Unfiltered Brewing

All posts tagged Unfiltered Brewing

Although November is on the wane, the beer news in Atlantic Canada is showing no signs of slowing down. Last weekend’s Atlantic Canadian Brewing Awards Gala celebrated the best beers in the region at HopYard Halifax with all four Provinces represented in the winner’s circle and Montague, PEI’s Bogside Brewing taking home the title of Brewery of the Year. You can check out the full results in our post here and maybe use it as a guide to trying some beers you’ve not had before. Meanwhile, in eagerly anticipated news, especially for beer lovers in Halifax, the latest venture from the gang at Stillwell, The Stillwell Freehouse, is now officially open on Agricola Street in the North End. You can read (and see!) more about what is certainly to become a favorite haunt for many in our profile posted this morning. But that is far from all the news you need to know, read on for plenty more about this week’s releases, re-releases, and events in our little corner of the continent.

Good news if you’re a fan of Port Rexton’s ongoing Continuum series (hazy IPAs that tend to focus mainly on one single hop variety), as they’ve just released their latest entry, Continuum w/ Cashmere. While there’s plenty of the Cashmere variety used in the whirlpool, hop back, and dry-hop additions, they threw in some Columbus as well. Lots of pineapple, lemon, and pine in this one, as well as “a light herbal bouquet on the palate”. Pretty manageable at 5.6% ABV, it finishes with a smooth bitterness. Look for it right now on tap at the taproom, and it’s also available for growler fills at the St. John’s retail shop.

Speaking of the wonderful world of hops, Tatamagouche Brewing has their newest hoppy beauty out this week. Lotus DIPA is an 8% Imperial IPA that is loaded with Lotus (breweries take note, “Loaded with Lotus” is a pretty cool-sounding name for a beer), a quite-new American variety that has popped up in a few beers in our region since its launch. The Lotus is accompanied by Citra and Galaxy, resulting in a hazy beer with “sweet aromas and flavours of strawberry Campino candies, tropical pineapple, and citrus with a slight spice”. It’s available at Tata on tap, with cans hitting the shelves hopefully sometime next week (some of those may make it to some of the private stores in Halifax, too). 

New can release from your buds at 2 Crows, and after a super-hoppy and hazy American IPA, they’re giving us something to dial it back a bit, a Helles they’ve named Milosh. They’ve teamed up with the folks at Shoreline Malting and Darlings Island Farm to design/brew this one, a Lager that features Pilsner malt (from Shoreline) and all NB-grown hops from Darlings Island. Brewed using a low-oxygen, multiple step mash, the wort was hopped with Magnum, Ultra, and Tettnanger is the mash, first wort, and late kettle additions. After fermentation with a traditional German Lager yeast (and krausening with fresh wort and active yeast), the beer was lagered for nine weeks, before packaging. It’s tasting “crisp and smooth, with a bready/doughy aroma, a full malty body and a firm, lingering head”. Some floral and herbal notes accompany, and it finishes with a firm bitterness. Weighing in at 4.5% ABV and 17 IBUs, look for cans and draught pours of this baby at 2 Crows, starting today at noon (we expect it’ll be on tap at several fine establishments across the HRM, as well). 

Waaaay up in Twilingate, NL, Split Rock Brewing Co. has their first lager available on the taps, a beer in the California Common style. Amber in color, it’s clean and malty as one would expect, with spicy and floral hop character owing to the use of American Cluster hops and a dry, bitter finish. Coming in at 5.0% ABV, you’ll find it pouring at their tap room as well as The Guv’nor and Fort Amherst Pub in St. John’s. As far as we know they’ve got no current plans to package it, but never say never, and if it’s a hit with the drinking public it’s certainly possible that future batches will see release in cans.

Moving Southeast down the shore, Quidi Vidi Brewing Co. has teamed up with Tod Perrin, Steve Lee, and the crew  of Mallard Cottage for two new entries in their Bog & Barrens series. If you get up to Mallard you’ll be able to get a sneak peak of these new beers with special food pairings before they are packaged in cans and released to the wider public later this month. The beers in question are Parsnip & Golden Beet Kveik and Partridgeberry Stout, both clearly hewing to the ethos of the Bog & Barrens banner to collaborate with local providers and bring to market beers that could only come from Newfoundland. If you’re interested in this preview, you’d best get your reservation together for tonight or tomorrow by contacting Mallard Cottage directly.

And continuing with Newfoundland beer news, moving West this time to Cormack, Crooked Feeder Brewing has released a new beer as well, a brown they’re calling 12 Mile House Nut Brown Ale. This 5% ABV and 27 IBU beer has a lovely mahogany color and a firm off-white head. It’s available at the brewery, of course (open 6 – 10 PM tonight), and the Crooked Feeder Gastro Pub in Corner Brook, as well as being served at the Corner Brook 12 Beers of Xmas event happening tomorrow and, if you’re in town, on tap at The Guv’nor in St. John’s.

Lastly, before we leave the Rock, we head all the way up to St. Anthony to one of the newest breweries in our region, RagnaRöck Northern Brewing Co. who are celebrating the Norse Goddess of Death with a beer they’re calling Hela’s Fury IPA. We don’t have much in the way of details on this one other than an ABV of 6.9%, but we do remember Atlantic Canada’s Hop Overlord Greg Nash posting pictures from a brewery in St. Anthony a few weeks ago, so we think maybe, just maybe, the gang at RagnaRöck got themselves some superstar help with this one. There’s only one way to find out for sure: head on up and give it a try! Brewery hours are currently Sunday to Wednesday, 3pm – 11pm, and Thursday to Saturday 3pm – 12am.

Good Robot is taking another swing at the wonderful Schwarzbier style, a dark Lager that is meant to be roasty yet smooth (i.e. not acrid), with a lighter body than other dark beers out there. This beer, which they’ve named A Cunning Plan, is a 4.6% ABV, 27 IBUs brew that is dark brown, light-bodied, with a bit of bitter chocolate on the palate and an herbal hop aroma. Finishing crisp and roasty, it was originally supposed to be released at the taproom this week; however, you’ll have to wait a bit longer for it now… look for it to debut at Good Robot next Thursday.

Down in Lunenburg, Shipwright Brewing has a new beer to put the wind in your sails (see what I did there? It’s because they’re a brewery named after ships and such). Hull N’ Boats is an “Irish Extra Stout” that has aromatics of “dark roast coffee, anise, and roasted barley”. There’s a bit of cacao bean on the palate as well with this one, and with the beer being brewed with a healthy addition of oats in the grist, a smooth, silky mouthfeel. It’s 5.5% ABV and 30 IBUs, and available now at the brewery, along with three other beers of theirs (apparently a first for Shipwright, having four different beers available all at once… that’s a good sign for them!). 

Dartmouth’s Brightwood Brewery has a new beer on the go for the holiday season: Christmas on Portland Street is a version of their Portland Street Porter, a porter with plenty of chocolate malt for a dark chocolate-y bitter character, that was aged on raspberries. The result is something they’re describing as raspberry chocolate cake in a can. Coming in at 5.5% ABV, we’re told that it’s one of the beers in the Maritime Craft Beer Countdown box now available at certain private stores in Halifax. But if you’re eager to give it a try, a limited amount is available on tap and to go at the brewery as well!

Moncton’s Pump House Brewery has released a new beer this week, the latest in their limited edition Backdraught series. Now out is KAZAK Russian Imperial Stout. Inspired by co-owner Lilia Fraser’s Russian and Kazakhstani heritage, this 8.7% ABV beer is the perfect accompaniment to the cold days, and colder nights, we are experiencing. Featuring a variety of dark and black malts, the beer is punctuated with bitterness and light citrus notes from Magnum and Celeia hops. Available on draught at the Brewpub and Fill Station, tall cans are also available to go in their retail spot, and rolling out to select ANBL locations.

New bottle release at Tidehouse this weekend, and it’s got the three most profitable words in the beer industry: DDH (yes, we’re counting that as one word, because seriously, those three letters are $$ when used in that order), Milkshake, and IPA. Yep, Milk Trip is an 8.5% ABV DDH Milkshake IPA brewed with lactose, orange zest, and vanilla bean, and heavily-hopped with Citra and Mosaic. Hazy, with a full mouthfeel, and helluva lotta citrus throughout, it’s available today at 2 pm in 650 mL bottles (maximum 2/person). They won’t last long, as it’s a smaller bottling run than usual for TH, so drop by soonish or they may be all gone!

Your pals and ours, the 902 BrewCast triumvirate of Tony “Important” Wight, Phil “KelticDevil” Church, and Kyle “I don’t need no stinking nickname” Andrus, have somehow managed to survive three years of visiting breweries, drinking beer and talking (at length) about it all for your (presumed) education and entertainment! Head on over to their podcast homepage or check them out on your favorite podcasting app for their most recent episode, which dropped today, their Third Anniversary tasting episode where they reminisce about the antics of the last few years and no doubt toast to more in the next one, we also expect they busted out some bangers from their cellars in celebration. Congrats to the guys on managing to get this far and we look forward to hearing more from them in the future!

If you’re the type to keep abreast of trends in the beverage alcohol industry, especially the US markets, you might know that Hard Seltzers are currently hotter than a Times Square Rolex. Although they’re generally coming out of beer breweries, these very accessible products, low in carbs and calories, generally don’t feature much, if any, beer flavor at all, but boast bubbly effervescence, fruity flavors, moderate alcohol levels, and catchy slogans like, “Ain’t no laws when you’re drinking Claws.” As is very often the case, trends tend to push north across the border and this one is no exception, as we’ve now got a brewery in our region with a release that’s ticking a lot of the same boxes (hopefully not the slogan part though, mmkay?). Fredericton’s Trailway Brewing is releasing Raspberry Bubbly today at the brewery, which they’re calling a “seltzer-style ale” no doubt owing to the portion of malt included in the recipe. “Super zippy, clean and ultra dry” you can expect this 4% ABV beer-adjacent beverage to be a low carb option for those looking to imbibe without paying a penalty in the waistline department and/or a more fruit-forward option for those who aren’t into hoppy or beer-flavored beer. If you’re curious, you can grab cans, pints, or fills starting today at the brewery. And stay tuned, Tw social media posts about this one certainly seem to imply that raspberry won’t be the limit of their explorations of the style, so it’s very possible that in coming months you’ll be able to taste the rainbow.

So, what’s on the go around the region this weekend?

Starting right …. about …. an hour ago (sorry!), Stillwell HQ on Barrington kicked off their tap takeover by St. John’s newest brewery, Bannerman Brewing. This is the first time these new favourites have been available outside of Newfoundland (maybe even outside of St John’s?), and we can’t think of a better place to hold it. Phil Maloney and Dave Bridger (Co-owner and Brewer, respectively) will be in the bar chatting with folks. Six Bannerman beers will be pouring this afternoon, including their All Hands Helles, Thirst Trap APA, Island Time DIPA, as well as brand newbies Nervous State Milk Stout (collab with Hogie from Upstreet), Medium Cool IPA, and Scenic Route Sour with blueberry and mint. We’ve heard you may also be able to pick up some merch when you drop by, so best visit early!

Don’t forget that Cask in the Sticks is being held at Lunn’s Mill in Lawrencetown, Nova Scotia, this Saturday. This roving beer festival is moving cask beer into the country, with 8 breweries (and one homebrew collective) sharing some old standards and new to the format. Your $30 ticket ($25 if you buy one at one of the participating breweries ahead of time) gets you your own take-home glass, and fills all afternoon long. Dress up in your favourite onesie to take part in the competition, and build your own S’mores too. Breweries in attendance are: Lunn’s Mill Beer Co., Sober Island Brewing Company, Big Spruce Brewing, Boxing Rock Brewing Company, Meander River Farm, Tatamagouche Brewing Co., Roof Hound Brewing Co., and Annapolis Brewing Company.

Just a couple more things to woo you with before we send you on your way:

Halifax’s Bishop’s Cellar is having a large weekend, with plenty of new beers available on their shelves. Available from noon today, is SpontanBasil, a totally unique unique collaboration between Lindemans and Mikkeller. Their take on a gueuze, with one- and two-year old lambic blended and added with fresh basil at bottling. After conditioning and a final fermentation, the beer is now available for sale at their shop, as well as online. And dropping tomorrow morning are three releases from Toronto’s Bellwoods Brewing, Fruit Jelly King PTG, Saison Pizazz, and Yeehaw Y’All. Available from 8 AM in store and online, we suspect these won’t last long, so set your alarms now! Probably a good excuse to get out to peep their newly expanded location in Bishop’s Landing, eh?

Propeller Brewing has brought back a seasonal favourite, their Coffee Porter. Using Fog City coffee from Java Blend Coffee Roasters, this 5.9% ABV beer is full of chocolate, coffee, and light toffee notes as well. This year’s batch is a bottle exclusive, and only available at the NSLC, so pop by your local to grab some!

Have you found yourself with an orange hop bomb-sized hole in your beer drinking life lately? Well we’ve got good news from Unfiltered about getting you what you’re missing. DOA (Double Orange Apocalypse) is back at the brewery in all formats (fills, pints, and cans) starting from noon today. As always, 7.5% ABV, hoppy as hell, and leaving you happily belching an orange grove.

North Brewing, formerly of Halifax, now firmly ensconced in Dartmouth, has two returning beers to mention this week. First up is a brand new version of their Sunshine Shandy, this time made with Meyer lemons and local honey, a tart and lemony brew with a teensy bit of residual sweetness from the honey. And also returning is the OG tiramisu version of their Twinkle Pony Pastry Stout, which features lady fingers and chocolate malt on the grist side, lactose and vanilla for some sweetness, and cold brew coffee for an espresso kick. Both are available at the brewery and the Twinkle Pony can be had on nitro pours at Battery Park on Ochterloney.

And in late-late-late breaking news, Rough Waters Brewing is opening their retail space in Deer Lake this Sunday. Located at 83 Wight’s Road, the space will be open 1 – 6 PM Sunday, and will have four beers available: their Selkie Wheat, Scallywag IPA, Sou’wester Sour, and Singaler Porter. You can also get a sneak peek of their beer at this weekend’s Newfoundland Craft Beer Festival in Corner Brook. We’ll have lots more details on Rough Waters very soon! Congratulations!

It’s damn near October; how the heck did that happen?! We’ll let you ruminate on that one whilst you peruse our weekly round-up of beer and beer events news in the region. Plenty of new beers on the go this week as breweries continue their transition from, “dear god make it stop,” summer production to, “let’s have some fun in the brewhouse again,” fall shenanigans. Meanwhile, plenty of Oktoberfest events are still going on or yet to come, and though we didn’t have any submissions this week, we know the pumpkin beers are still flowing. Grab one (…or maybe a Pilsner, if that’s what you prefer) and read on!

Tanner & Co Brewing in Chester Basin has packaged a beer released earlier this month, strongly influenced by one of Brewer Dan Tanner’s favourite wines. Pinotage is one of South Africa’s signature grape varietals, a cross of the Pinot noir and Hermitage varietals, developed in the first half of the 20th century. The wines made with Pinotage are dark red, with smoky and earthy flavours, and sometimes having banana, tropical fruit, and possibly acetone/solvent notes (though these are discouraged and avoided when possible). Starting from their base Porter beer, Tanner aged the beer in highly charred barrels that once held Ironworks Dark Rum, with extra fruit notes from Black Raspberry puree, kicked up with fresh Blackberries and Blueberries. With contribution from the base beer, barrel, and fruit additions, look for vanilla, caramel, light smoke, roast, chocolate, with deep berry character. The 6.3% ABV Porter [Oak Aged & Berry Addition] is available at the brewery and farmers markets now in bottles and limited growler fills, and may be one of the offerings at their Chester taproom, poised to open at the end of October. Tanner & Co on Duke will be located (coincidentally, right?) at 59 Duke Street in the Village of Chester, and feature 20 seats, with a whole bevvy of their own beers, complemented by guest taps from the region, and plenty of excellent wine once the licensing is in place. Another of their beers which *may* still be around at the time of celebration is their Double IPA, back in the lineup after a six-month hiatus. Maxing out their larger system this time around, this 8.0% ABV beer features a dry finish, accentuated with lots of kettle and dry hops (their biggest ever!) to the tune of 60 IBU, with Amarillo, Centennial, and Citra throughout, for a citrus bomb with additional floral and earthy notes. Available now at the brewery as well!

We mentioned it was coming last week and now that it’s out we’d like to double-down on a recommendation that you give it a listen. September’s 902BrewCast tasting episode has the gang blind tasting 8 (no wait, 9!) Czech- and German-style Pils(e)ners from around the region (and one from beyond) and documenting their experience as they went. We think it’s an excellent introduction to the practice of throwing away your preconceived notions and tasting blind with others, describing what you’re sensing and talking it through. Whether you’re a budding beer geek or an old palate, it’s an excellent exercise for your senses, your descriptive abilities, and your tasting mindset. It’s also a bunch of fun as you can tell from listening to these jokers do it!

Last Friday Bootleg Brew Co in Corner Brook put on a new beer before closing their doors for the week on Sunday night to head to town for a series of 6 pop-ups on Tuesday at locations around St. John’s. So we’re not entirely sure this beer is still available, but we’re going to tell you about it anyway – if it didn’t sell out, you can go try it, if it did sell out, you know it’s a straight banger and you’ll want to keep an eye out for the next time it’s available. Old Hat is an honest and gimmickless American Pale Ale hopped with Amarillo, Idaho 7, and some BC-grown Cascade. Expect a classic floral, citrus and piney hop character in flavor and aroma, a lowish bitterness and a light body, all in a fairly sessionable 5% ABV package. Only available at the brewery, definitely for fills, possibly for pints.

The bad boys of Niche Brewing in Hanwell have emerged from the summer madness and now seem to be back on the road of new and interesting releases. This week they’ve got one called Colours of Shade hitting the taps, a mixed-fermentation Saison with black currant. As you might expect, this one was fermented with Niche’s own house culture of Saison and Brettanomyces strains, meaning that at some level it’s going to taste like a “Niche beer,” but the very nature of such a blend of microorganisms means that it’s likely to express itself a little differently every time it’s used, so some of the magic is seeing how each beer is different. In this one, the yeast and fruit come together to provide a pleasant tartness, with some Brett funk to complement. The color is a beautiful purple thanks to the addition of black currant puree late in fermentation. Aged briefly in stainless, it comes in at 6.2% and would be a great choice for fruity/funky beer fans and wine lovers alike. Coming soon to  The Joyce Pub, Peppers Pub, Stillwell, The Auction House, Graystone Brewing and the Laundromat Expresso Bar (Marky’s), with a couple of kegs also making their way to the ANBL growler station at their Moncton North store. And if you’re at one of those places you might also find one of the last few kegs of their Intergalactic NEIPA on tap as well! 

Our first Oktoberfest beer this week, as Big Spruce launched Schnitz & Gigglez, their take on the malty-yet-dry amber Lager. Brewed with 100% German malts (including Pilsner, Munich and Vienna) and hopped lightly with GR Magnum and Tettnang, the wort was fermented with Escarpment Lab’s Biergarten (“sourced from a venerable Munich brewery”) and then lagered for about 8 weeks before packaging. With aromas of toffee and brown bread, and “hints of dried apricot and candied orange”, the beer is full-bodied, with a lightly-sweet finish. It weighs in at 6.3% ABV (at the upper end for the style), and is available right now on tap at the Sprucetique in Nyanza (and soon at some of your favourite Big Spruce accounts).  

In Edmundston, Petit-Sault is leaning towards the hoppier side of things with their latest release, Double Vision. This is the brewery’s first crack at the Double IPA style, and it’s a big one at 8.8% ABV. Intensely hopped with Vic Secret, Azacca, Columbus and Mosaic, the beer has plenty of malt backbone to balance, and finishes firmly bitter (60 IBUs). There is only a limited supply available, and it IS in cans… however, the only way to get it is at the brewery, so either get ready for a road-trip, or maybe call in a favour or two to friends/family who live around that area of New Brunswick!

Testify! Stillwell Brewing has announced that their barrel-aged sour beer with peaches, Preach, is being released today. This year’s version is their most peach-saturated batch yet, featuring a whopping 300 g/L of whole peaches. The “base” beer is a blend of four different barrel-fermented Saisons (who gets to decide which Saisons to use in these blends, and is Stillwell Brewing looking to add people into that role? Asking for a friend…), and went through a refermentation on the peaches (that’s 600 lbs!) and continued aging on the fruit for about five months, before bottling at the beginning of the year. They’re describing the final product as “bright, fresh, soft and fun”, and if it’s similar to the last batch, we can confirm that this is accurate! Grab it on tap and/or in bottles at Stillwell today from noon. And with their Beergarden still closed due to the crane issue during Dorian, be sure to drop by and show them some love at HQ.

Few new/returning beers coming out of Propeller today, proving that they’re continuing to stay very busy at the brewery. Returning is Nocturne, their 6.7% ABV Black IPA that is brewed in celebration of Halifax’s Nocturne, “an evening of art and wonder” in mid-October that Propeller sponsors. Luckily they release the beer weeks ahead of time, giving you many chances to consume a pint or two. Speaking of the beer, it is dry-hopped with Amarillo and Falconer’s Flight, giving “complex tropical fruit and pine hop aromas” to go with the flavours of dark chocolate and coffee. Also out today is a tasting-room only beer, Lagered Ale. The name gives you an idea of what this one will be: “easy-drinking, balanced and refreshing”, according to the brewery, and at just 4.5% ABV, it definitely seems to fit the mould. Expect hints of “sweet melon, stone fruits and citrus” in this one. Finally, tonight’s cask is Pumpkin Ale with Vanilla (4.5% ABV), which will be tapped at 5 pm as usual.

Not too far away, Garrison Brewing has a couple new releases of their own, both brewed in celebration of, yep, Oktoberfest. Let’s start with their Oktoberfest/Marzen, Gettin’ Ziggy. Malty and clean, this 5.5% ABV Lager has “grainy and toffee flavours and a quick and soft bitterness”, and pours a reddish-copper colour. Next is a Wheat Ale named It’s a Wienerful Wheat, which they brewed in collaboration with local radio station Jack 92.9. This 4.6% ABV, 12 IBUs golden-coloured brew is light and crisp, with aromas and flavours of “sweet malt and bready wheat, with spicy notes and a mild, citrusy finish”; each can sold will see $0.50 go to the SPCA. Both beers are available now, at the Garrison taproom and private liquor stores in the HRM.

Lots of news from Tatamagouche Brewing this week, with the return of their Lagerhosen as well as two bottle releases on the go. For those who aren’t familiar, Lagerhosen is an amber lager that Tata has been making for quite awhile (our first mention of it was in 2014). Timed for release in the fall during Oktoberfest season, there are two variants, a regular and a dry-hopped. Running at just about 5% ABV, it’s brewed with Hallertauer Mittelfruh hops for spicy and floral notes. The dry-hopped version features additions of both Strisselspalt and Czech Saaz for an even more intense noble character. Find both of these in cans at the brewery for sure, and hopefully also your other favorite locations for grabbing Tata brews. Or, if you’re planning to be at the 40th North Shore Oktoberfest this weekend you’ll definitely find it there!

Meanwhile, those who missed out on the annual Tata Tap Takeover at Battery Park a couple weeks ago may have been kicking themselves when they read our post that week mentioning some of the special kegs that were pouring that night. Well fear not gentle reader, at least some of those beers are being packaged for wider release and the first two, both considered entries in Tata’s “Weird Beer” series, are ready to go this week! First up is a barrel-aged rye (quick! someone call Tony!) saison they’ve named Rooted. All kinds of things went in to this beer, which started with a rye saison with Brettanomyces that was then blended with a neutral Berliner-style sour for some tartness before being barrel-aged. Described as a beer that “connects you to the earth,” you’ll find plenty of flavor, aroma, and mouthfeel including some spice from the rye, plenty of tart lemon and other citrus, and a pithy bitterness on the finish. Coming in at 6.6% ABV, it pours a bright banana color, and slightly cloudy, with polka dot lacing; if you get your hands on some expect a complex and challenging experience for your senses. Find it in 750 mL bottles at the brewery and hopefully at private stores in the city as well.

And if you lean more (or also) towards the bigger beer styles, Tata’s also got you covered with their second bottle release of the week, Toro. A massive Belgian Quadrupel bourbon barrel-aged with Brett, it’s a monster at 11.2% ABV and, where it’s been packaged in 500 mL bottles we suggest you bring a friend and/or plan for a night in when you try it (as friends of the blog like to say, a “movie beer”: best enjoyed on the couch while checking out the latest superhero flick). Like the Rooted, there’s lots going on in this deep coppery-orange beer, with plenty of dark fruit flavors complemented by sweet and malty notes and maybe even a little bit of toffee and chocolate presence. Although there’s certainly some heat from the alcohol, it’s not overpowering, as it’s been balanced by the malt profile and caramel sweetness. You can also safely expect some additional oak character from the barrels and some of the notes that only brett can provide. Definitely available from the brewery, we hope it’ll be available in the city as well as time goes on.

Speaking of Oktoberfests in the region, the Mount Pearl Oktoberfest is this weekend, and several of the breweries attending have released beers they’ll be pouring at the event, as well as doing wider releases. First up, host brewery YellowBelly has offered up a Helles named Schweine fliegen (we’ll leave the translation as an exercise to the reader). At 5.2% ABV, it features a simple malt bill of Pilsner, Munich, and CaraPils malts, and hopped entirely with Hersbrucker hops. Filtered clear, as is tradition, the light beer leans towards the malt side rather than hops, though both sides shine through with pleasant biscuit notes and Noble-like earth and spice from the hops. In addition to at the Fest, Schweine fliegen is pouring now at the brewpub in downtown St. John’s.

A short taxi or bus ride from George Street is Quidi Vidi, where the brewery by the same name is fully embracing Fest season by releasing Oktoberfest Marzen.This 5.5% ABV beer is malt-driven, and supremely chuggable. While not available in 1 Litre Maß at the brewery overlooking the gut, it is being released in tall cans there and around town. So grab two and make your own Oktoberfest at home (if you can’t make it out to Mount Pearl)! 

A little further out of town is Port Rexton on the Bonavista Peninsula, who are visiting the Avalon this weekend with their own German beer, this one in the Pilsner style. German Pilsner is a 6.2% ABV crisp and clean beer, using Hallertau Mittelfruh, Tettnang, and Strisselspalt hops, and fermented with Escarpment’s Isar Lager yeast. In addition to the Craft’ernoon Experience tomorrow, it will be available in the PRBC Retail Shop on Torbay Road, keep an eye on their social media for when exactly it is tapped, so you can fill up your Siphon or Stuetzla! 

And a couple more notes about PRBC this week: they are hosting a Brewers Dinner at Peach Cove Inn in nearby Trinity East, on October 11th. Featuring 6 courses of food and an accompanying beer (or is it the other way around?), this will surely be a fun intimate environment to sit down with both chef and brewer to talk about the flavours in both food and drink. Limited to just 20 tickets, best to contact your via phone at 709-436-2069. And if working for a brewery has been on your radar, then look no further! PRBC is hiring a part-time delivery driver to join their team. Looking to fill about 20 hours worth of work, though there may be a potential for more hours in a packaging capacity at the brewery. Send Nicole your resume today, or pop by the brewery to learn more!

And while not out quite in time for the Oktoberfest in their backyard, Landwash Brewery has teased that they will be releasing a Munich-style Helles in the next few weeks. More info on that when the time is right, but in the meantime they’re still bringing the German flair this weekend with their One Wave Blonde (which features lots of German Saphir hops), as well as their Brackish Sour Ale (heavily influenced by the German Gose style). Cans of both are available at the brewery if you cannot get out to the Oktoberfest this weekend.

Today is “Meet the Motherfuckers” day at Unfiltered Brewing in Halifax as they’ve brought back their pair of aggro-named sour beers. Sour Motherfucker is a little different this time around, with no Brett or barrel-aging involved, but it’s still a tart cherry wheat beer that should be plenty refreshing and a little dangerous, weighing in at 6.5% ABV. Fruity Motherfucker on the other hand is described as a 7% ABV “apricot, pink guava and tangerine IPA,” with plenty of fruit and, since it’s coming from Unfiltered and it’s an IPA, no doubt plenty of hops! Find both of these for fills and pints and in cans at the brewery from noon today along with what’s left of the cans of DOA and also some new branded merchandise.

What’s on the go this weekend? Peep here for the fresh info!

Dartmouth’s New Scotland Brewing is making a foray across the harbour today for a takeover at Hop Yard Halifax on Gottingen Street. Featuring 10 taps from the brewery, including Rampant Lion NEIPA, Karate Laser SIPA, Bush Berry Haskap Cider, Taken for Granted Mead, and their brand new Sound Check West Coast IPA there should be something for everyone. Head down for an afternoon pint or plan to stay for several and a meal, there will be live music starting at 8 PM.

Good Robot’s annual celebration of all things puppers is this weekend, with their Hair of the Dog event at the Garrison Grounds in Halifax. From noon daily, there is a beer garden, events throughout the day, food and dog-friendly merchandise and paraphernalia, with the highlight of Saturday night being an airing of Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban. Your $12 entrance fee gets you your first drink (beer or other alcoholic and non-alcoholic beverage), and access to all of the fun. One of those beers may be the brand new Hope Nation Saison, which we mentioned in last week’s post. Good news for dog Aunts and Uncles, no pupper is required, and please note that entry is restricted to those pups and people who play nice with new friends. 

Just a couple more things before we send you on your way today…

Boxing Rock teamed up with frequent collaborator World Tea House’s Phil Holmans to brew up Citrodora, a 6.5% ABV IPA with a healthy dose of lemon verbena tea. Look for that on tap at the Legendary Taproom in downton Shelburne, as well as the Agricola Street bottle shop in Local Source Market in Halifax. In case you haven’t already grabbed your tickets for the Highway 103 Tap Takeover happening tomorrow, now’s your chance to avoid disappointment!

King Street Beer in Bridgewater is releasing the latest of their Lahave River Beers, collaborations with local homebrewers and fans. Hawaiian Explosion is a Pineapple IPA, featuring moderate bitterness and tropical floral hops. Grab it from 6:30PM tonight!

Fredericton’s Maybee Brewing is Zagging while many are Ziggying (sorry not sorry), and releasing Pony Boy, a British Golden Ale described as “clean and malt-forward beer with a biscuit aroma”. Drop by today to grab a sample, pint, or growler of this one.

Secret Cove in Port au Port Newfoundland is going dark this week, with The Port au Porter. A 6.0% Robust Porter, think chocolate and coffee thanks to the dark German malts used. Smooth as silk, and with a name like that, how can you not take a trip out to grab a pint?!

Sourwood has an interesting new cider available this weekend: Semitone (7.1% ABV) was spontaneously fermented on blueberries that had been used in the making of their last blueberry cider, Denim. Aged on the previously-used fruit for 2 months, it’s tasting slightly acidic, with a “much softer fruiting ad colour profile” compared to the first go-around with the fruit. 

If you’ve been around the Nova Scotia beer scene for a while you know that Uncle Leo’s is known for, among other things, making some fine German-style beers. And if you’re a fan of those you’ll know that this is the time of year when they drop their mixed 4-pack! Featuring Vohs Weizenbier (wheat beer), Nachtical Illusion (Schwarzbier), Ceilidh Ale (Kölsch), and Altbier (Alt, of course!), it’s a pretty great primer for those interested in trying German styles or a treat for those who are already in the know. Find it at NSLC locations in and around the HRM already (hopefully with more around the province added in coming weeks) and, word has it, at ANBL and PEILC locations as well!

Wow, where did the summer go? Here we are, closing out August on a wet and blustery gorgeous and sunny note, and it’s the last hoorah before students head back to school next week. It looks like our region’s breweries are maybe coming up for a little air now that the crush of summer production is easing off a bit, as there’s quite a few new brews on this long weekend for you to try, and even better you’ve got an extra day to recover! We remind you as always, though, to keep in mind that your local breweries may be adjusting their hours because of the holiday.

Let’s kick off the week’s news with a stunner of a collaboration coming out of Mount Pearl, Newfoundland. Landwash Brewery teamed up with the beauts at the Newfoundland and Labrador Beard and Moustache Club to release a special brew this week. The NLBMC are celebrating the third year of their widely popular Merb’ys calendar, an annual fundraiser for a variety of provincial charities. This year’s recipients are Planned Parenthood Newfoundland & Labrador Sexual Health Centre, Home Again Furniture Bank, and SPCA St. John’s. Let’s talk about the beer, shall we? Bellyshake is a 6.5% ABV Key Lime Milkshake IPA, the brewery’s first in the style, which features lactose and vanilla to mimic the popular dairy treat. Bellyshake features loads of key limes for a sharp citrus and light tartness, with strawberry puree used to increase flavour and body. With a massive dry-hop addition adding notes of pineapple, coconut, and tangerine. Cans are now sold out at the brewery (though we understand there are some to enjoy on-site at Toslow downtown), but growlers, pints and samples are still available. Cans of One Wave Blonde will be available at opening today, with the deadly trio of Pilsner, American Pale Ale, and Breakfast Stout also pouring for the weekend.

Speaking of Downtown St. John’s, Bannerman Brewing at 90 Duckworth St is pouring a new beer these days, on the lighter side of things. Brite Lite is a 3.8% ABV Session Ale, kinda sorta mostly in the Session IPA family. Oat malt complements the base barley to give a fuller body despite the low alcohol, and the Citra and Sabro hop character shine through as tropical fruit reminiscent of pineapple, mango, and passion fruit. Grab a pint or growler of Brite Lite and/or half a dozen more at the brewery today!

Stillwell Brewing snuck a release out that we didn’t get a chance to tell you about in last week’s Friday Wrap-up so we’ll just tell you about it this week instead. Sook is YOUR new grisette in the region, a bit of a niche style that you’d be wise to not bring up around serious beer geeks lest you be lost in esoteric arguments over what a grisette truly is. In this case, it’s a low-alcohol (4.1% ABV) farmhouse-style stainless-fermented beer with a touch of acidity, “charming” fermentation character, and bit of noble hops to finish. As with many, if not most, mixed fermentation beers, this one would certainly be cellarable, but we agree with the brewery on this one: enjoy it now, when its no doubt at its lightest and most effervescent while you consider the coming change of seasons. You’ll find this one in bottles to-go at Stillwell on Barrington, and we’re sure it’ll pop up a few times on tap there as well as at the Beergarden over the coming weeks.

Did we say Beergarden? We sure did! And did we just hear someone say that they were hoping that 2 Crows would launch a couple of beers – specifically, one new and one returning – at the Stillwell Beergarden this Saturday? We thought we did! For privacy sake, let’s call this person Jeremy T. No wait, that’s too obvious… let’s say J. Taylor. Well, good news, because that’s exactly what they’re doing! The brand new beer they have is called Terry, named after a couple of important Terrys in the brewery’s life. Brewed in early 2018, the beer is their typical “sour base” (Pilsner, Wheat malt, Spelt, Special Aromatic, Flaked Oats) that was hopped to a scant 3 IBUs. Fermented with a variety of yeast strains and bacteria cultures in tequila barrels, the beer waited patiently here until half of an enormous blueberry addition (the brewery’s highest fruiting rate yet) was thrown in late last summer. After another long aging period, the other half of the fruit was added a few weeks before bottling, where the beer was allowed to condition naturally. The final beer is exhibiting lots of blueberry juice character, oak, acidity, and “tequila earthiness”. 

The returning beer is Refresh, 2C’s dry-hopped lager that they released to lots of fanfare last summer (was it really that long ago??). Brewed with Pilsner malt and flaked rice, they hopped this one in the boil with Huell Melon and Hallertau Blanc. Fermented slowly at cool temps with their favourite Lager strain, the beer enjoyed a nine week lagering period with a healthy dry-hop of more Huell Melon. “Bright, crisp, with some serious honeydew, lemongrass, and lychee vibes”, it’ll be pouring on tap (alongside bottle pours of Terry) at the Beergarden all day tomorrow. Of course, you’ll be able to grab bottles of Terry for take-away (and cans of Refresh!) at 2 Crows as of noon Saturday. 

If you happen to be hanging around Tatamagouche this long weekend, we highly recommend that you stop by Tatamagouche Brewing. We’d recommend that on any day, really, but for this weekend they do have a couple kegs of a special low alcohol beer fermented solely with Brettanomyces yeasts (the same blend as their lovely Feronia, the Wild Ale aged on plums). Brett Session started out with a grist bill of Pilsner, oats, and wheat, and lightly hopped with Azacca and Hallertau Blanc in the kettle. After primary fermentation began in early 2019, it was kegged off and allowed to naturally carbonate in kegs. And now our collective patience is being rewarded as it is now on tap at the brewery (and only on tap at the brewery).

And returning this week is Tata’s Atlantic Pale Ale, a collaboration with Annapolis Valley maltster Horton Ridge Malt & Grain. Using 100% Atlantic Canadian-grown grains, malted by Horton Ridge, APA weighs in at 5.9% ABV, and is available now at both breweries. And if you plan your visit right, you can catch Christina Martin live in the Horton Ridge taproom this evening at 8, tickets are still available.

It’s been a super-busy week for the crew at Lunenburg’s Shipwright Brewing, with 3 (three!) new beers on tap. Maybe the threat of Labour Day weekend had something to do with it… do people drink more on long weekends? Unsure. Anyhoo, let’s just dive right into these, shall we? The first brew isn’t so much new, actually, but a second take on their Whitecap, a Belgian Witbier. While this version was still brewed with a 50:50 mix of Pale and Wheat malt, this time around they hopped it with Topaz (to a higher bitterness than the first batch), and added bitter orange peel, lime, and grapefruit peel, to give more of that citrus character that goes so well with this style of beer. Sticking with the Belgian theme for their next brew, Slack Tide is a “Hopped Rye Saison”, which they’re breaking down as a hybrid between a Saison and a Rye Pale Ale. Brewed with Pilsner and Rye malt, and hopped with Pahto in the boil, it was dry-hopped with Enigma once fermentation was complete. With aromas of “slight Belgian funk, followed by grassy notes”, the 5.3% ABV brew exhibits flavours from both the malt and hop sides, according to the brewery, all with a dry finish. Their third and final beer is Desperate Session, a collab they did with Nyanza’s own Big Spruce Brewing. Due to the high demand for their beer in Lunenburg, they were starting to run a little low, so Big Spruce kindly reached out to help in getting more beer out there! The beer in question is a hazy Session IPA hopped with Mosaic and HBC 472, giving tropical fruit in the aroma, and “huge flavours of passionfruit and citrus”. All of these beers are available (hopefully, if they haven’t run out!) on tap at Shipwright.

Looks like the Ladies Beer League is back to their collaboratin’ ways, as they’ve teamed up with Dartmouth’s Brightwood Brewery to create Jagged Little Pils. Not your typical Pilsner, they’re calling it a “Juicy Pilsner”, probably because it was dry-hopped with Simcoe and Idaho 7. Still brewed with a Pilsner base and fermented with Lager yeast, the dry-hop addition gives the beer lots of citrus and tropical fruit notes on the nose, and at 5.5% ABV, it’s right in that range where you can enjoy a couple without going *too* far (ymmv). It’s currently available at Brightwood for pints and growler fills, and cans also just hit their shelves this week.

HRM stalwart Propeller has released a new beer today, their Tropical Session Sour, making sure you’d have something suitable for lovely weekend weather. It’s tropical, with notes of passionfruit and pineapple, sessionable, at 3.9% ABV and 0 IBU, and sour. If that doesn’t describe an ideal patio beer we don’t know what does! A limited release, you’ll only be able to find it at Propeller’s two Prop Shops on Gottingen in Halifax and on Windmill in Dartmouth, as well as all of the private stores (including Liquid Assets at the Stanfield Airport if you’re on your way out of town). And if you decide to seek this one out at the source, you’ll also find a limited number of bottles of the Celebration Pils from earlier this summer available at the Prop Shops!! If you missed this the first time around, you’ve got one more chance to give it a go; if you didn’t miss it, we suspect you may wish to experience it again. On sale today from opening until it’s all gone.

Halifax’s Good Robot has been around for 4 years now and they’ve made all kinds of beers, both crazy and staid. But they’ve never ever made a Hefeweizen. Until now. A somewhat strangely uncommon style in our region, hefeweizen is more than just fun to say, it’s one of those lovely German words that says exactly what it means: hefe = “yeast” and weizen = “wheat”. Describing a Weißbier (“white beer”, most likely deriving from Weizenbier, “wheat beer”), a hefe is a beer made with a significant portion of wheat replacing barley, then fermented with a strain of ale yeast known for imparting phenolic (clove) and estery (banana/bubblegum) characters and served unfiltered, with some yeast still suspended, imparting a hazy appearance in the glass and a soft mouthfeel. Good Robot brewed theirs with 55% wheat and 45% pale malt, Australian Summer hops, known for subtle flavors of apricot, melon, peach, and grass, and they added some orange peel to the mix for a bit of a citrus presence. Coming in at 4.7% ABV and  10 or so IBU, they’re calling it Yeast Boss (or El Jefe de Hefe) in honour of brewer and yeast QA/QC man Gio, which is fitting as this style is extremely dependent on healthy and happy yeast. You’ll find it on tap at the brewery now!

Fredericton’s TrailWay Brewing is continuing their line of beers showcasing that European sensation Kveik yeast, but pushing the boundaries a little further. This batch of Oculus weighs in at 8.0% ABV, a fair jump up from the 4.0% and 6.0% of previous batches. With the jump in ABV, they are also pushing the limits of hopping, with massive additions of Sabro and Vic Secret in the kettle and dry hop addition. The resulting beer features notes of pineapple and orange, with a light vanilla sweetness. Grab a four-pack or growler to enjoy this weekend, while the weather is still tropical-ish.

And in Breaking News, we see that The Drome by TrailWay will be opening its doors this weekend! After major renovations lasting more than 4 months, the long-time Main Street institution has received a TrailWay facelift and improvement to be a taproom and patio, while preserving the lanes and character of the original. With lots more local craft beer available on tap, and a menu still focusing on classic bowling alley fare with a modern twist, we’re sure this will be a fun addition to the local beer taproom landscape. Doors open Saturday at 3PM for beer, food, and bowling (first come first serve on these while they sort out the weekend), so drop by!

Living in/around Fredericton and interested in entering the professional brewing world? Maybee Brewing is currently hiring for a full-time Assistant Brewer position, which would put you right in the center of the action: brew day prep, brewing, cleaning, inventory, etc. Brewery experience is an asset, but avid home brewers are also welcome to apply. Check out the full job listing here; you can drop off your cover letter and resume directly at the brewery, or send it via email to paul@maybeebrew.com. 

Have you been following the goings on (and the comings out) at Church Brewing? We have, and we’re happy to report that per several sources, they’re already coming through with many of the economic benefits to the Town of Wolfville that some people always said were likely to be the result of their opening. One of the most impressive and prominent of these is the fact that they’re already employing more than 90 people (we’ve heard tell that already makes them the second-biggest employer in town, less than 6 months after opening). But with beer flying out of the taproom and the retail shop, and already on the shelves of the NSLC, they have need for at least one more: they’re looking for an Assistant Brewer and Cellarperson to help keep liquids moving from tanks to the people. If you’re looking to get into the beer industry and you’re interested in joining a going concern in Wolfville, maybe check out the job posting and consider sending in a resume. Hell, they hired KelticDevil, they’ll probably at least give you a look! 

Speak(ing) of the (Keltic)Devil, he was back on the most recent episode of the 902BrewCast (August Tasting Episode #2: Electric Boogaloo) where he, Tony and Kyle talked some more about Church Brewing, beer, politics, and beer politics, all while sampling some tasty-sounding beers. Get it at your favorite place what does podcasts.

The weather may be due to cool down in coming weeks, but it seems the beer events are heating up. Check them out:

We would be remiss if we neglected to give a big old plug to our own event tomorrow night at the Auction House. Those who’ve been around a few years know that ACBB likes to do a little beer-flavored trivia now and then. Normally this is twice a year during FCBF and NSCBW, but The Auction House in Halifax has been kind enough to offer us an opportunity to do another one tomorrow night from 6:30 PM to 8:30 PM. As always the taps will be flowing with beer from many local and regional breweries, but featured will be fine selections from Tatamagouche Brewing, several of which might be first time/only time on tap in the city. Come on out and tolerate our corny humor while you rack your brain for the answers to our trivia questions. Did we mention that there will be prizes for the winners? Full details can be found on the Facebook Event page; hope to see you there!

The Labour Day weekend festivities continue at Big Spruce on Sunday, September 1st, with some fun activities for you AND the kids! Starting at noon at the brewery, there’s going to be lots going on, with plenty of activities that all revolve around beer! All of the usual Big Spruce taps will be pouring at the Sprucetique, and outdoors they’ll have games, archery, a bouncy castle (be aware, archers!), and live music. They’ll also have a pig roast, and accompanying sides from Stand and Stuff Your Face. It only costs $10 to get in on the fun, and kids are free!  Food is pay-as-you-go (pay-as-you-eat?). 

If you’ve been lurking around 899 Portland St. in Dartmouth for awhile, eagerly waiting for North Brewing to open their new taproom, they’re holding a sneak peek next Friday, September 6th. This is going to be a small gathering, as only 100 tickets will be sold. Your $100 ticket (available here) will get you into the event, three drinks at the bar, and food inspired by the menu at Side Hustle Snack Bar. Additional beers will, of course, be available for purchases, and $25 of your ticket price will go to the Nova Scotia Nature Trust (as part of the North Brewing Conservation Initiative). As for the grand opening itself, that will be happening on the following Friday, September 13th.

Odds and sods abound this weekend; we’ll see you out with these newsbites and remind you once again to check the opening hours of your favorite breweries this weekend, especially for Monday, before you go making any long drives.

On the western side of Newfoundland in Corner Brook, Bootleg Brew Co. put a new beer on tap last night, their Hard Ticket Sour IPA. With plenty of their favorite hop varieties added for dry hop, they describe this one as “juicy, fruity, a little piney & dank,” all while being sessionable/crushable. Get your sour and your hop fix at the same time in a 5% ABV package! On tap for pints and fills at the brewery. Maybe stop in there before/after the Gros Morne Beer Fest tomorrow evening? Grab your tickets for that here.

Chain Yard Cider is branching out a little bit into the realm of mead. This week they’ve got their new Traditional Mead available, made from wildflower honey sourced from the Annapolis Valley. Fermentation of this 7% ABV sparkling mead was arrested, leaving a slight honey sweetness with floral and melon notes on the palate and providing a light, fine carbonation. Get it at the source on Agricola St. in Halifax.

Meander River Farm & Brewery reminds us that they’re a cidery as well with the availability of a new small lot cider called Juicy Strawberry. We think we know what’s probably in this 5.5% ABV blend… As with all their small lots, you’ll almost certainly have to go to Ashdale to get it, but that’ll be a lovely drive on a long weekend in late summer, we think.

Newfoundland Cider Company in Clarenville have a big weekend of tasting planned, as they’re serving up their summer batches of small batch botanical ciders. Starting at 3:30 PM today you’ll be able to sample and quaff Old Tilt, Cloudy Blueberry, Blackcurrent & Lavender, Spruce Tip, Pineapple Weed and Wild Rose. If you’re in the area and you love cider, this sounds like an amazing lineup to try!

For those who like Toller from Dartmouth’s Spindrift but would like to have a slightly lighter, lower-calorie option, you’re in luck! Today marks the day that Toller Lite is released, exclusively at the brewery on Frazee Avenue in Burnside at 4 PM. A full percentage point lower in ABV than regular Toller, it weighs in at 4%, with only 92 calories and 3.2 g of carbs per serving. And if you can’t make the brewery, the private stores carrying its big brother are all scheduled to have Toller Lite this weekend as well.

Last but not least today is the return of Unfiltered’s ode to Citra, DOA. Double Orange Ale is their single-hopped Double IPA, weighing in at 7.5% ABV, and featuring massive citrus and specifically orange character on top of a robust bitter beer. On tap for pint and growler fills at the taproom and brewery respectively, with cans available at the brewery today and tomorrow as well.