LOS LUNAS — Los Lunas has a new brewery following the opening of The Valencia Taproom by The 377 Brewing on Main Street in March.
The brewery, which received its permits to open the day before businesses were temporarily shuttered under the first public health order related to COVID-19, got the word out of their opening by distributing coupons for to-go beers wherever they could.
The 377 Brewing, which opened initially in Albuquerque in 2017, focuses on European style beers, primarily varieties found in Belgium and Germany and is a tribute to Kirtland Air Force base and everything it has provided to the Albuquerque area.
“All of our beers are going to be European style,” General Manager Tina Tarin said. “A lot of them are German style. Our Schwarzbier is the one we’ve won an award on, its a dark German lager.
“That one is really good. Our Dunkel is one of our better-selling beers as well, its a Bavarian dark lager.”
Tarin is the one who oversees the day to day operations at the brewery and said the first six months have prepared them for anything going forward, between COVID and the bumps in the road that come with opening a brewery for the first time.
As they have adapted to the ever-changing COVID restrictions, from being able to open up indoor dining to having to close it back down, as well as having shades on the patio blow down in wind storms and a door hinge pulling out of the wall.
“I think its a good thing,” Tarin said with a laugh. “We’re working the kinks out before we’re able to open at full capacity.”
The beer served at the taproom is produced at the company’s Albuquerque brewery and brought down in kegs, which are split into seven-and-a-half gallon pony kegs in order to fit into the temporary kegerator that Tarin and her staff are using while a more permanent setup, as well as a new refrigeration unit, are installed.
Currently, the selection of what is available on tap does rotate, so sometimes favorites may be off the board.
Growlers, bottles and cans are also available, with a fridge featuring pre-bottled options, but the ability to choose any of the beers on tap to be canned or bottled on the spot also exists.
In addition, they are in the process of putting in a kitchen in order to add food service, but that process has been delayed while they await an inspection on the newly installed water line.
Once the kitchen is completed, they will serve a menu similar to the Albuquerque location, which specializes in burgers.
In the meantime, the taproom hosts food trucks Tuesday through Saturday, which rotate based on the day.
“Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursday is Rock-A-Belly, he does sandwiches,” Tarin said. “Friday its been a variety of people, and then Saturday and Sunday is Big Mike’s. Until we have a kitchen, people are also welcome to bring in their own food. If you’re here and you want to get delivery, that’s fine, or even just bring it in with you.”
The walls in the taproom are adorned with the work of Armstrong Photography, which is a husband and wife team local to Los Lunas, with all of the prints available for purchase.
Already, there are plans to expand the patio, as well as add in a beer garden in addition to the construction of the kitchen.
Tarin said Cliff Sandoval and Fred Atencio, the owners of The 377 Brewery, do all of the work themselves.