Navigation

Graduates of CNM: Amelia Salas

After earning a certificate from CNM’s Brewing program, Amelia has quickly ascended to general manager of Thirsty Eye Brewing Co. in east-downtown (EDo) Albuquerque.
Graduates of CNM: Amelia Salas
Amelia has used her education in brewing and beverage management to land a job as general manager of Thirsty Eye Brewing Co.

Aug 15, 2019

Due to dietary restrictions, Amelia Salas was never interested in beer until she learned that certain brewing methods could allow her to enjoy one of New Mexico’s hottest commodities.

“I was able to discern that I am able to drink beer that doesn’t have wheat or corn in it,” Amelia says. “Once I figured that out, beer was back on the menu and I wanted to learn everything about it. So, I went straight to CNM’s Brewing program.”

Before attending CNM, Amelia graduated from the University of California, Berkeley, with a bachelor’s degree in film studies and worked in the New Mexico Film union for nearly a decade. She says she chose the Brewing Technology Certificate program at CNM because of its highly respected accreditation, which would help her climb the ladder of New Mexico’s craft beer industry.

“Almost immediately after completing the program, I was brought on as assistant brewer at Bow and Arrow Brewing Company,” she says. “The brewery community in New Mexico is so tight knit and supportive. I was able to network and make those connections with the right people with the support of the instructors at CNM.”

Amelia says that one of the most valuable aspects of CNM’s Brewing and Beverage Management program is that the majority of the instructors are industry professionals.

“It’s not this cutthroat industry here. Everyone is working together to create a successful future for everyone, and that is totally reflected in the kinds of instructors that are in the Brewing program at CNM,” she says. “The instructors are open books for the students. They’ve been in the industry for years, so they understand the needs of employers and are truly preparing students to fill those positions.”

Amelia and the team at Thirsty Eye are continuing to bring communities together through beer, wine, coffee and art.
Amelia and the team at Thirsty Eye are continuing to bring communities together through beer, wine, coffee and art.

Part of the allure of the craft beer industry in New Mexico, for Amelia, is the community building aspect. She says that New Mexico in particular is excellent at emphasizing the importance of community cultivation and support.

“What I think the brewing industry is really doing here is fostering this new wave of community building,” Amelia says. “People use the breweries for so many community events. They use the breweries to dance, to do yoga, for fundraisers, for art exhibitions. Connecting people and building community pride is what makes this industry so successful.”

Amelia has grown along with the craft beer industry here in New Mexico. She began as an assistant brewer and is now the general manager at a new brewery, Thirsty Eye Brewery, in downtown Albuquerque.

“When we were opening Thirsty Eye, one of the CNM instructors came in and gave us tips about how to succeed and what pitfalls to look out for,” she says. “That was absolutely invaluable, and we couldn’t be more grateful.” 

Amelia and the team at Thirsty Eye have added an innovative twist to the craft beer scene by creating a brewery-café hybrid while supporting the local art scene.

“You’ll notice that we don’t have TVs on the walls. Instead, we have beautiful art for our customers to appreciate and discuss over our delicious brews here at Thirsty Eye,” she says.

Thirsty Eye Brewing Company is located in east-downtown (EDo) Albuquerque on Broadway near Central. They also offer free Wi-Fi and a dog friendly patio.

Learn more about CNM’s Brewing and Beverage Management program.