Happy Friday, everyone! As we begin the long process of shedding winter for warmer weather, check out the following beer news to keep you warm…
• Big news for Big Spruce! This week, they celebrated one year in operation, congratulations! To celebrate, they are holding a birthday party at the Bras d’Or Yacht Club in Baddeck this Saturday, starting at 5pm. Featuring a BBQ and cake, live music, and, of course, beer! They will be releasing a special cask of their The Whole Nine Yards 1 Year Anniversary Scotch Ale, infused with Glenora Glen Breton Rare 10 year Single Malt Whisky. Weighing in at 6.5% ABV, the beer features lots of roast flavour, as well as smoke and peat characteristics from the whisky. If you’re anywhere near Cape Breton this weekend, this is the place to be!
• In more Big Spruce news, their collaboration with Sawdust City brewmaster Aaron Spinney, You Spin Me White Round Wheat IPA has made it on tap in Halifax, beginning with Stillwell Beer Bar. This Wheat IPA weighs in at 6.5% ABV and 79 IBUs, and will available at a few more locations around the province soon.
• Celtic Knot Brewing has released some early information on a new beer that they’re brewing up, a low-ABV American IPA (beers of this “style” are often referred to as Session IPAs or India Session Ales). Owner/brewer Bruce Barton is naming the beer For Shore (poking a bit of fun at how some Maritimers say “for sure”); the beer will be “light-colored” with an ABV around 5%. Brewed with 2-row and Munich malt, with a bit of Melanoidin and Wheat malt added, it will also feature two new hop varieties for Celtic Knot, from Australia and New Zealand. Low in bitterness but high in hop flavor and aroma, look for this “Maritime Session Ale” to be on tap in the Moncton area in the near future!
• Garrison Brewing is releasing another of their Test Batch IPAs, #3459, today. Taking note of customer feedback from their #3447 release in February, they have tweaked the recipe a bit. The IPA is 6.5% and 51 IBUs, featuring lots of tropical and citrus notes from the (secret) hops. As before, look for this beer to be on tap around Halifax, and available in 650mL bombers at the brewery, private stores and NSLC, and for the first time, a pallet is being sent to the ANBL . Use the #TestBatch Twitter tag to weigh in on this version, they’re anxious to hear what you have to say!
• And more great news from Garrison, Brewmaster Daniel Girard brewed for the first time on their new brewhouse this week, located in the Film and Media Centre building, just across Marginal Road from their current location. The larger brewhouse will allow them to triple their production, allowing them to keep up with the growing demand for their beer across our region, and expand in to more provinces across the country. President Brian Titus had this to say, “End of a challenging 3 year process to stay in the Halifax Seaport & build a state of the art craft brewery. Done & done!” They brewed up their Irish Red Ale, which was also the first beer they brewed back in 1997. Congratulations on the new digs, and continued success!
• As the summer approaches, everyone at Les Brasseurs du Petit-Sault is working hard to get everything up and running so their first two flagship beers are ready for the thirsty public! In the meantime, they’re putting on a couple of beer workshops with beer expert Mario D’Eer. The first is being held tonight at 7:30 pm at the Book Fair at Cité des Jeunes A.-M-Sormany High School in Edmundston, which will involve an introduction to beer and cheese pairings, with six different beers and cheese to be tasted. The second workshop will be held tomorrow at 3:00 pm at The Deck, and will include a basic “ABCs” of beer, with tastings of nine beers, ranging from Hoegaarden to Picaroon’s Winter Warmer. There are only a few tickets left for both workshops; call (506) 733-7409 to reserve yours!
• And, if you’d like to meet some of the people behind Brasseurs du Petit-Sault, you’ll have a chance next weekend! On Saturday, April 12th, there will be a Beer Fest at Au Cafe d’LaVieille Forge from 7:00 pm – 9:30 pm. Those representing the new brewery will be on hand to pass out information and answer questions. Tickets for the beer festival are $40.
• A quick note for our Valley readers: Bad Apple Brewhouse American Pale Ale is now on tap at the Union Street Cafe and Wick Pub in Berwick, NS. Stop in for a pint today!
• Picaroons will be holding their annual Prohibition Repeal Party and Tap Takeover at The Capital Complex in Fredericton on Saturday, April 19th at 7:00 pm. All 12 taps will feature Picaroons beers; while details on which beers are being served are currently being kept secret, Marketing Director Dennis Goodwin has confirmed that there will be some interesting options. They also plan on bringing their “Randall the Enamel Animal”, a device designed by Dogfish Head that hooks up to a bar tap and acts as a flavor-inducing filter system (check out the link, really). There will also be live music from Krasnogorsk and Jim Blewett & The Swingin’ Cats starting at 9:00 pm. No charge for tickets; entry is free at the door until regular cover charge starts at 10:30 pm.
• And while on the topic of annual Picaroons events, they’re currently accepting entries for their Melonhead Cat Contest. Send in a hi-res picture of your cat (no need to involve melons), and the Picaroons people will pick their favorite and include it on the label for this year’s release of Melonhead. The beer should be released sometime in June; the winner will be announced before the beer’s release. Cat pics can be emailed; the deadline for entries is Thursday, April 24th.
• Finally, those of you who are big fans of the Picaroons spring/summer seasonal, Dooryard, haven’t got much longer to wait until its 2014 release. They’ve announced that the beer should be available on Tuesday, April 22nd. A wheat beer brewed with coriander and orange peel, it’s an easy-drinking and light beer with an ABV of 4.5%. We’ll keep you updated on its release… there’s usually some type of launch party that goes with it!
• North Brewing is releasing a second batch of their Glenora Barrel-Aged Strong Dark Belgian today. This beer is in very limited quantities, so be sure to drop by the brewery *today* to avoid disappointment!
• It’s only April, but the Beerthief Newfoundland Artisanal and Craft Beer Group is already taking orders for the 2014 Craft Beer Advent Calendar! Featuring 24 mystery beers from 24 breweries on six continents, these will brighten up any beer lover’s December. Orders must be placed by Monday, April 7th, so get on them now!
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