Nelson BC has a fairly new brewery in Backroads Brewing. The brewery is located on the main drive and a great spot to stop on a walk through town.
The tasting room has a great feel with lots of wood finishings and shared tables. The bar is inviting and has some bar stools on one side. They have lots of growlers and some good swag for sale also. The brewmaster Mike Kelly was originally from Nelson Brewing Company and has a ton of experience in brewing and it shows with their beers.
The brew house in the back is an 8HL brewhouse. They have 1-16HL unitank and 3-8HL unitanks with a total capacity of 40HL. A nice touch for this brewery is that they have 8-8HL serving and conditioning tanks in their cooler. these tanks are hooked right up to the taps in the taproom.
Photo from Backroads Brewing
Photo from Backroads Brewing
Photo from Backroads Brewing
If you find yourself in Nelson I really recommend you check out this brewery. They are making tasty beer and it does not make it far outside of the brewery at this point!
Trail Beer Refinery in Trail BC located in the Kootenays region of BC is one of the newest breweries in the province opening on March 25, 2017.
Trail is a town that is not like many in the province where 50% of the residence actually work at a refinery on the hill. They understand refining something into a material that is more marketable. This business just happens to refine water into a liquid that is far more interesting. Beer!
This brewery is more a brewpub than a tasting room and production brewery. They serve some tasty foods but at the same time they keep it simple. They have things like pizza and burgers. If the brewery was not as busy as it is they would have a bocci court but most often they actually just have more tables to house the crowd they are getting. I find it amazing just how busy they were as it feels much like a Vancouver brewery.
Trail Beer Refinery did not play around when they set up their brewery. They purchased a 25HL brew house with 2 – 100HL fermetnors and one – 25HL fermentor. When they did their research in Vancouver they decided to go big with the possibility of expansion instead of starting to small. The brewery started as an industrial brand much like the town really is. They do not want to be the most experimental brewery at this point but hope to convert the local macro drinkers to locally made craft beer. With the opening of the brewery they share the same head brewery as Highway 97 Brewing in Penticton Andrew Anker. The wife of one of the owners has done the brewing program at Siebel Institute in hopes of taking over brewing.
The brewery has the tag line Work Hard Play Harder and I think this really explains the town as a whole. If you find yourself in Trail it is worth checking out the brewery.
To learn more about the brewery listen to our Pacific Beer Chat episode on the brewery.
Chelsea of Brewtiful British Columbia and I headed over to Nelson for the grand opening of Torchlight Brewing’s new production brewery on June 24th, 2017 . It was also their third anniversary party as they opened their original nano brewery location in June 2014.
I had been to the original location soon after they opened and this new location is something amazingly different. The old location was way more hands on with plastic mobile fermenters with little to no refrigeration. Check out my original post on the brewery. The tasting room was also very small and not as well laid out. By the end of 2016 their brewery just could not keep up with demand and they decided to move into a much bigger production facility.
The new lounge is amazing! The space is very large with lots of seating (60 seat capacity) and 20 taps available with 6 growler filler guns. Currently not all of the taps are full but they do have some local guest taps pouring as well as their own beer and their brand new sodas. On top of the beer and sodas they also do cocktails and have a full kitchen that serves tasty food. I enjoyed all of their beer as I always do but their Sodas are really amazing also and a good choice between beers or for your friend or child that do not drink alcohol.
The brewery has grown from their original nano system to a 20HL brewhouse. The current brewing capacity is 100HL wich is an amazing upgrade from the old brewery with a 16Hl capacity. Not only does the brewery fill growlers but they produce bottles on their 8 head bottler. They also now distribute outside of Nelson to much of British Columbia. Make sure to look for their bottles in your favourite bottle shop and if they don’t have them ask the store to bring them in.
Not only is this a great brewery located in the Kootenays but the staff and the owners are great people and will make you feel very welcome. Their 13 staff members will make sure you have a great time while you visit them.
For more information check out our Pacific Beer Chat episode where we sat down and interviewed the brewery.
Steel Toad Brewpub & Dining Hall has been brewing up a storm since late 2015 but with some changes they invited me out to try some of their brew beer and share the fact they have finally begun filling growlers! Located in Vancouver’s Brewery Creek district and on the edge of the Olympic Village you do not have to venture far to check out this brewpub.
I still find it amazing that this building was saved after it lost its historical status back in 1997. Nothing usually sticks around when it is left to fall apart like this building was. Luckily the developer saw the value of the history and saved this building.
I have enjoyed myself every time I have stopped in to Steel Toad Brewing. The bar area is located in the middle and is a wrap around style. On all sides you will find seating also. There are now two different patios with one located out front and one in the back. To the far left and up the stairs you will find a nice mezzanine seating area that can be used for private events. On the right side you get to see the brew house behind a glass wall. The beer here is very fresh as they pour directly off of serving tanks for their own brews. But if you are looking for something else they also have guest taps and other bar drinks.
mezz area seating
mezz area seating
view of brewpub from mezz
Behind the glass wall you find the brewery. As far as I can tell they still use a mobile grain mill that they wheel outside to do all their milling. The brewery uses a 10 barrel brew house that consists of a two part vessel that is comprised of a mash tun and hot liquor tank. The other part of the two vessel brew house is their kettle. Once they have finished making the wort it is moved over to the fermenters on the far side. Once the beer is finished it is moved into one of 10 serving tanks. The brewery has a capacity of 1000 barrels a year. The photos below are a mix of old and new photos.
If you have never been here you are doing a disservice to yourself. If you have been its time to go back for a nice meal and to take home a growler of your favourite beer. The brewery does not purge their growlers with CO2 at this point so they recommend you drink it as soon as possible. This is a nice first step and hopefully in the future they can start purging the growlers with CO2 so that the beer will last longer.
Backcountry Brewing is the newest brewery to open up in town of Squamish. From the outside it just looks like anouther commercial building that has very little that stands out.
As you arrive at the door they currently just have a banner hanging in the window.
Now once you walk through the doors you are transported to a totally different place.
When you are inside it both feels like a ski resort bar on the one side and like your sitting outside of a backcountry building. You almost feel like you are outside drinking with the decor. This is one of the more intricate builds for a brewery in BC and I really like what they have done. It is really welcoming!
Behind a big of a keg wall to the far back of the brewery you find the brewing equipment. The brewhouse comes in at 25HL and they have 3 25HL fermenters and 3 50HL fermenters. They also have a canning line for when they are ready to start packaging their beer for sale. For now you can pick up growler fills at the brewery.
If you have not been up to check out the brewery its time to go.