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!

YVR ISA – Steamworks Brewing

From Steamworks Brewing in Burnaby BC comes their latest release the “YVR ISA”.  The beer pours an orange colour with a white head.  The aroma consists of tropical fruits, passion fruit, orange and floral hops.  The flavour is of tropical fruits, passion fruit, orange, hint of white wine with mild notes of resin, earth and bitterness in the finish.  The alcohol content comes in at 4.4% with an IBU of 40.  This is a mild flavoured ISA but would fit in well on any patio this summer.



Pluot (Alew Brewed With Pluot Juice) – New Belgium Brewing

Lips Of Faith Series

From Fort Collins Colorado’s New Belgium Brewing comes their “Pluot (Alew Brewed With Pluot Juice)” a sour Tripel ale brewed as part of the breweries Lips Of Faith Series.  The Tripel pours a straw yellow colour with a white head.  The aroma consists of fruit and lots of it including plum, apricot, tart apples, pinapple and some other fruits hiding in behind.  The flavour is of tart apples and white wine, plums, apricot, pinapple and again some other fruits burried in behind.  The alcohol content of this beer comes in at 10% with and IBU of 5.  This fruity concoction is an amazingly smooth and drinkable brew that is not overly sweet at all as it leans to the tart side.  It is also amazing how easy it goes down as it has an alcohol content that is so high!

Commercial Description:  Hook up a plum with an apricot and they’ll make you a pluot. This sweet hybrid fruit is as refreshing as it is strange, and it’s the perfect starting point for our new Lips of Faith beer. Pluot Ale pours a bright, light golden. The aroma is full of fruit tones and distinct esters from blending the funky brettanomyces and our house Belgian ale yeast. The flavor carries the same weight, adding a spicy, vinous subtlety to stand up against the malt backbone. To build a beer around this worldly fruit is purely Belgian in imagination. Pour some Pluot and enjoy!

Food Pairing as per brewery:  Spicy Tarragon Yogurt Chicken, Thick cut pork chops with a spicy Pluot glaze and goat cheese crumbles

New Belgium Launch - 13

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.


Noble Rot – Dogfish Head Brewery

Half Time Beverages Beer Box #1

Limited Release

From Milton, Delaware’s Dogfish Head Brewery comes their “Noble Rot” a Saison with a major twist.  Grapes are added to this brew and the grapes are infected with a fungus called botrytis which reduces the water in the grapes but increases the sweetness.  This process is called Noble Rot.  The beer pours a straw yellow that is almost clear with a white head on top.  The aroma is of saison yeast, wheat, grapes and white wine.  The flavour consists of saison yeast, pepper, wheat, mild sweetness, grapes, citrus, white wine, mild alcohol and a hops finish.  The alcohol content of this Saison is 9% and the IBU comes in at 18.  The flavour is quite out there, but man is it tasty!

Commercial Description:  This saison-esque science project gets complexity and fermentable sugars from two unique wine grapes sourced with our friends at Alexandria Nicole Cellars in Prosser, Wash.
The first addition is unfermented juice, known as must, from viognier grapes that have been infected with a benevolent fungus called botrytis. This noble rot reduces the water content in the grapes while magnifying their sweetness and complexity. The second is pinot gris must intensified by a process called dropping fruit, where large clusters of grapes are clipped to amplify the quality of those left behind.
Noble Rot is brewed with pils and wheat malts and fermented with a distinct Belgian yeast strain. It has a spicy white wine body and a dry, tart finish.

Click here to check out the rest of the beer from my Half Time Beverages Beer Box