Montague PEI’s Bogside Brewing opened their doors May 31st, just in time for the inaugural PEI Craft Beer Week. While some minor hiccups meant their own beers were not immediately available, they filled their taps with beer and cider from the other Island producers. They have since ironed out those kinks and are now in full production mode, ready to serve the thirsty public their own brews, and pair them with an extensive food program. We caught up with Mark, Dave, and David to get us up to speed with the brewery, taproom, and kitchen.
Can you tell us a little bit about yourselves?
I am Mark Patriquin and I’m the Head Brewer. I’m originally from Tatamagouche, Nova Scotia and I’ve been brewing commercially for 3 years on both the East and West coasts. David McGuire, Bogside’s owner, has been visiting breweries everywhere he travels, and has visited somewhere in the 100-range. He also works as a civil servant in the Agriculture and Fisheries departments of the local government which tie in nicely with our restaurant. Chef Dave Mottershall has previously owned and operated restaurants such as Terre Rouge in Charlottetown and Loka in Toronto. Most recently he was the butcher at the Chef Michael Smith’s Inn at Bay Fortune before joining the Bogside team.
How did you get into the world of beer?
After finishing my Biology degree at StFX, I started working at TataBrew as a cellarman, eventually working my way up to becoming a brewer. The following January, I decided to attend the VLB in Berlin to get my Certified Brewmaster Diploma before returning to Tatamagouche for another year. I then moved to BC and worked for Four Winds in Delta and Central City (Red Racer) in Surrey before moving back to the east coast.
What made you decide to take the step into opening a brewery?
I think most brewers have a dream of opening their own brewery one day, so when the opportunity came up with Bogside to start fresh and to help build a brewery/brand it was impossible to say no. David has been working on this project for about 2 years but has been wanting to open a brewery for almost a decade.
What is the ethos of the brewery?
Work hard, have fun and keep the customer in mind at all times. We brew beer that we want to drink and serve food we want to eat, and we think of customers as friends and family – we try to do the best job possible with anything we do and create an open and welcoming place for people to enjoy.
Tell us about the brewery and taproom name, Bogside?
Bogside is the historic local name for the neighbourhood along the north side of the beautiful Montague River. Once an industrial area along the waterfront and railway tracks; Bogside is a place for the finest kind of adventure and exploration.
Bogside Brewing overlooks a beautiful marina, working wharf, and one of the Three Rivers that connect the communities of Montague, Cardigan, Georgetown and Brudenell.
Beer and Cider at Bogside is always fresh and our taproom is a welcoming spot for friends to gather and enjoy a pint or socialize over some delicious food. Every town has that one place where you feel alive, a place to catch up, and the relaxed atmosphere of a public house.
This is ours.
Can you tell us about the beers you plan on offering initially? Any seasonals or one-offs in the works?
We have 4 20 BBL (2300 litre) fermenters so we will be running 3 core beers through those most of the time. They will be a Session IPA, ISA (Island Session Ale); a German style Weizen, Wheat Kings County; and an American Brown, Brudenell Brown. I really wanted to offer a selection of beers that would each focus on a key ingredient (hops, yeast, malt) while still being approachable. With our fourth fermenter we’re planning on brewing a Pilsner to have something light and easy drinking available for people who are still “craft-curious” and then rotate different styles through that tank as much as possible. We also have 3 more 20 BBL tanks that will primarily be used for cider production.
Tell us about your restaurant and taproom.
We have a taproom with 90 seats attached to a fantastic kitchen set up, as well as a roofed patio with additional seating – we are licensed for sales at the brewery, on site consumption and will have a serious food program with Chef Dave Mottershall offering up Southern style barbecue with lots of local island veg and seafood. Chef Mottershall is also establishing Salume Rume onsite, featuring fermented and dry-cured salamis, cold cuts, preserves and more, that will be available in the taproom and beyond.
How else can people enjoy your beer?
Of course, the best place to enjoy Bogside is a pint in the taproom in Montague, but we will also be distributing kegs to licensees such as HopYard and Pilot House in Charlottetown; 473 ml cans will be available on site and eventually via PEILCC, and we do offer growler sales of our beer to go currently (both 0.95 and 1.89 litre).
Have you had any assistance from other breweries/people in Atlantic Canada?
Locally, we’ve had a lot of assistance from the whole crew at PEIBC (most notably Spencer Gallant). I’ve also spoken to Matt Kenny at Tata, Jeremy from 2 Crows and Greg Nash about certain things that come up. Since DME Brewing Solutions is back up and running they’ve been a huge part of getting our brewhouse online. They also helped facilitate a trip down to Columbus to brew with Brew Dog USA who have the same brew system as us (they use it as a pilot system), so I was able to see firsthand how our equipment works before we get up and running.
Where do you hope to see your brewery in the next 2-3 years?
We hope to be in growth mode, putting out great beer and adding a few more tanks along the way
Ok Mark, let’s get nerdy and talk about the brewhouse and beer!
We have a 3 vessel/10 BBL (1200 litre) brewhouse from DME with four 20 BBL unitanks, a 20 BBL jacketed brite, and five single-walled serving tanks to supply our taps. We have a semi-automated system, with a Control Panel that can monitor the brewhouse, fermentation, and conditioning tanks, controlling valves, temperatures, flows, and pressures.
Right now we have our Island Session Ale and Brudenell Bell Brown on tap, with the Wheat County Kings coming in the next few days.
ISA is 4.7% ABV, featuring Amarillo, Azacca, and Hallertau Blanc added in the kettle after the boil (during whirlpool) and as a dry hop, both techniques favour flavour and aroma without much bitterness extraction (about 15 IBUs).
Brudenell Bell is 5.6% ABV and about 50 IBUs with Northern Brewer, Chinook, and Simcoe, and dry hopped with Chinook and Simcoe again.
Wheat Kings County is 5% ABV and about 30 IBUs from Hallertauer Mittelfrueh and Hersbrucker, with a big nose of banana ester due to the iconic yeast choice and addition of dextrose.
Coming soon will be our North Lake Lager Pilsner, and a tart sessionable beer.
Care to share some info on your brewing history, were you brewing before you joined the team at Tatamagouche?
My experience is almost all commercial. I did a few batches with kits in my dorm room, but my first all grain batch was when I started working at Tata with Matt.
Do you have a favorite beer style you find yourself going back to?
I really enjoy German Weizens. After spending 6 months in Germany, it really stood out as one of my favourite styles. It’s so versatile and is light and refreshing enough for summer but also has enough body and “chewiness” for the winter. There’s also dark, dry hopped, or fruited versions that are fun as well.
What about favourite style or ingredient to brew with?
I like brewing dark beers the most. I find the brewhouse smells the best on those brew days and of all the recipes I’ve written, the dark beers have usually turned out the best.
Congratulations to Mark, Dave, and David on the launch of Bogside Brewing. The taproom and restaurant is open weekdays from 4 PM, and from 11 AM for brunch on Saturday and Sundays. Keep your eyes peeled on their Social Media for the latest release details, and what Mark and Dave are cooking up! Facebook, Instagram, Twitter.