From Spinnakers Gastro Brewpub in Victoria BC comes the “Jolly Hopper Imperial IPA”. The beer pours a deep amber with a tan head. The aroma consists of caramel, fruity almost banana, lemon, floral hops and some sweetness. The flavour is of caramel, toffee, fruity, citrus rind, resin, pith, hops bitterness and a grassy finish. The alcohol content comes in at 8% with an IBU of 100. The 100 IBU and the alcohol does not really come out in the flavour as bitterness but this is an interesting flavour anyways. I would say this almost seems like and English IPA.
Commercial Description: Ahoy matey! While the Jolly Roger is flown to identify that pirates are about to attack, our Jolly Hopper signifies an imminent attack on your tastebuds. Featuring a moutherload of experimental hops, this beauty is not for the faint of palate. Surrender or walk the plank!
From Strange Fellows Brewing Company in East Vancouver comes their “Bayard Farmhouse Saison”. Check out the tasting panel I was part of for this beer at Whats Brewing magazine. The beer pours a golden colour with a white head with some retention. The aroma consists of citrus, orange, pepper and a citrus find in the finish. The flavour is of lots of citrus and tons of orange rind, pepper, herbal notes, crackery malts and a grassy and mild bitter finish. The alcohol content comes in at 5.5% with an IBU of 25. I enjoyed this beer but I found the citrus rind a little strong for my liking as it took on a bit of an odd bitterness.
Commercial Description: He’s back and better than ever! – Hero of many a legend, Bayard the horse perpetually outwits any attempt to control him & fearlessly blazes his own path. He symbolizes the free spirit not to be tamed. Wild by nature, this Saison is the happenstance of unique yeasts & bottle-conditioning, & is just the thing for celebrating the things we cannot control.
Food pairing as per brewery: Asian & Middle-Eastern cuisine, spicy, funky & creamy cheeses
From Hearthstone Brewery in North Vancouver comes their “Wyld Raspberry Berliner Weisse”. The beer pours a reddish pink colour with a small white head. The aroma is of Raspberry, sweetness but not to much else. The flavour is of raspberry, tartness with some undertones of sweetness with a mild malt note. The alcohol content comes in at 3.2% with an IBU of 00. You can not go wrong with a nice session sour ale and this one will not disappoint.
Commercial Description: We brew this the way they did back in the day, using a 100% wild lactobacillus bacteria to sour the beer, then we bring it back into the kettle and add 200lbs of real, whole local raspberries resulting in a pink, tart and refreshing summer beer.
Paul Pyne is a certified Cicerone and a craft beer consultant. Not only is he a Cicerone but he is also an Industry Professional and an Instructor in craft beer courses.
If you are wanting to get into craft beer he can do a guided tasting of some good entry level beers. He can also do very specialized tastings be it to a certain style, Country or Theme. These tastings are not limited to private events either you can also have these tasting for your company. Recently I was invited out to a specialized tasting with a few of my industry counterparts. Seeing as we are not just your average consumer Paul set us up with some seriously cool beers.
I have lost my notes of the beers we tasted but the following are what we tried.
Gulden Draak – 2016 Limited Edition Aged in Whisky Barrels 03/2016.
Brekeriet – Sourley Wine (Sour Barley Wine)
Hornbeer – Caribbean Rumstout
Straffe Hendrik – Heritage 2015 Quadrupel a Armagnac Oak Aged Ale
Le Trou du Diable – L’Ours
This was one of the best tastings I have every been to. The beers were amazing and Paul had done a tone of research about the breweries and the beers themselves. I would highly recommend checking out one of this tastings or hiring him for a private tasting and education session.
From Microbrasserie Le Castor in Rigaud Quebec comes their “Yakima IPA”. Thanks to Cee of Beer & Other Shhh Podcast for this beer! The beer pours an orange colour with a white head. The flavour is of orange, citrus, tropical fruits, juicy and floral hops. The flavour is of herbal hops, resin, orange, tropical fruits, mild caramel and bitterness. The alcohol content comes in at 6.5% with an IBU of 75. This was a really enjoyable IPA and I am glad I got the chance to try it!
Commercial Description: This beer is a celebration of the mighty West Coast hop, grown east of the Cascade mountains. Multiple varieties are used in this ale, at several different points in the brewing process. With emphasis on late hop & dry hop additions, we serve up juicy citrus flavours & aromas on a bed of pale malt.