The heart of summer continues across the region, with time at the beach, lake, or local brewery patio being maximized while the weather cooperates. However you’re able to enjoy, we hope you do it with a local beer! Lots of new beers and a few events to tell you about this week, let’s get right to it!
If you’ve been following along at home, Bishop’s Cellar has been celebrating their 20th anniversary and now we’ve got their final beer collaboration to round out the trio. The first two were Cellar Slammer (with Tatamagouche) and Cellarbier (with Propeller) and this new release, Cellarbration is a dry-hopped Saison with a common thread from the previous releases. This collaboration with North Brewing, takes the primary dry-hop from each of the previous collars (Hallertau Blanc and Saphir) to dry-hop in equal parts complementing the aroma of the Saison. The grain bill features Pilsner malt from PEI and classic French Saison yeast grown in Guelph by Escarpment Labs. This one is 6% and is available today from Bishops, North, their online shops in cans.
Newcomer Rackhouse Brewing Company has released their first lager to the Saint John River Valley area. Aptly named Lager #1, this 4.8% lager features 75% locally-grown and -malted Pilsner malt, and is also hopped with locally-grown Saaz for a bit of bite, complementing a citrus undertone. Future plans include barrel-aging a similar recipe, but it’s always great to compare before and after a barrel treatment. As with many of Rackhouse’s offerings, they can be found at their host Big Axe Brewery, as well as nearby Moonshine Creek and Picaroons Roundhouse.
Serpent Brewing in Spryfield has a trio of new beers out this week. Drama Llama is a 7.6% Double IPA, with notes of citrus, berry, and pine, thanks to the Citra and Simcoe used throughout. Think “New World” DIPA, as this is not super-bitter, and features a sweeter character. Cans are available out the door, as well as a small supply to enjoy on draught while checking out their new menu. Out yesterday at Serpent is Mango Mónica, a 6.2% Saison with mango, named in celebration of a dedicated partner to the brewery and family. Starting from a Saison base, hopped with Citra, and with mango added, it shows DNA from both sides of the family. Big on flavour, but not sweet, it does show some tropical and light esters and phenols from both the hops and fruit addition. Cans and draught of both are available now. And finally is today’s Father O’Keefe, a 9.0% Belgian Tripel with cherry. Showing its higher ABV with a touch of warming alcohol, it finished dry, and the cherries help to enhance the overall experience.
Up the North Shore, Tatamagouche Brewing continues to roll out new releases in its Intertidal IPA series, but is also sneaking in re-releases of previously popular editions. In that vein, returning today is Intertidal Sabro Session IPA, featuring a lower ABV of 3.5%. Per the name, this one uses Sabro hops, leading to its signature coconut notes, along with peach and other tropical fruit. It also uses the Hydra yeast strain from Escarpment Labs, known for leaving plenty of body in a small beer and creating the juicy character that has taken the IPA world by storm. Fresh off the canning line, check out the brewery and Tata’s online store to get your hands on some now.
On the other end of the IPA spectrum, Unfiltered is releasing a new DIPA today, featuring the Bergamot hop. This 7.5% ABV single-hop DIPA shows notes of tropical fruit, pine, lemongrass and citrus, with a touch of dankness. The hops were grown and sourced from Quebec’s Duke 25 Hops. In other Unfiltered news, you might want to circle Saturday, July 29 on your calendar, when the brewery will be celebrating its 8th anniversary with special releases, deals on pints, and the eminent Greg Nash on the grill outside their pub, Charm School. Keep an eye on their socials for more details and how to purchase advanced tickets for food.
Out in Cape Breton, it has finally stopped raining and Big Spruce has two new releases ready for what is shaping up to be a stellar weekend. First up is A-Game a 4% session IPA. This one was developed in collaboration with the fine folks at A for Adventure, just in time for the party they’ll be hosting at next week’s Stan Rogers Folk Festival in Canso. Cans are available in Nyanza this weekend, with the official launch happening next week at the festival. Also out this weekend is the returning Luft Schloss, a 5.5% ABV Helles Lager. The German-style lager features a trio of noble hops with Hallertau Perle, Hallertau Traditional, and Hallertau Callista. Look for floral and herbal notes from the hops, and a dry finish on the palette. Cans of Luft Schloss are available now at the brewery and through Big Spruce’s online store.
Jumping over to Newfoundland, Quidi Vidi Brewery has a new release in its longstanding Sofa Sour series. Blackberry Rosemary Sofa Sour pours a vibrant purple colour with a pink creamy head. Expect notes of berries and rosemary to be balanced by a subtle tartness and a slightly sweet finish. Cans of this 5% ABV sour are available now at the Hop Shop in the Gut, with a drop of cans on its way to the NLC and corner stores.
Last week, we distinctly remember saying “I could really go for a[n]
Allagash White right now,” and look at what the local craft beer lords have delivered: Propeller White! Propeller’s White is a Belgian-style witbier brewed with wheat malt, oranges, and coriander and is smooth, refreshing and just what you’d expect in a full flavoured and smooth wit. At 4.8% and 30 IBU, this year’s release features wider distribution to our New Brunswick friends, as it should be in select ANBL locations over the coming weeks. This will also be at the private stores in Halifax, all of the Prop shops, select NSLCs, and online for Canada-wide shipping.
Newfoundland’s Mauzy Cider has another new release this week, the latest from their 2022 season. Playing once again in the piquette space, Take Me Away saw orchard and feral pomace rehydrated and undergoing a week-long maceration process. After primary fermentation, a dosing of honey from Baccalieu Trail allowed it to naturally carbonate in the clear stubby bottles. At just 4%, this one is light and easy drinking, plenty of delicate notes of fresh apples and a touch of funk. Available at the usual Mauzy haunts, including Toslow, Banished (online and in-store), and better retailers on the Avalon.
A couple of fun events coming up in NL and NS:
Big birthday and anniversary happiness to our Newfoundland friends as next weekend (July 22nd and 23rd) Port Rexton Brewing will be celebrating their 7th anniversary. They’re going to feature a special rotating tap that changes 7 times to feature 7 new beers for their anniversary. We’re highlighting this now to get it into your calendars and they will have more news on their special fruited IPA anniversary release in the coming days. Check out the full lineup here and if you’re in the area, it is a must-visit event!
On the same weekend, but in Halifax, we’ve got a returning collaboration as the fine folks at Stillwell will be hosting Willibald again, a Farm Distillery and Brewery out of Ayr, Ontario (near Cambridge, just outside Kitchener-Waterloo). This is a two day event (A Weekend with Willibald!) with the first day being a full takeover at the Freehouse with Korean Fried Chicken. The second day will be hosted by the Beergarden on Spring Garden Road and willl feature seltzers with BBQ food pairings. The first day will feature 10 taps of beer, seltzer and cocktails and Stillwell HQ will also feature cans to drink and takeaway. Check the Instagram post here for the full details and drinks!
Another one for July 22 and staying in Halifax again, as 2 Crows Brewing and Studio East are teaming up with a food pop up in the 2 Crows taproom. A Beer and Bao event, Studio East will be bringing the sweet, purple milk buns and 2 Crows will be bringing the beer, with a special on-tap only brew for the event. This small batch sour will feature Ube (purple yam), ginger and sea salt, so you can double up your ube pleasure. This starts at noon on Saturday, July 22 and runs until the food is sold out!
Are you looking to begin or change up your craft brewing career? Want to help keep New Brunswick shelves stocked and taps flowing with the good stuff? If so, then TrailWay Brewing in Fredericton has a job opening just for you! They are hiring a Sales Manager to serve the province of New Brunswick, with ANBL locations, licensees, and everywhere in between being the intended audience. Sales experience is a big plus, and check out this post for more information and how to apply.