Gain­ing a good rep­u­ta­tion


The Taos News - Dining Out - - Story By Cindy Brown -

For an au­then­ti­cally lo­cal din­ing and drink­ing ex­pe­ri­ence, head to the Red River Brew­ing Co.

Lo­cated on West Main Street, the new brew­ery opened last Memo­rial Day. New Mex­ico's high­est el­e­va­tion brew­ery was founded by Michael Cal­houn, who was born and raised in Red River and his fam­ily. The brew­ery is al­ready gain­ing a rep­u­ta­tion for dis­tinc­tive lo­cal beer and good food.

The rus­tic dé­cor, in­clud­ing wind­mill fans, barn wood and min­ing ref­er­ences, speak to the his­tory of Red River as a min­ing boom­town and place to home­stead. Garage doors open to the pa­tio on mild days and a fire out­side keeps din­ers warm dur­ing snowy times.

The menu fea­tures a se­lec­tion of starters, in­clud­ing na­chos, chicken wings and more un­usual fare, such as beer-bat­tered fried pickle spears. You can try the Hatch burger, cov­ered in grilled Hatch green chile and ched­dar cheese. A va­ri­ety of sand­witches, sal­ads and desserts are of­fered, in­clud­ing the Mile High ice cream pie with lay­ers of cof­fee choco­late ice cream, topped with whipped cream and sweet peanut but­ter sauce.

And of course, there is beer - lots of beer. Four­teen dif­fer­ent va­ri­eties are brewed on site, such as the Cop­per Chair Am­ber, a red brew with hints of bis­cuits and choco­late, and the Ed Iver Pale Ale with its earthy spice and piney fin­ish. All the beer is made here with clean, cold Red River wa­ter and grain from Monte Vista, Colorado. There is a house-brewed root beer and a se­lec­tions of wines, in­clud­ing a Wicked Kreations chokecherry wine.

The brew room is vis­i­ble through the glass with its shiny sil­ver tanks full of fer­ment­ing beer. The nearby cold room stores 25 tanks of beer con­nected with di­rect lines to taps at the bar. You might catch a glimpse of the old­est son, Chris Cal­houn, at work as head brew­mas­ter.

Michael Cal­houn in­vites ev­ery­one to visit Red River Brew­ing for the open­ing of Red River Ski Area. “Along with all the nat­u­ral snow, the ski area has some great snow-mak­ing ca­pac­ity. We haven't missed a Thanks­giv­ing Day open­ing in 30 years,” says Cal­houn.

Red River Brew­ing Co. was named New Mex­ico Brew­ery of the Year by the New Mex­ico Restau­rant As­so­ci­a­tion. Visit at 217 West Main Street in Red River; open daily at 11 am. Check out the menu at redriver­brew­ or call (575) 754-4422.

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