Copyright © 2020 Albuquerque Journal
For the better part of a decade, Cameron Frigon’s life has revolved around beer – whether working as head brewer at a New York City brewery, working in a brewing microbiology laboratory, or simply visiting other taprooms.
It made sense that his next step would be to open a brewery of his own.
So Frigon teamed up with his brother, Chris Frigon, to launch Gravity Bound Brewing, one of the latest additions to Albuquerque’s brewery scene.
“Albuquerque has really, really good beer here, but I think it’s never bad to have another brewery,” Cameron Frigon said.
Both brothers, recent New Mexico transplants from Colorado, were drawn to Albuquerque for opportunity in the brewing community.
Cameron Frigon said while deciding on a home for his brewery, Albuquerque “checked all the boxes” with its combination of access to the outdoors, a vibrant brewery scene and low cost of living.
Gravity Bound, at 816 3rd NW, is tucked away in the brewery-laden northern part of Downtown, just blocks away from popular spots like Marble Brewery and Tractor Brewing Company. Chris Frigon said he views the proximity to other breweries as a bonus – being near other breweries will allow customers to swing by for a pint while on a beer crawl, and add business to the Downtown area.
“I’m like a huge believer in ‘If you can get your downtown to be awesome, your city is going to do great,'” Cameron Frigon said. “… We definitely wanted to contribute to that.”
Gravity Bound also makes non-alcoholic kombucha in addition to its selection of beers.
Since opening in mid-June, the Frigons say they have been well-received by Albuquerque beer drinkers which has kept business steady despite the pandemic and various restrictions placed on brewery operations.
However, the pandemic did add a few hurdles, like delaying the opening of the brewery by several months.
Otherwise, though, the Frigons say they have been lucky to escape many of the challenges other businesses have faced. They said the extended closure even allowed them to complete tasks like planting a small fruit tree orchard on-site.
“Silver linings for us, we had the opportunity to take out a couple more projects,” Chris Frigon said.
The brothers said Gravity Bound’s large patio and outdoor seating area has been helpful for driving traffic while making customers and workers feel safe.
“From what I’ve heard it gives you that backyard feel,” Chris Frigon said. “Like you’re at home, like you’re drinking in your backyard and you’re comfortable and I’m very happy that we had the opportunity to bump (the patio) out.”
The Frigons said it is important for them to keep the brewery as sustainable as possible.
Already they have added a cistern to collect rain, which is then used to water herbs for beers and kombuchas. They’ve installed solar panels and have a discount for those that bike to the brewery.
“Hopefully we would like to reduce our footprint as much as possible in the brewing community too,” Chris Frigon said.