Of course it wasn’t easy, but I figured out which breweries are my favorites. Criteria include:
- I have tried multiple beers in each brewery, and they are consistently delicious.
- They have a great outdoor space, and it just feels great to hang out there.
- Good music. I love a great beer in the sunshine with no TVs blaring, just good music.
#5: Sidetrack Brewing Company in downtown Albuquerque, NM has a great patio as well as a very hip and cozy indoor vibe. The people who work there are experts on their beer, and provide good service and conversation. There is often live music outside, and if not, they always stream music we enjoy. On Sundays, they play vinyl.
#4: Second Street Brewery in Santa Fe, NM (on 2nd street, not the one at the Railyard or Rufina taproom) has been a favorite for many years. Parking can be challenging, but most people survive it (just don’t park too close to that fence on that bumpy road, or your passenger might fall into the ditch when they get out of the car). Maybe just bike over to be safe. OMG, the patio is great. They frequently have live music, and the servers are the best. When it’s cold out, try to get a seat near the fireplace or in the bar area. If they happen to have the British Mild on tap when you are there, try it. It’s fantastic.
#3: Dodgeton Creek Brewing Company, in Trinidad, CO, has a large outdoor space. Every one of their beers is excellent. When we were there, the guy serving the beer was the owner and brewer. He commuted from somewhere in Texas! This is definitely a labor of love. Every beer they serve is delicious. I’ve tried them all. At least I think I tried them all.
#2: Last Stand Brewing in Austin, TX has another great patio area. The servers make sure you stay happy, and I am in love with Resilience IPA and the Citra SMaSH IPA. Don’t go there unless you are ready to relax and have some good food and great beer. It’s a bit out of the way, but well worth the drive/bike ride.
#1: Equinox Brewing in Fort Collins, CO is numero uno because I love all of their beers that I’ve tried. They have a wonderful patio and cozy indoor seating in case it’s cold out. They have free live music on Fridays and Saturdays. I also just saw on their website that their “self -limiting distribution model” is a custom made keg trike. Yes! That is sooo Fort Collins. I love it.
Al and I plan to check out several breweries in Tucson while we are there. We’ve gotten some great recommendations from Courtney and Steve (AStreaminLife.com) and from my brother, Steven. If we come across any great ones we will let you know. Also, please contact me with your favorite brewery recommendations!