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La Cumbre Brewing Co.

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Based on:
66 Beers
2,971 Hads
Place Score: 96
Reviews: 27
Visits: 94
Avg: 4.42
pDev: n/a
Taps: 11
Bottles: --
Cask: Y
Beer-to-Go: Y
[ Brewery, Bar ]

3313 Girard Blvd NE
Albuquerque, New Mexico, 87107-1930
United States
phone: (505) 872-0225

visit their websiteWebsite view map and get directionsMap 

Place added by: taxguyjase on 01-18-2011

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Place: Reviews & Ratings
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Reviews: 27 | Visits: 94
Photo of amano_h
4.3/5  rDev -2.7%
vibe: 4 | quality: 4.5 | service: 4.5 | selection: 4

I somehow managed to visit La Cumbre at the worst time of the day at the worst time of the year, and my experience still ended up being a lot better than I thought it was going to be.

I had never heard of La Cumbre until earlier this year when I was heavily involved in the "sharing" of beers through a forum that is yet to be named, when I came across what I was told was "beer from New Mexico." Just from that description alone, it was hard to gauge what La Cumbre's beers would be like (I mean Texas, Colorado, Utah, and Oklahoma are proven beer states, but New Mexico??) but all doubts faded away from my mind when I first had a taste of Elevated IPA and a bottle of Project Dank.

My chance to actually sample La Cumbre from the teet came during my 3000+ road trip from NJ to CA where I purposely took a longer, more beer scenic route just so I could hit up this magical place in New Mexico where the beer flows freely and immersed in hops. Unfortunately for me, I got to La Cumbre three days before they were heading out to the Great American Beer Festival in Denver, 30 minutes prior to last call.

Despite the limited time and choices I was given at the Brewpub, it was still a very positive experience -- the cute bartender was more than understanding enough of my situation and let me order my growler of Full Nelson a little after I had my pint of Elevated IPA, straight from the source; I also got to score a pint glass with the La Cumbre and the Malpais logo on there even though they were running out of merchandise (again, because of GABF) because they took pity on the fact that I had just driven 16 hours from St. Louis to get there, and would have to drive another 12 to drive to Los Angeles the next day.

Notwithstanding circumstantial experiences that made my trip slightly less favorable than expected, I really like the brewpub itself; the atmosphere is kind of like a sports bar (downstairs) and a lounge (upstairs) rolled into one. Given the amount of space they have onsite, I wouldn't be surprised if they had live music and/or dancing too, if that's more of your thing. The crowd seemed to be predominantly college/younger adults which is unsurprisingly due to the proximity to the university(ies?), but the establishment seemed remarkably chill and mellow despite the younger patron population. Maybe it's a New Mexico thing.

I'll have to make a trip out to New Mexico again next time Father Nelson is available!

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Photo of Ernie_The_Dude
4.71/5  rDev +6.6%
vibe: 4.5 | quality: 4.5 | service: 5 | selection: 4.75

Another cool spot in the ABQ. I am glad to see the beer revolution is alive and well here. visiting from Cali and I was excited to try the spots here. The service is outstanding, the beer selection is very good and the beer is cold. they have different lunch trucks providing food. there was a pizza truck with excellent looking grub but, I stuffed myself with old school N.M. food (green chilies, beans and potatoes) and did not partake in the pizza. I'm coming back !

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Photo of jhavs
4.58/5  rDev +3.6%
vibe: 4.5 | quality: 4.75 | service: 4.5 | selection: 4.5

Great place. Kinda tough location in a industrial park, but they pull it off. Have lots of seating indoors and out, food trucks park out front and bring their food to your table when ordered. Great beers, world class IPA's, not much to complain about. Easy going vibe, good prices, lots of pour sizes so you can try multiple brews.

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Photo of gantry
4.59/5  rDev +3.8%
vibe: 4.5 | quality: 5 | service: 4.75 | selection: 4

Overall great atmosphere. The new patio is much needed addition to the facility. I love that it is family and dog friendly and a must stop for any beer drinker traveling though NM.

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Photo of NMBeerLoversWifey
4.73/5  rDev +7%
vibe: 5 | quality: 5 | service: 5 | selection: 4

La Cumbre is a local place for me and among my favorites. Their wait staff is outstanding, they remember their customers and the beers are excellent. The atmosphere leavses a little to be desired (pre-fab building, no parking, very noisy, limited seating and an up-coming no vaping policy). Still, the beers are very good. Slice of Hefen is my go to beer on site and in stores.

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Photo of Chastise
4.64/5  rDev +5%
vibe: 4 | quality: 4.5 | service: 5 | selection: 4.75

With a good (and ever-changing) selection, La Cumbre is a taproom that should be visited if you find yourself in Albuquerque. The bartender was exceptionally knowledgeable and friendly. My wife and I split a flight of 8 flavors (of the 14 on tap), and through conversation ended up tasting a few more options. La Cumbre was in the process of expanding their brewery when we visited, and hopefully they'll be able to supply more beer across the US soon.

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Photo of thebigredone
4.34/5  rDev -1.8%
vibe: 4.25 | quality: 4.75 | service: 4 | selection: 4.25

La Cumbre is a place that you have to visit if you're in Albuquerque. All of the beers we tried (and we tried everything that was on tap) ranged from good to great.

The service was a bit slow, but the place does seem to be pretty busy from open to close.

No food is served, but they often have a food truck right outside.

Prices were reasonable.

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Photo of MilwaukeeCrusher
4.5/5  rDev +1.8%

Place was packed with people. Got a flight and sampled on top of a stool. Beer were good to great, notably the IPAs. Might not be my style as far as hops... they were very good but I've had better with less hype. Still well worth a visit. Didn't get anything from the food truck outside.

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Photo of VashonGuy
4.5/5  rDev +1.8%

I rate places primarily on the quality of their beers, and on this score, La Cumbre is a top tier, must-visit, worth-a-road-trip-to-Albuquerque kind of place. We had four beers, and not only loved them all, but found most of them exceptional and unusual.

The place itself is a typical industrial area small brewery, with the usual oddity of such locations. Inside, it's better than average for industrial tasting rooms, with a fair number of tables and a nice bar. No food, but a food truck outside.

Prices are reasonable, and they'll do a taster flight of any number of tasters of your choice.

Did I mention the remarkable beer?

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Photo of Irrenarzt
4.25/5  rDev -3.8%

One of my favorite New Mexico spots. Jeff Erway brews clean, solid beer and has nice looking women pouring them. That's a winning combination right there folks.

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Photo of -N8
4.14/5  rDev -6.3%
vibe: 4 | quality: 4 | service: 4 | selection: 4.5

This is not some trendy hipster micobrew pub. This is a place for working stiffs - you will see plumbers rubbing elbows with heart surgeons. Parking is a pain since the lot in front of the brewed is limited to a half dozen spaces and parking at a neighboring business can get your car towed. However, if you want great beer, and I mean really great beer, then you will find a spot on the street and make your way inside. The pub is cozy and welcoming. The beer selection is outstanding.

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Photo of orangesol
4.21/5  rDev -4.8%
vibe: 4 | quality: 4 | service: 4.5 | selection: 4.25

My last stop of the night. Atmosphere was pretty solid, I met plenty of locals at the bar and a few milling around the other areas of the tasting room. Quality was pretty good. Beers served in the right glasses at least. Service was solid all around. I talked to both bartenders and they were really nice. Selection was solid with about 10 beers on offer, my favorite being their IPA or the Cafe Con Leche stout. They had a food truck out front but I didn't partake after having quite a bit of food beforehand, I did however talk to the owner of the truck at the bar and he was a hoot to talk to. Prices were more than reasonable for the area. Overall a really nice tasting room that I would definitely return to in the future.

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Photo of JonesArtGlass
4.41/5  rDev -0.2%
vibe: 4.5 | quality: 4.5 | service: 4.75 | selection: 4.5 | food: 3

I had the pleasure of working in the neighborhood, near La Cumbre and it was a staple in my after work (ok sometimes midday) routine. A nice selection of beers, awesome people, and a true family atmosphere that let's you know they take pride in their work. Thanks for soso many pints of delicious beer!

Yes, I admit that it gets a lil crowded on the weekends, but that's the price you pay for having such great beer, a lot of people want to drink it.

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Photo of ONovoMexicano
4.23/5  rDev -4.3%
vibe: 4.5 | quality: 4.5 | service: 3.5 | selection: 4.5

This is THE BEST brewery in Albuquerque and that's saying something, as Marble Brewery and Il Vicino are both outstanding, and Nexus is damn good too.

A rundown of some of my favorite beers:

Elevated IPA- Not only is this beer's ratings among the top 250 in the world, but it's highly sought around the US. People contact me from all over looking to get their hands on it. It's that good. What you get is an immensely hopped up beer, that is magnificently balanced so you don't have a bitterfest in your mouth. The hops impart all of the piney, citrusy notes you'd expect from a West Coast IPA, while the malts come in and smooth the beer out, give it a nice mouthfeel, and make it very easy-drinking. A super beer that us New Mexicans have the privilege of calling our own.

Witch's Tit- An excellent fall offering, this is a pumpkin beer done right. This beer had me filling growler after growler.

Simcoe's Daughter- This beer was to me taking the Elevated and improving on it---if that's even impossible.

The list goes on and on, with beer after beer being downright delicious, from the Anniversary Stout to the smoked porter, the Baltic porter, Gracias Por Fumar, the Acclimated DIPA... La Cumbre continues to offer delicious offering after delicious offering.

And beyond that, let's tip our hats to Jeff and the other brewers for their continued respect of the German forefathers that have paved the way for the artfully made beer we get to enjoy. Beers like Miles from Cologne, Who Gose there, and Where in the Helles are not only nods to classic and/or centuries-old styles, but they're damn tasty too.

I'm thankful for this brewery. I enjoy the staff and appreciate their love of the beer. I will acknowledge that I've heard of issues with them before but every place has room for improvement.

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Photo of JohnnyJam
3.45/5  rDev -21.9%
vibe: 4 | quality: 4 | service: 3 | selection: 3

I am writing this review again. I didn't save it, I guess. Stopped at La Cumbre on my way to Denver and beyond and as part of my brewery tour vacation. It is on my list and close to my hotel. This brewery is in an industrial area.

They do not have food but there was a food truck outside and we enjoyed some very good waffle fries that came with an interesting dipping sauce. There are tables for 2, 4, or 8 people along with several stools at the bar and two house chairs downstairs. Upstairs has a couple small tables and a pool table but no one was upstairs.

Our server came over promptly and took our order and quickly brought our beers. A couple of large parties came in and that was all we saw of her. I got me last beer at the bar.

They serve only their beers. I had Elevated IPA, A Bit of Hefe, and Siberian Silk. The last one was from their seasonal selection. All were very good. That night there were four regular beers and six seasonal beers available. Only Sprite was offered if you didn't want beer or more beer.

Overall, this is a place to have a few beers with friends were you can enjoy good beer in a comfortable atmosphere and bring a well behaved dog. They are dog friendly.

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Photo of sholland119
4.47/5  rDev +1.1%
vibe: 4.25 | quality: 4.5 | service: 4.5 | selection: 4.5

Second great stop on a great cross country trip. We hit La Cumbre for beers after a terrific dinner at Chama River Brewing.

A very cool, laid back vibe in the place. About a 10 stool bar on the left, some high tops behind and a larger seating area on the right. Relaxed crowd, great service and outstanding beer. There were a couple of empty taps, not surprising on Sunday night. But there was plenty of Elevated IPa, which is all I needed. The Jefe's Hefe and the Malpais Stout were quite tasty for others in the party but the IPA was really mindblowing. Lived up to its GABF gold and all the hype.

There was a food truck outside, which looks like a permanent fixture. Did not try anything but good to know they have a food option.

Great place.


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Photo of DanE
4.51/5  rDev +2%
vibe: 4.5 | quality: 4.75 | service: 4 | selection: 4.75

Great find while on business in NM. Very reminiscent of a Portland bar scene. Kids and dogs are welcome, a food truck outside (they don't have a kitchen), TVs, a pool table, and the love for quality. The Elevation IPA is very, very good. They have a good variety of styles on tap and cask and have a fridge full of cans. It also didn't hurt that the bartender was gorgeous. A must stop if in NM. It was about $20 fare and tip to take a cab from the airport.

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Photo of dhabersetzer
4.53/5  rDev +2.5%
vibe: 4.5 | quality: 5 | service: 4 | selection: 4.5

Wonderful experience here in Albuquerque. Every beer I've tried met or exceeded expectations. The elevated IPA is up there with the best of them, and I have never had a hefeweizen so good. 11 beers on tap as of Oct 2012. Every beer is well thought out and complex. The brewmaster is off at the GABF this week as a judge, which says about this brewery and its beer. No food, but a decent food cart outside with burgers, wings, and fries. Live music every Wednesday and Friday. A must stop here in New Mexico.

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Photo of kcillini77
4.8/5  rDev +8.6%
vibe: 4.5 | quality: 5 | service: 5 | selection: 4.5

La Cumbre is definitely the class of the Albuquerque beer scene. I've been to lots of breweries in ABQ, but no trip to the city is complete without a stop at La Cumbre.

Don't let the location fool you. Everyone is friendly - the servers are knowledgeable and love to talk beer, and the beer itself is outstanding.

The pilsner is world class, the IPAs are incredible, the stout is great, and there are always a handful of unique beers. This time they had a single hop beer made with Nelson Sauvin that was outstanding. Beers are available at $1 per 4 oz, $2.50 per 10 oz. and $4 per pint.

And now, they are canning their Elevated IPA. Picked up a 4 pack that is finding its way to Kansas City in my luggage.

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Photo of elNopalero
4.73/5  rDev +7%
vibe: 5 | quality: 5 | service: 4.5 | selection: 4.5

This place was great! Nothing but beer but oh, what incredible beer! If I lived in Albuquerque I would make this my regular spot. I counted 8 house beers on tap—including their GABF Gold medal winning IPA, aka my new favorite IPA crush—available by the glass or to go. Nothing on hand-pump on my visit. They played reggae and had a healthy food truck outside for some food options but otherwise the main focus here was on the beer. Seemed like a place with a lot of regulars as literally everyone around me had a familiar banter with the servers. It was a great start to my Albuquerque visit.

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Photo of lisomiso
4.56/5  rDev +3.2%
vibe: 5 | quality: 4.5 | service: 4.5 | selection: 4.5

LOVED this place. We were a bit apprehensive driving through the industrial district, but the bar was bustling. A great band was playing while older hippie types danced to the music. We sat at the bar and chatted with the friendly bartenders. Lots of house brews, a few guest beers, and two beers on cask!

We loved pretty much every beer we tried. I'd drink their Notty Pale Ale every day if I could get it at home, and I also very much enjoyed their pumpkin beer (Witch's Tit) on cask.

Wish we had a place like this at home... And I live in Southern California!

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Photo of EspressoGuy
4.8/5  rDev +8.6%
vibe: 4.5 | quality: 5 | service: 4.5 | selection: 5

This is a true beer place and am I ever glad I found it. I echo everyone else's comments here but have to say that all the staff were friendly and really liked good beer -- what a concept! I liked all the beers but the standouts for me were the Oatmeal Stout and Notty IPA (brewed with Nottingham yeast). This place is worth finding and well-worth watching for how the facility develops and their reputation skyrockets. Tell everyone that you remember it when .... Bring your own food or choose from the Burger truck outside. Make sure you sit up at the bar and start a conversation with the friendly locals.

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Photo of lordofthewiens
4.3/5  rDev -2.7%
vibe: 4 | quality: 4.5 | service: 4.5 | selection: 4

If you didn't know what was inside, you'd never stop in. Located in an industrial part of town, with bars on the door and windows, it doesn't look very inviting. Different story inside, Clean, well-lit, decorated in a rustic southwest style. The high tops are barrels, the lampshades are old license plates. L-shaped bar with 11-12 seats. There's a sofa and pool table upstairs. It has a neighborhood bar feel. My wife and I opened the place up one Sunday afternoon. The bartender was friendly and helpful. We were soon joined by some of the regulars, and had a great time.
On our visit there were 7 Le Cumbre taps: wheat, pilsner, pale ale, IPA (also in cask), stout, imperial red, super pils, and white. 4 guest taps, one Marble Brewing Company and three Chama River. I had the imperial red and the cask IPA, both excellent. My wife really enjoyed the super pils.
We spent two very pleasant hours there. What could be better than drinking great beer with a bunch of great people?

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Photo of
4.16/5  rDev -5.9%
vibe: 4 | quality: 4.5 | service: 4 | selection: 4

I visited La Cumbre for the first time this past July and have gone back several times since then. They seem to really be getting their feet under them and offer some of Albuquerques best beer. Most times I go are on weeknights and still find the place busy (a good sign).

Aside from the other beers mentioned in the other reviews they are currently pouring one called Rojo Grande. To call it a red would be selling it short. With 8.1% abv and 120+ IBU's it is a monster of a beer and in my opinion the best being poured in Albuquerque right now. I try any and every IPA I can get my hands on, including great offerings from Marble and Chama River as well as La Cumbre's own IPA. Rojo Grande WILL exceed any hophound's need for more...Try it!

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Photo of orfeu
4.6/5  rDev +4.1%
vibe: 4 | quality: 5 | service: 4.5 | selection: 4.5

La Cumbre is the newest brewery in Albuquerque's already impressive local-beer scene. Head brewer Jeff Erway and his wife Laura opened the place up back in December 2011, and it immediately became a mandatory stop for any serious beer aficionado in the middle Rio Grande Valley. La Cumbre features five regular house beers (an American wheat Aae, a Foreign Export Stout, British-style pale ale, a Czech Pilsner, and an insanely hoppy IPA). Seating is somewhat limited at an L-shaped bar, with maybe ten small tables in the main bar room and second room to the north, which has benches lining the far walls and some chairs. There is also a small leather couch and one table in the upstairs room with the pool table. The brewery and tap room is located in a decidedly industrial zone off of Candelaria, about 7-8 blocks east of I-25, and the decor is a mix of unpretentious industrial brewery taproom (exposed painted metal beams lined with an impressive collection of empty beer bottles from around the U.S. and Europe and concrete floors downstairs) and cozy pub (upstairs billiard room is carpeted with wood panels and hunter green paint on the walls). The entire place is tastefully well-lit but not overly bright. As another reviewer mentioned, there's no food other than a small selection of pre-made sandwiches from DG's Deli, although patrons are welcome to bring in takeout from other restaurants or even have pizza delivered to the taproom.
As far as the beer is concerned, La Cumbre is brewing some excellent stuff that either equals or surpasses the already great offerings from other local breweries and brewpubs like Il Vicino, Chama River (where Jeff used to be the head brewer), and Marble. The Malpais Stout is a sturdy and chocolatey FES and their Pyramid Rock Pale Ale is more reminiscent of a British style ESB than Sierra Nevada Pale Ale -- a welcome change of pace. However, my hands-down favorite La Cumbre beer is the Elevated IPA, a massively hoppy San Diego style IPA. Topping 7% abv and 100 IBUs, the aroma on this thing is AMAZING: more piney than citrusy, it smells like a bowl full of high-grade cannabis. Without a doubt, the best IPA brewed in the southwestern US. In fact, I have a hard time thinking of any IPA I'd rather drink (only Pliny the Elder and Ruination compare, frankly).
Also, this is the only place in town that has at least one (sometimes two) cask beers pouring every day of the week. If you are in Albuquerque and can only visit one brewery, I'd recommend La Cumbre without hesitation.

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La Cumbre Brewing Co. in Albuquerque, NM
96 out of 100 based on 27 ratings.