Santa’s Sac Golden Strong Ale – Bridge Brewing Company


From Bridge Brewing Company in North Vancouver comes their “Santa’s Sac Golden Strong Ale”.  The beer pours a golden colour with a white head.  The aroma consist of bubblegum, Belgian yeast, citrus and some spices.  The flavour is of bubblegum, yeast, candi sugar, sweetness, fruit with some peppery spice.  The alcohol content comes in at 10% with an IBU of 30.  This brew drinks much like a Belgian Tripel with a strong sweetness.  If you are big on that style then make some to pick this bottle up.

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Super Tuff – Tofino Brewing Company


From Tofino Brewing out of Tofino on Vancouver Island comes their 5th Anniversary Ale the “Super Tuff” an Imperial take on their Tuff Session Ale. The aroma consists of roasted malts, dark fruits, toffee, brown sugar and some residual sweetness. The flavour is of roasted malts, dark fruits, chocolate, brown sugar, toffee, earth and sherry. The alcohol content comes in at 10%. I don’t have a good reason why I have not had a Tofino Brewing beer in a while but I am glad this was my latest as it has a ton of flavour. If you can find a bottle but it.

Commercial Description:  To celebrate 5 years of brewing beer in Tofino, we bring you the Super Tuff. This is an imperial take on our brewery staple, the Tuff Session Ale. Enjoy right away or cellar this beer and let its character complexify and evolve over time. Cheers.

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He’Brew Jewbelation Reborn (17) 2013 (Aged 2+ years) – Shmaltz Brewing Company


Coming out of New York’s Shmaltz Brewing Company comes their “He’Brew Jewbelation Reborn (17)” an American Strong Ale. The beer bast brewed in 2013 and I purchased it in January 2014 and cellared until May 2016. The beer was brewed for the breweries 17th Anniversary and the first year they had their own brewery (No longer contract brewing).  The beer pours a deep brown with a ruby tinge and a brown head. The aroma consists of dark fruits, chocolate, roasted malts, molasses, toffee, coffee and sweetness.  The flavour is of dark fruits, chocolate, coffee, brown sugar, molasses, toffee, roasted malts, ash, sweetness and alcohol.  The beer used 17 malts, 17 hops and comes in at 17% Alcohol. With just over two years of cellaring this beer is surprisingly smooth for the alcohol content! It is also quite enjoyable on to of being smooth for the ABV.

Commercial Description:  How could we hope to top last year’s Jewbelation Sweet 16 with its cupcakes, unicorns, & Satan’s Ferrari birthday cake? massive challenge. So for Year 17, we threw in a whole new dimension to our shtick – we built our very own brewery! After 17 years of contract brewing, our first Shmaltz Clifton Park batch emerged 17 months after the first draft of the business plan. Coincidence? Renaissance means “Re-birth” in French & Italian. In Buddhism, the concept does not truly translate as “reincarnation” but instead as “becoming,” or a “stream of consciousness.” 11 syllables structure a haiku. Shakespeare penned 17 comedies. In The Simpsons episode “Duffness” Homer sings “When I was 17″ about buying his first beer with a fake I.D. “I drank some very good beer. I stayed up listening to Queen, When I was 17.” In The Office, Dwight recites Rule 17 that all Schrute boys must learn: “Don’t turn your back on bears, men you have wronged, or the dominant turkey during mating season.” Knowledge and growth come in many forms. It is taught that Nirvana is only attained when the soul transcends cycles of rebirth. Looks like Shmaltz just isn’t there yet. So with 17 malts, 17 hops, and 17% ABV, JEWBEL4TIONREBORN serves as another mark of our death as a contract brewer and proof of our conversion to a new life as brewery owner…… L’Chaim!!!

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Wobbly Bob English Strong Ale – Red Collar Brewing


From Red Collar Brewing in Kamloops in the Okanagan comes their “Wobbly Bob English Strong Ale”.  The beer pours a copper colour with a beige head.  The aroma consists of biscuit, mild fruit, floral hops and sweetness.  The flavour is of biscuit, plums, toffee, brown sugar, bitterness, earth and sweetness.  The alcohol content comes in at 10.6% with an IBU of 66.  Not quite like other English Strong Ales I have had but I would not hesitate to drink more of this if I found more.

Commercial Description:  A New World take on a classic English style.  A trifecta of Pacific Northwest Hops, Centennial, Comet and Cascade, are combined with rich biscuit and malt flavours.  Balance is key to this golden brew through one should heed our warning; this ale packs a wallop!

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Utopias 2013 (Aged 2 years) – Samuel Adams


Limited Edition
Bottle 6,561 of less than 15,000

From Samuel Adams out of Boston Massachusetts comes the Holy Grail of most beer nerds “Utopias” 2013 Vintage (also the most expensive beer to date).  This beer destroys your perception of what a beer is as not only is it uncarbonated but it is also 28% alcohol and is a blend of beers some of which have been aged in barrels for up to or more than 20 years!  This years edition has been aged in Bourbon barrels, 8 year old port barrels and rum barrels and the finished product is blended together with a small amount of their beer the Komsic Mother Funk.  Before you pour this beer understand it is not meant to be refrigerated and should be served at room temperature in one or two once pours.  The beer pours a deep brown colour with absolutely no head which makes sense as this is uncarbonated. The aroma consists of maple syrup, cognac, whiskey, booze, vanilla and some dark fruits.  The flavour is of maple syrup, dark fruits, vanilla, cognac, whiskey, alcohol warmth, chocolate, cherry, earth, brown sugar, rum, butterscotch, toffee, honey and plums.  This is a huge beer at 28% and there is no doubt when you drink it.  I still really enjoyed this beer although I have to say that there has not been a huge change over the last year since I tried this last.

Commercial Description:  Utopias is brewed using traditional methods. The brewers begin with a blend of two-row Caramel and Munich malts that impart a rich, deep amber color. Noble hops – Hallertau Mittelfrueh, Spalt Spalter and Tettnang Tettnanger – are also added to lend complexity and balance. During fermentation, several yeast strains are used, including one normally reserved for champagne. The beer is then blended with a variety of different brews, some of which have been aged in different wood barrels for more than 20 years. As a result of the blending and aging, Utopias invokes the flavors of a rich vintage Port, fine Cognac, or aged Sherry while feeling surprisingly light on the palate.

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