Craft Brewers Association of Nova Scotia

All posts tagged Craft Brewers Association of Nova Scotia

So it’s spring, eh? Ya right! March came in like a lion, and while it may have taken a nap mid-way, it leaves just as powerful. Let’s hope those April showers wash away the snow and ice, and we can be done with the white stuff for a few months. The poor weather hasn’t kept the brewers down, however, as we’ve got lots of news from around the horn to share with you today. Without further ado, here we go!

• The results of the first Gahan Harbourfront Homebrew competition are in and the winner is none other than Ian Wheatley, who you may remember from his mini-takeover at Tidehouse Brewing earlier this month. According to Gahan brewmaster Kyle Jeppeson, Ian’s Trappist Single was exceptional, well-carbonated and featuring a very pleasant yeast and hop profile. Ian will be brewing a batch of his beer on the 5 bbl system at Gahan at some point to be sold alongside Kyle’s offerings. Congratulations are also in order to Justin Clarke of the Brathair Brewing collective, who placed second. Gahan is promising that the competition will be back next year and Kyle is looking for any suggestions this year’s participants might have towards improving it for next year.

• Travelling up the hill to the base of the Citadel, 2 Crows Brewing is putting yet another new beer on this week. At 6.8% ABV and 39 IBU, Shakedown Brett Porter marries the classic English style (perhaps the brownest of the brown ales) with earthiness and funk from Brettanomyces bruxellensis yeast and a decidedly New World nose. Dry-hopped with earthy and fruity Calypso and straight-up orange grove Citra, it’s described by brewmaster Jeremy Taylor as “super earthy, dry, almost mossy in flavour, with a decent layer of funk.” This one wasn’t a big batch, so it’s not likely to be around for a long time. Catch it while you can at the brewery.

• Meanwhile, if you’ve been wondering if maybe there’s been a bit of a method to the madness of all these recent releases from 2 Crows, wonder no more! Thursday, April 13, will see 2 Crows doing their first tap takeover at Battery Park in Dartmouth. Promising 10+ taps (although we’ve heard rumours that it could be as many as 14 in total), you’re sure to see your favourite 2 Crows brews alongside some of the interesting limited releases we’ve seen in the last few weeks. And if that’s not enough, knowing Jeremy, there’s sure to be a couple of brand new and interesting brews that will see their first light of day at the event. Plan to kick off your Easter Weekend 2 Crows x Battery Park style. Look for the full tap list to be revealed as the event approaches.

• A hop, skip, and a jump back into the heart of downtown will take you to Tidehouse Brewing on Salter Street at Barrington, who are also releasing a new beer today. Out Like a Lion Hoppy Wheat Ale is a 5.1% ABV Ale, brewed with a blend of Superior Pale, and Wheat malts, for a hazy, straw appearance, and lighter body. Lots of late additions of Centennial and Summit (during the post-boil chilling step, as well as dry hopping), give citrus flavours and aromas, which meld nicely with the banana notes from the yeast blend chosen. Grab a growler at the brewery today, and keep an eye on the board of a North End taproom tomorrow to grab a pint.

• The crew at Trider’s Craft Beer in Amherst have been quite busy, with a pair of new beers out, and a couple more in the pipeline for release soon. Making its debut as last month’s Craft Beer Cottage Party, Maccan Maple is now available to everyone, no plaid required! Rather than using water as the base liquid for the beer, they only used sap from Hidden Mountain Maple Farms in nearby Springhill! After mashing and boiling as usual, they added maple syrup to the wort as they pitched the yeast. The 5.0% ABV beer ends up with a strong maple flavour, and is sweeter than other beers of the same style on the market, making this a perfect dessert beer. The beer is freshly bottled, available at their brewery, as well as in growler fills. Kegs of this, and all of their beer, are also available, so keep an eye out at local watering holes for a tap.

• The second new beer from Trider’s is Brew-Deau Cream Ale, based on their very popular Christmas Cream seasonal, but tweaked the recipe to end up with a lighter appearance, thanks in part to the subbing in of corn, iconic in a Cream Ale grain bill. The 5.0% ABV beer is lightly hopped to 10 IBU, and will be a popular warm weather beer (if it ever arrives!). You can sip on a bit of summer now, however, as the beer is available in growler fills and 500ml stubbies at their Anson Ave location in the Industrial Park.

• There are a pair of other seasonals headed your way from Amherst, including White Ogre, a hybrid between Belgian Witbier and American IPA. What started as a test batch to satisfy co-owner Scott Parker’s want of a hoppier beer has proven quite popular with customers dropping by the brewery. A significant wheat base, with lots of orange peel and coriander added, but with a hoppy kick from CitraColumbus, and Willamette, resulting in a 5.5% ABV, 56 IBU White IPA. The beer is finishing now, and will be available in growler fills and bottles next week. And aiming for late April is Second Breakfast Oatmeal Stout, a 5% roasty dark stout with a creamy mouthfeel thanks to the addition of oatmeal during the brewing. We’ll have more details, including release date, later next month. Plus we’ll have more news to share on Trider’s plans at their current location.

• TrailWay has released the last batch of Good Aura Amber Ale for the season, as they transition to their summer lineup. Featuring lots of Mosaic hops for a stonefruit and tropical aroma, built upon the base of Munich, Caramel, and Ryle malts. Named after brewery rescue dog Aura, part of the proceeds are being donated to the Fredericton SPCA. Don’t forget that the brewery is dog-friendly to friendly dogs (and people!) and they have treats and water to keep them happy while their owners enjoy human treats. Look for the latest batch of their house IPA, Hu Jon Hops, which just dropped at the brewery as well, and will be making it out to the ANBL.

• Mama’s Brew Pub in Fredericton has a pair of new beers on tap these days: German Dunkel is a 4.5% ABV tart, refreshing, beer with a sour fruitiniess and dry finish. Their East Coast Pale Ale is replacing their East Coast Dry Hop American Pale Ale, with a change of recipe to provide more flavour and body to the base beer, with using loads of late- and dry-hop additions of Cascade and Citra for pine and citrus aroma and taste. At 4.8% ABV, you can certainly enjoy a session at Mama’s!

• In Rothesay, Foghorn Brewing has released Bob’s Your Uncle, a 6.5% ABV English IPA, coming in at a significant 65 IBU, with even more hops added after the fermentation, namely iconic English hops Fuggles and Goldings, as well as new kid on the block Jester. Currently only available on tap for pints and growler fills at the brewery on Clark Road, look for it to pop up around the area soon.

• Moncton’s Tide & Boar is holding another Growler Day today, with three beers available to takeaway: Killington IPA is a 7.6% ABV hazy, North East IPA, featuring citrus and tropical notes from the Citra and Mosaic added throughout the brew. Method IPA is 7.0% juicy IPA as well, but in a different flavour and aroma profile than Killington. And finally Peach Shake is a Milkshake-style IPA, featuring lactose (milk sugar) and vanilla beans added to the beer for a sweeter flavour profile, enhanced by the addition of peaches during the brew session.

Good Robot will be releasing a new Beta Brew this Sunday called Brewster Juice. The name, we expect, is a nod to the millennia-long tradition of female brewers, and this beer was brewed on International Womens’ Day by Kelly Costello and two Good Robot Glee Club members, Jenn and Allana. This is a SMaSH (Single Malt and Single Hop) brew containing nothing but water, Canadian 2-row malt, Glacier hops from Fundy, yeast, and a “dry hop” of fresh raspberries. It weighs in at a nice and light 4.2% ABV and has an apricot-gold color.

• Up on the North Shore of NS, Tatamagouche Brewing has a new release for us this week from their Staff Series of beers. Tata cellarman Alex Martin developed the concept for a Brown IPA that melds the chocolate and dark fruit flavors of darker malts with big hop flavors and a solid IPA bitterness. Arriving at a husky 7.1% ABV and 80 IBU, the Tweed Wolf was hopped with the dank, piney and citrus-laden Simcoe and the fruity melon and berry subtlety of Huell Melon. The de rigeur IPA dry hop contains those same two varieties along with the very tropical El Dorado that should bolster an already heady nose. Expect this one to strike a nice balance between rich malts, firm bitterness and fruity hops. Cans will be available as of today at the brewery and should arrive at the private liquor stores next Thursday. Meanwhile, you’ll find it coming up soon at tap accounts in Halifax.

• Scuttlebutt in beer circles this week centered around a posting on commercial brewing forum ProBrewer regarding a currently operating Nova Scotia brewery being up for sale. Details are minimal and nobody involved is talking openly, which means that speculation is running rampant about who it is and why it they might be selling. With the Craft Beer industry in Nova Scotia growing as quickly as it has, especially over the last five years or so, one of the areas where we’re possibly a little behind the curve is in brewery turnover. As we look at some of the other markets where there has been a craft beer boom, however, we see that this is one of the hallmarks of a healthy industry. There are lots of reasons a brewery might go up for sale and many (some might argue most) of them don’t have anything to do with beer. While we certainly aren’t immune from kibitzing about it ourselves, as local beer lovers and fans of the scene we’re mostly interested to see who steps up to buy this business and how they approach taking it forward into its next evolution as a brewery. And no, we don’t know who it is either.

Be sure to check out our Events Calendar, as we keep it as up-to-date as we can with all of the goings on in our region. Remember that we don’t always repeat events we’ve mentioned in previous weeks, so your best bet is to check it periodically, or better yet, add it to your own iCal/gCal, and never miss out! Just click the +GoogleCalendar button on the bottom right of the calendar.

• Last week we told you about the 80/- Scottish-style Collaboration Ale created by the various members of the Craft Brewers Association of Nova Scotia. Today is your chance to check out that contentious brew as it goes on tap for the first time at noon in the Good Robot taproom in North End Halifax. The first 48 patrons will receive a takeaway can of the beer, which will eventually be available in limited supply at Bishop’s Cellar, Harvest Wine & Spirits, and the NSLC. You’ll also be amongst the first to hear the first official events list for the upcoming Nova Scotia Craft Beer Week, ask questions of Nova Scotia brewers, and try a custom Scottish Hot Dog from T DOGS.

• For some beer excitement in PEI, look no further than Charlottetown’s HopYard Beer Bar today. They are hosting a BarNone Tap Takeover, with eight beer from Rose Valley flowing, plus some special beers as chosen by owner and brewer Don Campbell, including Unfiltered’s Fist of God IPA. Drop by from noon to enjoy some blasts from the past, as well as new releases. It also corresponds to the first day of PEI Burger Love, the cross-province month of more than 80 establishments (including HopYard) serving up some creative burgers, from PEI-raised beef.

Today is also a big day in Alma, New Brunswick, as the Buddha Bear Cafe continues their major renovations towards opening Holy Whale Brewing Company in late spring. Located in a former church on Main Street, the Cafe has been open for several months, serving up their own roasted coffee, as well as beer from around the Maritimes. Buddha Bear/Holy Whale owners, brothers Jeff and Peter Grandy, will be closing the cafe during weekdays, and re-opening full-time in a few months. So, what’s happening today at the Cafe? The brothers need your help to Drink the Church Dry! All day today, they are looking to push as many kegs as possible through their nine lines, to help make room in the beer fridge. Every time a keg kicks, they will be lowering the price of a pint by 50 cents, so it pays to stick around and enjoy the return on your investment.

Tomorrow is the HRM celebration of Big Spruce‘s 4th Anniversary, and the launch of the 2017 edition of Ra Ra Rasputin, with several variations of the Barrel-aged Russian Imperial Stout pouring from 11:30am at Battery Park, and noon at Stillwell. Look for non-barrel-aged versions (in keg and on nitro), 2016 vintage, plus several unique casks with fruit, coffee, and/or wood additions right in the firkin for an extra level of flavour. You may need to hit both locations for the full experience! Check out the event flyer here.

• Sunday April 2nd, is the BC Tap Takeover at Stillwell, postponed from the original March 25th date due to shipping delays. Enjoy a dozen beauties from Brassneck Brewery in Vancouver, Dageraad of Burnaby, and Four Winds Brewing from Delta. Featuring a wide variety in styles of beer, including Brassneck’s Stockholm Syndrome Saison, Sri Lanka Dubbel from Dageraad, and Four Winds’ Nectarous Dry-hopped Sour. No tickets required for the event, and the doors open at noon (unusual for a Sunday). The full taplist is available here.

• Also coming up at Good Robot is Latin@ Night, a celebration of Latin American Culture on Thursday, April 6 that will feature the release of Cerveza Latina, a Beta Brew in the Vienna Lager style that was created in collaboration with some of GR’s patrons from various South and Central American countries. It’s got a bready nose, lemony citrus on the palate, and a clean, crisp lager finish. The night also promises to feature broken Spanish, South American-influenced dishes from Black Sheep, a playlist designed to inspire dancing and the Mexican beer cocktails known as micheladas.

• Digby’s Roof Hound Brewery is celebrating National Beer Day on April 7th. Only the 7th, how strange, we figured any/every day was a great day to drink beer! But who are we to argue? They will be showing off their expanded tap selection, including a very limited edition of Big Brown Pure Maple. Only one keg will be served at Roof Hound,  so best to not miss the event that evening. Live music from Tide & Timbre will kick off the festivities at 9pm, plus they will have guest taps from their neighbour breweries Lazy Bear in Smiths Cove, and Lunn’s Mill from Lawrencetown. Check out the FB Events Page for more details.

Before we let you go, a couple more things…

– As the grand opening of their new digs in Windsor approaches, Schoolhouse Brewing is now preparing their “First Draughts” on the new system! We’ll certainly have more information as it becomes available, but for now we can tell you that Cam and Co. are looking for a Retail Manager to help run the new storefront operation. The details are at the bottom of their webpage.
Garrison is bringing back a big ‘un today as part of their Cellar Series, the Barrel Aged Ol’ Fog Burner barleywine. Weighing in at an hefty 11.5% ABV, it spent time in oak barrels from Glen Breton Rare Single Malt Whiskey from Glenora Distillery. It’s available in 650ml bottles costing $15.95 at the brewery and quantities are severely limited.
Picaroons’ Winter Warmer is done for the year, but they have just released a batch of it that has been aged on French Oak for two months. Available only on tap at their Roundhouse and Brewtique locations in Fredericton, General Store in Uptown Saint John, and The 5 Kings Brewhouse in St. Stephen.
YellowBelly in St. John’s has brought back their East Coast Cream Ale, a 5.0% ABV, 22 IBU beer brewed in collaboration/celebration of Top Shed Brewery on Australia’s East Coast. Featuring Pacific Gem and Mosaic hops from Australia, the beer is on tap at the brewery now, and in bottles to take away.

As a last mention this week, maybe be a little wary of any wild or unexpected claims made by local bars and breweries tomorrow…check your calendar before jumping to conclusions; we wouldn’t want anyone to worry about breaking a nail.

Happy Friday! We hope that those of you in Nova Scotia have been participating in the many excellent events this past week for Nova Scotia Craft Beer Week, with more scheduled for the coming weekend (Brews Cruise tonight, Full House tomorrow, Cape Breton Kitchen Party Sunday)! Once we get our act in gear, we’ll post some pictures and thoughts on the week. In the meantime, it’s time to get caught up with beer news in our area, including the announcement of more breweries for New Brunswick…

• Attention, residents of Harvey, NB… there’s not just one, but two new breweries planning to open in your area in the near future! Longtime homebrewers Scott MacLean and Randy Rowe have been brewing weekly 1/2 BBL (~60 L) batches together for the past two years, and work is underway on both sides to open small-batch breweries at their homes in Harvey:

Randy Rowe and his wife, Denise, plan to open Off Grid Ales sometime this coming summer. Specializing in “full-bodied ales”, including a Honey-infused Double IPA, the 3 BBL (~360 L) brewery will be solar- and wind-powered, and housed in a barn located on the couples’ property. The brewhouse equipment from Stout Tanks and Kettles arrived last week, with work progressing on set-up for commercial production. The brewery now has an active Twitter account, and will be launching their official website soon.

Scott and Denise MacLean’s 1 BBL (~120 L) brewery, Think Brewing, will also be housed within a barn (over 100 years old) on his property. Scott recently purchased the brewhouse equipment from TrailWay (who have now moved to a 10 BBL system). Hoping to open sometime mid-summer, the brewery will initially focus on English and American style ales. Stay tuned to Think’s Twitter and Instagram accounts for updates; of course, we’ll also be providing more info on both breweries as they progress further!

• North Brewing and Stillwell have teamed up to release their latest collaboration beer, Gose. The Gose style is growing ever-more-popular… tart and refreshing, the North/Stillwell take was brewed with a grist of Pilsner, Wheat, and Acid malt, it was kettle-soured with Lactobacillus to provide a slight acidic character, with “wet hay and lemon aromas”.  Hand-harvested Black Whale Salt from PEI and toasted coriander were also added. Hopped with the new New Zealand variety, Wai-Iti (which reportedly provides “fresh peach and apricot character”), and Mandarina Bavaria, it’s easy-drinking at 4.5% ABV and 10 IBUs. Just released yesterday, it’s available for growler fills at North, and is on tap at Stillwell and other better beer establishments across the HRM.

• North is also releasing another new beer, Grisette. Historically brewed for the mining class in Belgium, it’s another low-ABV style (but not sour/tart), intended on being light and crisp, and able to be consumed in quantity. Similar to the Gose grist, and hopped again with Wai-Iti, as well as the Australian Summer variety, it weighs in at a supremely-sessionable 3.5% ABV and 15 IBUs. Dry and citrusy, with a light peppery finish, according to the brewery. Available today in growlers at both North locations (Agricola and Ochterloney), it will also be out in the wild very shortly.

• Continuing the new beer releases for #NSCBW, Boxing Rock has released 4 (four!) new beers this week, and we’ve got the scoop direct from the brewery:

Mutiny! (Subversive Amber Ale, 5% ABV). This amber ale is a collaboration with Garrison, Hell Bay, Propeller, and Schoolhouse and forms the base for the Grog raced to Gahan House for Race the Kegs on May 8. This is an English style Pale Ale, amber in colour with a bold malt backbone and moderate hoppiness… lots of spicy and citrus hop aroma and very smooth and drinkable.

Over the Top (Sour Mash Cranberry Wheat Ale, 4% ABV). This beer is a collaboration with Karen Allen from Gahan House and we believe it is the first sour mash beer to be brewed and packaged in NS. Refreshingly tart and awesomely sessionable, this beer began with a 48-hour sour mash, in which our lactobacillus friends thrived, partied and arm wrestled. A late hop addition imparts a fruity aroma to balance the sour malt base. Nova Scotia cranberries dry out the finish and add a subtle depth of flavour and give it an amazing colour.

Carbon-14 (Strong Dark Belgian Ale, 8.2% ABV). Runner-up in our Homebrew Competition, the Black Box Challenge, this beer is as rare as the C-14 isotope. A strong, dark, Belgian ale made in the classic style, this beer is altogether perfectly balanced with that unmistakable Belgian character. It will have a very short half-life, so get it while you can. Carbon-14 was brewed in collaboration with Professor Jason McDougall.

Where There’s Smoke (Smoked Pale Ale, 6.5% ABV). Winner of the Black Box Challenge, our first homebrew competition. This beer is made with copious quantities of beech smoked malt, hops and steeped on cinnamon. The result is a beer that is bold, unexpected, in your face, and totally crushable. Brewed in collaboration with Black Box Challenge winner, Brian Harvey.

Try many of these, and several more (including a few past favourite from the archives) at Lion & Bright tonight, when the Boxing Rock crew drop by for a Tap Takeover starting at 5pm. And be sure to try many (all?) of what’s available, as $1 from each pint sold will be going to Red Cross Canada, in support of people affected by the fires in Fort McMurray.

• Another NS launch is a new/old beer from Good RobotAwesome Beer, Great Job! is their own take on a Fall Saison, featuring darker malt CaraMunich 120 and Rye, spicing up the underlying Wheat and Pilsner malts. Lightly hopped with Mt Hood, it was fermented with Old World Blend from new yeast producer Escarpment Labs. The resulting beer is a hazy orange, with notes of plum, banana, and phenolic spice from both the rye and yeast character. Originally to be released in Fall 2015, due to difficulties with the beer, it was re-brewed, then re-re-brewed, and is now on tap! Check out their honest reporting of the ordeal. And keep an eye out for the launch of their American Wheat, Pryor Offences, this weekend, featuring lots of Amarillo and Mandarina Bavaria hops. And a new version of Burban Legend APA, dry-hopped with Cascade and Citra.

• There’s a new beer hitting taps from Riverview’s Celtic Knot BrewingMonkeytown Mango Ale is a 4.5% ABV “light-drinking ale” that features the addition of real, frozen mangoes to the beer after primary fermentation was completed. Lightly-hopped with Cascade to add a bit more fruit character, kegs were delivered earlier this week to Plan B and Ducky’s. Look for Celtic Knot’s other accounts to be pouring this beer in the near future.

YellowBelly has a brand new seasonal on tap at the brewpub, Tilt Cove Golden Nugget Ale. This APA was brewed with a mix of Canadian and West Yorkshire Pale Ale malts, along with some Scottish Carastan. Hopped entirely with the Nugget variety (including two dry-hop additions), the resulting “earthy, herbal, leafy character” comes through nicely. Clocking in at 6% ABV and 50 IBUs, this slightly-hazy beer will also be pouring at NLC Beer Expo this weekend, with a limited supply of bottles following shortly at the brewpub. In other YB news, they’ve rebrewed their East Coast Cream Ale, which should be available in about three weeks, and plan on brewing a “Summer Wheat Ale” dry-hopped with Sorachi Ace in the near future. As always, we’ll keep you updated!

• Sad news in Saint John this week, as it has been announced that Bourbon Quarter Restaurant, a true friend to local craft beer, is closing. On the bright side, BQ owner Shawn Verner is teaming up with Mike McPartland to open the Cask and Kettle Irish Pub, which they assure us will continue the BQ tradition of supporting craft beer. Located in the same space on Prince William, construction is underway now, with an opening expected in the next 4-6 weeks.

• After a year of construction and many test batches, Horton Ridge Malt is now open for business in Nova Scotia’s Annapolis Valley. Specializing in floor-malted organic malts, their first product deliveries were made earlier this week, and Cape Breton’s Big Spruce brewed up a batch of the Kitchen Party Pale Ale with the 2-Row pale malt. Look for more breweries to use the local malt very soon, including Tatamagouche Brewing. In addition to selling to breweries, Horton Ridge will also be available to home brewers looking for a local organic product. As locally-grown organic grain suitable for malting is not yet available in large enough quantity, HR has sourced the initial deliveries from outside of the province, but hopes to achieve a truly Nova Scotian-grown and -produced malt very soon. In addition to lighter barley-based malts, look for specialty and rye malts to be available in the future. For those commercial and amateur brewers attending tomorrow’s Full House beer fest, be sure to drop by their table for samples and to learn more.

A few more events worth checking out in the next little while:

• Tonight, the PEI Brewing Co. is holding Fortnight: Fundraiser for Fort McMurray at the brewery. Starting at 7 pm, it will feature “music, fun, and fundraising”, with all proceeds going to the Red Cross (and being matched by the Federal Government). One of the items up for auction is a chance to brew a full-size batch of beer with Upstreet‘s Mike “Hogie” Hogan, on the Upstreet system. Homebrewer or not, the lucky winner will be able to pick the beer style, help develop the recipe and take part in the brewing, name the beer, and ever pour the first pint at the Upstreet taproom! This is for a great cause, so get out your wallets and dig deep!

Tom’s Little Havana is hosting a Tap Takeover today (and all weekend) by friends Bad Apple Brewhouse and Unfiltered Brewing. Featuring seven beers between the two breweries, look for some old favourites, as well as some new … well, favourites too! Look for a new collaboration American Wheat, and a pair of iterations of the Tom’s Smoked Porter, including a barrel-aged version, today through Sunday.

• A reminder from last week, tonight‘s Meet Your Maker event at the James Joyce will feature Big Tide; four BT beers will be available on tap, and brewmaster Wendy Papadopoulos will be on hand to chat about our favourite beverage!

• This year’s Inspire Arts Festival (June 15th-19th, in Moncton) will be holding their first beer-themed event, the Picaroons Craft Beer Village, on Saturday, June 18th. Taking place at the Riverfront Park in downtown Moncton, it will all start at 12 pm with the opening of the Picaroons Beer Tent; later in the afternoon, at 4 pm, the rest of the craft beer village will open, with NB breweries Bore City, Celtic Knot, Flying Boats, and Maybee also pouring their beers. Entrance is free, just pay for your beer as you go, and enjoy the live music, circus performances, fire spinning, and more that’s going on during the festival!

• The Fredericton Beer Run is returning on Monday, August 1st (New Brunswick Day)! The fourth year for the event, it will once again feature three options of either a 4, 6, or 12 km distance. Your ticket will get you much more than just another run, however! Including a custom-designed beer glass and 14 x 4 oz beer tickets, there will be over 20 breweries present with plenty of beer to choose from! This year’s run will start at the Lighthouse on the Green, at 10 am, with the beer sampling occurring afterwards at the Crowne Plaza Hotel. Tickets are $60 (tax included) and are available now.

NS CBW 2016 splash

The 2016 NS Craft Beer Week starts this Friday. A presentation of the Craft Brewers Association of Nova Scotia, the aim of the week is to showcase the innovative products of its members, and collaborations with bars, restaurants and licensees. With so many different events to keep track of, we thought it would be beneficial to have them all in one place. Scroll all the way to the bottom for a handy calendar and map.

But first, with all of these events going on over the coming days, we can expect to see several new beers (and some returning favourites) from many of the participating breweries. Here’s a taste of what will be joining the many regular-release beers that will be pouring all week…

Big Spruce, Propeller & Tatamagouche…

These three breweries came back together for an organic conspiracy of epic proportions…. Cerberus American IPA. This Certified Organic beer weighs in at 7% ABV, and features massive additions of Ahtanum, AmarilloCentennial, Chinook, Citra, Simcoe and Zythos hops for an assertive, but not offensive, aroma and flavour. After a sneak peek at Propeller’s Prop’r Cask Night last week, it will be available around the province beginning Friday, including the two Signature events kicking off the week, as well as on tap for growler fills at each of the conspiring breweries. There will also be a limited number of bottles available at Big Spruce and Tatamagouche.

“South” and “North” Collaboration Grogs

There will be two new “Grogs” at the Race the Kegs event on Sunday, May 8th at the Gahan House Harbourfront. Both are collaboration beers – one from the “South” team (Boxing Rock, Garrison, Hell Bay, Propeller, and Schoolhouse), and one from the “North” (Big Spruce, Good Robot, North, and Uncle Leo’s). Details are under wraps on each of these beers for now; you’ll have to attend the event that afternoon to find out for yourself!

We’ve heard rumours of more than a dozen other new beers being launched this week from all over the province, but many of the breweries are keeping mum about the details until after the Stillwell Open or Stubborn Goat Royal Rumble. Keep your eyes open for the 2016 launch of Big Spruce’s Silver Tart, Boxing Rock’s brand new Where There’s Smoke, Meander River’s returning Surf & Turf Strong Scotch Ale, Rudders’ brand new Sweet Georgia Brown Double Chocolate Oatmeal Stout, a whole gamut of Seventh Wave beers from Spindift, the return of Tata’s Deadeye DIPA, and many more.

NS Craft Beer Week Events

Throughout the week

NS Craft Beer @ Roy’s Lounge at Westin Nova Scotia
Daily, throughout the week
Roy’s Lounge is hosting several NS Craft Beer specials throughout the week, including specials on samples all day, May 6-15 ($5 gets you five samples of their NS beer); Craft Beer & Curds Happy Hour 5:00-7:00pm daily; Under the Clock on Us! on Friday & Saturday May 6,7,13,14, with live music and free menu samples.

Free Beer Tastings each afternoon at the private beer stores around town
Check the Social Media of Bishop’s Cellar, Cristall Wine, Harvest Wines, and RockHead.

Friday, May 6

Cape Breton Kitchen Party at Centre 200
7:00-10:00pm
Hosted by Cape Breton’s own Breton Brewing and Big Spruce Brewing, they’ve invited 10 mainland breweries to join them for a night of local live music, Nova Scotia Craft Beer, with Cape Breton restaurants creating some awesome food. More than 10 breweries, food vendors and three musical acts.
Tickets are $60, $30 for designated drivers.

Beer & Beethoven with The Irish Descendants at Halifax Forum (Friday Session)
7:00pm-10:30pm
Beethoven in jeans, a pint in hand? The master would revel in the rousing!
Wear your jeans and come on out for Symphony Nova Scotia’s 25th annual end-of-season fundraising party! Hear great music, sample local craft beer, and try out an instrument at Long & McQuade’s Fun Zone – all in a laid-back, relaxed atmosphere with plenty of pints and loads of fun. Featuring orchestral music from classical to Celtic, special guest performers The Irish Descendants, and a delightful selection of the Nova Scotia Craft Brewers’ finest, it’s sure to be a rollicking good time for all. Come thirsty!
Breweries taking part in sampling May 6th: Big Spruce Brewing, Boxing Rock Brewing, Gahan House, Granite Brewing, Nine Locks Brewing, Tatamagouche Brewing
Plus beers from these breweries will be available for purchase: Meander River Brewing, Nine Locks Brewing, North Brewing, Propeller Brewing, Spindrift Brewing
Tickets are $43.99.

Kitchen Party After-Party at Commoner Table and Tap
10:00pm-2:00am
After the Cape Breton Kitchen Party, drop by the Commoner for more music and great beer. Big Spruce and Breton Brewery are taking over their taps for the evening.
No tickets required.

Saturday, May 7

Craft Beer Week Dinner at Sugar Moon Farm
6:00-9:30pm
Field Guide Restaurant will present a seasonally themed three course meal, thoughtfully paired with the North Shore’s delicious craft beer, including Tatamagouche Brewing and Uncle Leo’s – taking place at the ever charming Sugar Moon Farm.
$55 per ticket, $12 for flight of 4 North Shore Craft Beer

Beer & Beethoven with The Irish Descendants at Halifax Forum (Saturday Session)
7:00pm-10:30pm
More great music by the Irish Descendants and Symphony Nova Scotia!
Breweries taking part in sampling May 7: Gahan House, Meander River Brewing, Nine Locks Brewing, North Brewing, Propeller Brewing, Spindrift Brewing
In addition, beer from these breweries will be available for purchase: Big Spruce Brewing, Boxing Rock Brewing, Granite Brewing, Nine Locks Brewing, Tatamagouche Brewing
Tickets are $43.99.

Open Brewery Day: Many of the breweries in Nova Scotia will be open for tours and tastings, and a few have some special events planned as well. Drop by and show them some love! May 7th also coincides with National Homebrew Day, so several breweries have invited members of the Brewnosers in to set up their brewing gear to chat about this fun and rewarding hobby!

Open Brewery Day at Big Spruce
12:00pm-4:00pm
They will be hosting Rolling Bricks Pizza, who will be bringing their roving Wood Fired Pizza Oven for free food, with live music by Angelo Spinazolia. Samples of all of their beers will also be available.

Open Brewery Day at Boxing Rock
12:00pm-5:00pm
Drop by Boxing Rock for free brewery tours and tastings, charity-run BBQ, free cake, music and lots of other fun! Maybe even some axe throwing if the weather holds…

Open Brewery Day at Breton Brewing
9:00am-10:00pm
Breton Brewing is inviting homebrewer Mike Morrison into the brewery for the day. Come by to chat beer, learn the process of brewing, and pick up tips and tricks on brewing your own at home. Free brewery tours all day, as well.

Open Brewery Day at Gahan House Harbourfront
11:30am-4:30pm
Brewmaster Karen Allen will be on-site discussing various brew topics, and local homebrewer Tim Gregory will be helping to brew a batch on their system.

Open Brewery Day at Garrison Brewing
10:00am-5:00pm
Home brewer Mike Edwards demoing the Grainfather all-in-one home brew setup, brewing up a Gluten free Rauchbier. Asado will be on their patio cooking some awesome food, and there will be Maple Beer Bacon Cupcakes for sale!

Open Brewery Day at Good Robot
10:00am-10:00pm
Join Good Robot for the grand opening of the GastroTurf at noon, their new beer garden and frolicking space. Plus, local homebrewer Mike Orr to brew a Chocolate IPA LIVE for your viewing and brewing pleasure. This is a great chance to tour the brewery FREE, meet the cofounders and ask any beer questions you may have!

Open Brewery Day at Granite Brewery
10:00am-8:00pm
Drop by Stairs Street to see what Kevin Keefe is brewing up today!

Open Brewery Day at Hell Bay Brewing
12:00pm-5:00pm, 7:00-9:00pm
Drop by Hell Bay for Open Brewery Day! And stick around for Beer School for Beginners in the evening, 7:00-9:00pm (reservations are required).

Open Brewery Day at Meander River Farm
11:00pm-5:00pm
Drop by the Farm to meet your local brewer and farmer! There will be tours, tastings, and the patio is open!

Open Brewery Day at Nine Locks
10:00pm-5:00pm
Tastings, prizes and tours every hour on the hour 10-5. Bring the family and have some fun!

Open Brewery Day at North Brewing
12:00pm-9:00pm
Drop by North’s locations for a new beer launch, and $2 off growler fills, $1 off 750 fills.
In Dartmouth, brewer Josh Herbin will be on hand from 12:00-3:00 to chat brewing, there will have a home brewing demo going on inside the store.

Open Brewery Day at Propeller Brewing (Gottingen)
12:00pm-3:00pm
Drop by Propeller to watch they brew up the next One Hit Wonder beer, chat with their brewers, tour the facilities, and try some samples of their brews.

Open Brewery Day at Rockbottom
4:00pm-8:00pm
Drop by Rockbottom to learn about brewing ingredients and the brewing process, and check out their sweet brewing system!

Open Brewery Day at Rudder’s Brewpub
12:00-4:00pm
Drop by Rudder’s for tours of their three-floor brewing system, and reduced-price samples.

Open Brewery Day at Spindrift Brewing
11:00am-5:00pm
Drop by Spindrift to check out their brewery, and watch local homebrewers Derek and Kevin brew up something special! There will be sausages from Sweet Williams, and they will be launching the next Seventh Wave that day, Raspberry Session Saison.

Open Brewery Day at Tatamagouche Brewing
10:00pm-5:00pm
Drop by TataBrew for self-guided tours of the brewhouse, and to check out their expanded storefront. They will be selling flights of their beers, and have homebrewer Mark MacKay brewing a pilot batch.

Sunday, May 8

Stillwell Open at Stillwell Beer Bar
12:00-8:00pm
Stillwell invited brewers and homebrewers from across the province to put together their best Session and Imperial beers. During two sessions, each featuring twelve unique beers, look for one-off small batches and brand new beers being launched. They will be served blind (unknown brewer or style), and the public will vote on their favourites. The beers will be revealed as the voting closes, with the favourite beer taking home the title!
12-4pm: Session Beers
4-8pm: Imperial Beers
No tickets necessary, pay-as-you-go.

Race the Kegs at Gahan Waterfront
1:oo-4:00pm
Join the arrival party for collaboration brews from the North and South of Nova Scotia. Craft breweries from across the province have teamed up to face off for this challenge, which includes racing the kegs of their collaboration brews to Halifax Harbour by sail. Live music, pirate-themed food, and pirates, all while enjoying the competing Grogs.
No tickets necessary, pay-as-you-go.

Monday, May 9

Pints and Poses at Boxing Rock Brewing
6:00-8:00pm
The experience will start with 60 minutes of all-levels yoga delivered by Brittany Hachey of Yoga Room of Essence followed by a 60 minutes brewery tour and tasting!  A heads up – the beer doesn’t have to wait until the end!  So come early, grab a pre-pose pint, and stay to socialize and relax afterwards!  It is sure to be an amazing, relaxing night that you wont want to miss!
Tickets are $30, pre-registration is required.

Tuesday, May 10

A Walk In the Park at Battery Park Beer Bar
5:00-10:00pm
This is a new Craft Beer Week Signature Event hosted by the newly opened Battery Park in Downtown Dartmouth. The event begins with an oyster and beer reception, followed by a 5 course dinner where a local chef, brewer and farmer work together to pair each dish. This event will feature new and unique brews. Big Spruce, Boxing Rock, Breton, Garrison, Meander River, Nine Locks, North, Propeller, Spindrift, and Tatamagouche will all be pouring special beers.
Only 40 tickets are to be sold and the price is $75.

Wednesday, May 11

Beer Cocktail Face-Off at The Auction House
7:30pm-10:00pm
Nova Scotia Craft Brewers and some of the province’s best mixologists converge for a night of revelry that will expand your beer boundaries. Representatives from 10 cocktail bars will be paired with 10 Nova Scotia Craft Breweries and challenged to come up with the ultimate craft concoction. Attendees will vote on their favourites and a winner will be crowned!
Big Spruce with Kyle Macaskill (The Auction House)
Boxing Rock with Mark Bradbury (The Bicycle Thief)
Breton with Bret Dodson (Durty Nelly’s)
Garrison with Matt Conway (Stubborn Goat)
Good Robot with Neil Daoust (Shuck)
Hell Bay with Kyla Wright (Gahan House)
North with Steven Cross (Temple Bar)
Propeller with Shane Beehan (Lot 6)
Spindrift with Josh Jackman (Stubborn Goat)
Tatamagouche with Liam Mcneil (Good Robot Tap Room)
Tickets are $20, and include 6 samples, with more cocktails available for purchase once you pick a favourite(s).

Thursday, May 12

NS Craft Beer Royal Rumble at Stubborn Goat
8:00pm-2:00am
A wrestling themed blind showdown of Nova Scotia’s finest Craft Breweries hosted by the Stubborn Goat in Halifax. Breweries will bring their best one-off creations to battle it out in an all out “vote with your throat” showdown. The first keg emptied will win the title of being Nova Scotia’s Craft Beer Heavyweight Champion. In this challenge, if you ain’t 1st, you’re last. This event will run from 8pm – close.
Tickets are now sold out, BUT it is open to the public as a pay-as-you-drink event.

Unfortunately, The Science of Beer at the Discovery Centre has been cancelled due to low ticket sales.

Friday, May 13

Craft Beer Week Brews Cruise – Silva
7:00pm-8:30pm
Sailing and beer: the ultimate Nova Scotia pairing.
Halifax’s beer enthusiasts will be in and out of bars all week to celebrate Craft Beer Week. In connection with the Craft Brewers Association of Nova Scotia‘s Craft Beer Week, Murphy’s is excited to be hosting the ultimate beer experience – by bringing you out on the water.
The purchase of your ticket will include a delicious craft brew of your choice, and a 1.5 hour sail. Cruise through the harbour on the Tall Ship Silva while you enjoy craft beer from around Nova Scotia.
Tickets are $23.50.

Saturday, May 14

Full House Craft Beer Fest (Afternoon Session) at the Cunard Centre
1:30pm-4:00pm
This event will showcase most members of the Craft Brewers Association of Nova Scotia. Your ticket purchase includes access to the event, a Belgian-style take-home glass, and 12 beer samples of your choosing. Additional samples will be available for purchase, while food will be available by cash purchase. There will also be entertainment, a pop-up craft beer swag shop, and many other amazing things.
You will be able to taste craft beers from the 21 following Nova Scotia Craft Brewers: Big Spruce Brewing, Boxing Rock Brewing Company, Breton Brewing Co., Gahan House, Garrison Brewing Co., Good Robot Brewing Company, Granite Brewery, Hell Bay Brewing Company, Meander River Farm, Nine Locks Brewing Co., North Brewing Company, Paddy’s Irish BrewPub, Propeller Brewing Company, Rare Bird Craft Beer, Rockbottom Brewpub, Rudder’s Brew Pub, Schoolhouse Brewery, Sea Level Brewing, Spindrift Brewing Company, Tatamagouche Brewing Co., and Uncle Leo’s Brewery.
Tickets are $35, $15 for designated drivers.

Full House Craft Beer Fest (Evening Session) at the Cunard Centre
6:30pm-9:00pm
This event will showcase most members of the Craft Brewers Association of Nova Scotia. Your ticket purchase includes access to the event, a Belgian-style take-home glass, and 12 beer samples of your choosing. Additional samples will be available for purchase, while food will be available by cash purchase. There will also be entertainment, a pop-up craft beer swag shop, and many other amazing things.
You will be able to taste craft beers from the 21 following Nova Scotia Craft Brewers: Big Spruce Brewing, Boxing Rock Brewing Company, Breton Brewing Co., Gahan House, Garrison Brewing Co., Good Robot Brewing Company, Granite Brewery, Hell Bay Brewing Company, Meander River Farm, Nine Locks Brewing Co., North Brewing Company, Paddy’s Irish BrewPub, Propeller Brewing Company, Rare Bird Craft Beer, Rockbottom Brewpub, Rudder’s Brew Pub, Schoolhouse Brewery, Sea Level Brewing, Spindrift Brewing Company, Tatamagouche Brewing Co., and Uncle Leo’s Brewery.
Tickets are $35, $15 for designated drivers.

Sunday, May 15

Nova Scotian Kitchen Party Brunch at elements on hollis
12:00 PM – 2:00 PM
Join elements on hollis for a very special Sunday Brunch on Sunday, May 15. Brunch will literally be a kitchen party, allowing you to join the chefs in the kitchen as you dine.
Sip at a selection of craft beers throughout your meal. elements on hollis‘ culinary team will be serving up delicious Cape Breton inspired dishes. Join us for an Islander’s spin on our Halifax brunch.
Tickets are $35.00.  Reservations are recommended (902) 496-7960.

#NSCraftBeerWeek Calendar and Map

For those of you looking for an easy way to carry this list in you pocket, add the following calendar to your to Google Calendar, Outlook, or iCal.

Full-sized map on a separate page.

Looks like it’s going to be a great, fun-filled week! Keep an eye on this page, as we’ll be updating the list and calendar as last-minute events are announced. Be sure to get out there and support your local breweries, drink some awesome beer, and be sure to say “hi” if you see us around!

NSCraftBeerWeek Banner

The Inaugural NS Craft Beer Week starts tomorrow. A presentation of the Craft Brewers Association of Nova Scotia, the aim of the week is to showcase the innovative products of its members, and collaborations with bars, restaurants and licensees. With so many different events to keep track of, we thought it would be beneficial to have them all in one place. But first, with all of these events going on over the coming days, we can expect to see several new beers (and some returning favourites) from many of the participating breweries. Here’s a taste of what will be joining the many regular-release beers that will be pouring all week…

Big Spruce, Propeller & Tatamagouche…

These three breweries came together for a conspiracy of epic proportions…. Cerberus American IPA. This Certified Organic beer weighs in at 7% ABV, and features massive late additions of Centennial, Amarillo, Simcoe and Zythos hops for an assertive, but not offensive, aroma and flavour. It will be released Saturday at noon at Bar Stillwell in Halifax, as well as on tap for growler fills at each of the conspiring breweries. There will also be a very limited number of bottles available.

“South” and “North” Collaboration English IPAs

There will be two new English IPAs at the Race the Kegs event on Friday, May 15th at the Gahan House. Both are collaboration beers – one from the “South” team (Boxing Rock, Gahan House, Hell Bay and Sea Level), and one from the “North” (Big Spruce, Good Robot, Uncle Leo’s and North Brewing). Details are mum on each of these beers for now; you’ll have to attend the event that night to find out the differences yourself!

Good Robot…

Since Good Robot will be making their debut at NSCBW, all of their four beers are brand new! Here’s a brief run-down of their opening offerings (and remember, all beers have had Clarityferm added to significantly reduce their gluten content):

Goseface Killah (5% ABV, 11 IBUs) – Gose is a German style of beer that up until recently was extremely hard to find, but is gaining popularity quite quickly here in North America. A sour and tart ale brewed with coriander and salt water, and fermented with a Belgian Abbey yeast, expect a pale, tart, refreshing beer perfect for the approaching summer days!

Tom Waits for No One (8.1% ABV, 55 IBUs) – This is their big, dark beer, a Stout brewed with plenty of dark malts (Chocolate, Black, and Carafa II) to add all of the roasted and chocolate goodness you expect from this style of beer. Fermented with an English yeast strain, with real chocolate and coffee added in secondary

Burban Legend (5% ABV, 28 IBUs) – A Citrus American Pale Ale featuring several hop varieties (Cascade, Falconer’s Flight and Zythos) to provide the “citrus” that you’d expect in a beer with this name. Along with 2-row, Pilsner, Amber and Crystal 30 L malts, they’ve also added some rye to “spice” things up a little bit.

Crown on the Ground (4.3% ABV, 34 IBUs) – Good Robot’s take on the Steam Beer, this amber-coloured brew is hopped differently than most takes on the style, featuring Mt. Hood, Perle and Magnum varieties. Fermented cool with a California Lager yeast, this sessionable ale should exhibit an enjoyable malt character, backed by a firm bitterness in the finish.

North Brewing…

Belgian Pale Ale (5% ABV, 35 IBUs) – A hop-forward beer of the BPA style, think of it as an American Pale Ale with Belgian yeast character. Brewed with Belgian malt varieties, the beer was first-wort hopped with Columbus, and again during the boil at 30 minutes with the New Zealand Wakatu variety. Featuring further additions late in the boil and in the dry-hop with Amarillo, expect a fruity and citrusy beer! Fermented with the Belgian Abbey II yeast strain to allow the malt character to shine through.

Also note that North will be releasing this year’s version of their popular Glenora Strong Dark Belgian. The second time their Strong Dark Belgian has aged in their Glenora whisky barrels (for 4 months), the long aging period allows the strong flavours to blend nicely. Available only in 650 mL bottles, the beer should continue to mellow as it is aged for months (or years!) to come.

Authentic Seacoast…

Rare Bird Red Ale (5% ABV, 25 IBUs) – With a grist including roasted malts and Canadian Rye malt, this new amber-coloured beer features aromas of toffee and smoke, and similar flavours (including some spiciness from the Rye) that are balanced from the addition of American-style hops.

Tatamagouche Brewing….

TataBrew are launching their Giant Series this week, so keep an eye out for these big brews on tap:

Giantess Barleywine (11% ABV, 90 IBUs) – Named after Anna Swan, Tatamagouche’s famous Giantess, an American Barleywine hopped with Chinook, Centennial, and Columbus.

Two Rivers Baltic Porter (8% ABV, 36 IBUs) – Fermented with Lager yeast and cold-conditioned, and hopped with Czech Saaz, expect this one to be full-bodied, and “very smooth with hints of chocolate”, according to the brewery.

Rum Barrel-Aged Dreadnot IBA (11.5% ABV, 52 IBUs) – Their standard Dreadnot IBA, but aged in fresh Ironworks rum barrels for an additional 4 months. Jumping from its original 7% ABV after the barrel aging, it’s currently exhibiting lots of rum presence, including vanilla. Hopped with Waimea, El Dorado, and Cascade.

 

NS Craft Beer Week Events

Throughout the week

NS Craft Beer Week Hostile Tap Takeover at The Board Room Game Cafe
Daily, throughout the week
The Board Room is celebrating the first ever NS Craft Beer Week with a unique event. Throughout the week, they will be featuring 8 different craft beers from 8 different Nova Scotia breweries, including: Boxing Rock, Garrison, Meander River Farm, North, Sea Level, Tatamagouche and Uncle Leo’s. However, looming in the shadows is the Propeller Brewing. As each of the kegs from the above breweries runs dry, they’ll be taken over by Propeller until they control all 8 of their draught lines!

NS Craft Beer Week at the Nook and Cranny
Daily, May 10-14
All NS Craft Beer is on special, 16oz pours for 12oz price! Their 9 taps will be pouring Garrison, Propeller, Hell Bay, Tatamagouche & Uncle Leo’s

NS Craft Beer Tap Takeover at RockHead Wine & Beer Market

Daily, May 11-15
RockHead will be featuring a new NS Brewery at their growler filling station each weekday throughout NSCraftBeerWeek: Monday is Sea Level, Tuesday is Boxing Rock, Wednesday is Tatamagouche, Thursday is Big Spruce, and Friday is Hell Bay.

NS Craft Casks at The Stubborn Goat
Daily, throughout the week
Every day, The Stubborn Goat is featuring local beer served on cask. $5 for a 12oz pour.

More coming momentarily!

Friday, May 8

North Brewing X Brooklyn Warehouse Pop-up Dinner at Two If By Sea
6:30pm-9:00pm
To celebrate NS Craft Beer Week, The Brooklyn Warehouse is teaming up with North Brewing Co for a pop-up dinner located at the Dartmouth gem, Two if by Sea Cafe. Mark has put together a 6-course meal with which Peter has paired some of his best brews, including the launch of the new Belgian Pale Ale. Seating for this event is very limited so book your tickets today!
Tickets are $89.87 (plus gratuity).

Beer & Beethoven – NSCBW Kick Off Event at The Halifax Forum Multipurpose Room
7:00pm-10:00pm
Join in on Friday, May 8th at the Halifax Forum for Symphony Nova Scotia’s annual Beer & Beethoven fundraiser and help kick off the first ever Nova Scotia Craft Beer Week! This year they’re staying local –musical guest Dave Gunning takes to the stage with the symphony musicians while you enjoy local craft beer (with sampling included from 7 to 8 pm) and meet the brewers.
Long & McQuade is bringing back their musical instrument zone – be sure to stop by and check out the instruments with some of the musicians. Watch for an on-site fundraiser – funds raised support free community programming and concerts like the Family Series, Symphony Week and the symphony’s work with school children.
Tickets are $40, $45 online.

Saturday, May 9

Open Brewery Day: Most of the breweries in Nova Scotia will be open for tours and tastings, and a few have some special events planned as well. Drop by and show them some love!

Open Brewery Day at the Antigonish Townhouse
5:00pm-9:00pm
Terry will be doing nano-tours of NS’s smallest licensed brewery on Saturday, May, 9th from 5-9pm. Terry & Justin, one of the craft beer fanatics on their kitchen staff, will also be brewing a test batch of a Scottish Wee Heavy this weekend.

Open Brewery Day at Big Spruce
12:00pm-4:00pm
They will be hosting a roving Wood Fired Pizza Oven, with free samples.
From 1-3pm, Angeline MacLennan, the Maritimes’ only Certified Cicerone, will be on hand to talk beer and her husband Donald MacLennan will be entertaining visitors with his musical talents.

Open Brewery Day at Boxing Rock
12:00pm-6:00pm
Drop on by Boxing Rock for free brewery tours and tastings, Beer Sausages and lemonade for sale in support of the local elementary school playground society. Lumberjack games demonstrations, too!

Open Brewery Day at Gahan House Harbourfront
11:00am-4:00pm
Brewmaster Karen Allen will be on-site discussing all brew topics, and she may even let you sample some of the ingredients.

Open Brewery Day at Garrison Brewing
8:00am-4:00pm
Step into their brewhaus for a live brew with expert brewers and David Bardsley 2012 Home Brew Off Runner Up as they create his Wry and Ginger IPA. Enjoy Patio Pizza fresh from Morris East Restaurant’s mobile wood fired oven “Maximus” setup on the patio along with a taster of Fire Tap Ale. And be the first to try the newest beer from Garrison, Pucker Up: Apricot.

Open Brewery Day at Good Robot
10:00am-10:00pm (or later, knowing these guys!)
This will be Good Robot’s opening day! This is the public’s first chance to walk away with kegs or growlers of their beers, including some that aren’t on tap anywhere. They’ll be BBQing, tasting grub from their taproom, playing tunes, and having a time. They’re also working on something special that will be announced soon.

Open Brewery Day at Granite Brewery
10:00am-8:00pm
Drop by Stairs Street to see what Kevin Keefe is brewing up today!

Open Brewery Day at Hell Bay Brewing
12:00pm-5:00pm
Drop by Hell Bay for Open Brewery Day!

Open Brewery Day at Meander River Farm
11:00pm-5:00pm
Drop by the Farm to meet your local brewer and farmer.

Open Brewery Day at North Brewing
12:00pm-9:00pm
Drop by North Brewing for $2 off growler fills, and to chat beer.

Open Brewery Day at Paddys Irish Brewpub Wolfville
11:00am-6:00pm
Brewer Kirsten will be brewing up a storm Saturday, and will be accessible to the public, plus the pub will be open for sampling all day.

Open Brewery Day at Propeller Brewing (Gottingen)
12:00pm-5:00pm
They will be offering tasters in their tour room.

Open Brewery Day at Rare Bird
12:00pm-2:00pm
Drop by the Rare Bird Pub for Open Brewery Day.

Open Brewery Day at Rogues Roost
12:00pm-4:00pm
Drop by Rogues Roost to learn about brewing ingredients and the brewing process, and check out their sweet brewing system!

Open Brewery Day at Sea Level Brewing
10:00am-5:00pm
Tasting and tours at 12:00pm and 2:00pm.

Open Brewery Day at Tatamagouche Brewing
10:00pm-5:00pm
Drop by TataBrew for a gander at their great brewhouse.

Open Brewery Day at Uncle Leo’s
12:00pm-6:00pm
Cathy Munro, a local hop producer, will be on hand to share her knowledge of hop growing, and answer any questions. The brewery will also be open for those wanting a closer look!

 

Cerberus Release Party – Big Spruce, Propeller and Tatamagouche Tap Takeover at Bar Stillwell
12:00pm-2:00am
The Cerberus release will be taking place at Stillwell, and Big Spruce, Propeller and TataBrew are taking over their taps! Drop by for some Organic Beer Lovin’!

Celebrating NSCBW Opening Weekend at White Point Beach Lodge
2:00pm-10:00pm
White Point Beach has several events happening this weekend, including a Cooking with Craft Beer class, the official launch of Rare Bird’s Red Ale, and an introduction to NS Crat Beer with Jeff Pinhey. Check out their page for all of the details, and to book a room.

Sunday, May 10

The Stillwell Open 2015 – Backyard BBQ at Bar Stillwell
1:00pm-12:00am
Stillwell is hosting a very special tasting event. Twelve beers will be served blindly (ie, attendees won’t know the brewery name or style), to pair with Chef Graeme’s BBQ creations. Vote on your favourite to see who wins!
The 1-5pm ticket session is sold out, but after 5, everyone is welcome!
Breweries in attendance: Big Spruce, Boxing Rock, The Gahan House, Garrison, Good Robot, North, Propeller, Spindrift, Tatamagouche, plus beers from Homebrewers Jason McDougall (brewed at Boxing Rock), Chris McDonald (brewed at Good Robot), and Kyle McKenzie & Liam Sellers (also brewed at Good Robot). We know that more than half of the beers are brand new or special one-offs brewed for this special occasion, so don’t miss out!

Monday, May 11

Beer Dinner ft. Boxing Rock vs. Big Spruce at Lion & Bright
7:00pm-10:00pm
Four courses. Eight beers. Two breweries.
Check out the first in Lion & Bright’s Brewmaster Dinner series as Big Spruce Brewery & Boxing Rock Brewery go head-to-head to each pair one of their own beer with each course of locally sourced dinner created by Chef Kristy Burgess. Each course will feature one beer from Big Spruce and one beer from Boxing Rock – you decide which pairs better. We know that there will be at least one brand new beer at this event, so don’t pass this by!
Brewers from both breweries will be on-site during the competition to chat about their beer, their company and their passion.
Only twenty tickets available. Please contact the event organizer with any allergies or dietary considerations.

Tuesday, May 12

Craft Beer Tasting with Angeline MacLennan at Antigonish Townhouse
8:00pm-10:30pm
The very first NS Craft Beer Week starts Friday, May 7! In celebration of this auspicious event, Angeline MacLennan, NS’s first and only certified Cicerone, who just happens to be an Antigonisher, is hosting a guided beer tasting here at The Townhouse on Tuesday, May 12, at 8pm! Try 7 Nova Scotia craft beers (including some special NS Craft Beer Week brews and Terry’s London Style Porter), house made patés and preserves, and learn a tonne about why craft beer is taking over in NS!
Tickets only available online! Get yours quick before they’re all gone!

Wednesday, May 13

NS Craft Beer at Dalhousie University Club
4:00pm-6:00pm
Visit the Dal University Club for a glass of NS Craft Beer and complimentary pulled pork sliders.

Beer Dinner ft. Sea Level vs. Propeller at Lion & Bright
7:00pm-10:00pm
Four courses. Eight beers. Two breweries.
This is the second in Lion & Bright’s Brewmaster Dinner series as Sea Level Brewing & Propeller Brewery go head-to-head to each pair one of their own beers with each course of locally sourced dinner created by Lion & Bright Chef Kristy Burgess. Each course will feature one beer from Sea Level and one beer from Propeller – you decide which pairs better.
Brewers from both breweries will be on-site during the competition to chat about their beer, their company and their passion.
Only twenty tickets available. Please contact the event organizer with any allergies or dietary considerations.

Beer Cocktail Face-Off at The Auction House
7:30pm-10:00pm
Your favourite bartenders are pairing up with 8 of your favourite breweries to come up with some signature drinks based on their brews. Try them all! Live music accompanies your imbibing.
Tickets are $15, and available at The Auction House.

Thursday, May 14

NS Craft Beer at Dalhousie University Club
4:00pm-6:00pm
Visit the Dal University Club for a glass of NS Craft Beer and complimentary pulled pork sliders.

The Science of Beer at the Discovery Centre
6:00pm-9:00pm
This fun-filled evening of science is one of the Signature Events during Nova Scotia Craft Beer Week. The event, which will be held at the Discovery Centre in downtown Halifax, will feature a total of 7 “Science of Beer” presentations from a hand-selected roster of local brew experts. Guests will also be treated to 12 different beers from 6 local craft breweries (Boxing Rock Brewing Company​, Garrison Brewing Co.​, Good Robot Brewing Company​, North Brewing Company​, Propeller Brewing Company​, and Sea Level Brewing​), and delicious snacks from 3 local eateries, including The Stubborn Goat Gastropub​, Morris East Restaurant​, and Ace Burger Company​.

Beer Dinner ft. North Brewing at Lion & Bright
7:00pm-10:00pm
Join Lion & Bright for some North End Love with their neighbour North Brewing Co. for a four-course locally sourced dinner, paired with four locally crafted brews. Spend the evening enjoying the menu created by Chef Kristy Burgess, inspired by the beer of North Brewing. Menu items include mussel bouillabaisse, beer pretzels, IPA brined turkey roulade and rum raisin ice cream float. North Brewing will be answering questions about their Belgian inspired beer and how they are working towards creating a zero emission brewery right here in Halifax. Show the North End some love!
Only twenty tickets available. Please contact the event organizer with any allergies or dietary considerations.

Friday, May 15

Masters of Malt: A Beer Tasting for Everyone at Bishop’s Cellar
5:00pm-7:00pm
Bishop’s Cellar may be known for impeccable wine selection and friendly service, but they’re no strangers to a finely crafted brew. They’re dedicated to providing beer full of quality ingredients and distinctive flavours that’s been produced with integrity.
In the spirit of the inaugeral Nova Scotia Craft Beer Week, join them for a very special beer tasting as they taste through some of the fun brews on their shelves. As always, they’ll have some delicious, beer friendly bites catered.

NS Craft Beer Takeover at Spitfire Arms
5:00pm-10:00pm
Meander River Farm, Schoolhouse Brewery and Sea Level Brewing will be taking over the taps at The Spitfire Arms.

Race the Kegs at Gahan House Harbourfront
6:30pm-12:00am
Join the arrival party at Gahan House Harbourfront for conspiracy brews from the North and the South of Nova Scotia. Craft breweries from across the Province have teamed up to face off for this challenge, which includes racing the kegs of their conspiracy brews to Halifax Harbour by sail.
The kegs are expected to arrive around 6:30, and the beers will be tapped at 7pm.
The Fine Tuners will be playing 7pm to midnight.
Happy Hour Pricing will be in effect for the conspiracy IPAs, and the taps will be flowing with other NS Craft Beers!

NS Craft Brewers Brews Cruise on the Tall Ship Silva
7:00pm-8:30pm
Sailing and beer: the ultimate Nova Scotia pairing.
Halifax’s beer enthusiasts will be in and out of bars all week to celebrate Craft Beer Week. In connection with the Craft Brewers Association of Nova Scotia‘s Craft Beer Week, Murphy’s is excited to be hosting the ultimate beer experience – by bringing you out on the water.
The purchase of your ticket will include a delicious craft brew of your choice, and a 1.5 hour sail. Cruise through the harbour on the Tall Ship Silva while you enjoy craft beer from around Nova Scotia.

Saturday, May 16

Full House Craft Beer Fest (Session 1) at the Olympic Centre
12:00pm-3:00pm
This event will showcase most members of the Craft Brewers Association of Nova Scotia. Your ticket purchase includes access to the event, a Belgian-style take-home glass, and 12 beer samples of your choosing. Additional samples will be $1/each, while food will be available by cash purchase. There will also be entertainment, a pop-up craft beer swag shop, and many other amazing things.

Full House Craft Beer Fest (Session 1) at the Olympic Centre
4:00pm-7:00pm
This event will showcase most members of the Craft Brewers Association of Nova Scotia. Your ticket purchase includes access to the event, a Belgian-style take-home glass, and 12 beer samples of your choosing. Additional samples will be $1/each, while food will be available by cash purchase. There will also be entertainment, a pop-up craft beer swag shop, and many other amazing things.

Sunday, May 17

Brewers Brunch at Stubborn Goat
11:00am-2:00pm
Join The Stubborn Goat Gastropub for a most delicious brunch experience during the final day of Nova Scotia Craft Beer Week.
Grab your Craft Beer Week branded beer glass, which is yours to keep, and the first fill is included in the ticket price, along with the brunch of course. A special selection of craft brews from members of NS Craft Brewers Association will be featured on tap during this event.

 

#NSCraftBeerWeek Calendar and Map

For those of you looking for an easy way to carry this list in you pocket, add the following calendar to your to Google Calendar, Outlook or iCal.

Full-sized map on a separate page.

 

Looks like it’s going to be a great, fun-filled week! Keep an eye on this page, as we’ll be updating the list and calendar as last-minute events are announced. Be sure to get out there and support your local breweries, drink some awesome beer, and be sure to say “hi” if you see us around!

Happy Friday, everyone! We haven’t quite escaped Old Man Winter’s clutch just yet, so grab a coffee, or coffee stout, and let the beer news warm you up!

• There’s a new beer in the works at Celtic Knot Brewing: Terminus will be the first in a series of one-hop IPAs planned by owner/brewer Bruce Barton. Featuring the El Dorado hop, the beer should come in at 6.5% ABV and approximately 67 IBUs. El Dorado is a fairly new hop variety that exhibits notes of tropical fruit, citrus, and orange candy aromas and flavors. We’ll be sure to let you know more about this beer when it’s released!

• The Ladies Beer League will be brewing up another collaboration with Boxing Rock Brewing this month, and they want you to be a part of it! Open to any & all LBL members, they are holding a draw for a few spots on the brew team for the day. Fire them an email with your name, contact info, LBL Membership number, and answer to the following trivia question, “What was the name of the Ladies Beer League/Boxing Rock 2014 collaboration beer?”. If you are picked, you’ll be joining the crew in Shelburne to help brew the Cinnamon Challenge Robust Porter later this month. Transportation to/from Shelburne and food will be provided. If you’re not a member yet, you can apply online.

• The 7th Annual Garrison Brewing Home Brew-off Gala was last night, and once again many in the local homebrewing and beer appreciation community were in attendance. From a record 84 entries, the judging panel whittled it down to 14. From there, Brewmaster Daniel Girard and his crew picked out the top four, concentrating on adherence to style, drinking pleasure, and carbonation. Yesterday, the final round of judging took place, and a winner picked. acbbchris was one of the judges in the final, and can honestly say that it was quite difficult: all of the finale beers were very well crafted, enjoyable, and great examples of the style. However, there can be only one winner, and David Martin was crowned as this year’s victor. Congratulations to the finalists, and all who entered their beers.

• The Gala also served as the launch party for the 2014 winner, Jason McDougall‘s beer: Professor McDougall’s Weisse-Guy Hefeweizen. Jason talked about his great brew day with Daniel and co., and had this advice for anyone thinking of opening their own brewery, “Be sure to buy a house beside the brewery, because you’ll be spending a lot of time there!” This 5.4% ABV Hefeweizen gives off a powerful banana nose, thanks to the Weihenstephan yeast used to ferment the beer. Low bitterness from Hallertauer hops has the balance slightly sweet, which also plays well in the style, and will go perfectly with the approaching patio weather. Available now at the Brewery store, it will also be in the private stores & NSLC, and on tap shortly. And remember, Beer & Science are Sexy!

• The Beerthief Artisanal Beer Club is hosting a Beer & Food tasting next week. On March 11th, Executive Chef Peter Anthony of Magnum & Steins is putting together a four course meal to pair with Quidi Vidi beer. QV’s Iceberg, 1892 Traditional Ale, British IPA, and Winter Ale will be paired with a great selection of food prepared especially. RSVP by calling  709-576-6500 or emailing Magnum & Steins.

• The event details for Nova Scotia Craft Beer Week continue to trickle in. The latest one announced is the 2015 Stillwell Open. The theme is “Backyard BBQ Beer”, and breweries are encouraged to brew a beer in this vein, to pair with Chef Ruppel’s BBQ creations. The unique part of the event is that the entries will be poured blind, without attendees knowing which brewery, or exact style, they are drinking. Folks are encouraged to vote for their favourites, and as beers are eliminated as crowd favourites, their identity will be revealed, until only one beer remains, and is crowned the champion. Tickets are now available to get in on the first pours and food from 12-5, and then the doors will open to the public for the last hour of voting. Starting at 6pm, the beers will be revealed, one per half-hour.

Brasseurs du Petit-Sault has released a new beer they’re describing as a “Session Pale Ale”. Named Lt. Ingall (after British soldier Lieutenant Frederick Lenox Ingall, who led troups from Fredericton to Edmundston in 1837 to defend the territory from the Americans), it was brewed entirely with malt from MaltBroue, a maltser from Témiscouata-sur-le-Lac, QC (very close to the brewery). This brew was a sort of “test project” with MaltBroue and the NBCC in Grand Falls; they also had brewing engineer Jean Michel LeGraux, former head brewer for Belgian Trappist brewery Chimay, on hand during the process. Hops used in this beer include Columbus, Chinook, Citra and Willamette; quite drinkable at 4.6% ABV, it’s on tap now at the brewery for growler fils, and at the Sackville, Dieppe, and KV ANBL growler stations this week.

• We have some more details on the new beers now available from Big Axe Brewery. The first one is Partridgeberry Belgian Wheat, a 5.6% ABV Belgian Witbier brewed with “a mixture” of Pale malts, and hopped with Saaz and “other aroma hops”. Featuring the addition of orange peel and coriander – standard for the Witbier style), they also added five pounds of partridgeberries in secondary fermentation, giving the beer a “mild but complex tartness, and a wild berry aroma”, according to the brewery. Beer #2 is Chaga Porter, a 5.4% ABV dark brown ale featuring chaga, a variety of mushroom harvested locally in birch forests by Fiddlehead Heaven Forest Products. Featuring “traditional English aroma hops” and dark malts, the beer has “mild roastiness and a pleasant caramel character”, along with the flavors offered from the chaga. Big Axe has also revised their recent Big Axe Blonde; it’s now hopped with Perle and El Dorado, and the ABV has been decreased slightly to 4.6%. All three beers should be available at the brewery, and will be pouring at the FCBF tomorrow.

• To celebrate this weekend’s sold-out Fredericton Craft Beer Festival, the ANBL growler program is going all New Brunswick! For the first time since its launch, all four of the locations will be pouring only beer produced in the province. It is also the first time that newcomer TrailWay Brewing will be available for growler fills (check out their tasty Primetime APA at the Prospect St Fredericton location). And the price across the board is a very reasonable $10, whether you are buying Grimross’ Cheval D’Or, Railcar’s Artisan Brown Ale, or Pump House’s IPA. We expect them to whip through these beers quite quickly, so be sure to fill up your growler today! And the charity auction for 32oz FCBF-branded growlers is closing at noon today, so be sure to get your bids in now!

And finally today, in case our brewing brothers and sisters missed it, the official call for entries for the 2015 Canadian Brewing Awards is open! Last year’s competition saw almost 1000 entries, and they are hoping to break that barrier this year. There were several winning beers from the Atlantic Provinces in 2014, so let’s show the rest of the country that the beer quality continues to be as good as anywhere else in the country. Forms can be downloaded here, and are due April 1st. The beer must be delivered between April 7-18, with the judging taking place at the end of April. This year’s Awards & Conference are taking place June 4-6, 2015 in Niagara Falls, ON.

Good morning! Thankfully, February is just about over, which means winter has to be ending soon… right? Let’s celebrate with some regional beer news…

Big Spruce had a special visitor at the brewery earlier this week: Don Campbell, brewer/co-owner of PEI’s BarNone Brewing; luckily for us, the purpose of the visit was to brew! The two brewers conspired – not collaborated – together to develop a currently-unnamed Imperial IPA expected to come in at around 8% ABV and 97 calculated IBUs. Bittered with Magnum, flavored with Bravo, and lots of aroma/flavor additions of both Citra and Cascade, expect plenty of hoppy goodness! When it’s ready, it will be available on tap at the Big Spruce brewery, and at select establishments in Nova Scotia; BarNone may brew it at their brewery for release in PEI. Stay tuned for more info in the near future!

• A couple of days ago, Picaroons released their first of a new series of beers that are “brewed by, brewed for, and named after” their staff. All 30 Picaroons staff members (ranging from brewers to delivery drivers) will have a chance to develop and brew a recipe of their own, with some help from head brewer Myles MacKenzie and owner Sean Dunbar. They’re even being encouraged to incorporate different yeasts other than their house strain, Ringwood. While there’s no exact schedule to each brew, every batch will be brewed on the smaller system located at the Brewtique in downtown Fredericton. The first beer, Griff, was brewed by longtime Picaroons brewer Ryan “Griff” Griffith. An English Pale Ale, it was “moderately hopped” with Willamette and some Fuggles to 20 IBUs, giving the beer a “nice and pleasant earthy tone”. An easy-drinking beer at 4.8% ABV, it became available in limited supply at the Brewtique for growler fills on Tuesday, Feb. 24th; a single keg was also tapped at the Lunar Rogue last night for a Picaroons staff party celebrating the new beer series. We’ll keep you updated on the staff brew series as more beers are developed and released!

• And speaking of Picaroons, their seasonal Maple Cream Ale will be available again this coming Monday, March 2nd. This year, however, the ~5% ABV beer – brewed with real maple syrup from Briggs Maples in Riverview – will be available on tap only, no bottles. Look for it at the Brewtique for growler fills, on tap at select bars and restaurants, and likely at ANBL growler stations in the near future.

Bad Apple Brewhouse is bringing back one of their most most popular and often-requested beers, Mosaic Double IPA. Winner of the 2014 Atlantic Canada Brewing Award in the Double IPA category, it will see its 2015 launch at the Fredericton Craft Beer Festival next week. The beer weighs in at 8% ABV, features a medium body, and of course, showcases the lovely Mosaic hop varietal, which was extensively added late in the brew, at flame out, and during dry-hopping. Due to the popularity, and more access to Mosaic hops, the beer will be brewed again in the Spring and Summer, with the possibility of a limited release in bottles at that time. The beer is also a passion project for Bad Apple owner Jeff Saunders and his wife Kari Smith, who will again be partnering with the Halifax Down Syndrome Society and donating all income (not just profits) from sales of the brew to ensure that all local children (along with their families and caregivers) will be able to attend the Down Syndrome Weekend at Camp Brigadoon, being held June 13-15. Look for the beer at the brewery, and on tap wherever craft beer lovers come together!

• The University of New Brunswick-Saint John will soon be celebrating their 50th Anniversary, and they’ve asked Hammond River to brew up a special beer for a party on March 19th at Beaverbrook House. Owner/brewer Shane Steeves has fittingly chosen a “Golden Ale” (aka Blonde Ale), brewed with 2-row and CaraRed malts, and lightly hopped with Cascade to 20 IBUs. Expect this beer to be smooth and easy-drinking, at ~5.2% ABV. The UNBSJ party starts at 5:30 pm; there’s no charge to attend, and your first pint of Shane’s new beer is free! Head to the party’s FB page to vote on what the beer should be named. Hammond River’s regular accounts will also be receiving kegs of this new beer once it’s ready, so look for it around Saint John around the same time.

Pump House will soon be releasing their popular Bière de Garde in six-packs; this award-winning beer (it took home a gold medal in the Belgian Style Specialty Ales category in the 2014 Atlantic Canadian Beer Awards) has been available on tap periodically at the brewery. A dark-red beer with an aroma of toasted dark bread and hints of spice, juniper berries, and pineapple, it’s allowed time to mature and age to let the flavors develop. Bittered to 15 IBUs with Goldings and Chinook, it’s full-bodied with notes of dark caramel, according to the brewery. Weighing in at 6.5% ABV, look for the sixers across NB and NS (and in Alberta!) by the second week of March.

Red Rover continues to celebrate their 1st Birthday, this time with a party at the UNB Grad House, starting tomorrow (Saturday) at 8 pm. There will be several seasonal ciders available on tap, including their newest brew, Winter Blues, a wild blueberry cider. Head to the event page and vote for which of their ciders you’d most like to see on tap, and you’ll receive an official invite to the party, where there will be live music, free birthday cupcakes… and your first cider pour is on the house (while supplies last). They will also be announcing a special collaboration with Big Axe Brewery that they will be introducing at next weekend’s Fredericton Craft Beer Festival.

• The latest Signature Event of the Nova Scotia Craft Beer Week, coming May 8-17, has been announced. The Science of Beer will see the CBANS and friends take over the Discovery Centre on Thursday the 14th from 6-9pm, for a night of learning about, and enjoying, our favourite beverage. Seven speakers will be exploring different scientific, and fun, aspects of beer, from the brewing, packaging, and tasting, and many more angles. To keep your tastebuds stimulated while your brain is working, six breweries will be pouring beer (Boxing Rock​, Garrison​, North​, Propeller​, Sea Level, and Wrought Iron​), and food from Ace Burger, Morris East, and Stubborn Goat. We’ll have more details on the speakers and topics soon, but we can tell you that Chris will be giving a presentation. Tickets are available online now, we hope to see you there! And don’t forget to pick up tickets for the Full House Craft Beer Fest on Saturday the 16th, at the Olympic Community Centre. While there are many left for the 12-3pm session, there are only a few tickets remaining for the 4-7pm session. For $25, you’ll have a chance to sample the wares of CBANS members from one end of the province to the other, all under one roof, for the first time.

• The Moncton Beer League is partnering with Chef Matthew Pennell (Champion of Chopped Canada), for a 4-course beer and food pairing meal at Legends Restaurant (in the Moncton Coliseum) on March 21st. Each course will be paired with a different NB beer, plus an additional welcome beer in a souvenir glass you can take home. Tickets are available online now, and if you purchase them before March 4th, you will save $10.

• The official announcement has been made, and the website launched: Unfiltered Brewing will be coming to Halifax’s North End this Spring! Greg Nash is partnering with long-time friend Andrew Murphy and opening the brewery on North Street, and a sister pub adjacent, opening in the summer. Follow along with the progress on Twitter and their mailing list, where they will be releasing details on becoming a member of their Growler Club when it launches. We’ll have brewhouse and distribution details shortly. Welcome Unfiltered Brewing!

There are a few seasonal and special beers back to our region this week: Tatamagouche Brewing‘s RR#2 Lager, brewed with their own Mt. Hood and Crystal hops is back on at the brewery; Boxing Rock was able to their hands on more Nelson Sauvin hops, and have brought back a second batch of Unobtainium, available at the brewery and private beer stores starting today; Sea Level has released this year’s version of  El Rojo Diablo Double IPA, brewed with Waimea hops, and it’s on tap at the Port Pub and will be in the private stores shortly. The James Joyce Irish Pub in Fredericton has added yet another NB brewery to their taplist; they should be pouring Railcar‘s Artisan Brown Ale starting tomorrow.

If you missed out on tickets for next weekend’s Fredericton Craft Beer Fest, the Crowne Plaza Lord Beaverbrook is holding a contest on Facebook, giving away a pair of tickets and hotel room. Share this post to enter, and be sure to say Hi to Shawn and Chris on Saturday!

Happy Friday! As we enter the busy month of December, the breweries in Atlantic Canada are firing on all cylinders, as there is lots of beer news this week. Let’s get started…

Big Tide has a new brew on tap at the brewpub: Gasworks Chocolate Honey Wheat was brewed for an event at the Saint John Free Public Library, “Beethoven, Books and Beer”. Brewer Wendy Papadopoulos was aiming to brew a beer that was “light and dark”, and warming and refreshing at the same time. So, she added honey to a light wheat ale base to hopefully give a creamier mouthfeel, and also added both Chocolate and Carafa malts to darken the beer and give some roastiness to the flavor. The IBUs are on the lower end, to keep the malt characters upfront. It clocks in at 5.5% ABV; get down to try it, as it won’t be around for long! They’ve also got another new beer in the works just in time for the holidays, Santa’s Chocolate Porter. More on that one, soon!

Pump House has re-released their own take on the Winter Warmer style… a style which is becoming more and more popular for these colder months. Nor’Easter Winter Warmer is a strong ale at 7.5% ABV, and malty sweet, as the style calls for. The brewers spice the beer with cinnamon, cloves, and nutmeg, and lightly hop it to only 20 IBUs. It’s currently on tap at the brewpub in Moncton, and is also available for growler fills at the Dieppe ANBL store this week.

• Along with their first DIPA, 8 Cord, the PEI Brewing Co. also released another new beer yesterday! Ice Boat is the brewery’s Sydney Street Stout that has been aged in Tennessee whiskey barrels for three months (the barrels were rinsed before adding the beer, to temper the alcohol flavor and enhance the softening effects of the oak, according to head brewer Chris Long). Packaged in a limited number – 1000 – of 750 mL, wax-dipped bottles (they assure us the wax is easier to remove than in their Transmitter Stout!), it’s currently available at the brewery, and should hit PEILCC stores sometime next week. We also mentioned a Doppelbock last week; that beer has currently been put on hold, but don’t worry, they still plan on brewing it soon!

• In cider news, Red Rover has just released their newest product, Jingleberry. A semi-dry cider coming in at 7% ABV, it has wild blueberries added during the brewing process to give some tartness in the flavors. And if you’re looking to take home some Red Rover cider in a larger container than their usual 1 L flagons, they now have 5 L “Kitchen Party Kegs” for sale… they’re $64 (taxes included) and are refillable; available for purchase at the Ciderhouse. You can also find their products on tap at Sam Snead’s and Ten Resto in Fredericton, joining several other accounts in the city.

• With Christmas around the corner, it’s good news for Picaroons fans… they’re about ready to start their 12 Beers of Christmas! Starting next Friday, December 12th, they will be releasing a new holiday-themed beer every day at 4:00 pm (noon on Sundays) for 12 days, in growler form at the Brewtique. Like last year, there will be a 2 growler limit per person, and the day’s beer won’t be announced until noon on that day (through Facebook and Twitter). There may be a couple of brand new beers, according to the brewery; most will be re-releases of favorites over the last couple of years. These beers always go quickly, so if you want to grab some, make sure to show up early!

• If you don’t have plans for Saturday, Dec. 20th, we have a great idea for you! Les Brasseurs du Petit-Sault is having a tap-takeover at Resto-Bar Le Deck in Edmundston. All 8 taps will be dedicated to Petit-Sault beers, four of which will be “One-Hit Wonders” that have never been released before! These new beers include La Dictée (IPA), La Winding Eddy (Vanilla Bourbon Porter), La Kedgwick (Lager), and La Mud Lake (Brown Ale). It all starts at 7:00 pm; admission is free.

• Tickets for the 2015 Saint John Beerfest are now on sale! The event will be held on Saturday, April 11th from 7:30 – 9:30 pm; general admission tickets are $60, with VIP tickets – which allow you entry to the festival half an hour early, and access to “limited quantity beer, food, and entertainment” are $70. We’ll have some more details on the breweries, beers, and food and entertainment options closer to the date.

Propeller Brewing Co is at it again! They are releasing the second in their four-beer Lambic-style beer series in a couple of weeks. Their Blackberry beer will be released December 22nd at both the Dartmouth and Halifax breweries. This beer started out from the same batch of wort and young beer as the Framboise (and the two other beers to come), and then blackberries were added for a unique Nova Scotia twist on this Senne Valley traditional style. And much like their Framboise release in August, they will be holding a special event at Bar Stillwell on Saturday, December 20th. Beginning at noon, patrons can enjoy the new beer by the glass or bottle before it hits the shelves to the general public Monday morning. No tickets are necessary to drop by and enjoy the beer, and those who do will have the opportunity to sign up for a guaranteed bottle to be purchased at the Gottingen St location Sunday the 21st.

• Another busy week for Big Spruce Brewing in Nyanza, NS. Last weekend, the Second Annual Homebrew Competition judging took place, and Eric Gauthier’s American Wheat was crowned the best in show! Through stiff competition, Eric’s beer rose to the top, and he will be joining the Big Spruce crew for a brewday in a couple of weeks. His beer will then be released for the first time at the Local Connections Craft Beer and Local Food Celebration at the Halifax Club, January 15, 2015 (sorry, tickets are sold out, but you can sign up to the Wait List). Congratulations Eric, and finalists Keith and Jimmy! Last year’s Homebrew Competition winning beer, Tim’s Dirty American IPA, has made a return to the brewery and tap accounts this week, so be sure to grab it when you see it.

• And in more Big Spruce news, they are releasing a new beer today, an Imperial IPA, brewed with 100% imported German malts. Crazy Ivan weighs in at 8.2% and 108 IBUs, thanks to several different American hops. Due to the wicked amount of hops in the boil, the yield for this Bad Boy is quite low, at just over 500 litres, so don’t delay, and grab this insane beer today. And this is a warning to be on the lookout for Hoppuccino version 2, brewed this week. This version featured a special blend from Just Us! Coffee Roasters, roasted especially for this brew. The beer has more coffee added, and a lower ABV, so the flavour profile will really allow this new coffee blend to shine through.

Boxing Rock Brewing Co has brought back their very popular U-889 Russian Imperial Stout, just in time for the colder days ahead. Weighing in at 8.89% ABV and 65 IBUs, this dark beer features a full body, and significant roast and chocolate character, benefitting from additions of organic, fair trade coffee from Just Us! and Madagascar Bourbon vanilla beans for a complex flavour and aroma profile. Available in 650 ml bottles at the private beer stores in HRM, at the Halifax Seaport Market both Friday (for the next three weeks) and Saturday, and at select bars on the South Shore and HRM.

Tatamagouche Brewing Co had a busy week, with a beer re-release, a new beer style on the horizon, and some visitors to the brewery. They have re-released their Dreadnot IBA (India Black Ale) in 650 ml bottles (for the first time), as well as on tap around the province, and in growlers at the brewery. More details on the beer are available here. Details are light, but we spotted the Tata Crew adding some oysters to a new brew that will debut in early 2015, an Oyster Stout. We’ll be sure to pass along the specs when available, but we can say that it features both local Malagash hops and oysters. And the crew from Stubborn Goat Gastropub paid a visit to the brewery to help out with a collaboration that will be released in early 2015 as well. More details on that beer soon.

• And while we don’t yet have all of the details on Tata’s upcoming festive ale, we do have more information on the Holiday Brunch launch event, being held at Stillwell December 12th, put on in partnership with the Ladies Beer League. Chef Graeme Ruppel has prepared three special menu items for the event, Frittata, Strata and Purgatorio (full details at the link above). Tickets for the noon event are $25, which gets you a glass of the Tata holiday beer and food beginning at noon, before the standard 4pm Sunday opening time. Tickets are available online, and will sell out this weekend, so act fast!

• The North Brewing crew were working their new bottling system hard again this week, busy packaging their Barrel Aged Strong Dark Belgian. Aged in barrels from Glenora Distillery in Cape Breton for two months, the base beer features dark candy sugar and a long boil for dark fruit flavors and a full mouthfeel, that is only enhanced by the vanilla and whisky flavours and aromas picked up from the barrels. Available in 650 ml bottles at the brewery beginning today.

• Local glassware printer Jym Line received a shoutout in the Herald this week. Chances are good that if you’ve filled a growler, or drunk a beer from a logoed glass from a local brewery, you were using a Jym Line product. Check out the article for more insight into this local business.

• As drinkers, we include local beer in our diet, to support our vibrant community of local breweries. In turn, these breweries are increasing their use of local ingredients, grown or harvested in our region. Hop harvest season is a flurry of activity with breweries teaming up with local hop growers to share the best our land has to offer. Other ingredients just as critical to beer production are the grains and malt. While there are local grain producers, there are no commercial malting facilities in the Maritime Provinces. Though the barley for Maritime Malt is grown in our region, it is malted in Quebec. Enter Horton Ridge Malt & Grain Co, a new malt house, located in the Annapolis Valley, NS. President Alan Stewart has been growing certified organic produce in Nova Scotia for over 25 years, so is well aware of the unique character of the land and climate of this region. He wants to bring that passion to begin producing malt and grain for local breweries, distilleries, and homebrewers. To further his knowledge on the art and science of malting, Stewart trained at the Canadian Malt Barley Technical Centre in Winnipeg, completing the Malt Academy course. Plans are in place for the first malting to take place during the 2015 season, including three varieties of rye grown on-site. To involve the wider local community in this new venture, Horton Ridge has launched a Community Economic Development Investment Fund (or CEDIF). Stewart is holding an information session December 11, 2014, at the Wolfville Farmers Market, to learn more about the Malt House plans, and the CEDIF details. If interested in attending, be sure to RSVP. We wish Horton Ridge success, and look forward to tasting beers brewed with their malt soon!

• “The best laid plans of mice and men / Often go awry” … Garrison Brewing Company was to be releasing their much anticipated Spruce Beer today, but sadly some bottling line issues has delayed the release until next week. However, we’ll give you the details today, to get you in the mood. It was all hands on deck for over a dozen staff, family and friends of the brewery who visited Meander River Farm and Brewery, to harvest spruce and fir tips and boughs three weeks ago. A bit of snow fell as they collected the tips, making it all the more magical. Pale, dark crystal, roasted malt, and oat flakes were used in the mash, with Crosby’s Molasses from Saint John, NB added to the wort for additional body, aroma, and fermentable sugars, aiding the beer to reach the 7.5% ABV. To complement the aroma from the nearly 40 bags of boughs used, Citra hops brought the bitterness up to 25 IBUs. This year’s brew will be packaged in 650 ml bottles, just the right size for sharing with your favourite elf. And good news for beer drinkers, the distribution of the beer has now expanded into both New Brunswick and PEI, and will be sent to Manitoba and Alberta, as well. The Spruce Beer goes on sale at the brewery next Friday, the 12th, at 9am. We can also share that some of this year’s Spruce Beer will be aged in barrels that previously held Ironworks Distillery Rum, and that last year’s Barrel Aged Spruce Beer will be released before the New Year.

• May 11-17, 2015 will be the inaugural Nova Scotia Craft Beer Week! The Craft Brewers Association of Nova Scotia is hosting this week-long celebration of beer made in the Bluenose province. Events include Open Brewery Day, Tap Takeovers, Beer Dinners and more, capped off by the flagship event Saturday May 16th, the Full House Craft Beer Fest. The Fest will see beer poured by all members of the Association, all under one roof for the first time. There are two sessions of the fest, being held at the Olympic Community Centre, 12-3pm and 4-7pm. Tickets are now available at the Early Bird price of $22, which gets you in the door, a take-home glass, and your first 12 beer samples. After that, samples are only $1. This format allows for a more relaxed environment, without people rushing and overindulging, in the hopes of “getting their money’s worth” of a higher ticket price. Reasonably-priced food options will be available onsite, as well as musical entertainment and a pop-up shop with merchandise from the Association members. Grab your ticket now to avoid disappointment! We will be sharing details of the other NS Craft Beer Week events as they are released, but from what we’ve heard so far, we can assure you that there will be events across the province, and for beer lovers of all stripes.

Wow! Just when you think beer news is slowing down a bit, you get a week like this. Have a fantastic weekend! In addition to all of the new beers mentioned above, Granite Brewery‘s Darkside IPA is now available at their Beer Store for growler fills, so if you’re in Halifax, stop in to pick some up! And there’s some other new beers on the horizon that we weren’t able to get info on for this week… Big Axe has Chocolate Mint Stout and Wrath of Putin Imperial Pale Ale, both of which will be on tap at 540 Kitchen & Bar soon; BarNone announced that they’ve just brewed a Sweet Stout, La Vaca Loca; and Yellowbelly has their latest seasonal, Root Cellar, on tap now, with bottles following shortly. If you haven’t bought your tickets for the 2015 Fredericton Craft Beer Festival, don’t wait any longer… VIP tickets are gone, and general admission tickets are already over 50% sold out! Hell Bay has received a new 12 hL horizontal fermenter that will become their new (and bigger) mash tun, so expect more production from them in the near future. Finally, a big congratulations to Cam and Jenn at Schoolhouse Brewery, who welcomed the newest addition to the family/brewery – baby Claire – on Monday!