Fest-Of-Ale 2017 – Penticton


April has come again and one of my favourite beer festivals has come and passed.  This was the 22 annual Fest-Of-Ale in Penticton.  This years festival was held on April 7-8th 2017 (Friday and Saturday).  This festival is held at the Penticton Trade and Concention Centre and is comprised of a large indoor area and a small outdoor section.  Both areas have live music as well as food options.

This festival continues to grow every year.  This year had an extra 15 breweries bringing it up to 65 and and a total of 6 bringing it up to 71 cider and beer producers.

This year the list included:

4 Mile Brewing Co.
Bad Tattoo Brewing Co
Banff Ave Brewing Co.
Barley Mill Brew Pub
BC Brew Co. and Distilling  – New
BC Tree Fruits Cider
Beau’s All Natural Brewing
BNA Brewing Co
Bomber Brewing
Boundary Brewing Company  – New
Bridge Brewing
Britannia Brewing  – New
Cannery Brewing Co.
Canuck Empire Brewing
Category 12 Brewing
Coal Harbour Brewing
Coronado Brewing Company
Crannog Ales
CrossRoads Brewing  – New
Dead Frog
Detonate Brewing
Doan’s Craft Brewing Company  – New
Dominion Cider Co
Dogwood Brewing – New
Double Mountain
Fernie Brewing Co.
Field House Brewing Co.  New
Firehall Brewery
Foamers’ Folly Brewing Co.  New
Four Winds Brewing
Fuggles & Warlock Craftworks  – New
Glutenberg
Hearthstone Brewery
Highway 97 Brewing Company Ltd
Howe Sound Brewing
Howling Moon Craft Cider
Hoyne Brewing Co.
Kettle River Brewing Company  – New
Lighthouse Brewing Company
Longwood Brewery
Marten Brewing Co.
McClelland Premium Imports
Moody Ales
Moon Under Water
Mt Begbie Brewing Co.
Naramata Cider Co.  New
NOMAD Cider – New
Orchard Hill Estate Cidery Ltd.
Parallel 49 Brewing
Persephone Brewing Co.
Phillips Brewing & Malting Co
R&B Brewing Co
Ravens Brewing Company
Red Arrow Brewing Company  – New
Red Collar Brewing Co
Red Racer
Red Truck Beer Company
Spinnakers Brewpub
Steamworks Brewing
Steel & Oak Brewing Co.
Strange Fellows Brewing  – New
Summerland Heritage Cider Co.
The Parkside Brewery  – New
The Tin Whistle Brewery
Torchlight Brewing
Tree Brewing Co.
Twin Sails Brewing  – New
Twisted Hills Craft Cider
Victoria Caledonian Brewery  – New
Whistler Brewing
Yellow Dog Brewing

This year there were more than 175 craft beers being poured over the Friday and Saturday with over 5000 people in attendance.  Once again this was an amazing festival with great beer and lots of great people!  Here are some of the beer and food that I tried while at the fest.

This year I spent more time working on episodes of Pacific Beer Chat than I did taking photos for the blog.

Episode 12 Found us talking with Crannóg Ales out of Sorrento.   Website, Google Play Music, iTunes, Stitcher.

Episode 13 Part 1 found us talking with a selection of breweries as seen below.  Website, Google Play Music, iTunes, Stitcher.

Cannery Brewing, Detonate Brewing, Bomber Brewing, Steel & Oak Brewing, Untapped Craft Imports, BNA Brewing, Kettle River Brewing and Torchlight Brewing.

Episode 14 Part 2 found us talking with a selection of breweries as seen below.  Monday May 1, 2017

R&B Brewing, Crossroads Brewing, Tin Whistle Brewing, Marten Brewpub and Yellow Dog Brewing.

Like every year this was an amazing event.  There are a ton of people but you never have to wait in line long for a beer.  So many beer festivals get so crowded that you almost need two samples glasses to make it to the front of the line.  In the years that I have attended this has never been an issue.

This festival has become one of my absolute favorites every year.  Most of the best breweries come to this festival every year and the people really love that fact!  This year there were so many new beers to boot!  It may not have been requested but this year so many breweries brought out North East Style IPA’s the super cloudy and juicy beers.  These beers are all the rage right now and I am very happy that this is the case.

The first day of the festival I really explored the beers that the festival had to offer as I usually do.  This year though the weather was very bad on the way to Penticton and you could pick out the people like me that took the Coquihalla Highway and the Okanagan Connector as were were still stressed out and drank a bit to much because of it.  On Day 2 I was once again one of the as they put it Industry Expert judges for the best beers of the festival.  After Juding beer from 10am on Saturday I decided like normal that the second day of the festival was far more about the food than the beer.  Luckily for me the food was amazing!

If I remember correctly on Saturday around 3pm all of the judges made their way to the Main Stage for the awards ceremony.  Here are the winners from this years festival.

The Awards were distributed as follows:
Best in Show, Judges’ Choice Award:
High Five Hazy IPA – Yellow Dog Brewing, Port Moody, BC

Best in Class, Judges’ Choice Awards:
Pilsner/Golden Lager Pixel Pils – Fuggles & Warlock, Richmond, BC
Pale Ale Dusk Pale Ale – Parkside Brewery, Port Moody, BC
Wheat Ale Summer Ale, Witbier – Steamworks Brewing, Burnaby, BC
Saison Sirens Chai Saison – Britannia Brewing, Richmond, BC
Amber/Dark Ale Brave Liver Scotch Ale – Mt. Begbie Brewing, Revelstoke, BC
IPA Street Legal IPA – Twin Sails Brewing, Port Moody, BC
Specialty IPA High Five Hazy IPA – Yellow Dog Brewing, Port Moody, BC
Dark Lager Dark Lager – Steel & Oak Brewing, New Westminster, BC
Stout/Porter Dry Irish Stout – Ravens Brewing, Abbotsford, BC
Sour Nectarous – Four Winds Brewing, Delta, BC
Cider Pippin’s Fate – Twisted Hills Craft Cider, Cawston, BC
Fruit Beer Park Life Passionfruit Ale – Bomber Brewing, Vancouver, BC

The People’s Choice Awards, voted for by guests at the event:
Best Beer Old Style Lager – Red Arrow Brewing, Duncan, BC
Best Cider Pears & Peaches – BC Tree Fruits Cider, Kelowna, BC
Best Food Brodo Kitchen, Penticton, BC

When it comes right down to it if you can only make it to one beer festival in British Columbia in a year then the Okagnagan Fest-Of-Ale is that one festival.  They also have an amazing pop up liquor store to boot!

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East Van SMaSH (Amarillo) – Bomber Brewing


From Bomber Brewing in East Vancouver comes their “East Van SMaSH (Amarillo)” the latest India Session Ale in their Single Malt and Single Hop series of beers.  The beer uses German Munich malts and a Vermont Ale yeast.  The beer pours a mild cloudy copper colour with a white head.  The aroma consists of citrus, grapefruit, peach, melon, caramel and floral hops.  The flavour is of citrus, grapefruit, peach, melon, caramel, resin and bitterness.  The alcohol content comes in at 4.4%.  The East Van SMaSH is always a good beer but this batch was one of my favourite so far.

Beer League Bash (3rd Annual) – Vancouver


On March 11, 2017 Bomber Brewing hosted the Third Annual Beer League Bash at Britannia Community Rink in East Vancouver.  The event ran from 4-10pm and cost $25 a ticket which got you three beer tickets.  More sample tickets could be purchased for $1.25 or for donated hockey gear.

From Bomber Brewing:  100% of the proceeds go to support Britannia After School Hockey. This great youth program gives kids, that normally would not have the opportunity to play hockey, a chance to play. BASH supplies all of their gear and provides coaches/mentors to help develop not just hockey, but life skills. Through this event, the local craft brewery community has helped to raise close to $5000 a year in cash and donated gear to support this program. Come out and enjoy some great beer and some mediocre hockey and help us surpass that level this year.

From me:  This event helps support an amazing program that helps kids be part of a team and learn life skills in a sport that is usually very cost prohibitive. I wanted to play as a child but my family could not afford it. This BASH program helps keep kids occupied with life lessons and a fun sport so that they do not end up getting in trouble with gangs and drugs. Or at least gives them a fighting chance. East Vancouver is traditionally not as well off as other areas of Metro Vancouver and the kids really need programs such as this. Supporting this event and the BASH program itself is enriching children’s lives and I am all for that!  

This fundraiser consists of a beer league hockey tournament and a beer festival.  Starting with the beer festival in the stands.

The breweries that came to support the BASH were as follows:  Bomber Brewing, Central City, Moody Ales, Parallel 49, Main Street, Powell Brewery, Yellow Dog, Steamworks, Bridge, Steel & Oak, Red Truck, Callister, Strange Fellows, Doans and Luppolo Brewing.

 

I really appreciated that some of the breweries brought out beer that was brand new or fairly new to try as this event does seem to bring out the industry and not just the average beer drinker.  Without the hockey though this is just anouther beer event.  The best of the festival for me was the new release from Bomber called The Code a beer that tied into the hockey movie Goon Last of the Enforcers.  While no goons are aloud in beer league hockey the Goon does have a place in many Canadians hearts. 

Now that I mentioned hockey again here are some photos from the hockey itself.  There were 4 teams this year in the Beer League Bash.  The teams included Bomber Brewing, Parallel 49 Brewing, Craft Beer All-Stars and the Suburban All Stars.  The Craft Beer All-Stars were made up of Vancouver breweries staf while the Suburban All Stars were made up of staff from the Vancouver Suburbs. They held a round robin tournament with music between plays, goal horns and everything.

This was beer league hockey and there was definitely mistakes but it sure made for some exciting goals.  For the first time in the 3 years this event had the correct finish with Bomber Brewing winning the big trophy!

I would be remiss to share some of the videos of the actual games.

Its not a win without the skate with the trophy!

I was sad to miss the second anual event but this year was a blast!  Being a huge hockey fan and beer fan this manages to bring so much good together and it is for a good cause to help get kids off the street!  If you did not make it to this event make sure you make it out next year!

The Code East Coast IPA – Bomber Brewing


With the Release of the sequel to my favourite hockey movie on Friday March 17th 2017 Goon Last of the Enforcers, Bomber Brewing in Vancouver made “The Code East Coast IPA” and its Official.  The beer pours a mildly cloudy golden colour with a white head.  The aroma consists of pineapple, citrus, caramel and dank hops.  The flavour is of resin, pineapple, citrus, overall fairly juicy with caramel, pine and bitterness.  The alcohol content comes in at 6.9% with an IBU of 69 just like our favourite goon Doug Glatt’s number.   Pick up a six pack soon and go see the movie in theatres in Canada now!

 

Absolute Horizon CDA – Bomber Brewing


From Bomber Brewing in East Vancouver comes their “Absolute Horizon Cascadian Dark Ale”.  The Black IPA pours a very deep brown colour with a light brown head.  The aroma consists of roasted malts, earth, ash and floral hops.  The flavour is of earth, ash, burnt malts, chocolate, grapefruit, citrus rind, tropical fruit, grassy hops and bitterness.  The alcohol content comes in at 6.5% with an IBU of 72.  This is the way a CDA should be a mix of roast and fruits.  So many of this style are just far to burnt and roasty.

Commercial Description:  Almost every species in the universe has an irrational fear of the dark, but there’s nothing to fear in this perfectly balanced Cascadian Dark Ale.  the stellar mass that lies within forms a dichotomous darkness of Midnight Wheat and Chocolate Malts, punctuated by the presence of Galaxy, Horizon, Comet, and Apollo hops.  This may just be the beer you’re looking for… So say we all…

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