From the new Smugglers’ Trail Caskworks Ltd brewed out of Factory Brewing in Vancouver comes their “Flaskers Ale Best British Bitter”. The beer pours a copper colour with a tan head. The aroma consists of caramel, toasted malts, sweetness and maybe a hint of fruit. The flavour is of caramel, toasted malts, mild citrus with hints of resin and bitterness. The alcohol content comes in at 3.8% with an IBU of 24. This is a nice session ale and well worth a try if you find it at the store.
Commercial Description: Flaskers were the characters who supported the lifestyle of early BC gold miners by smuggling (among other things) traditional ales to the goldfields. Dark and smooth, just like the rogues who delivered it to you.
From Granville Island Brewing out of Vancouver comes their new “BC Bitter”. This English Bitter pours a cloudy copper colour with an off white head. The aroma consists of caramel, sweet malts, mild grapefruit, mild pine and floral hops. The flavour is of caramel, mild earth, citrus, bitterness and herbal hops. The alcohol content comes in at 5.5% with an IBU of 32. This new beer using all BC grown ingredients is an enjoyably brew. Granville Island Brewing is owned by Molson Coors.
Commercial Description: Local ingredients add BC flavour to this traditional English bitter. Nugget and Chinook hops from Lillooet balance brilliantly with Pilsner malt from Armstrong for a slightly hoppy, bready summer beer. Pair with fish & chips.
From Backroads Brewing Co the newest brewery in Nelson BC comes their “ESB”. This Extra Special Bitter pours a cloudy brown colour with a tan head. The aroma consists of toffee, brown sugar and a hint of fruit. The flavour is of mild roasted malts, toffee, brown sugar, semi sweet with some mild bitterness. The alcohol content comes in at 4.7% with an IBU of 30. While it is not quite like any other ESB I really enjoyed it and I hope that I can get more of their beer sooner than the next time I end up in Nelson.
From Strathcona Beer Company in Vancouver comes their “Rye ESB”. The beer pours a copper colour with an off white head. The aroma consists of rye spice, rye malts, caramel, and floral hops. The flavour is of rye spice and rye malts, earth, caramel, semi sweet citrus and bitterness in the finish. The alcohol content comes in at 6.2% with an IBU of 50. Strathcona Beer Company is on to something with this beer as Rye malts seem to add great aroma and flavour to beer.
Commercial Description: Strathcona Beer Company presents a Rye, English Special Bitter. A beer brewed in the tradition of Lord Strathcona’s British heritage, a man that left behind a legacy of charity and philanthropy that shaped many communities across Canada. The design of the can, with the Strathcona astronaut, is to symbolize our first launch of limited edition, four pack, tall cans. This beer has an abundance of well rounded malts, a crisp bitter finish and a hop character that is moderate and balanced, with a touch of dark caramel flavours.
From Surrey’s Russell Brewing comes their “Blood Alley Extra Special Bitter”. The beer pours a copper colour with an off white head. The aroma consists of caramel, mild roasted malts, fruit and floral hops. The flavour is of roasted malts, caramel, grapefruit, pine, resin and bitterness. The alcohol content comes in at 5.5% with an IBU of 50. While this is not your typical ESB because the bitterness is a bit to high I quite enjoy it.
Commercial Description: Blood Alley Bitter is an Extra Special Bitter named after a notorious cobblestone laneway in Vancouver’s Gastown district. At 50 IBU’s this beer is slightly higher in bitterness than the average ESB but it is well-balanced by the rich, roasted malt flavours.
Stylistically, the malt side is very English, but the hops are all floral US varieties. Brewed with only the best including: 2-row Pilsner malt, Flaked Barley, UK Crystal Malt, and a touch of UK Chocolate Malt. We use Columbus hops in the brew kettle, and dry hop with Cascade and Willamette. PART OF THE RUSSELL BREWMASTER SERIES – a succession of small batch beers crafted for an unconventional beer drinker.