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La Cumbre Brewing Co. chosen to produce NM State Fair beer

La Cumbre Brewing Company president and master brewer Jeffrey Erway pours a glass of New Mexico State Fair Cream Ale. (Adolphe Pierre-Louis/Albuquerque Journal)

La Cumbre Brewing Company president and master brewer Jeffrey Erway pours a glass of New Mexico State Fair Cream Ale. (Adolphe Pierre-Louis/Albuquerque Journal)

It’s official, the New Mexico State Fair has its own beer.

An unveiling of the New Mexico State Fair Cream Ale cans took place Thursday afternoon at La Cumbre Brewing Company, which is where the beer was made. La Cumbre president and master brewer Jeff Erway, New Mexico Brewers Guild director Chris Goblet, New Mexico State Fair General Manager Dan Mourning and other State Fair representatives also were in attendance.

The cans are a festive turquoise blue and feature the new State Fair logo.

“Oh my God, if you’re a craft brew person, which I am, Jeff is a master of his craft,” Mourning said when asked what he thought of the cream ale. “It’s very good. People are going to love it.”

To enhance the clarity and freshness of the cream ale, Erway used a lenticular filter.

“I used a lenticular filter to make sure it is brilliantly clear,” he explained. “It increases its shelf life and keeps it stable.”

Official New Mexico State Fair products must include New Mexico ingredients. New Mexico-grown hops were used to create the State Fair Cream Ale. Barley and corn were brought in from out of state.

The creation of the ale has inspired conversation and research between New Mexico State University, the Department of Agriculture, the New Mexico Brewers Guild and others about adding the production of barley and increasing the production of hops in the state.

“My fellow craft brewers love the idea of using New Mexico ingredients in our beers,” Erway said.

Goblet said the collaboration to create the State Fair beer is a nod to the craft brewing industry in New Mexico.

“Over the last three years the New Mexico Brewers Guild has evolved,” Goblet said. “We have been around since 2012 and who would have known that three years later we would be working with the Department of Tourism and the Department of Agriculture? We’re thrilled the state is recognizing the impact craft beer is having on New Mexico.”

You don’t have to wait to find the cream ale at the New Mexico State Fair, which runs Sept. 10-20. It is available now at La Cumbre as well as local retailers including Kelly’s, Jubilation, Stone Face Package Liquors, Total Wine, Trader Joe’s and Whole Foods.

It also will be available on tap at Brickyard Pizza, Nob Hill Bar & Grill, O’Niell’s Northeast Heights location, Two Fools and Standard Diner in Albuquerque. It will be available soon at Billy’s Long Bar and Horse & Angel Tavern. The cream ale can be found in Santa Fe at Loyal Hound and Violet Crown.

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