Emily Jaceks - KOB.com

June 24, 2017 07:26 PM

ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. – Get ready to raise a glass, or can, to the penguins.

The Rio Bravo Brewing Company is making a special beer to honor the group of aquatic birds that will soon call the Albuquerque Zoo home.

But first, the Penguin Chill needs to be built, and you can help contribute while enjoying a cold one.

“It’s a great beer, a light lager. People ask for it by name,” said Rio Bravo Brewery Owner Randy Baker.


Penguin Lager is now available at the downtown brewery; it’s available on tap or to buy in 4-packs.

On Sunday, the brew will be available at the zoo.

Baker and his wife, Denise, are the brains behind it all.

“They’re just really great community people,” said Julie Miller Rugg, executive director of the New Mexico BioPark Society. “We’ve been doing a lot of events over there, and we started talking about, ‘Hey, why don’t you brew us a beer?’ Then it turned into, ‘Hey, why don’t you brew us a beer and do fundraising for us?’”

Baker said he’s spent many years at the BioPark Zoo, and has a special place in his heart for the animals – especially the penguins.

“There are about 18 types of penguins and they’re all having a tough time right now,” he said. “We all live in this house together. We’ve got to take care of it.”

For every Penguin Lager that is sold, one dollar will go towards the New Mexico BioPark Society.

Baker said he isn’t sure at the moment when the fundraiser will end; it could run beyond completion of the penguin habitat.

“We’re trying to help out as much as possible, and this is one way to participate,” Baker said. “Because who doesn’t like beer?”