I was in Portland last year in the heart of hop harvest season. Every brewery I went to (which was a lot…) had multiple wet hop beers on the tap list ranging from the expected IPAs and pale ales to the unexpected kellerbier and saison. Jealous that we rarely have access to this amount of fresh or wet hop beers in ABQ and with our Acequia Wet Hop IPA garnering honors three years in a row at the Great American Beer Festival, I tried to convince John to source more fresh hops for a multiple-beer wet hop series. Wouldn’t you know it, he bit!
For the last three years, we’ve purchased fresh hops from a small farm in Colorado for Acequia; this year’s Acequia will keep the tradition. However, we’ve also sourced fresh hops from the Pacific Northwest and from a small farm in northeast NM to bring you a unique (to NM) series of fresh and wet hop beers:
- Rio Vallecitos Wet Hop DIPA – Trying to keep it as local as possible, this beer exclusively uses malts from Colorado and Wet Hops from NM.
- Acequia Wet Hop IPA
- Citra Blonde
- Hazy Mosaic – A northeast style hazy IPA
First up is Rio Vallecitos Wet Hop DIPA (8.8% ABV | 95 IBU) where New Mexico meets Colorado for the ultimate expression in hyper-local freshness. We’re welcoming fresh hop season with a unique Double IPA showcasing Chinook hops grown right here in New Mexico with malt produced by our neighbors up north. Pungent, earthy, and bursting with complex freshness, Rio Vallecitos is our way of celebrating local ingredients and the beginning of our brewer’s favorite time of year!
New Mexico’s affection for Riverwalker IPA has been steadily increasing since its launch in February 2015. However, the national craft beer explosion has created some unanticipated problems, namely trademark conflicts. While many are amicably resolved, some have led to vicious and nasty legal battles. This was not the case for Riverwalker IPA, but a conflict exists nonetheless in the form of Riverwalk Blonde Ale from the now-defunct Twisted Manzanita Brewing Co. based in California. Anticipating a lengthy and uncertain process to acquire trademark rights, we opted to submit this beer to the 2016 World Beer Cup competition under the moniker Bosque IPA, for which no additional trademark was required. The 2016 Bronze Medal win in the Australian or International Pale Ale category set the name change in stone. While the name change is substantial, have no fear: no changes were made to the original Riverwalker recipe.
Bosque IPA, along with Bosque Lager and Scotia Scotch Ale, will be available for purchase at local retailers in 6-packs of cans beginning in October 2016.
Engineering plans for our new headquarters and production facility in Bernalillo, New Mexico are currently being finalized as part of the new @ Rio North project located in the former Jackalope retail space. When the facility opens in 2017, we will initially have the capacity to produce at least an additional 10,000 barrels of beer a year. For reference, since we opened, we’ve produced 350 BBLs in our first year, 1,200 BBLs in year 2, 4,000 BBLs in year 3 and are on pace to finish this year at roughly 6,000 BBLs.The space will also include a taproom, kitchen, and two-level, open patio. However, as usual, there have been construction delays, so we’ve decided to take a creative approach to ensure a timely launch of our new product line. We’re going to join forces with Sleeping Giant Brewing in Colorado (www.sleepinggiantbrewing.com) to temporarily brew and package our IPA, Lager, and Scotia so that we can meet growing demand and get packaged beer on the shelves while the construction project is underway.
Partnering with Sleeping Giant Brewing solves a temporary production issue and allows us to amp up packaging efforts right away rather than waiting for the facility to open. In an increasingly competitive market, it is important to get our beer onto shelves as soon as possible. Initially, we were extremely skeptical to utilize a third-party to brew our beer. However, after Gabe and John flew out to Denver and met with Sleeping Giant’s President, Matt Osterman, and Vice President of Brewing Operations, Robert Kuntz, tasted the beers they produce, and toured the facility, it was obvious that their attention to detail and devotion to quality aligned closely with our values. For us, this is a solution to a temporary problem that allows us to maintain the top-notch quality and consistency that our customers have grown to love about Bosque.
Sleeping Giant uses each brewery’s own recipes and works closely with brewery staff to produce their beer at a single state-of-the-art facility. That means the beer can be brewed, packaged and shipped, which solves a huge problem for small craft breweries who are challenged by the space and cost requirements for building out a packaging facility. Sleeping Giant helps these breweries keep up with demand and grow their packaged sales while maintaining the exceptional quality that local craft consumers demand.
In October 2016, we'll begin delivering packaged beer to retailers. The initial 600-barrel order will cover three of our year-round brands and represents approximately 6,600 cases. Once our new facility opens and the initial term of the contract with Sleeping Giant has been fulfilled, all production of packaged product will take place at the Bernalillo facility.
Ah, Scale Tipper, you are loved by many and elude even the most devout. And as such, every last drop of the Scale Tipper kegs and bottles that made it to our taprooms is gone. But don’t fret! If you’re still jonesing for a fix, you can, for a limited time, find bottles of it at these fine establishments across the State:
Albuquerque Metro Area
Total Wine (Uptown)
Total Wine (Westside)
Kelly's Liquors (Bernalillo)
Kelly's Liquors (Juan Tabo)
Kelly's Liquors (Mountain Run)
Kelly's Liquors (Wyoming)
Jubilation Wine & Spirits
Triangle Grocery (Cedar Crest)
Whole Foods (Carlisle)
Whole Foods (Wyoming)
Santa Fe Area & Taos
Kelly's Liquor Barn (Santa Fe)
Susan's Fine Wine & Spirits
Whole Foods (Cerrillos)
Side Door Liquor Store
And if bottles aren't your thing, Scale Tipper’s going to make a brief comeback on draft at the taprooms in roughly 2 weeks.
Bottle Release: Imperial Coffee Brown
Collaborations with local artisans are an excellent way to experiment and create inspired new products. Today we release one such collaboration: Imperial Coffee Brown Ale (9% ABV | 20 IBU).
This newest release can be found at all of our taprooms and will be available on retail shelves over the next couple of days.
Las Cruces Turns 1
It’s hard to believe that one year has passed since we opened our doors in Las Cruces… John Bullard heard your pleas to bring the milk stout back and he answered. We will be celebrating on Saturday, December 12 with a special, Las Cruces-only beer release: Organ Mountains Milk Stout! With that, the first 100 people through the taproom doors will receive a small token of our appreciation for making this year such a success!
On December 3, we hosted our first Bosque Insider event at the brewery. Attendees were given an opportunity to purchase the first 50 bottles of Imperial Coffee Brown before they were released to the public, were given access to prereleased specialty beers paired with food items that preview our new menu at the Nob Hill Public House, and heard from John Bullard and Gabe Jensen about barrel aged beers and Bosque’s plans for the new year.
This event was a huge success and we are excited to start planning the next event! We will keep you posted to let you know when tickets go on sale. Thank you for making the night one to remember!
THE WAIT IS OVER
For the last year, Jet Black Winter Russian Imperial Stout has been aging in Buffalo Trace Bourbon barrels provided to us by Jubilation Wine & Spirits. We are releasing this collaboration at a special tasting at Jubilation on Friday, November 20 from 4 to 6 pm. John Bullard will be onsite to talk barrel-aged beers while you sample this unique creation. That's not all...
It comes with an exclusive invite!
The first 35 customers to purchase this small-batch release get an invite (limit one per person) to our inaugural Bosque Insider event, the first in a series of events we'll be hosting in the coming year. This event will be complete with beer discussions with John Bullard, beer samplings, food pairings, and the first crack at our Imperial Coffee Brown collaboration with Essence, a local organic coffee extract company. Each attendee will be given the opportunity to purchase one of the first 50 bottles of this beer the day it was bottled at a reduced price of $8 per bomber, well before it is released to the public. The event is being held in the brewery (8900 San Mateo Blvd., NE, Suites J & K, 87113) on Wednesday, December 2 at 6 pm.
We'll see you at Jubilation Wine & Spirits next week!