Spring is upon us; gracing Albuquerque with warmth, brightness, flowers, and beautifully tasty seasonal beers. My first taste of spring ale was this past Friday at Canteen Brewhouse.

The main taproom is a spacious and unpretentious haven for beer drinkers. It’s comfortable and has plenty of light pouring in to create a friendly environment. It is also a great hub for entertainment hosting events such as live music and trivia.

It is perhaps not known to some that Canteen Brewhouse (f.k.a. Il Vicino Brewing) is Albuquerque’s oldest microbrewery, opening its doors in 1994. With over two decades of brewing under its belt, Canteen remains a staple in the Albuquerque craft beer community.

I sat down with Zach Guilmette to talk a bit about Canteen as well as their “Social Capital” series. “Social Capital” is a reoccurring series that features rotating styles of kettle-soured ales. Kettle-souring is a process where the beer is soured using lactobacillus in the brewing process, allowing the beer to become sour very quickly.

I was fortunate enough to have one of the first pints of the most recent batch on it’s release. This batch is brewed with Orange Peel, Vanilla Bean, and Cardamom. The first sip explodes with a bouquet of citrusy brightness. It is unbelievably crisp and refreshing. It is on the very sour side making your mouth water in the best possible way. Coming in at 5.5% ABV this ale is perfect to have on on their spacious patio on a gorgeous spring afternoon.

The next addition of “Social Capital” will be released for ABQ Beer Week and will be Thai-style sour of sorts, combining sweet basil, lemongrass, and coconut.



Written by Barney Gumbel

Boxing Bear’s Black & Blue Sour Review

black and blue sour

Black & Blue – Boxing Bear Brewing

ABV: 5.6% – IBU: 10
Sour Fruit Beer

Overall Rating 4 of 5 Mugs

Barney Gumbel – 4 of 5 mugs

Boxing Bear rests off of Alameda Blvd. right by the beautiful Rio Grande river. For the readers in the heights/midtown area I could not recommend this lovely drive enough. You get a great sight of the river as well as all the abundant plants/wildlife. I get there around 2pm and am immediately put at ease by the plentiful amount of foliage in the patio area; plenty of shade for the warm weather.

Being an enormous fan of sours I immediately order their newer Black and Blue Sour. It is a gorgeous wheat-based sour made from a purée of blackberries and blueberries. It is bright and sweet with a lovely lactic/acidic finish. It sports an attractive dark opaque purple color. 10 IBU’s and a 5% ABV it is a pint made for a pleasurable spring afternoon.

It is one of many of the fantastic selections that Boxing Bear offers. Boxing Bear has a history of making fantastic specialty ales such as: Bear Fuzz (peach-based wild ale), watermelon gose, Iron Lung smoked porter, and the chocolate milk stout to name a few.

MrHoppy – 4 of 5 mugs

Black & Blue’s name is fitting. A beautiful bluish purple hued brew served in a tulip glass with a small purple foamy head. Not much aroma but there is a faint fruity presence most likely from the hops or berries. Initial taste is sweet and fruity. It’s hard to pinpoint an exact flavor profile but it is definitely “berry”.  There are virtually no malt or hop flavors present as expected with the style. Flavor finishes with a long moderately sour taste that lingers on the back of the tongue long after the first sip.  Very acidic but not overly sour. More on the lighter side of the sour scale for my preference.

I thoroughly enjoyed this beer. Before I could even taste this one, I knew I would like it judging by it’s perfect glass appeal.  Taste was very balanced, masterfully mixing the berry and sour flavors. I’m a big fan of anything sour so this one gets a few bonus points from me. I would definitely recommend this beer to anyone who enjoys sours and fruit beer lovers looking to get into sour beers.


Boxing Bear Brewing  (10200 Corrales Rd, Albuquerque, NM 87114)

Enchanted Brewing Challenge 2017

Deadline April 14th!

If you want to see how your Brewing, Cider making, Mead making skills stack up to other talents, this is the event for you! We’ll have quality judges that will give you valuable feedback on your creations, and there’s lots of winner’s medals and some excellent prizes as well. So check the the “Competitions” menu for more details as we get closer to the event.

We’ll be using the BJCP 2015 guidelines Entry registration starts March 11th. And if you just want to help us out, you can also volunteer as a steward, judge, or general volunteer help……all much appreciated!!

DOA: Club Brew at Broken Trails

Dukes of Ales Members Event

Initial order limited to 5 gallons Irish wort at $4.00/gallon and two bottles of spirits at $15.00/bottle. (Limited supply based on estimated 217 gallons wort and 100 bottles spirits.)

March 11: Small group to help with mash of Irish whiskey spirit.
March 18: Wort-share mash, boil, and distribution, same time as spirit distillation and barrel fill.
Sept. Bottling session after 6+ month barrel aging. Bottle distro’ and Homebrew evaluation.

Fine print: Current Dukes of Ale club membership required.

Signup now to reserve shares of wort and spirits.
Additional shares may be available at time of distribution.
Activity times will be published later and all are welcome to participate.

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