Hart & Thistle

All posts tagged Hart & Thistle

It’s the last Friday of the week, which means it’s time for more Atlantic Canada Beer news!

• This Saturday, October 26th, the PEI Brewing Co. is holding their Oktoberfest celebration at their location in Charlottetown, from 1-6 pm. With no charge for admission, there will be live entertainment and lots of food and beer for purchase; they will also be providing tours of the brewery for half-price. In addition, they will be holding their 1st Annual Growler Challenge! For $10, entrants will have a growler filled with the beer of their choice. All contestants will then hold the full growler at arm’s length, parallel to the ground; the person who holds out the longest without bending their arm wins a $100 gift card from the Murphy Hospitality Group (which can be used at the brewery). All contestants get to keep the growler afterwards, of course!

• Speaking of the PEI Brewing Co., it looks like their popular Lobster Ale from this summer is going to continue to be available through the coming months. While this Saison will still be found in bottles, it will likely start turning up on tap at the brewery and other restaurants/bars in the Maritimes. It’s currently available at many ANBL stores in New Brunswick as well.

• Tonight, Picaroons will be hosting a tap-takeover at Wilser’s Room in downtown Fredericton. Starting at 5 pm, all twelve taps will be dedicated to Picaroons beers, including their latest seasonal release, Harvest Ale, as well as special releases Plaid to the Bone and 104th Regiment. Live music by Nick Ferrio starts at 9 pm.

• And while we’re on the subject of Picaroons, they’ll be releasing their very popular Winter Warmer seasonal on November 1st. Based on the English Barleywine style, it clocks in at 7.3% ABV. No events are planned for the official release as of yet; follow them on Facebook and Twitter to stay updated!

• If you missed Big Tide Brewing‘s Pumpkin Ale brewed with fresh hops last month, good news! Brewer Wendy Papadopoulos has confirmed that a second batch has been brewed, again with locally-grown pumpkins that have been roasted in maple syrup and spices. While there were no more “fresh” hops left to use in the brewing process, Cascade and Hallertau hops were added to the boil; the 5% ABV beer also has cinnamon, nutmeg, coriander and ginger added in the brewing process. Get it at the brewpub (available on tap and for growler fills) before it’s gone!

Garrison Brewing have released two fall favourites this week: their Martello Stout and Winter Warmer. With notes of chocolate and coffee, the Stout will be available for growler fills and bottles. The Winter Warmer, brewed with cinnamon and clove, and with notes of plums and dark fruit from the dark demerara sugar used, and a little more warming at 7.0% ABV, will be available in bottles only. Both are available now at the brewery, and bottles will be filtering out to the private stores shortly.

• Sea Level has released their fourth wet-hopped beer of the season, their Punkin’ Grinner Ale. This is a new creation for brewmaster Randy Lawrence, clocking in at 5% ABV and amber in colour with a unique balance of spicy and sweet. It features all local ingredients with roasted baby pam pie pumpkins from Sea Level’s own gardens, honey from Cosman & Whidden and Cascade hops grown on the Annapolis Valley floor. It is available now on tap at the Port Pub and in 1 Litre refillable growlers at Sea Level Brewing. Cans should be on their way to Halifax for this coming weekend, at Harvest Wines and Spirits, Cristall Wine Merchants and Bishop’s Cellar. Also take note that this will be the last Sunday that the brewery will be open for the year, so take advantage of the nice fall weather and go for a drive to the Valley this weekend.

Uncle Leo’s Brewery and Big Spruce Brewing are both taking part in the Swine & Stein event at Pictou’s Palace Theatre this Saturday, 5-10pm. Your ticket ($15 in advance from Uncle Leo’s or Stone Soup Cafe, $20 at the door) gets you inside for a massive pig roast and great entertainment from local artists. The beer is extra, but we know you won’t mind paying for these two excellent breweries’ beers.

• The Hart & Thistle Gastropub will be celebrating brewmaster Greg Nash‘s 29th (again!) birthday in style tomorrow. Starting at 11am, they will be serving up a special burger, pork belly sliders and smoked brisket sandwiches. Oh, and beer too: the currently available Dank & Stormy DIPA, as well as a special 2012 keg of Commissar RIS. It will also mark the tapping of the 2013 edition of Hop Mess Monster, Nash’s ode to hops. This year’s beer clocks in at 11.5% ABV and 533 IBUs (calc), and features hops anywhere and everywhere throughout the brewing, fermenting and conditioning period. The ACBB will be in attendance, so come say hi!

• It looks like Railcar Brewing has finally found a new location for their brewery! After plans fell through to open in Railcar 3 at the Shogomoc site, owner/brewer Mitch Biggar recently announced on his Facebook site that the brewery will be located in the rear unit at 9172 Main St. in Florenceville-Bristol. With 1800 square feet available, Mitch plans on opening the retail store and tasting area by the end of the year, with the brewery hopefully producing beer sometime in early 2014.

Bridge Brewing will be releasing their fall seasonal tomorrow, a Belgian IPA. The beer clocks in at 6.5% and 60 IBU, from the Centennial, Chinook and Brewers Gold hops. This is a very interesting style, with the spice and fruit character of the yeast blending very well with the hops. And don’t forget that they’ve extended their hours: Open Monday to Thursday 12-7pm, and until 9pm Friday and Saturday, and open 12-6pm Sundays.

• If events in Charlottetown, Fredericton, Pictou, or Halifax aren’t enough to satisfy you, don’t forget about Boxing Rock‘s Grand Opening Saturday in Shelburne. There are still spots available on their free tours, and there will be lots of fun activities, food and beer to celebrate their opening. Check last week’s post for more details.

• Premier Wine & Spirits in Halifax, purveyors of great beer, wine and spirits in Halifax, is looking for part-time clerk people. They are looking for folks to work 15-20 hours a week, and of course a knowledge (or love!) of beer and wine is a big plus. Drop off your resume at the store at 1535 Dresden Row between 10-8.

• The latest offering from the Newfoundland Artisanal and Craft Beer Club (aka Beerthief) is closing this Sunday. The brewery being highlighted this go-around is Muskoka Brewery, after a very successful offering in the summer. Their Dark Ale, Craft Lager, Twice As Mad Tom IPA and Winter Jack (Tennessee whisky barrel-aged Double Chocolate Cranberry Stout) are all up for grabs. To sign up and/or put in a request, contact Tom Beckett.

• Late addition to Friday Wrap-up: A reminder that signup to the Picaroons and New Brunswick Craft Brewers Association Homebrew Challenge is due November 1st. Beers can be dropped off Nov 1-15 at the Picaroons Brewtique on Queen Street. More info is available in our previous post. Good luck to all NB Homebrewers!

Another week with lots going on! Have a good weekend…

Hey, everyone! Here’s what’s happening in the craft beer world in Atlantic Canada this week (and beyond)…

• Big Spruce is brewing up a Black IPA/India Black Ale today. With a medium body, using imported organic Carafa Malt and Sinamar for colour, the beer will showcase a great citrus flavour and aroma (thanks in no small part to their on-farm-grown Cascade to be used for dry-hopping), and will weigh in at a whopping 124 IBUs! We are looking forward to try this one in three weeks.

• On Monday, a bit too late for our Hop Harvest-centric postSea Level brewed up their popular New Scotland Heather Ale, made with all NS-grown hops and heather (from their own hop farm and others in the Annapolis Valley). Look for it at The Port Pub (on tap and at the brewery) and in Halifax at Bishop’s Cellar soon.

• Two new beers from Celtic Knot Brewing should be available soon: both the Dark Passage Oatmeal Stout and Dubh Loki (a Black IPA previously named “Loki”) are currently going through the listing process with ANBL. Batches are standing by, and will likely be pouring at The Tide & Boar and Marky’s Laundromat very soon.

• The Halifax Cycling Coalition is hosting an event at Bridge Brewing after the Switch Open Streets event. Running from 2:30-6:00 this Sunday, there will be live music, food from the Food Wolf, and pints of Bridge Brewing available. No admission to enjoy the music, and the food and beer is cash-only. Hopefully the skies stay clear for the event.

• Don’t forget the PEI Beer Festival is this weekend, starting this evening at 6pm at the New Charlottetown Event Grounds. A detailed post on the festival can be found here; tickets are still available, so don’t wait any longer to get yours! With over 75 beers available, as well as lots of food pairings and live music, it should be a great time. Head on over to The PEI Beer Guy, who has put together some solid suggestions on what to seek out at the festival.

Last week we mentioned that Picaroons was planning on releasing their annual Harvest Ale, where there will be several versions of the same base beer, with differing hop varieties and local hop fields used. Details are still slim, however we DO know that their official launch for the beer will be Thursday, Sept. 26th at the York St. ANBL in Fredericton. Stay tuned for more info as it becomes available.

• Speaking of Picaroons, they plan on being involved with one of the music events planned for next week’s Harvest Jazz & Blues Festival in Fredericton. On Saturday, Sept. 14th, they will be showcasing “Bluegrass, Blues & BBQ” at the Capital Complex, which will feature southern-style BBQ, as well as live music from The Modern Grass Quartet and Sissy & The Hobos. At the Wilser’s Room bar, there will be several Picaroons beers on tap, with the possibility of one or two special releases, according to Marketing Director Dennis Goodwin. The show starts at 1 pm (doors open at noon), and the $15 admission will get you a plate of BBQ and access to the all-day live music.

• The Hart & Thistle have their newest seasonal now on tap, TubberRoe Robust Porter. Weighing in at 5.9% ABV and 43 IBUs, this beer is full of roast, dark fruit and chocolate notes from the specialty malt used, and plenty of citrus from the Centennial, Cascade, and Falconer’s Flight hops.

• Last weekend, BarNone Brewery in PEI brewed up their first IPA since they started officially selling their beer in July. Showcasing a device called the “Hop Dam” developed by DME for BarNone, the beer is “heavily dry-hopped” according to BarNone’s Twitter account, although we’re currently unsure which hop varieties were used. We’ll be sure to let you know more about this beer when we can; keep your eyes open for updates on when it will be released!

• By the way, if you’re in PEI and are looking to try some BarNone beers on tap, they’ve added another account to their list – The Old Triangle in Charlottetown is now selling their Summer Sessions Ale. Both of BarNone’s beers (Summer Sessions and Pale Ale) are still available at Cedar’s and Baba’s in Charlottetown, and at The Landing Oyster House & Pub in Tyne Valley.

• reLiSH Gourmet Burgers has become quite popular in Fredericton since they opened several years ago, and have even started other franchises in other areas of New Brunswick, and also in Nova Scotia and Newfoundland. This fall, they plan on opening a new type of restaurant in Fredericton, which will pair craft beer with gourmet hamburgers. With a goal of having 6-8 craft beers on tap, as well as in bottles, they plan on opening this restaurant by late October. We’ll have more details and a standalone post on this soon!

Happy Friday, beer buddies! Time for another Friday Wrap-Up…

• The PEI Beer Festival is only two weeks away (Sept. 6th and 7th)! We’re partnering with the PEI Brewing Co. to put on a contest for 2 VIP tickets to the festival, through Twitter. All you have to do is take a picture of one of the 75 beers that will be poured at the festival (check the list here) and post it on Twitter, with the hashtag #PEIBeerFest. The winning photo will be selected by the PEI Brewing Co., and we will announce the winner Monday through our Twitter account. Good luck, everyone! Also check back for a full post with all of the details on the Fest early next week.

• Earlier this week, Grimross Brewing released their fourth beer in downtown Fredericton. “Bayard Belgian Blond” comes in at 7% ABV, and has a lot of fruitiness and spiciness to complement its Belgian character. Brewed using the same hops as the recent “Ben’s Bitter Pale Ale”, it’s also fermented with the same yeast strain, but comes across as a sweeter, less bitter beer that is “approachable, with lots of flavor”, according to brewer Stephen Dixon. It’s currently available in 750 mL growlers at the Picaroons Brewtique.

• Meanwhile, Shiretown is also releasing a new beer… the “Black Currant Bitter Wheat” is brewed with their “base wheat recipe” and local black currants, according to brewer Derek Leslie. With an ABV of 5%, it will be available only at the brewery for growler fills, for a very limited time. The launch will be next Thursday, so hurry over if you’re in the area!

• More new beer! Halifax brewpub Rogues Roost has a pair of new beers available on tap: a light and refreshing Blueberry Wheat (their first ever of this style), and a 6% Baltic Porter, with notes of smoke and chocolate. Both are also available in growlers to go, but enjoying the beer on their street-level patio on one of our few-remaining summer days is a good idea too.

• In support of the Atlantic Salmon Conservation Foundation, Picaroons will be re-releasing their “Upstream Ale” for a limited time. Described as a “crisp and clean golden ale”, it has a sessionable ABV of 4.5%, and should be available in ANBL stores by early September. Twenty-five cents from every bottle purchased will go towards the ASCF.

Greg Nash, has released another new beer in town. Hop Candy II, on tap now at the Hart & Thistle, is a 6.5% IPA, hopped at 3.6lbs/bbl with Centennial, Cascade and Falconer’s Flight. As with most hop-forward beers, the younger the beer the better, as the flavour and aroma can drop off significantly over time.

• What a busy week for new beer releases! And with hop harvest arriving soon in the Atlantic Region, we’ll be seeing some special beers coming through the pipeline soon. If you are in the Cabot Trail area today, drop by Big Spruce as they pick hops from their field and brew up a ~6% Harvest IPA. They are using the wet hops (picked minutes before use, only having to travel feet from field to brewery) continuously in the mash tun, kettle and a hopback. It should be a fun day out!

• Originally available only at Marky’s LaundromatCeltic Knot Brewing beers will now be available at another location in Moncton. As of this week, The Tide & Boar Gastropub will begin pouring a rotating selection of Celtic Knot beers (based on availability), including their Hopicide IPA and “Not Joe Average” Pale Ale, as well as future releases such as the Loki Black IPA, Robert the Spruce, and Dark Passage Oatmeal Stout.

• Yesterday, Barnone Brewing had something special for those dropping in for their weekly Thursday growler fill from 6-8 pm – an opportunity to touch and smell their glorious hops! Barnone has been growing hops all season which are just about ready to be harvested for use in brewing, so they graciously allowed customers to experience up-front what fresh hops look, smell, and feel like.

• After we spotted a teaser picture of some excavation work posted on their Facebook page, we contacted Meander River Farm for an update on their upcoming brewery. Alan Bailey was kind enough to get us up to speed with their current situation: after four months of waiting on the NS Dept. of Environment, they will be able to operate as a farm-based microbrewery. Hooray! They will be brewing on a 3 barrel system, focusing on American-style Ales, using hops and other products from their 186 acre property (including honey and lavender, which, along with their hops, have all been used in Garrison beers). They plan to be selling beer by December, and we will certainly be keeping you up-to-date with all of the news! One exciting plan of theirs is to offer CSB (community-supported brewery) shares, similar to the CSA shares popular in the province. This allows for a more personal connection between the consumer and farmer/brewer.

• And more great news for beer lovers in Nova Scotia: as mentioned in our profile in June, the Antigonish Townhouse is ready to serve up their in-house-made beer! They’ve been working hard on perfecting the recipe and techniques, and even harder on getting all of the licensing and legal stuff in place. Within the next week or so, they will be serving it exclusively at the pub. A cask-conditioned English Bitter brewed with 2-Row, Crystal and a touch of Black and Flaked malt, the beer clocks in at 4.5%. The 42 IBU beer uses Challenger for bittering, and great English hops East Kent Goldings and Fuggles for flavour and aroma (including Fuggles for dry-hopping). The only thing this beer is missing is a name, which is where you come in! Send them a message on Twitter or Facebook with your suggestion for a name, and you could win a prize! It probably helps to be able to taste it first, but I have faith you folks can come up with some great names. We’ll let you know the moment the beer hits the hand pump!

• It’s still months away until the second annual Fredericton Craft Beer Festival (March 8th, 2014), but a new website has just been launched for the event. Keep an eye on the site (and this blog) for details on the festival, and follow them on Twitter and Facebook to keep up-to-date on breweries, beers, ticket availability, and more. They might be making some changes to the fest format, so weigh in to let them know what you think!

Lots of beer news this week… hopefully the trend continues! Have a great weekend!