I was driving past Steel Toad Brewing (since it is in an industrial building I love the pun in the name) in Vancouver and noticed they were open. My wife and I were killing time before a show and decided to take a look, see what was on the menu and maybe share a beer flight to try out their brews. Turns out they are giving free flights of their own beer until “late this week” so we both had a flight, trying their American Blonde, Saison, Rye IPA, Special Bitter and Oatmeal Stout.
While all of their beers were good I want to focus on the Rye IPA (though I should point out I liked their Saison a lot). Our server mentioned that she generally did not like IPAs but the Rye IPA was her favourite out of the Steel Toad offerings, similar to my wife and I who feels that IPAs have gone overboard with the bitter hops to the exclusion of flavour. The Rye IPA did have a good hit of hops but it has both bittering hops and aromatic hops, providing some nice, subtle citrus. It also has a strong rye malt backbone providing a spiciness that cuts through the bitter hops and a good full body. This is the sort of IPA I want to drink.
If you are in the area near Olympic Village (2nd Ave and Ontario) stop in for a flight and give Steel Toad a try.
As a side note, they do have a big projection TV in the restaurant area but they also are smart enough to roll it up if there isn’t a major event being shown.