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Welcome to Amazing Tap Handles - The Tap Handle Museum. Here you will find photos of the Museum's collection of beer taps, along with brewery info. Have a look around the Museum, and use the contact form in sidebar to leave me feedback about the site, talk about taps, or if you have a rare tap handle you'd like to sell to the Museum. I'd love to hear from you! Please, no inquires about buying taps - they're not for sale.

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Sunday, December 21, 2014

Tap Handle #452: Blue Corn Cafe & Brewery - High Altitude Pale Ale

Tap size: 11"
Rarity:  Scarce
Mounting:  internal 3/8" nut

This tap was a bit difficult to photograph properly, as the internal nut was not mounted squarely, making the tap tilt to one side. This "tilt" is commonly found on many older taps. Although this tap is mostly flat, it is only partially bas relief style - the bighorn sheep is fully three-dimensional. The sheep stands on top of a snowy peak with a patch of clouds hanging behind the mountains, and his cartoonish features make him quite a character. Since the Blue Corn Cafe & Brewery is a relatively small outfit, and this beer has been discontinued for some time, this tap is extremely rare - I've never seen another like it.

Click through to read more about Blue Corn Cafe & Brewery, their retired High Altitude Pale Ale, and to see more photos of this lofty tap...

Blue Corn Cafe & Brewery was founded in Santa Fe, New Mexico in 1994 by Jerry Peters. Peters was an art and real estate dealer who created Santa Fe Dining Inc., which owned the La Casa Sena restaurant, the Rio Chama Steakhouse and Rooftop Pizzeria. The Blue Corn Cafe became part of the Santa Fe Dining group, and was a restaurant only. The brewpub/brewery was built later in a separate location in 1997, and consisted of a one-manned 7 barrel brew house. There were four 7 barrel fermenters and one 15 barrel fermenter, with the 15 barrel used exclusively for Road Runner IPA, their most popular beer. Blue Corn Brewery has 6 house beers and 4 rotating specialty beers.

In 1999 a second location was added in Albuquerque, but was later closed in 2004. In 2007 their Oatmeal Stout won a gold medal at the Great American Beer Festival. In 2010, tragedy struck the brewery when a drunk driver, who was out on bail after his fifth drunken-driving arrest, killed two teenage sisters in Santa Fe after being over-served while at the brewpub. Blue Corn was fined $10,000 by the state Alcohol and Gaming Division, and implemented a program for employees in order to prevent a repeat of the incident. However, the brewery put the incident behind them, and restored some of their former glory in 2014 by winning a second gold medal for their Oatmeal Stout.

High Altitude was a Pale Ale referred to as "altitude with an attitude". The beer was dry hopped with Cascade and Centennial hops to produce a medium body, crisp hop character and dry finish. It had an amber color with a citrus, fruity hop aroma. However, the beer has been discontinued since at least 2008.

Ratebeer weighted average:  3.17 out of 5
Beer Advocate:  no score

Blue Corn Cafe
133 Water St.
Santa Fe, New Mexico 87501

Blue Corn Brewry & Brewpub
4056 Cerrillos Road
Santa Fe, NM 87501

Source Material
Blue Corn Cafe website

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