Chama River Brewing Company
Active Beers: 23
Beer Ratings: 104
Beer Avg: 3.75
Taps: / Bottles:
Cask: N / Beer-to-Go: Y
Ratings: 44 | Reviews: 34 | Display Reviews Only:
4.28/5 rDev +3.9%
vibe: 3.5 | quality: 4.5 | service: 4.5 | selection: 4 | food: 4.5 | $$$
An upscale brewpub with exceptional food. Located in the typical modern big-box retail type space just off I-25 (e.g., there's a Texas Land & Cattle next door and a large movie theater in the same complex). It has a corporate concept feel, think BJ's but better done, so don't expect any unique funkiness. The atmosphere is comfortable, even if a bit predictable. Not too loud, which is a plus these days. It was full on a Wednesday night (short wait for a table). The food was inventive and well prepared. I had the fries with truffle oil, blue cheese, and bacon (needed more blue cheese and less truffle oil) and a green chile chicken pot pie (nice balance of shell to filling). Price were reasonable for what you got, but maybe a bit pricey for a brewpub in Albuquerque. The entrees ran from about 17 to 35. The beer was very good. Service was good, despite having to ask for bread and water. I'd return if I was up for a good meal and good beer, but might look elsewhere if I was only interested in good beer.
02-13-2010 21:09:20 | More by LittleDon
4.18/5 rDev +1.5%
vibe: 4.5 | quality: 4 | service: 4.5 | selection: 4 | food: 4 | $$$
Stopped in on the way to NHC in Oakland. Atmosphere was more upscale than I anticipated, but all the customers were dressed casually. Staff was very friendly. Our waiter was attentive and knew his beer.
Although we showed up with, we were seated quickly. The waiter spent a little extra attention on the kids, offering aIm ice cream dessert if they cleaned their plate. They didn't, but got ice cream anyway. The chicken fried scallops were good. Portion size was good, not a huge plate of food I would never finish.
I don't get this way often, but I will be back
06-14-2009 04:26:38 | More by hiikeeba
3.43/5 rDev -16.7%
vibe: 4 | quality: 4 | service: 3 | selection: 3.5 | food: 2 | $$$
Visited here while on business last week. I enjoyed two of the beers, their Sleeping Dog Stout and one of their Ales, the name of which escapes me.
I thought both beers were very good. Unfortunately, this was a business dinner and I did not take specific notes. However, I would definitely go back if in the area again for the beer.
The food was a different story. We shared appetizers (wings, nachos, calamari) and they were good, about what you would expect as typical bar fare.
I had a NY strip steak which was average at best, as was the accompanying side dish. At $30, this seemed like a rip-off to me.
Long story short, I'd be back for the beer in a heartbeat, but I would not eat here.
05-11-2009 21:07:22 | More by mphopkins99
4.2/5 rDev +1.9%
vibe: 4.5 | quality: 4.5 | service: 3.5 | selection: 4.5 | food: 4 | $$$
I try to go to Chama River at least once per season to enjoy their seasonal brews as well as their everyday brews. The beer is very good. Their food is also delicious, but a bit pricey for Albuquerque. Unfortunately, their service is hit or miss. Mostly it is good, but there is the occasional bad server. The atmosphere is eclectic for a brewpub. I usually prefer the hole-in-the-wall style pubs, but it is nice to take the lady out to a "fancier" joint for some good food and beer. I have not had a bad glass of any of their beer. If you visit from out of town, this is a sure stop along the way. Beware of the frontage roads on I-25. They tend to confuse people at first.
02-06-2009 01:56:58 | More by tonyfugere
4.2/5 rDev +1.9%
vibe: 3 | quality: 5 | service: 3.5 | selection: 4.5 | food: 4 | $$$
Great beer! The brewpub is a nice new building with that nondescript cookie cutter feel of the mass produced yuppie infill. However, the beer produced is superior well-crafted by someone who loves brewing. I've tried all the styles and they are fine examples of each. When I'm in the area I always pick-up a few growlers to enjoy at home. The restraunt serves good food and service is average. Prices are a little high, but is normal for what brew-pubs seem to think is expected these days. The beer, however, is worth the price.
05-27-2008 18:40:40 | More by cggarcia
3.48/5 rDev -15.5%
vibe: 4 | quality: 3.5 | service: 2.5 | selection: 4 | food: 4 | $$$
The location of Chama River is odd. It can been seen off the interstate however difficult to get there for anyone who is not familiar with ABQ. You must turn on Jefferson and then take the frontage road on the west side of the interstate. It is one way heading south.
Once there you are faced with a sea of compact car parking spaces. The building is well maintained, with a patio facing the mountains. The bar is to the left, with several seperated areas of seating, which probably helps keep noise down. The bar is dark brown wood and copper. The ceiling is also copper stamped reminescent of late 1800's early 1900's. It felt like a synthesis of brewpub and Santa Fe snob.
I sat at the bar. The place was slow and so was the service. The bartender didn't seem to want to be there. I had to ask twice for a lunch menu.
I had the lunch special which was a lamb curry pot pie and salad ($10.00). The salad was very fresh and presented perfectly. I had the chipolte vingerette, which was spicy yet flavorful. The pot pie could have used a little more curry for me. I was presented well using a puff pastry covering an oval dish. Food service was fast, and the server was polite. There was however no follow up.
Now for the brew. I tasted the IPA and either I wasn't in the mood for it or something because I was unimpressed. I had heard good things about it. I decided to have a 16 oz Hefeweisen ($3.97). It seeemed to follow the traditional Hefe recipe. It started with a banana-vanilla note. The taste was an average Hefe. I really like Hefe's. This one I could take or leave.
Overall I'll return to Chama River when in ABQ.
05-26-2008 16:35:54 | More by chileman13
3.78/5 rDev -8.3%
vibe: 4.5 | quality: 4.5 | service: 3 | selection: 3.5 | food: 3.5 | $$
Got the rec to go here from Rblwthacoz. As a bit of a Albuquerque swami he said this was better tha Kelly's and I think I agree with him.
Chamas is located right off of I25 just north of downtown. They have outside seating with a good view of the mountains and a nice outdoor fireplace by the entrance. When you walk in there are booths to the right, a long U shaped bar right ahead and tables to the far left. There also is another private room which looks onto the brew tanks. The bar itself is mainly dark brown wood and looks nice without being cheesy. The copper ceiling tiles are a nice touch.
The beers themselves were all above average for brew pub fare. I had their IPA, Brown Ale and Stout which were all very good. They had around 10 of their own beers on tap all of which were fresh. I didn't see any other beers available but I did not really look.
Foodwise they do an upscale pub type of thing. I had a bowl of chili and their house salad. The chili was good but nothing mind blowing. There were a number of other entrees available such as coffee crusted pork chops, squash pasta and some more typical pub stuff.
Service was mediocre at best. The bartender really wasn't attentive or friendly but he did check in every so often. The bill was about $24 for three beers and the two food items which I supposeis expensive for NM, but wasnt bad for me.
All in all Chama's is a good place to grab a brew and some dinner.
05-07-2008 04:08:07 | More by sleazo
4.5/5 rDev +9.2%
vibe: 4.5 | quality: 4.5 | service: 5 | selection: 4 | food: 4.5 | $$$
I was definately caught off guard when I sat down and looked at the Chama River menu. When I go to a place that brews their own beer, I expect a brewpub atmosphere, etc. This is far from it. My wife and I are a blue collar type of people, so we opted for appetizers instead of any of the $22 plus meals (which is the low end for meals there).
Let's start with the beer. The beer was very good. My wife had the Broken Spoke Honey Wheat Ale, which was a very refreshing beer. It had a very nice lightly spiced taste, with nice floral aroma. It was a very nice light beer to have with a meal.
I started out with the Jackrabbit IPA, which was excellent. It was lighter than what I expected, but the hops came exploding out of that bad boy. This would be an excellent summer ale.
Second, I had the Sleeping Dog Stout, which was also excellent. It had an excellent full bodied texture, with nice coffee and chocolate tones, without the overly smokey aftertaste that some stouts tend to have. This was a superb stout.
The appetizers were to die for! The chicken wings were very large, and the buffalo sauce was absolutely fantastic. The rib appetizers were as tender as tender could be, and they fell right off the bone. The BBQ sauce was delicious.
If you're looking for a reasonably priced place for dinner, then I do not suggest going here. This is definately a high-end establishment when it comes to dinner. Any decent dinner will cost you at least $22 a plate. I can't say if the meals are good, or not, but price-wise it didn't float our boat (we prefer a pub grub menu). But if you're looking for excellent beer, with excellent appetizers, and excellent service, then you will not be dissapointed by Chama River. And if you remember to, ask for a table that Isaac is working - he did an outstanding job (very friendly, and very efficient).
04-12-2008 05:10:45 | More by tcbl1007
4/5 rDev -2.9%
vibe: 4 | quality: 4 | service: 4 | selection: 4 | $$
Visited this large brewpub located right off the highway in dusty, windy Albuquerque last month while on business (actually in Santa Fe). New in appearance and looking somewhat like a Texas steakhouse, I looked forward to the visit and was not dissapointed. In case you've never been to New Mexico, there is precious little quality beer available. I don't think there's a single beer bar in the entire state, so you're left with a select few brewpubs such as this. A large outdoor fireplace and patio was found right at the entrance. Nice touch. The interior was large and roomy with a high post and beam ceiling and a sizeable rectangular bar dominating the space as you enter. The copper topped surface and tin ceiling over the bar made for a clean, attractive and pleasing atmoshere. I'm guessing the bar sat upwards of 40 people, it was just that big. A row of curved silver armed taps with uniform white handles were in the middle of the space within the rectangle. Two flat screens in the same space were perfectly located for viewing. The beer was well crafted. I enjoyed the Munchener Dunkel(5.3%) first. I then followed up with the Double IPA - "Dangerous Intentions, " which was served in a pint glass even at 8.4%. Grassy and herbal nose and aggessive hopping made this the best of the three. I also found the Broken Spoke Golden Ale crisp and refeshing. Efficient service from the barkeeps, too. All in all a solid brewpub in the high desert that is Albuquerque. Will visit again on my next business trip and stay at the best Embassy Suites I've been to right down the road.
04-10-2008 12:04:53 | More by jim102864
3.98/5 rDev -3.4%
vibe: 4 | quality: 3.5 | service: 4.5 | selection: 4 | food: 4 | $$$
Had the sampler on a Friday evening: The barleywine was the best of the bunch, also liked the ESB & IPA
The place reminded me of a upscale rock bottom in many ways. A little too fancy for me to be truly comfortable
Our waiter was great, very attentive, despite the fact it was a busy Friday night
Most of the beers were average to above average, but the barley wine was the only beer I'd call good.
9 beers on tap to include a farmhouse ale & a few lagers, not too mind blowing IMO
The food was pretty tasty albeit a bit pricey. The Chimchuri steak was tasty but smallish. Some nice regional touches.
Not a bad stop, but nothing to to get too excited about. I expected a little more from the beer to be honest
04-06-2008 23:24:39 | More by russpowell
Chama River Brewing Company in Albuquerque, NM
92 out of 100 based on 44 ratings.