Distillerie Fils du Roy

All posts tagged Distillerie Fils du Roy

Good morning! After a brief hiatus last week, due to vacation on one’s part and work travelling on the other’s, we’re back and ready to continue the work of spreading the love of beer! Good thing nothing happened during that…. oh, crap.

Port Rexton Brewing opened last weekend in … Port Rexton, Newfoundland. Located a few hours Northwest of St John’s on the Bonavista Peninsula, PRB is the first brewery to open outside of the Avalon Peninsula. After a busy opening weekend, they are now in a groove, open daily 2-10pm for samples, pints, and growler fills. They are now pouring a pair of beers, with more on the way very shortly: Horse Chops IPA is a 6% ABV/72 IBUs American-style IPA, featuring lots of West Coast hops (including a dry hop with Mosaic) on a medium body; their Night ‘Bous Porter is 6.5% ABV and 29 IBUs, with lots of chocolate flavours in the “medium-sweet body”. We’ll be sharing more details on the brewery and the great duo behind the beer soon, but in the meantime, take a trip to P.R. for a solid pint this weekend!

• There’s another new brewery opening soon in New Brunswick, and while details are currently very slim, Fundy Bay Brewco currently has a Twitter account started. Sounds like the brewery will be located in Sussex, with three beers listed as “coming soon”: Alma IPA, a 6.5% ABV, 50 IBUs “West-Coast style IPA” with aromas of pine, citrus, and tropical fruit; Digby Dubbel, a 7.2% ABV Belgian Dubbel fermented with a Belgian yeast strain to give aromas of “dark fruits, sassafras, caramel, leather, and toasted grain”; and St. Martin’s ISA, a 4.8% ABV, 25 IBUs Session IPA hopped with Mosaic and Falconer’s Flight. We’ll have more details on the brewery soon; in the meantime, be sure to follow them on Twitter to stay up-to-date with their progress.

• After a year-long hiatus, Shiretown will be making their return at tomorrow’s Bon Ami Flavor Fest, held at the Dalhousie Lion’s Club from 7 pm – 2 am. They will be pouring two beers: their flagship, Blonde du Quai, a 4.5% ABV Blonde Ale, and Cartier’s Columbus, a new beer the brewery describes as a “Golden IPA”, weighing in at 6.2% ABV, and hopped entirely with Columbus to 60 IBUs. Shiretown is aiming for bottles of both beers to hit select ANBL stores around mid-August; we’ll keep you updated!

• There’s a new beer available from Petit-Sault, a SMaSH (single-malt and single-hop) Pale Ale named La Glazier. Brewed entirely with Pale malt from Malt-Broue, a nearby Quebec “micromaltery”, and hopped with Cascade from Aroostook Hops in Northern Maine, it comes in at 4.9% ABV and 30 IBUs. Featuring “citrus notes and a slight bitterness”, it’s available on tap at the brewery, and select ANBL growler stations this weekend, as well as select bars/restaurants in the province. And congratulations to Petit-Sault on their recent expansion, thanks to further buying-in by ACOA, the New Brunswick government, and their community investors. More details here.

Distillerie Fils du Roy has released another new beer, Hommage à 1755, a Belgian Strong Ale. A style very similar to the more-commonly-seen Belgian Tripel, it’s a pale-coloured, bitter, effervescent beer that finishes extremely dry (thanks to high attenuation by the Belgian yeast strain), with a “spicy/fruity, resinous hop profile, and a soft, supportive grainy-sweet malt palate”, according to the brewery. Weighing in at 7% ABV and 22 IBUs, it’s available in bottles now, as well as on tap at all of the ANBL Growler filling stations this weekend. As the name implies, it is an homage to 1755, a band that popularized Acadian music in the 70’s/’80’s, and still active today.

Hell Bay has released their first Black IPA, Black Flag IPA. As dark as the name suggests, this 6.1% ABV beer has notes of “roasted malt and rum flavours upfront, followed by earthy and citrus notes”. Hopped with Chinook and Ahtanum (to 55 IBUs), it’s available on tap at the brewery for growler fills, and should pop up on tap at the Port Grocer, Rhubarb, and Stillwell.

Wayfarers’ Ale Society has released the third of their offerings recently at their Port Williams brewery. Thistle Dew is a 4.8% ABV Scottish Ale, described as “a malty ale with a low hop profile”. The rich copper colour leads to a medium body and very light bitterness (20 IBUs). Now on tap at the brewery for samples, pints, and growlers, it joins their Hellene Blonde Ale and Ruby Ale Irish Red Ale. Look for a pair of new beers from them in the coming weeks, their EPA English Pale Ale and One-Eyed River Hog IPA.

Mill Street St John’s has released their latest brew, Caribou Cream Ale. Weighing in at 5% ABV and 20 IBUs, this easy-drinking beer is available on tap at Mill Street/Bier Markt and to go in growlers as well. This easy-drinking, thirst-quenching beer was fermented with two yeast strains (first with a British ale strain, then with a German lager strain) “to impart complexity and smoothness”, and exhibits “fresh, cracker malt with a slight hop aroma and yeast undertones”, according to the brewery. Also note that $1 from every growler sale will be donated to the newly-opened Royal Newfoundland Regiment Museum.

• Last week, Pump House released a new beer available on tap only at their brewpub in Moncton. Raspberry Wheat is a German-style Wheat beer that has been “bombarded” with 70 kg of fresh raspberries, and is described by the brewery as “tart and refreshing”, with plenty of raspberry in the aroma and flavour. Clocking in at 6.2% ABV, get down to the brewpub for a pint before it’s gone!

• Mahone Bay’s Saltbox Brewery is launching this weekend, to coincide with the Mahone Bay Heritage Boat Yard Festival. Visit their tent on the Town Wharf Saturday and Sunday, 1-5pm both days, to grab a taste of their beer or some merchandise. And then visit their brewery (open the same hours) on Main Street to grab growler fills of the beers. They will have their HefeweizenIndia Pale Ale, and Dark Cream Ale available, with a new Light Pilsner possibly making an appearance, if ready. Depending on beer availability, their retail storefront will be open going forward, as they are currently releasing beers brewed on their pilot system, while they await the arrival of their full-sized brewhouse. Keep an eye on their Twitter feed for exact details.

Bulwark will be releasing a New Ross 200th Anniversary edition of their Oak Aged Cider. Long in the making, the cider spent more than six months maturing in American oak barrels, and is packaged in a bottle designed by local resident Bonnie Keddy. The barrel is an ode to the many cooperages that were in the New Ross area, thanks to the locally-designed apple barrels needed to support the apple industry. The 7.0% ABV cider is now ready for purchase at their homebase, Muwin Estate Wines (either by phone or email), and will be on sale at the New Ross 200th Anniversary Night Market on Friday, August 5. As a way of giving back to the community and thanking them for all of their support, a portion of the sales will be donated to the New Ross Development Society.

Nine Locks has released their first seasonal, Watermelon Blonde, perfect for the remaining days of summer. Described by the brewery as “light and crisp, with a hint of watermelon”, with whole fresh watermelon added during the mash, as well as in a post-fermentation secondary (as well as some natural extract). This 5.0% ABV, 12 IBU beer is available now for growler fills and cans at the brewery. And congratulations to them on their recent expansion in the brewhouse – with the addition of three 72hl (60 BBL) fermentors, they will be better able to keep up with demand and different seasonal options.

• There’s a new beer on tap at Big Spruce’s tasting room, thanks to a collaboration with Shelburne’s Boxing Rock Brewery. Stark Craving Mad is an “Amber American IPA” with lots of late-addition hops for a serious hop flavour and nose. The beer weighs in at 7.2% ABV and 65 IBUs, and is currently only available at the Big Spruce tap room, so drop by today! And when you do, grab some grub from the Cruisin’ Cuisine Food Truck, onsite 12-7 pm Friday, Saturday and Sunday, with live music 3-5 pm daily. Check out the FB event page for details on the menu and music schedule.

• And speaking of Boxing Rock, after three years in operation, they just packaged their 1,000,000th bottle this week! To celebrate, they’ve hidden winning tickets in six of their Hunky Dory Pale Ale six-packs, which can be returned to the brewery for some sweet swag. Congratulations! They also did a small tasting of a Gin-infused Pale Ale at Bishop’s Cellar last night, which looks be prelude to a wider release soon.

• After a very successful launch at the Alderney Landing Farmers’ Market earlier this month, Brightwood Brewery has released their second beer. Smokey the Beer is a Honey Smoke Ale featuring, unsurprisingly, Honey and Smoked malts in the grist, for an aromatic journey of the senses. First smoke, then honey sweetness, with some piney hop notes to complete the campfire feel. Grab this 5.3% ABV beer, and their The Big Lift American IPA, at the Market this Saturday 8am-1pm. You can grab/exchange one of their own growlers, and they will fill personal growlers, provided they are nice and clean.

• There’s a new beer soon to be tapped at the Antigonish Townhouse – brewmaster Terry Piercy brewed up an experimental batch in the style of an English Pale Ale, using Horton Ridge Organic Pale Malt. The light-coloured ale was hopped with UK Fuggles for both bittering and flavour additions, to 43 IBUs. Coming in at a sessionable 4.7% ABV, look for this currently-unnamed brew to be released in a couple of weeks, where it will likely be cask-conditioned and served on the pub’s hand-pump.

There are a whole slew of events coming up in the next little while, so be sure to keep your calendar open for the following opportunities to drink great beer:

Unfiltered Brewing turns one-year-old today, and they’re throwing a celebration at their Charm School Pub, with $5 pints all day (that’s noon till late), and a “special Nash-inspired menu” from 5-10 pm, served by Food Wolf. Happy 1st Anniversary!

• In other 1st Anniversary news, Breton Brewing is celebrating theirs on Saturday, July 30th with a slightly-belated Birthday Breakfast at the brewery from 9 am – 12 pm. The first 100 breakfasts (prepared by local STAND & STUFF Your Face) are free, and live music will be playing. After chowing down on some pancakes, attendees will also be able to take the opportunity to sign up for their new Mug Club, starting at noon. Limited to the first 50 people to sign up, the Club features all sorts of perks, including a personal 18 oz mug that will be kept at the brewery. Membership is $75 for the first year.

• This coming Monday, August 1st (New Brunswick Day), the 4th annual Fredericton Beer Run will be held, starting at the Lighthouse on the Green at 10 am (registration begins at 8 am). With 4, 6, and 12 km runs available, it’s open to novices and serious runners alike! Afterwards, runners will receive 14 beer tickets, each good for a 4-oz sample, with 15 breweries pouring roughly 40 different beers. There are still a limited number of tickets available ($60 each), so be sure to grab yours now! If you’d like to participate in the drinking, but not the running, tickets ($30) are available for the NB Day Beer Garden, where you can enjoy the beer without the effort. Additional tickets will be available for purchase. Not to be outdone, there is also now a Moncton Beer Run next Friday, August 5th, starting at Centennial Park at 6:30 pm (registration begins at 5 pm). This will be a 6 km run only, also featuring a beer tasting afterwards with 14 beer tickets, and 5 breweries pouring their beers. Tickets ($55 each) for this event are available here.

• Next Friday and Saturday, August 5th and 6th, marks the return of the annual Halifax Seaport Beerfest, which will be celebrating its 10th year since it first launched in 2007. Featuring over 300 different beers and ciders (full list available here), there are three sessions to choose from: one on Friday evening (7-9:30 pm), and two on Saturday (2-4:30 pm, 7-9:30 pm), with each session featuring VIP tickets that get you in a full hour earlier. All sessions will include unlimited samples, with VIP tickets also giving you access to a panel discussion and guided beer tasting. Tickets are $49+tax for regular, and $70+tax for VIP, and are available online. We’ll have more details on the event early next week, including info on a mega-collaboration brewday happening at Garrison with many of the visiting breweries.

Stillwell Beer Bar will be hosting a Tap Takeover by Stillwater Artisanal Brewery Saturday August 6th. With a homebase in Maryland, Stillwater is a gypsy brewery, not owning their own equipment, but rather releasing beers brewed at others’ locations. There will be 10 different Stillwater beers available on tap starting at noon Saturday, and it will be a pay-as-you-go event, no tickets needed. We have the inside scoop on a few of the beers that will be flowing, including Mono, a 5.2% ABV Hoppy Pilsner; As Follows, a 9.0% ABV Belgian Strong Golden; and Vacuum, an 8.0% Black Smoked IPA. For those who can’t wait until Saturday for a taste, Stillwater Classique, a 4.5% ABV farmhouse beer, is currently available in cans at Stillwell’s homebase on Barrington.

• The Ladies Beer League is hosting a special sneak preview party with 2 Crows Brewing, a new 20 BBL (23 hL) Halifax brewery set to open this fall, on Thursday, August 18th. Held at the home of two of the owners from 7-10 pm, all three of their core brands will be available to be sampled, as well as a few surprises. Tickets (available through the link above) are only $10, with all proceeds going to Feed Nova Scotia (and they will be accepting further donations for FNS during the event)

Have a fantastic long weekend, hopefully surrounded by plenty of great beer! For those of you in New Brunswick, note that this weekend, all five ANBL growler stations will be pouring beers that were brewed by NB breweries (FYI, ANBL stores will be closed Monday August 1st). And in closing…

– A reminder that there’s still a few tickets remaining for the Fredericton Beer Tour (Saturday, August 6th) that we mentioned two weeks ago; your $77 ticket (available here) will get you transportation to five breweries/cideries, chat time with the brewers, and a minimum of four 4-oz samples per stop.
– Grimross has officially started canning, as their Maritime Pale Ale is available now in 500 mL cans at the brewery; the beer will hopefully be available at select ANBL stores in the near future. Look for their Saison, Cheval D’Or, to be canned by early fall.
– Maybee has bottled their Long Carry Brett Red in a limited number of 750 mL cork-and-cage bottles; labels are currently being printed, so look for these to be available at the brewery within the next couple of weeks.
– Keep your eyes peeled for a new English Mild from Tatamagouche Brewing. This 3.7% ABV beer has been spotted in the wild at Battery Park and Stillwell, and will surely satisfy the “sessionable” crowd, it’s a flavourful beer in a small package. And on the other end of the spectrum, they are serving an English Barley Wine at the brewery, but details on it are a little slim at the moment.

Phew, that’s it! That’ll teach us to never take a week off again!

Welcome to the weekend, and it’s looking like a nice one! The start of summer doesn’t appear to have slowed down local beer news in any respect, so let’s get to it…

• Attention Central Newfoundland beer fans, there’s a new brewery scheduled to land in your region very soon! The brainchild of three avid homebrewing pilots, Scudrunner Brewing will be opening soon in Gander. Looking to bring well-made beer to their home base, they will be focusing on brewing flavourful and interesting styles for the local community on a 6hl system. Follow along on their progress on their website, Facebook, and Twitter pages, as they work towards opening before the end of the year.

• Downeast Beer Factory, located at 612 Windmill Rd in Dartmouth, will be launching their house-brewed beers this weekend. While their restaurant and bar have been open for a month and a half, their 18 hl brewhouse took a little bit longer to get up and running. Drop by tomorrow from 11am to grab a pint or growler of their 4.5% ABV Fiddler’s Irish Red Ale, or 6.0% ABV Game Changer IPA. In celebration, Downeast will be donating $5.00 from every bill to the Children’s Wish Foundation.

Mill Street Brewpub’s new St John’s location held their Grand Opening this week, and launched the first of their beers produced onsite. Brewed on a state-of-the-art 10 hl Caspary system, Longshore Porter is the first Mill Street beer produced on the island. Weighing in at 4.8% ABV, this dark amber brew features strong caramel notes from the Carafa and Munich malts (on top of a Pale base), with a balancing bitterness from Clear Valley Hops Cascade and Chinook to 35 IBUs. Burton Ale yeast was used for the fermentation, for a light fruity ester profile and good attenuation, and a dry finish. Their second beer is conditioning now, and will be available late next week. Capelin Session IPA features Cascade, Chinook, and Pacific Gem in the boil, along with lots of Cascade and Mosaic hops added after fermentation. Named after the Capelin fish that can be caught as they swim into shallow water, this Session IPA is the perfect refreshment while waiting for the day’s catch, due to the low ABV despite layers of hops (for about 50 IBUs). The house-brewed beers join the dozen other Mill Street products on tap, a rotating list of which can be purchased to go in growlers. They join the 130+ beers available at the adjacent Bier Markt location.

• Fredericton, your wait is over… Gray Stone Brewing has officially announced the opening date for their brewery/taproom! Next Friday, July 1st, the 10 BBL (~11.5 hL) brewery will open the doors at their 221 King St. location downtown, starting at 11 am and continuing until midnight. Featuring a brewing team of four local brewers (Ian DeMerchant, Mark Budd, Steve Christie, and Ryan Placktis), Gray Stone will be launching with two beers: Patagonia Pale Ale, a light-to-medium-bodied APA with a “bold tropical flavour and aroma”, 5% ABV and 160 theoretical IBUs; and Black IPA, strongly hopped, with “mild roasted malt character and pine/citrus flavours”, and clocking in at 5% ABV and 127 IBUs. The taproom will feature 24 taps; in addition to Gray Stone brews, many other New Brunswick beers will be showcased on a rotating basis. The Canada Day opening will feature plenty of beer, food, and games as a kick-off to summer! After the launch, their regular hours will be Monday-Thursday 11am-11pm, Friday-Saturday 11am-12am, and Sunday 12pm-7pm. They will be filling growlers in the future; details are still TBA.

Boxing Rock has released the third beer from their first homebrew competition, the Black Box Challenge. Hop Springs Eternal, a White IPA, was the first runner-up in the comp, brewed by local homebrewers Mark Reid and Sean Ebert. With a malt bill comprised of over 30% Wheat, and “hopped generously” with Columbus, Cascade, Willamette, and Pacifica, expect plenty of fruity, citrusy character in the aroma and flavour. Fermented with “an obscure yeast strain”, the beer weighs in at 5.4% ABV. You can find it at the brewery, at select tap accounts and all four private liquor stores in Halifax, and in growlers at the Halifax Seaport Market and Alderney Farmers’ Market on Saturdays. And in other Boxing Rock news, they’ve also re-released their Professor McDougall’s Oban Heather Scottish Ale, brewed in collaboration with local homebrewer Jason McDougall, and Bottle Blonde, a Blonde ale featuring a healthy dose of rye malt in the grain bill. Look for more details on all three beers at BR’s blog.

TrailWay has released a new Pale Ale, Summit APA. Hopped entirely with the Summit variety, this 4.7% ABV, light-coloured beer has characteristics of garlic and onion in the aroma and flavour, as is typical for this particular hop. Joining it is a fresh batch of their Primetime APA; both beers can now be enjoyed in the hot sun on their newly-opened patio, or purchased in growlers to go. As usual, food trucks will be serving up delicious treats at the taproom location both today and tomorrow.

Schoolhouse Brewery has announced a major expansion, including a move to 40 Water St. in downtown Windsor, where they will be brewing on a repurposed10 BBL, copper brew house. The new location will feature a retail space and taproom with a patio; with 6 taps dedicated to Schoolhouse beers, and another six to other Nova Scotia craft breweries, the local beer selection in Windsor will definitely see a bump! Renovations are planned to start on July 1st, with brewing commencing hopefully by early November. Plans are for the retail store to open in December, with the taproom following next Spring. Congratulations to the Schoolhouse family, and as always, we’ll keep you updated on their progress! In the meantime, they have announced that their beers are now available on tap at Saint-Famille Wines in Falmouth.

• Petit-Pacquetville’s Distillerie Fils du Roy has launched a pair of new beers recently. Late last week, they launched Lady Chaga, an Acadian Pale Ale (inspired by the English IPA style), featuring the locally-harvested Chaga mushroom. Described by Fils du Roy as being very hoppy and bitter, with notes of citrus and a nutty finish, this amber-coloured beer clocks in at 7% ABV and ~60 IBUs. This beer is available exclusively at La Brokerie, a bar in Caraquet, though there may be a keg available elsewhere very soon (coughJamesJoycecough). In addition, this week saw the launch of Gougou, a cranberry-infused beer. This 7% ABV Fruit Beer was inspired by the writings of Samuel de Champlain, who spoke of the Gougou, a monster who would terrorize the native inhabitants of the Baie des Chaleurs. This special brew is only available at La Terrasse à Steve, a seafood restaurant on Miscou Island. Finally, look for the return of La Messe Blanche, their 7% ABV Weizenbock, which was bottled earlier this week.

Propeller has released the latest beer in their One Hit Wonder series – June Bock. A Maibock (aka Helles Bock), this style is a pale-coloured, malty, strong German Lager. Propeller’s take on this classic style features Two Row, Pilsener, Wheat, Munich malts, and is hopped solely with Hallertauer. The resultant beer is 6.8% ABV and 35 IBUs, and features a moderate bitterness, slight floral hop flavour, and a bright golden colour, according to the brewery. As always, it’s available in a limited supply, so get down to either Prop Shop location to fill your growlers ASAP! It will also likely pop up on tap at a few select locations in Halifax, shortly.

Tatamagouche Brewing just released a new SMaSH (single-malt and single-hop) beer, Horton Ridge SMaSH. With a grist made up entirely of Horton Ridge Pale Malt, the 5.4% ABV beer was hopped with Amarillo, a crowd-favourite variety that’s big on grapefruit and citrus. Available at the brewery for growler fills now, and should be following on tap at better beer bars and restaurants any day now.

• Now that the new Authentic Seacoast Distillery and Brewery facility has officially opened at 75 Ferry Lane in Guysborough, we have some more information to share: they have christened their new 35 hl brewhouse, so expect to see product from the new system hitting shelves in the next month or so. The brewhouse will also be creating the mash for their line of GLYNNEVAN whisky. Hours of operation for their tasting room are 11am-6pm daily, with tours running at 2pm throughout the summer.

• Petit-Sault has welcomed a new brewer for the summer – Andrew ‘Esty’ Estabrooks, former brewmaster at Picaroons, will be brewing at the Edmundston brewery over the next couple of months, to help with the transition on the recently-expanded brewery and taproom… which means, more Petit-Sault beer! Speaking of, their beers are now heading to Nova Scotia for the first time, with their Amber Ale, Louis XVII, having the honour of being the first brand! Look for it at NSLC stores across the province shortly.

Lazy Bear Brewing has confirmed that they will be opening their retail location on Thursday, June 30th, from 5-8 pm. Located at 120 West Old Post Rd in Smiths Cove, NS, this will be a “soft opening”, with current plans being to open every Thursday thereafter. Growlers (1 L swing-top) will be available for purchase, and both of their first-release beers will be pouring; of course, they will happily fill clean growlers from other breweries as well! They will also be attending the CD release show for Ramshackle & Scarecrow at the Sissiboo Coffee Bar in Smiths Cove July 2nd, pouring their beer. They are now available in Halifax at the Lord Nelson’s The Arms Public House, and will be on tap at East of Grafton on Argyle when they open June 29th. In the meantime, check out their updated website (link above) for some details on the family behind the beers!

• A for Adventure is holding a contest to raise awareness of the Rogues Roost wilderness area in Nova Scotia. Check out the video, and plan to make a visit this summer. The prize pack is a kayak adventure including lunch from PEI Brewing (including some Rogues Roost IPA), $100 MEC gift card, all guided by the A for Adventure crew.

• Big Spruce and Boxing Rock brewed up a pilot batch of a new Blonde recently, and it is available in Nyanza now. Wigged Out is a 5.0% ABV blonde ale, featuring late addition Cascade hops for a low bitterness, but aromatic character, for an extremely quaffable beer. It is only available on tap at their tasting room this weekend, so be sure to drop by for some, and grab some food from Cruisin’ Cuisine food truck, who are there 12-7pm daily Fri-Sun.

We’ve got a bit on events in the next couple of weeks, including some Canada Day celebrations.

• A couple of final reminders for this weekend: tonight and tomorrow, Upstreet will be celebrating their first birthday with some special parties and an anniversary beer release; check out our previous post for more details. And in Fredericton tomorrow, Maybee Brewing is holding their Grand Opening Party from 6-11 pm, to celebrate the opening of their taproom.

• The second annual Canada Day Bash at the Lighthouse, hosted by the Fredericton Craft Beer Festival, will take place at the Lighthouse on the Green from 8pm-11pm. Tickets are $55 each and on sale now, and will get you fourteen 4-oz samples from local breweries TrailWay, Maybee, Red Rover, and Sunset Heights Meadery, as well as a variety of food options served up from the Food at the Crowne. And, of course, you’ll have a prime spot to watch the fireworks when they start after it gets dark!

• The Townhouse Pub in Antigonish is celebrating their 4th Anniversary next weekend. They’ll be releasing the details of the party and events shortly, check their Twitter and Facebook feeds for more details.

Wayfarers’ Ale in Port Williams expects to be opening their doors next weekend as well. Details are slim at the moment, but we’ll share them when we have them!

And a few more things of note this week:
Red Rover has re-released Tinderbox, a 7% ABV cider featuring the addition of bourbon and oak; it’s currently on tap at both the Cider House and James Joyce.
Grimross has launched “Phase One” of a series of expansions; they appear to be embiggening their taproom and retail space currently, and promise that canning of their beers will be commence in the near future.

Happy Friday, beer fans! A brewery launch, plenty of beer launches and events, and the start of Fredericton Craft Beer Week. Let’s go!

• Nine Locks Brewing launched this week in Dartmouth. Located at 219 Waverley Rd, adjacent to the Mic Mac Tavern, they opened their doors Monday afternoon. They are currently selling two beers, an IPA, and an ESB. The India Pale Ale is 6.9% ABV and 70 IBUs, featuring loads of citrus and floral hop character and smooth bitterness, from first wort hopping, hop bursting (adding the majority of hops in the last 20min of the boil, retaining most of the aromatic oils), and dry hopping. The Extra Special Bitter is 5.6% ABV and 35 IBUs, featuring English East Kent Golding and Fuggles hops for a subtle Noble hop spiciness. The beers are currently available in growlers to go at the brewery (both 1L flip-top and 1.89L), with canning beginning before the end of March. When that happens, look for cans at the private beer stores in HRM, as well as a selection of NSLCs around the province. Also look for the full release of their Dirty Blonde and Porter before the end of March. The storefront is open Mon-Fri 12-9pm, Sat 11-9pm, and Sun 12-5pm 12-9. Congratulations to the entire Nine Locks family!

• It’s been a busy week at Halifax’s Garrison Brewing! The Awards Gala for the 8th Annual Home Brew-Off were last night. The 45 entrants, plus family, friends, and members of the public, gathered at Garrison’s tasting room to hear the results in the Experimental American IPA category. This year’s winning beer was Honey Chamomile, brewed by Mark Power. Using honey malt to complement the chamomile herb, it featured nice hop additions to give it the necessary bitterness and aroma the judges were looking for. Rounding out the Final Four were a Toasted Coconut IPA, Earl Grey Tea IPA, and Parmesan & Jalepeno IPA. Congratulations!

• Attendees were able to taste the top 3 winners, as well as get the first pours of last year’s winning beer, Mr. Robusto. Brewed by Dave Martin and the Garrison crew, this Robust Porter is 6.5% ABV and 33 IBUs. Notes of sweet chocolate are prominent, along with vanilla and caramel, but with enough hops to balance. Mr. Robusto is available for purchase in bottles and growler fills at the brewery now, and will be available at the private beer stores and NSLCs shortly.

• Last night also served as the release party for the final beer in the Cellar SeriesTo Prussia With Love. This big beer is a blend of their Grand Baltic Porter, along with Barrel-Aged Coast to Coastless Imperial ESB (their collaboration with Le Trou du DiableFlying Monkeys, and Phillips). The barrels were from Ironworks Distillery in Lunenburg, and had previously held rum. The beer weighs in at 10% ABV and 35 IBUs, and is available for purchase in bottles now at the brewery, as well as previous Cellar Series beers Ol’ Fog Burner and Grand Baltic Porter, the former being available at the private stores soon.

• Garrison Brewmaster Daniel Girard will be facing off against wine maker Pete Luckett March 31st at the Harbourstone Sea Grill and Pourhouse, in a Beer vs Wine Showdown. Five Courses of food are being prepared, with a wine and beer paired with each, with attendees voting on their favourites. Tickets are available through the Harbourstone now, via email or phone (902-428-7852).

• Fredericton’s Mama’s Brew Pub will be releasing their fifth beer early next week, an American Amber Ale. A slightly bigger beer at 6.1% ABV than their other releases, it’s lightly hopped with East Kent Goldings to 15 IBUs. The grist features Maris Otter, Crystal 70 L, Carafa and Wheat malt, lending the beer “toasted malt flavours and a pleasant fruitiness”, according to brewer Ryan Kingston. They’ve also brought back their Session IPA, at 4.2% and 24 IBUs, it features lots of dry-hopping with Citra and Comet for a great blast of citrus hop character.

• Dartmouth’s Spindrift Brewing will be continuing their Seventh Wave release today with Blueberry Phie. This 5.0% ABV Wheat Ale was aged on loose leaf Masala Chai Tea and PEI blueberry puree. Pouring with a thick white head (thanks to the high percentage of wheat in the malt bill), it features notes of blueberries, cardamom, cinnamon and vanilla, for an experience like tasting savory blueberry pie. As with all of their Seventh Wave series, this beer is only available at the brewery in growlers, and in extremely limited amounts (they tend to sell out Friday afternoon), so grab some now to avoid disappointment.

• Gahan House Halifax released a brand new beer last night, Cranberry Sour. The beer was produced using a 48 hour sour mash, allowing the Lactobacillus on the grain to produce lactic acid for a sour bite, and then the fermentation was completed with brewer’s yeast. Cranberries were added after fermentation was complete, for a fresh aroma and tart character to complement the 3% ABV base beer. It is available on tap at the brewpub for pints, as well as growler fills.

Gahan House Charlottetown’s Brewmaster Trent Hayes will be hosting a Brewmaster dinner at Fishbones Oyster Bar on Friday, March 11. Beginning at 7pm, Hayes will lead the four course meal of food and beer pairings, featuring local products in a beer-inspired presentation. Tickets are available now at both Fishbones and Gahan House.

• Details on the Cape Breton Beer Fest were announced yesterday. Scheduled for Saturday, November 19th at the Cruise Pavilion on Esplanade in Sydney, there will be both an afternoon and evening session, each 2.5 hours (with evening VIP tickets allowing early entry). Featuring primarily craft breweries, including Cape Breton’s own Big Spruce and Breton Brewing, the organizers are aiming for about 35 breweries in attendance, from Nova Scotia, the Maritimes, and beyond. Food vendors will be onsite to provide sustenance to keep the party going, and other vendors will be invited to set up tables to showcase the best Cape Breton has to offer. Early bird tickets (at a $10 savings) are now available online, and regular-priced tickets will be online, and in NSLCs shortly. We will update you with a brewery list when it is available.

• The ANBL will be opening a new location in Saint John today. Located at East Point Shopping, this location will also be the first expansion of the very popular Growler program since Sackville in late 2014. To celebrate the opening, Big Tide Tidal Wave Double IPA, Flying Boats Dixie Clipper IPA and Hammond River Nut Your Everyday Red Ale will all be available, with the three head brewers onsite. The store is open now, with a celebration at 1pm this afternoon, check out the East Point ANBL’s page for their current inventory and details.

• The Fredericton Craft Beer Fest Week kicks off today with an event at the James Joyce Pub: The 4th Will Be With You! A Star Wars themed evening, attendees are encouraged (but not required) to come in Cosplay, and there may even be members of the 501st Legion in attendance. The fun continues with a Beer and Cheese tasting at ANBL York Saturday afternoon, and the Johnny Be Good Pub Crawl that evening. Keep on top of it all with our Calendar, as well as the FCBF App, available for both Android and iOS. The app will be updated with the floor plan of the festival, in order to plan your afternoon or evening session most efficiently. Don’t forgot to drop by the King Street Ale House next Thursday for our Trivia Night! We’ll be putting your beer, brewing, and general knowledge skills to the test, and handing out great prizes courtesy of the breweries attending the Fest. And there are still a few tickets available for the Afternoon Session of the main Fest March 12, grab them now before they sell out.

A few parting shots this week:

– Distillerie Fils du Roy has brought back their spring seasonal, Stella Maris. This 7.5% ABV Biere de Garde is named in honour of the star in the Acadian flag. Look for it along the East coast of the province, and Fredericton, and check out Fils du Roy’s other offerings through the ANBL.
North Brewing has brought back their Dartmouth Dark, with v2.0 hitting the shelves and taps today. This batch features Cannon espresso from Anchored Coffee, on top of their dark lagered ale. Look for it at both the Halifax and Dartmouth stores.
PEI Brewing Company has released their Transmitter Coffee Stout, featuring coffee from Charlottetown’s Receiver Coffee. Available now at the brewery, look for it to hit Nova Scotia in the near future as well.
Picaroons has released their Maple Cream Ale this week, available now at the Brewtique, and soon at ANBL locations.