The Vine – Cascade Brewing

From Portland Oregon’s Cascade Brewing comes their “The Vine” a sour ale aged with grape juice from white wine grapes.  The beer pours a cloudy orange with a very little head.  The aroma consists of white wine, sour, vinegar, oak and come citrus peal.  The flavour is of sour, vinegar, oak, grapes and some vanilla.  The alcohol content comes in at 8.85% but is not all that present in the flavour.  This is an amazing sour ale just like everything else that Cascade Brewing is doing.  The difference here is with grapes being added it has an ever so slight wine flavour coming though with the other great flavours.  I am not a wine fan but it can compliment a great beer fore sure!

Commercial Description:  This Northwest Style Sour Ale is a blend of Blond ales that were aged in oak barrels for up to 12 months before cold aging on fresh pressed grapes for an additional three months.


Sigrun India Pale Ale – Odin Brewing

From Odin Brewing out of Seattle Washington USA comes the “Sigrun India Pale Ale” the newest beer in their lineup!  This IPA pours a light copper colour with a white head.  The aroma has a heavy malt presence with citrus, melon and a floral hops finish.  The flavour consists of sweet melons and citrus up front tons of malts and a great bitter finish.  The alcohol content of this brew is 6.1% and the IBU comes in at 50.

Commercial Description:  This easily approachable IPA is light copper in colour and brewed with lightly kilned barley and rye malts.  Numerous hop additions provide supple aromas of stone fruit and melon that finish with a crisp hop tang.  While this beer is packed with flavour, it is light enough in body to be enjoyed with a wide range of dishes.  In Norse mythology, ‘Sigrun’ is a Valkyrie, representing a selection of strong and wise women tasked with deciding who lived and died in battle.  On a more personal note, Sigrun (more affectionately known as ‘Runa’) is the grand matriarch of Odin Brewing.  Her name is Old Norse and roughly translates to ‘Victory Rune’.  Her namesake IPA pays homage to a strong and wonderful woman with a balanced and approachable character.


Ovila Abbey Quad with Plums – Sierra Nevada Brewing Company

Limited Collaboration

This Ale was created in Collaboration with Sierra Nevada Brewing Company and the Trappist-Cistercian Monks at Abbey of New Clairvaux both in California.  The brewery is located in Chico while the abbey is located in Vina.  The monks may be trappist Monks but this is not an official Trappist beer but an Abby Ale.  The “Ovila Abbey Quad with Plums” is what has been born out of this collaboration. The beer pours a deep brown with a reddish tinge and a brown head.  The aroma consists of malts, sweet fruitiness, plums and other dark fruits and maybe a hint of alcohol.  The flavour is of sweet malts, dark fruit like plums, caramel, sugar, yeast and some alcohol.  The alcohol content of this brew comes in at 10.4%.  I would have to say the Monks and Sierra Nevada have come up with a great beer worthy of some day bearing the Official Trappist logo!

Commercial Description:  Ovila Abbey Quad is heady with aromas of caramel, rich malt, and dark fruit balanced by the spiciness and delicate fruity notes of a traditional Belgian yeast. This complex beer is a collaboration between Sierra Nevada Brewing Co. and the monks of the Abbey of New Clairvaux. It features sugar plums grown on the grounds of the Abbey and harvested by the monks in Vina. We hope you enjoy this collaboration ale.  A collaboration between Sierra Nevada Brewing Co. and the monks at the Abbey of New Clairvaux, Ovila Abbey Quad brings the centuries-old monastery brewing tradition to America. Ovila Abbey Quad is rich and complex with layers of flavor including notes of intense dark fruits, and caramel-like maltiness. Rich and complex, this ale should be shared among friends in the true spirit of the season. A portion of the proceeds from this ale goes toward the restoration of the historic Santa Maria de Ovila chapter house on the grounds of the Abbey of New Clairvaux. This medieval building stood for nearly eight centuries in Spain. William Randolph Hearst purchased the monastery in 1931 and planned to use the stones for a castle even grander than his famous San Simeon. Although Hearst’s plans crumbled, these historic stones will rise again in a California Cistercian abbey.

Food pairing as per Sierra Nevada Brewing Company:  smoked meats, game, gouda, sharp cheddar, plum-walnut tart.


90 Minute IPA – Dogfish Head Brewery

From Milton, Delaware’s Dogfish Head Brewery comes their “90 Minute IPA” a beer that is continuously hopped for 90 minutes straight and then dry hopped.  The beer pours a copper colour with and off white head.  The aroma consists of sweet malts, fruitiness and floral hops.  The flavour is of sweet tropical fruits and a ton of hops bitterness!  The alcohol content of this double IPA is 9.0% and the IBU comes in at 90.  I really enjoyed this beer and look at it as a standard for what India Pale Ales should be like.  I do live on the West Coast and all I want hops and tons of it!!!!

Commercial Description: Esquire Magazine calls our 90 Minute IPA “perhaps the best IPA in America.” An imperial IPA best savored from a snifter, 90 Minute has a great malt backbone that stands up to the extreme hopping rate.  90 Minute IPA was the first beer we continuously hopped, allowing for a pungent — but not crushing — hop flavor.  In addition to the continuous hopping, 90 Minute IPA is also dry hopped with our ‘Me So Hoppy’ device during conditioning.


Scottish Ale – Fearless Brewing Company

From Estacada, Oregon’s Fearless Brewing comes their “Scottish Ale”.  The beer pours from the tall can a copper colour with a creamy white head.  The aroma is of sweet fruity citrus and some malts.  The flavour consists of sweet fruits, citrus, caramel, brown sugar and some mild hops bitterness.  The alcohol content of this brew is 5.3%.  This is a sweet Scottish ale but a very tasty one for sure!  If you see a can of this in your local store pick it up!  Also if you see it in store in Canada send me a message because I would love to get more!