La Cumbre Brewing
La Cumbre is the most recommended brewery in Albuquerque and one of the few known outside New Mexico. From my visit I can see why. They have a large indoor tasting room with an upstairs area as well as an outdoor area. I started with a flight of six beers, which gave me a good idea for the quality of everything.
The Elevated IPA is their flagship IPA and on tap it had a fantastic balance of hops with notes of fruit and resin with a mild bitter kick at the finish. Before leaving town I drank a few Elevated IPAs in the can and found it to be a delicious soft IPA with a good blend of hop character. The Malpais Stout was smooth with notes of chocolate and roast for a good balanced stout. The Project Dank IPA was a bit more dry than Elevated and had a great mix of pine and citrus with some mild hop acidity at the finish.
The Red Rycot was a perfectly balanced rye amber with notes of caramel, mild fruity hops, and a spice kick from the rye. I tried this one on the recommendation of the beertender. The Pecos Porter was thinner and more mellow than the stout with mild roast. I should have tried it first because after the stout it seemed too mellow. The Dunkel was smooth and not overly sweet with notes of nuts and caramel. They had a coffee milk stout as well but only in bottles because it had already run out on tap.
Overall, I was quite impressed with La Cumbre and as expected it was the best of the bunch in Albuquerque.
Project Dank IPA
Marble has a great tasting room and fantastic design with their logo. I tried seven beers while I was there. The pilsner was mildly fruity but not clean enough on the finish, instead it had a lingering bitterness that I’ve come to expect from American brewed pilsners. The IPA was a great example of the classic west coast IPA with a blend of grapefruit and pine notes. Fit Bird IPA on the other hand was too bitter and had a harsh lingering bitterness that mixed with notes of overripe fruit in a way I didn’t like at all. The White Out was a strong and hoppy white beer with good spice character and a good dry finish.
The Double White was slightly thicker and more bitter with light alcohol finish and some notes of vanilla. The double IPA was very bitter with strong herbal hops and spicy rye notes. The herbal hops are never my thing but the intense bitterness was too much for me and overpowered any other aromas that may have been present. The Oatmeal stout was smooth and roasty with notes of vanilla, quite well done. Though a few of the beers were too bitter for the style, Marble has their IPA and Oatmeal Stout down nicely and would satisfy any west coast hop head.