Sorry we’re late this week folks, sometimes work and life have a way of interrupting the truly important things like blogging about beer. We’re happy to say that we’ve once again got news from all four Atlantic Provinces this week, including an entertaining slate of new beers that show that our brewers are definitely already looking forward to warmer weather. Now that we think about it, it’s brilliant: a way to enjoy the taste of a warm-weather style without the oppressive heat and intense production schedules of the summer months. So grab one (or more!) of those summery beers this weekend, close your eyes, and let yourself dream a little.
In future brewery news, we’ve got a big one for our fans on Prince Edward Island! Lone Oak Brewing, the darlings of Borden-Carleton, are expanding their reach in a big way, as they look to open a brewpub location at 15 Milky Way in Charlottetown. Set to open late Spring next to Receiver Coffee’s spot, the new location will feature all of the great beer that visitors and locals have enjoyed in Borden, along with great food, live music, and a cozy atmosphere in the 70-seat taproom, as well as extensive cobblestone patio overlooking the North River. Residents will now be able to enjoy a pint or two without making their way to the bridge! Stay up to speed with their progress by checking out their Instagram and Facebook for the new location. And hey, while we have you… their Otis Foeder-Aged Grisette is back on tap and in cans this week. Light and spritzy, a little tart and a lot of refreshment in just 3.5% ABV, it is available in cans and on tap at the brewery, and will be available further afield in better beer bars soon!
In New Brunswick’s Kennebecasis Valley, Gridiron Brewing is putting out a really hopeful-sounding beer for the middle of February, but we’ve got to say we like their optimism. T-Shirt Weather is billed as a “Hefeweizen-style Dampfbier,” which brings a bit of obscurity to the fore, as Dampfbier is a very traditional, but little-known, style from Bavaria. Pairing an all-barley malt bill with a Weißbier yeast and fermented warm to encourage some phenols, this one was also hit with some bitter orange peel as well as some Mandarina Bavaria hops to promote even more of a citrus presence. At 3.9% ABV you’ll be able to sip several of them and consider that combination without worrying about being able to walk afterwards. Look for it on tap at the brewery in Hampton.
Mount Pearl’s Landwash Brewery has a new sour on tap and in cans this week. Ruby Line is a Raspberry and Lime Sour, bursting with flavour from both fruits, on top of a super-tart 4.5% base beer. Who knows, maybe you even took Ruby Line to get to the brewery that day! You can enjoy it on draught in samples and pints, grab a growler to go, or snag a single or four-pack of cans from their retail side. Also hitting the shelves at Marie’s (where you’ll get a free glass if you’re one of the first 24 to grab a four-pack), NLCs, and other retailers as we speak! And hey, if you’re up for it, drop by the taproom tonight where Robert Russell will be playing live, from 7:30 PM.
In the hub of Nova Scotia, Truro Brewing has a new one out with a name that might help you hearken back to the 90s (y’know, if you’re old and into great tunes). Under the Pink is a sour wheat ale with a lovely hue provided by a generous addition of local haskap berries. Is this another beer this week that’s dreaming ahead to summer? You bet your life it is! Light and tart, 4.0%, this one’s only available at the taproom, where we suspect you just might hear some Tori Amos on the sound system as you sip away.
In Bay Roberts, NL, Baccalieu Trail Brewing continues the apparent trend of this week’s post, as they have a brand new gose on the go. And nothing says, “the depths of winter,” like a gose, right? Right?! Well perhaps they took inspiration from the state of Atlantic Canada’s roads right now (salty and everybody’s sour about them) in coming up with Sea Spray. Or maybe they just wanted to make a tasty sour beer with notes of sea salt and coriander, in this case tarted up by the addition of tangerine, key lime, and grapefruit for a real citrus kick. Unfortunately you won’t be able to enjoy this one on tap at the source, as they’re still working on an HVAC issue in the taproom that’s keeping them closed, but you can grab some to go or look for cans already on the shelves at Marie’s and select NLC locations as well as Needs on the Avalon.
In Halifax, Propeller Brewing has a new beer out and would you believe it’s a dry-hopped sour that should have you thinking of warmer, brighter days ahead? Arcane hit the shelves today at all Prop shops as well as most of the private stores in Halifax. Tart and juicy, it was hit with what they’re describing as an “elusive” hop blend which is probably brewer code for either, “we don’t remember,” or, “you’ll never get me Lucky Charms.” You’ll just have to try to suss it out as you savour this 4.8% ABV sour and the citrus and tropical hop notes it features.
If we told you that Tanner & Co. Brewing in Chester, NS, had a new saison out this week, you might think that we’re finally getting away from the “summer style beers in winter” trend, and if that’s the case, allow us to tell you a little bit about Belgian Saison… Originally brewed by farmers in winter and spring, then cellared until they were provided to workers in the summer, they’re known for rustic grist, yeast driven character notes, and a thirst-quenching dry finish. Tanner’s new Belgian Saison utilizes two Belgian yeast strains, first one known for peppery/spicy phenols, then a second, added at roughly 50% fermentation, that tends to favour a more citrus-forward character. Sounds like a tasty combination to us; look for this 7.2% ABV strong beer in bottles at both Tanner locations or order online for delivery.
We started with news of a new taproom opening in our region, and let’s finish the news section in the same vein. After closing their taproom for a couple of months, St. Anthony’s RagnaRock Northern Brewing is opening back up next Wednesday, February 23rd! You should know that masks and vaccine passes are still the order of the day (Provincial rules, of course) and capacity will be limited to 50% for now, expecting to be back to full houses when restrictions lift on March 14th. For now, they’ll be open Wednesdays to Saturdays, 4 PM to 10 PM (occasionally later). So head on down and grab a pint of freshly kegged beer and something off their new Pub Grub menu and welcome truly local craft beer back to St. Anthony!!
And we’ll finish with a trio of hop-forward quick-hits to take you into your weekend.
Starting on the small side, Candid Brewing in Antigonish, NS, has an aromatic and citrusy classic American Pale Ale that they’re calling Dr. Strangelove. Balanced and dependable, it’s a 5.0% ABV easy drinker that will help you learn to stop worrying and love the hops.
Stepping up the hops, and the ABV, we have Fredericton’s Grimross Brewing with the latest in their Scratch series of IPAs. This is Scratch 26, with a bit of a west coast vibe at 6.5% ABV and 55 IBU, featuring aromas of grapefruit and sweet citrus, with some lighter tropical, pine, and floral notes completing the picture.
We wind up the week with not just a big’un, but a sweet, smooth, fruity, and boozy big’un. Tusket Falls Brewing has released Blueberry Milkshake IPA, a bit of a crazy one that saw lemon rind, cinnamon, vanilla bean, blueberries, and graham crackers in the mix along with, we’ll warrant, a whole bunch of hops! Look for aromas of grape gummies and flavours of blueberry pie in this 7.5% conflagration.