November 19, 2015

Why you could see more ABQ beers at city events soon

Marble Brewery beer. Photo Credit: kbrookes cc

The next time to you go to a city event that sells beer you might see beers from Marble, Boese Brothers or La Cumbre alongside Bud Light and Corona.

Marble Brewery beer. Photo Credit: kbrookes cc

Marble Brewery beer. Photo Credit: kbrookes cc

Albuquerque Mayor Richard Berry signed legislation that would encourage local beer at local events. It would not encourage sales at events that don’t already have beer sales, but instead encourage those that already have beer sales to use beer from local breweries.

City councilor Don Harris introduced the legislation last month and the council passed the legislation on Nov. 2 on a unanimous vote.

There is no financial incentive for local breweries in the legislation.

The legislation directs the city to makes “best efforts” towards making sure “that local microbrew produced by Albuquerque-based small brewers is offered and served at every City sponsored event where alcohol is served.”

The legislation also directs the Albuquerque Convention Center to make sure local breweries are featured at every event where alcohol is served.

When he introduced the bill in October, Harris spoke to NM Political Report and said that it still “gives the organizer a lot of discretion.”

The legislation acknowledges that “the local microbrew industry has been a bright spot in local business development within the City even during a time of relatively slow economic activity.”

Local beer aficionados were optimistic about the legislation, including Chris Jackson, who is the editor of a website focused on local beers and breweries called Dark Side Brew Crew.

“Anything you can do to get exposure beyond word of mouth would be a good thing,” Jackson said last month.

The news comes at a time of rapid expansion in the local brewery scene with new of new breweries opening or expanding with an additional tap room seemingly every other week (and an increasing amount of festivals, which may be a bad thing for local breweries in the long run).

The news of one of the newer breweries, Rio Bravo Brewing Co., seeking industrial revenue bonds for expansion caused discussion of the scene’s expansion.

The expansion in Albuquerque mirrors a national expansion, causing some to wonder if there is a “beer bubble” that will burst soon.