From Vancouver Island Brewing in Victoria comes their “48 Lager”. The beer pours a golden colour with a white head. The aroma consists of citrus, grain and floral hops. The flavour is of citrus, grain, biscuit and a very mild bitterness. The alcohol content comes in at 4.8% with an IBU of 22. This is not going to wow you as a craft beer fan but it is a clean crisp lager and well made.
From Vancouver Island Brewing in Victoria comes their “Sombrio Citrus Session”. The Beer pours a mildly hazy Yellow colour with a white head. The aroma consists of citrus, mld malts and floral and herbal hops. The flavour is of earth, citrus, mild resin, grassy hops and bitterness. The alcohol content comes in at 4% with an IBU of 36. Like many session Ales this one is light on flavour but still enjoyable. Should stand up to a good patio.
Commercial Description: Bright and citrusy, this fruity session ale will take you right to the beach, no matter the season.
From Victoria BC’s Vancouver Island Brewing comes their “19 IPA” actually an India Session Ale. The beer pours an orange colour with a white head. The aroma consists of citrus, tropical fruit, bready malts and floral hops. The flavour is of mild resin, citrus, mild tropical fruit, bread and caramel malts, pine and bitterness. The alcohol content comes in at 4.8% with an IBU of 47. While calling it an IPA is a miss representation it is a pretty darn tasty India Session Ale.
Commercial Description: Tropical in taste with floral notes, this everyday IPA was made to accompany you on any adventure.
From Courtenay BC’s Gladstone Brewing on Vancouver Island comes their “Pilsner”. The beer pours a straw yellow with a white head. The aroma consists of grain, biscuit, citrus and floral hops. The flavour is of biscuit, grain, citrus, sweetness, grassy and a very mild bitterness. The alcohol content comes in at 5.5% with an IBU of 35. As a person that does not get excited about pilsner usually this was actually very tasty!
Commercial Description: Resulting from the advent of pale malt in the 19th century in what is now the Czech Republic, Pilsner was the original pale coloured beer. Once pale malt became widely adopted, Pilsner and lagers in general became the preeminent beer style in the world.
In Summer 2016 Vancouver Island Brewing was purchased by Bob MacDonald a partner in Ontario’s Muskoka Brewery. As the year progressed and new staff were hired they undertook a huge rebrand and renovation of their brewery. They are now ready to share this with the world (Well at least with British Columbia). On March 2nd Vancouver Island Brewing invited media out to The Blackbird Public House in Vancouver between 7pm and 10pm to try their beer out.
With a rebranding of some old favourites and some brand new products there is a lot to check out with the new Vancouver Island Brewing. Even the old rebraded favourites have been altered by new production manager Danny Seeton formerly of Parallel 49 Brewing.
For the relaunch of their brand they brought out 7 beers to try. Unfortunately I did not try all seven as they were serving 20oz pints at The Blackbird. The beer that they brought were as follows:
Piper’s Pale Ale, Carmanah Ale, Dark Lager, Victoria Lager, 19 IPA, Juan De Fuca Cerveza and Sombrio Citrus Session.
I was able to sample the 19 IPA a Session IPA, Piper’s Pale Ale and the Carmanah Ale (Formerly the Sea Dog Amber). All three beers come in at 4.8% as the brewery sits on the 48th Parallel. I enjoyed all three beer. I would quibble with the 19 IPA being an IPA and not an ISA or Session IPA as it is well below the norm of around 6%.
While I enjoyed the beer the other media seemed to enjoy both the beer and the food that was on offer.
I look forward to trying more beer from the newly relaunched Vancouver Island Brewing. Look for reviews in the future.
Keep your eyes peeled for their new lineup!
Vancouver Island Brewing