Celebrate industry with New Mexico brew fest

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Fourth annual fall beer festival showcases local and regional microbrews, food trucks and music in Oktoberest-style setting.
Now in its fourth year, the New Mexico Brew Fest once again aims to lift the spirits of local craft beer drinkers by bringing together microbreweries from New Mexico, Colorado, California and Oregon at Expo New Mexico’s Villa Hispana from 1-6 p.m. Oct. 5. Along with the festival’s focus on the burgeoning microbrew industry in New Mexico and throughout the Western U.S., festival organizers are making sure there is plenty of local representation.
Sponsored by Local iQ magazine and partnering with the New Mexico Brewers’ Guild, NMBF4 offers dozens of beer varieties from more than 20 New Mexican breweries, including newcomers Duel (Santa Fe), Bosque Brewing (Albuquerque) and Taos Mesa Brewing (Taos), as well as seven out-of-state breweries, including Stone (California), Oskar Blues (Colorado) and Lagunitas (California). All out-of-state breweries will be featured in the Whole Foods Market Beer Village.
“Whole Foods has been a big time supporter of the Brew Fest since year one,” says festival director Chris Goblet, also the director of the New Mexico Brewers’ Guild. “Thanks to them, New Mexico craft beer fanatics can get a taste of beer from inside and outside the state border all in the same setting. That and they will be cooking a ton of German bratwursts to go along with the Oktoberfest theme.”
Food and music have been great pairings in past years of the burgeoning festival. This year is no different. Adding to the bratwursts being served by Whole Foods, expect to see local food trucks Supper TRUCK, The Last Call and Rustic, among others, serving food all day long.
As for music, scheduled acts are Todd and the Fox from Santa Fe, Mondo Vibrations from Albuquerque and 11-piece German oompah band Die Polka-schlingel will warm up the stage for visiting headliners Keltic Cowboys, Arizona’s premier Irish rock band.
“It’s a pretty easy formula to figure out,” said Kevin Hopper, founder of NMBF and associate publisher at Local iQ, of the festival’s popularity. “Food and music and beer go very, very well together. Add a local focus inside a beautiful venue, and it’s not hard to get people to spend the day with you.”
Hopper adds that this year’s VIP ticket ($50 in advance/$55 day of event) will hold something extra-special for true craft beer enthusiasts, particularly those who have latched on to the Belgian brewing trend. “Right now, Trappist-brewed Belgian beers are all the rage. With that in mind, we have partnered with local distributor Favorite Brands to bring a handful of these beers — some of which are considered the best in the world — to the festival. Leading the pack is Delirium Tremens.”
This is a rain or shine event. Tickets available at nmbrewfest.com. General Admission: $25 advance/$30 day of event. PJs Motorcycles’ VIP Belgian Beer Experience: $50 advance/$55 day of event.