Beer of the Year(s)

A huge shout-out to Albuquerque's Bosque Brewing Co., which, for the second year in a row, took home top honors at the recent National IPA Championship for its Scale Tipper India Pale Ale. The win this year makes Bosque, which beat out 128 other brewers during the competition, the first back-to-back repeat champion in the event's history. In 2014, Albuquerque's La Cumbre Brewing Co. took home the gold with its Project Dank IPA. Albuquerque brewers: Keep being awesome!

Some of the Best in the West, of Course

Popular glossy publication Sunset magazine, "your guide to living in the West," is in the middle of narrowing down the finalists for its 2016 Sunset Travel Awards, and Santa Fe's food scene is in their sights. In the Best Food Town in the West category, the four finalists are Portland, Ore.; Walla Walla, Wash.; St. Helena, Calif.; and good ol' Santa Fe! Sunset also chose Santa Fe Spirits as one of four finalists in its Best Microbrewery or Distillery category. The distillery's 4,000-square-foot expansion is also go! Just ask the mayor. Winners will be announced online in August and will be featured in the September issue of Sunset. Good luck, guys and gals!

More Reason for Ski Season. And More Beer!

Fast on the heels of St. Paddy's Day, Pajarito Mountain presents its Skiesta event on Saturday, March 19. Besides encouraging attendees to wear retro ski gear, organizers are offering up live music by Felix y Los Gatos, a handful of ski races (for which registration is required if you which to compete), a costume contest and a beer garden featuring brews from Santa Fe Brewing Co., Second Street Brewery, Taos Mesa Brewing, Bathtub Row Brewing Co-op (based in Los Alamos) and Blue Heron Brewing Co. (located in Embudo, on the Low Road to Taos, with a taproom in Española).

Throwdowns for a Good Cause

Ever heard of 505 Food Fights? Imagine local chefs duking it out (OK, cheffing it out) in a bracketed kitchen competition (à la March Madness) to help support New Mexico charities. A quick description of the action from the 505 Food Fight website: "Every 21 days, two local chefs face off in an underground, after-hours, tournament-style competition. The chefs will go head-to-head in a 60-minute live competition. The contestants will receive a mystery basket of three ingredients to create two dishes. The audience is invited into the kitchen of some of the best restaurants … to cheer on and watch the battle as it goes down. Three local judges will decide which chef moves on to the next round." The new bracket for 505 Food Fight season two was just released on the event's website, and it's got some pretty heavy hitters on it, including Joseph's of Santa Fe and the Corn Maiden restaurant at Hyatt Regency's Tamaya Resort and Spa. The first round of the second Food Fight series gets started April 7. Hit the website for tickets and more details.

An Eggcelent Alternative to Fancy E-Day Brunch

Looking for something a little different to do in-state this Easter holiday? Why not join the folks at Old Windmill Dairy in Estancia on Saturday, March 26, or Sunday, March 27, for their annual Easter Extravaganza and farm celebration, which includes an Easter egg hunt, snacks prepared from the dairy's own scrumptious products, a farm tour and farm-focused games for the kiddos. Did we forget to mention that goats will be available to pet? It's very relaxing. Registration is required online for this event, and it's BYOEB (Bring Your Own Easter Basket).

Food Truck Festival? Sign Us Up!

On Saturday, April 9, the Second Annual Great New Mexico Food Truck Festival takes place at the Anderson-Abruzzo International Balloon Museum in Albuquerque. The museum website doesn't reflect that the event is taking place there, but a quick call to the museum confirmed it. Besides showcasing more than 20 of the state's best food trucks, the event offers more than 50 microbrews from New Mexico-based and national beer producers. Organizers ask attendees to bring nonperishable food items to the event to benefit the Roadrunner Food Bank.

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