Craft brewing has become popular all over the world, as the major breweries took over the beer industry in the past five decades, drinkers found it increasingly harder to find a decent pint. The major breweries were mostly interested in brewing average beer for the most profit, and scarcely gave a second thought to the quality of the beer they were producing.

So beer drinkers all over the world were demanding a better quality libation, and what surprised the major brewers was that they were quite happy to pay a premium for a quality beer. So, countries all over the world are now producing great craft beer, and the U.S is no exception including New Mexico.

In this article we will take a sample of the best beers in New Mexico and the people who make them. In New Mexico the craft breweries often provide events where locals can get together and listen to music, there will be food trucks and of course vendors selling their beers.

Santa Fe Brewing Company

The oldest brewery in New Mexico was founded in 1988, and the Santa Fe Brewing Company produces craft beers that are among the state’s most popular. The brewery has its own tasting room and patrons can sample the excellent brews either al fresco or inside.

This brewery also allows for pets in the outside area, or you can enjoy the Albuquerque Taproom or the popular El Dorado Taphouse. The brewery regularly presents live music events so that patrons can really let their hair down.

Sierra Blanca

The Sierra Blanca Brewing Company is based in Moriarty which is just outside Albuquerque. Since its inception nearly twenty-five years ago the brewery now produces fourteen different beers, and you can enjoy them all in the awesome beer-garden that is half an acre in size.

Visitors to the brewery can take a free tour, as well as enjoying the great tasting room. At the weekend a selection of foods trucks are parked in the beer-garden and everybody enjoys the party. Try the Desert Pilsner, Alien Wheat Beer, and the Imperial Stout.

Blue Heron Brewery

This family owned and run brewery and winery is located in Embudo, the owners have been brewing excellent craft beers since 2009, and they have a partner vinter who makes the wine on the same site. The popular tap room is a great place to sample both the beers and the wines with the recommended brews being: Ladybug IPA, Oro de Rio Grande Pilsner, and XXX Maibock.

If you are more into your wine then try the red and white varieties under the labels, La Chiripada, and Blue Heron.

Our alcoholic journey across New Mexico continues in part two of this article when we will travel to Farmington, Portales, and Bernalillo in search of even more superb craft beers and to see where they are made. Of course, food goes hand in hand with a good beer and some of these breweries offer great local fare you can munch whilst you are swilling down a glass or two.