Albuquerque is turning into quite the brewing hot bed these days. A new entry has arrived on the scene: La Cumbre Brewing. The location is just a little bit hidden in a mostly industrial area on Girard just north of Candelaria. Considering that it's essentially a warehouse, La Cumbre has done a good job of creating a welcoming interior. It's the sort of place you wouldn't mind sitting down and hanging out at for a few hours. It manages to be both contemporary and homey at the same time. The beer bottle chandelier is a nice touch.
The sampler is a good place to start. For $8 you get 4 oz of just about every beer on tap, including the seasonals. We tried everything from the Cerro Blanco Wheat to the Elevated IPA. There are lots of hoppy options for Pale Ale and IPA lovers. I'm burdened by the variation of the TAS2R38 gene that makes bitter beer unpleasant to my palate. It is fun to cheat the taste buds a little by taking a sip of a 100 IBU (International Bitter Units) IPA and then going back to a 55 IBU pale ale. Suddenly, the pale ale is a lot more palatable.
La Cumbre has a good pedigree that bodes well for its success. It a family operation with Jeff and Laura Erway at the helm. Master Brewer Jeff is fresh off a healthy stint running the kegs at Chama River Brewing. You can even find a couple of Chama options on the La Cumbre menu board. I enjoy many different kinds of beers and ales, but I'm hoping somebody with more in-depth experience can add their own commentary on the La Cumbre offerings. I naturally gravitated to the wheat and the pilsner. La Cumbre seems to cater more to the hop-happy clientele, but there are certainly options people like me can enjoy on the menu.
We saw hints of a few snacks kicking around the bar - mostly in the form of peanut shells. La Cumbre doesn't serve food and isn't planning to. Customers are welcome to bring their own food to enjoy with their pints. Well-behaved dogs are welcome to come in with you. That's always a bonus for those of us that sometimes have furry critters attached. No word on what the cat, ferret, capybara or hamster policy is.