Free Dive IPA – Coppertail Brewing


From Coppertail Brewing in Tampa Florida comes their “Free Dive IPA”.  The beer pours a golden yellow colour with a white head.  The aroma consists of citrus, grapefruit, citrus rind, pine, floral hops and maybe a dank note or two.  The flavour is of grain, citrus, citrus rind, resin, pine, bitterness, earth, herbal hops and bitterness.  The alcohol content comes in at a good 5.9%.  This was a really nice India Pale Ale and a great introduction to this brewery.

Commercial Description:  Whether you’re diving for stone crabs under Tampa Bay’s Sunshine Skyway or just wishing you were, this beer’s got you covered. Expect huge hits of citrus and pine aromas layered over a bright malt backbone. Perfect for a day on the water.

Food pairing as per brewery: Spicy grilled shrimp

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Ortega Blonde 2017 – Spinnakers Gastro Brewpub


From Spinnakers Gastro Brewpub in Victoria BC comes the “Ortega Blonde” 2017 edition.  The beer is a blend of  wine and Ortega Blonde Ale.  The wine is of the final vintages of the Muse Winery that was the oldest winery on Vancouver Island.  The wine was a Bacchus wine.  The beer poured a golden colour with a white head.  The aroma consists of white wine, citrus and some grassy hops.  The flavour is of white wine, citrus, grain, bread, mild bitterness and a mild spicy hops.  The alcohol content comes in at 6.2% with an IBU of 24.  People that know me know that I do not like wine but this beer is well made and well blended and really refreshing.

Commercial Description:  Building on our 2014 Ortega Blonde, and taking the final vintages from Muse Winery, home of the oldest wines on Vancouver Island, this Ortega/Bacchus blend was introduced to a light bodied Canadian Pilsen based ale resulting in a delicate, complex, effervescent ale, a beer spritzer with citrus notes, and a dry white wine finish. As the saying goes “It takes lots of beer to make a good wine.” We believe in having them both and drinking them both too. Cheers!

Seas Between Us Red IPA – Twa Dogs


From Twa Dogs (Macaloney Brewers & Distillers) brewed at the Victoria Caledonian Brewery & Distillery comes their “Seas Between Us Red IPA”.  The beer pours a deep copper colour with a tan head.  The aroma consists of caramel, citrus, pine and floral hops.  The flavour is of caramel, resin, fruity citrus, pine, herbal and bitterness.  The alcohol content comes in at 7%.  I have not had a ton of beer from this brewery as of yet but this beer was an enjoyable one.

Blondes In Stereo – Torchlight Brewing


From Torchlight Brewing in Nelson BC comes their “Blondes In Stereo”.  The beer pours a cloudy blonde colour with a white head.  The aroma consists of grainy, citrus, citrus zest and some floral hops.  The flavour is of grain, bready, citrusy, orange, citrus zest, mild spices and mild bitterness.  The alcohol content comes in at 5% with an IBU of 19.  This gives you exactly what you would expect a tasty low hopped ale that drinks a bit like a lager.

Commercial Description:  Did you grab this bottle because it was the brightest one on the shelf?  Well, you’ve definitely made the right call by picking this crisp, refreshing, blonde ale to quench your craft beer thirst.  Made with Wakatu hops from New Zealand, this is the perfect beer to pair with all our sunshine shenanigans.

Bayard Farmhouse Saison – Strange Fellows Brewing


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