From Boundary Brewing in Kelowna and Crannóg Ales in Sorrento comes their “Not For Nazis” Organic Nut Brown Ale. This beer was born out of a digital attack that threatened the business and life of the brewer Oliver and his children for hanging an Anti Fascist flag in their brewery. When Sorrento’s Crannóg Ales stepped up to say hey we have been hanging that flag for many months it moved over to them. From this horrible situation this beer was born. If you would like to hear more about the situation take a listen to the Pacific Beer Chat episode where we profiled Boundary Brewing. The beer pours a deep chestnut brown with a brown head. The aroma consists of a good nutty start with mild roasted malts, caramel and some residual sweetness. The flavour was of nuts, caramel, roasted malts, some ash or smoke and a mild bitterness in the finish. This Organic Nut Brown ale is a great example of what I look for in a Brown Ale. So get off your couch and help fight hate by picking up a bottle of this brew!
From Toronto Ontario’s Mill Street Brewery comes their “100th Meridian Organic Amber Lager”. The beer pours a golden amber colour with a lightly off white head. The aroma consists of grainy malts, mild citrus and some grassy hops. The flavour is of citrus, fruits, grainy malts, caramel and very mild hops. The alcohol content comes in at 5% with an IBU of 24. For an amber lager this beer has a pretty good amount of things going on. The flavour is big enough I could see myself grabbing anouther bottle.
Commercial Description: Our organic barley comes from the Great Plains of Canada and I have had an opportunity to go and meet the farmers that grow this organic grain for us and they are amazing people. These fine folks have taken one step back and are doing things the right way. This is an American-style craft lager brewed with pale and amber malts and a whole lot of American west coast hops (all of the organic barley malt, hops and yeast come from west of the 100th Meridian–thus the name) to give it a wonderful character that’s 100% organic. It is a truly Canadian craft brew that combines the “best of the west” ingredients, a unique recipe and classic Mill Street smoothness.
Food pairing as per brewery: With grilled light meat/poultry, corn tortillas and mild salsa, medium cow’s milk cheese
From the brand new Dogwood Brewing in South Vancouver comes their “Organic Honey Ale”. The beer pours a cloudy golden colour with a small white head. The aroma consists of mild honey and malts. The flavour is of malts, some fruit notes and some semi sweet honey. The alcohol content comes in at 4.5% with an IBU of 15. The flavour may not be huge in this beer but it hits all the right marks and is a great session ale!
Commercial Description: Light and Refreshing with just the right amount of sweetness.
Well who would have guessed a new brewery would open up in the Vancouver area? Not me for sure I mean there isn’t a craft beer revolution going on here or anything!
Ok so I am full of it. South Vancouver now has a brewery to call its own just blocks off of Marine Way close to Knight Street. Just to kick the trend in beer lately this brewery is helmed by a female head brewer! Head Brewer Claire Connolly was formerly the head brewer at Big River Brewpub in Richmond and has worked at breweries in the UK also. Not only have they kicked the trend of Male head brewers but they are also using different ingredients than most breweries. Dogwood Brewing only uses Organic ingredients. They get their malts from Gambrinus Malting Corporation in Armstrong BC and their hops from HOOH Hops Inc (Harvesters of Organic Hops) in Lillooet BC. This is the first Organic brewery in Vancouver and only the third in the province with Nelson Brewing Company and Crannóg Ales being the other two.
When you walk into the brewery you find a nice big space with lots of table space and a bar where you can order your beer and growler fills. Currently they only have the tasting room license but I would assume from the layout they will be going for their lounge license also. There is just too much seating to not plan to have people stick around for more than one flight or 12oz glass of beer.
When you are in the tasting room there is a nice little peek-through window where you can see the brewery in all its small glory.
I was lucky enough to run into Claire Connolly while I was at the brewery for my first visit and she was happy to give me a tour of the brewery. She showed off the hops and malts that she is using that are certified organic and then took me though the brewery itself.
In my opinion being fairly in the know in the craft beer community in BC I think Dogwood Made a very good decision to get a space that was currently to big for their capacity. It may currently look cavernous but thing always grow in Vancouver and they are already planning their next tank purchases and they just opened a few days ago. If you look at the trend in Metro Vancouver you will see a massive growth in breweries be it Powell Street and Bridge Brewing or even Central City Brewers & Distillers. No matter your current space you will probably end up out growing it and depending now small you go your first brewery move may only be years away. Unless Dogwood explodes like Parallel 49 Brewing I think this space should be great for years to come. Dogwood may even be limited on growth depending on just how much Organic ingredients they can procure on a year to year basis. But if you are into Organic ingredients I recommend that you head to Dogwood Brewing as soon as possible and check out what they are doing! Well when it comes down to it I recommend everyone head out and try out their take on local craft beer really!
From Nelson BC’s Nelson Brewing Company comes their “Organic Ginger Beer”. The beer pours a golden amber colour with a white head. The aroma consists of huge ginger, some honey and lemon with a very light floral finish. The flavour is of mostly ginger but has notes of malts, honey and lemon. Any bitterness I taste seems to come more from the ginger flavour than hops. The alcohol content comes in at 5%. If you like a strong ginger flavour then you will really like this beer. Do not expect a ginger-ale flavour though as it is not like a pop at all.
Commercial Description: Nelson’s latest summer seasonal will surely satisfy your thirst all summer long on the beach. Upfront ginger snap that’s not over powering with subtle hints of organic honey and lemongrass, the light malted bodied allows the sweet and spicy ginger notes to shine through. This new legendary ale lends itself to be consumed straight up in a icey cold pint or blend with a small amount of ice, freshly squeezed lime and a jigger or two of dark rum…sounds like the best boat drink ever?