Thursday, February 6, 2014

THE ROAD TO TAOS

E L E C T R I C I T Y…..

Ahhhhh - you gotta love electricity! We have been enjoying the luxury of being 'plugged in' for the previous three nights. Cold?! Yup - it's been cold! Last night it was forecasted to go down to a chilly 24F (-4C)  just south of Alamogordo. Brrrrr……

Even with electricity and a comfort station we left site 24 at Oliver Lee Memorial State Park this morning - the Wood Clan has trouble sitting still. Although sitting still is a bit of a stretch - we got some good hiking in the first two days that we were there. 

But I am completely ahead of myself - you all are still back with us deciding to leave Santa Fe after our look around the downtown area back last Friday. 

So, let's get to it - I am now four posts behind since the State Park was without wifi. Hopefully I can get two done tonight and two tomorrow night - fingers crossed, no promises - powering up the laptop maybe a problem in our future since we aren't going far tomorrow. 

On our way to El Paso to pick up our tickets! Excited.

Anyway, since it was only around lunch time last Friday when we decided to head out of town. There are many places to venture around Santa Fe but we decided on Taos. 

Taos.

It has been on my list for a long time - ever since I missed it twenty years ago. 

Between Derek and I we had lots of ideas about what Taos would be like.

We were totally and I mean TOTALLY off.


It wasn't the best day to be traveling but we were determined. It looks stormy in the mountains the same mountains that we were headed to - and windy?!


But we kept with it and by the time we were headed into those mountains along the 68 things settled down a bit.

A very beautiful drive by the way - one of the best we have been on. Well then, you are saying where are the pictures. Sadly, I don't have any for now. 

And here is why.


About half way up we noticed a sign on the highway. Craft Beer. 

Craft Beer? Where?!

Well, in Embudo of course! If you can imagine, there is a small brewery called the Blue Heron Brewing Company just off the highway on the way to Taos. Imagine our surprise.

Somehow, while reading our New Mexico Brewery Map we failed to realize that there was a brewery on the way to Taos - guess we were too focused on the Taos breweries.


We weren't going to just drive by now were we? Our porter samples.

On tap today. Rather than get a flight we just went for samples of the porter - it was early in the day after all and we had already been to the Blue Corn Brewery and were headed to more. 

The Blue Heron is also a winery - we sampled a little bit of wine as well.


A small, unassuming place putting out excellent beer. Makes us hopeful that a small place out in the middle of nowhere can make a go of it with good product…hmm.. a seed is planted. A note to you guys too - Daniel and Jennifer!


It just shows that you don't have to have a huge production system to put out good craft beer.

We stayed a while since the Blue Heron had wifi. We didn't head out again until about 4:30pm after visiting with some of the locals.

We had a place to be after all.


Our destination for the night. We took this picture just after we arrived. It was cold up in those mountains!

We arrived into Taos in the dark - good thing that a couple of guys told us where to find the Taos Mesa Brewing - clear on the other side of Taos - actually - quite a bit out of Taos!

That is why I don't have anymore pictures this post of the awesome ride up. Not to worry - they will be in the next post as we came back down the 68 Saturday afternoon.


Once we got in and found a seat we looked over the beer menu. It was all a bit much to take in a first - what a cool place. And I mean COOL. One of the coolest places we have been in a long time - if ever. Boy, I sure hope I can do this place justice with this post. 

We had a GREAT time Saturday night.


Having a raven as their theme only made things better for the Taos Mesa Brewing in our books.


Again, we decided against getting a flight - our usual way of introducing ourselves to a new brewery. We went straight for the Superstitious Stout and the Big Brown Beer. The BBB has a APV of 8.9% so it comes in a snifter glass.


A groovy place - it used to be an airplane hanger. 



TMB has everything you could want on a Saturday night - a funky atmosphere, great craft beer, good food, neat people to visit with, and music. Five - count them - FIVE bands for the night. 


A very eclectic group of people. It's been a while since we were with such a range of ages and lifestyles. 


Band #1. A pretty wild bunch.

Here's the movie - I know - a bit extreme for our tastes but it helped us feel a bit younger - or older. Derek and Cassia had fun dancing. Not really what a typical four year old listens to I'll give you that!

video


The next band - sure wish I had caught their name. Amazing! They are from New Orleans and had a great sound - the lead singer had a really deep voice. 

Here is another movie - I loved this song - much better in person of course.

video

When we first arrived Derek went to check if we could overnight in the parking lot. 

Nice that we didn't have to leave especially with a young one. We only lasted until about 9:30pm - all the dancing wore Cassia out. She had also met a friend in one of the Owners three year old boy. The two of them had fun running around. After Derek came back to the van with us and got us set up he returned to listen to more music and visit a little longer with the couple that we had met. 


Since we arrived in the dark it was interesting to see where we were in the light of day. 

Did I mentioned how cold it was?



Derek and I took turns freezing our hands to take the pictures.


Just before we left it even started to snow a little.




A whole lot of thought went into the design of Taos Mesa Brewing - it is the complete package. Great beer, architectural and graphic, location, atmosphere, food and music.



Derek and I have decided to list our 10 favourite Craft Breweries from our travels this winter when we get home.

Taos Mesa Brewing will be tough to knock out of top spot!

So, what about the city of Taos itself?

That's up next.

Teresa

If you are looking for more of Rantin' n Raven we are not hard to find out there in the social media world. We are on FacebookTwitter and Pinterest. See you there!






9 comments:

  1. This place looks amazing! We are planning to spend all spring and part of the summer traveling around New Mexico and Taos is high on our list of places to visit. Now that I know about this cool brewery I am even more excited. Can't wait to read more about what you thought of the town.

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    1. Amanda - it was one of our most favourite nights in a long time - you won't be disappointed - just a really cool vibe there. I guess it would also depend on the bands - hopefully a good one - or more - is playing while you are there. We would have liked Taos if we had stopped - I think it has a lot to offer. Drop us a line when you have been there - we would love to hear about you visit. A few months from now would be a much better time to visit!

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  2. Nice post! Looks like a fun place to hang out.

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  3. Its wonderful how people with a vision can take an old place like an airplane hangar and turn it into a really cool place like a craft brewery.......looks like an awesome time was had by all! And when the little one can find someone her age to hang out with, well, that's even better!

    Safe Travels.....

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    1. Love it! Sure makes for an interesting space! Cassia entertained = priceless!

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  4. My you are sure keeping busy, but too cold there for us, we will stay south a while longer yet.

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  5. What a fun place! Cassia really "gets down" with the music! What a trooper she is.

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    Replies
    1. Too funny - she sure does - her own form of dancing! Glad you watched the video (s) Croft!

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