Lightfoot & Wolfville

All posts tagged Lightfoot & Wolfville

Anyone else feel like they blinked and suddenly September was gone? Fine weather followed by a straight humdinger of a hurricane will do that, we guess. Apologies for our absence last week, but everyone needs a break sometimes, and frankly we trust that y’all know how to log into Fb/Ig/Tw on your own and troll for beer news. Won’t have nearly as many crappy puns, but we guess that’s what you pay us for! We’d also be remiss not to mention the upcoming Thanksgiving holiday and the fact that beer/cider pairs perfectly with preparing, eating and cleaning up after a turkey dinner. So grab your favorite local Pilsner, pale ale, saison or dry cider, start brining your bird, and scroll through for this week’s news.

The very special gang at Delta Force Brewing has something new to talk about this week, and if you guessed it was another Ukraine beer you’d actually be wrong (this time, anyway). What it is, though, is the result of leveraging the age-old technique of parti-gyle brewing whereby two (or more) batches of beer are produced from one batch of grain. The first is a “big beer,” usually high in gravity and robust in flavor, whilst the second is a “small(er) beer,” often a daily drinker type. If you’re a fan of the brewery, you’re probably familiar with Operation Wessex, ∂F’s 8.0% fireside sipper; well the new Operation Lil’ Wessex was produced by rinsing further sugars from an OW mash and fermenting the result to produce a second beer. But wait, there’s more! After undergoing a secondary fermentation with brettanomyces, it was further aged on apple pomace (the stuff leftover after apples have been pressed for cider) to produce a very light but very seasonal tipple at 4.0% ABV. And if small beer meets funk meets cider isn’t your jam, you should know that Operation Triufino, their Mexican-style Vienna Lager is also back in stock. You can buy both of these beers along with many others, including their 3-pack of Baurenhofschuppen Märzen variants (plain, Bretted, and aged on apple pomace), at their online store for delivery in Halifax.

Across the Province from the Annapolis Valley is Chester Basin’s Tanner & Co. Brewing, who are celebrating their 5th anniversary this weekend. Although there are still details remaining to be released, we know that they’re planning a little shindig at the brewery with some special beers, sausages and pretzels from Old Black Forest, and a little bit of afternoon music. You’ll find their Barrel-Fermented Saison on tap and in bottles to go, as well as their Ginger IPA and ESB, both exclusive to the taps. Do check Tanner’s socials (Fb/Ig/Tw) for more details on Saturday’s happenings. Congrats to Dan and the team at Tanner on a fruitful five years, and we look forward to seeing what they develop in the next five. 

From a brewery celebrating five years to one celebrating twenty-five, we find Garrison Brewing with a brand new beer available. Twerp is a “tiny sour IPA” which seems pretty self-explanatory to us. Featuring plenty of hops, with an emphasis on southern hemisphere varieties, including Bravo, (Australian) Cascade, El Dorado, Galaxy, and Topaz, this hazy and golden beer sports a bold bitterness at 46 IBU to balance the hop flavors and the tartness from kettle souring, all in a 3.8% ABV package. You’ll find this zesty and sour brew in cans at all Garrison retail spaces as well as on tap at the Seaport and the Oxford Taproom.

The other NS brewery celebrating 25 years this year is Propeller Brewing and while they’ve not got a new one for us, they do have the return of a special seasonal. Continuing their annual tradition, Propeller is supporting Nocturne Halifax by sharing the proceeds from their annual release of Nocturne Black IPA. Hopped with Amarillo and Falconer’s Flight hops, you can expect an amalgam of tropical fruit and dank piney aromas married to a malty backbone with roasty touches of dark chocolate and coffee. Strong and balanced, but maintaining a dry finish, it tips the scales at 6.7% and is the perfect accompaniment to Art at Night. Check out the festival website to peruse the projects and plan to grab some Nocturne at Propeller’s Gottingen, Quinpool, or Windmill Road locations (or online!) and help support the art and energy of the fest.

Everyone knows that Halifax’s 2 Crows Brewing sometimes takes things to extremes with their brewing, and this week is no exception, with two beers hitting the shelves, both over three years in the making. Up first is Soirée, a barrel-aged sour red beer/wine hybrid. On the beer side, it started with a base batch of Flanders-style red that was brewed in June 2019, and fermented and conditioned in oak with a melange of microorganisms. Then, in fall of 2021, the wine side began when the 2C team visited Carmody Cove Vineyard in PEI where they collected a whole bunch (well, bunches and bunches) of Petite Pearl, Marquette, and Muscat whole cluster grapes. After carbonic maceration, the grapes were pressed on-site and the juice was fermented into wine. This wine was blended with the beer and the two were allowed to get friendly for a while before bottling and bottle conditioning for several months. The result keeps the character of the Flanders Red, but adds subtle wine notes. 

Next up is Grapes! which also began life as a batch of Flanders Red brewed in June of 2019. This one (or perhaps this portion) was aged extensively in port barrels until fall of 2021, when it met a large amount of Marquette pomace from Lightfoot & Wolfville. Melding with the residual sugars, tannins, and acids,  and refermenting over several months, the beer was drawn off the pomace and packaged into cans, which were in turn conditioned for another seven months or so. The result is described as “zippy, jammy, [and] complex,” but also, no doubt, “Grapey.” Both of these delights are available at the brewery now, but we’ll pass on the caution from the brewery: chill them both well before opening as they are both very lively!

Boomstick Brewing in Corner Brook, NL, has a new beer in the taproom, and fans of smooth and creamy stout will no doubt rejoice to find out it’s pouring on nitro! Townsite celebrates Boomstick’s home neighborhood in Corner Brook, where you’ll also find Bootleg Brew Co., making it a very densely crafty place. An Irish Stout at a very sessionable 4.4% ABV, it’s a great after work pint, with the roasty character of the darker specialty grains playing off the velvety mouthfeel imparted by the nitro tap. Try it on tap for best results, but consider grabbing some to go from their West Street retail; it’s not quite the same, but pour it hard and drink it fairly quickly and you’ll still get some of that lovely creaminess.

It’s no surprise that one of our region’s most IPA-focused breweries has a new beer out featuring Phantasm, a Sauvignon Blanc grape-derived powder that brings piles of tropical potential to beer, but it is a little surprising that they took so long to do it! Now available from Fredericton’s Trailway Brewing is Phantasmagoria, a 5.6% ABV IPA packed with plenty of passionfruit, berry, and guava character. Dry-hopped with Nelson Sauvin and Cryo Citra, you can expect a pungent and dank aroma to go with all that fruit, and a soft mouthfeel, but also a dry finish. Grab it at the brewery in cans.

You may have heard that Stillwell Brewing is up and running and making and selling beer out of their new digs on Kempt Road in Halifax (special weekend hours this Saturday from 11 – 4 PM!). You may have even sampled some of those tasty, tasty beers for yourself. But do you have the whole story on how it’s all gone down since the halcyon days of sharing a brewhouse at Propeller’s Gottingen Street location? Probably not. But you could probably learn a lot of that stuff if you tune your podcast-ma-phone to the 902Brewcast and check out their new episode with Chris, Nikki, and Grant from the Stilly B set.

For all we know it’s sold out already, but if you’re looking for a can of something that can take your your brain away (and by away, we might mean, “permanently”), Unfiltered brewed up a batch of the aptly named 10% ABV Warning Label and released it to a post-Fiona world last Friday. Still have some storm-related angst coursing through your veins? This liquid hop candy might be just the thing to quell that. Or at least make it bearable. Available in cans, of course, but also for fills (hahaha, fuck!) to go.

It may be a holiday long weekend, but that’s not stopping breweries, cideries and better drinking establishments across the region from hosting events for their thirsty patrons; hell, it might even be encouraging them! 

First up is a release party for a new cidery out of Paradise, Newfoundland focusing on spontaneous fermentation. The first release from Mauzy is Take Me Away Piquette, featuring apple pomace from feral Burin Bay apple. Naturally fermented to 4.7% ABV, this one was also bottle conditioned with Baccalieu Trail Honey. Bottle pours from the 20 cases they produced will be available throughout the evening at Brewdock on Duckworth Street. We’ll be sure to provide more info on Mauzy’s launch plans as details emerge.

Starting today, two of the lovely, but maybe somewhat lesser known breweries in Nova Scotia are trading their taps for the rest of the weekend! Serpent Brewing out of Spryfield and Lunn’s Mill in Lawrencetown (Annapolis Valley version) are making their beers available at the other’s taproom! At Lunn’s Mill, you’ll find Serpent’s Crystal Crescent Strawberry Kolsch and White Mountain Belgian Whit. At Serpent Brewing, you’ll find two tasty Lunn’s Mill brews, First Cut IPA and Pub Ale ESB.  This is an excellent exchange for two breweries that really support their local communities and we hope this keeps happening throughout our region!

If you’re in Saint John, love beer, and love Oktoberfest, you’ve probably felt a small hole in your heart in past years. Well, Uncorked Tours  is bringing an outdoor, open-air beer event in true Oktoberfest fashion. North Market Street in Saint John will be transformed into a beergarden (biergarten, even!) and to celebrate this inaugural event, they are giving away tickets, drink tokens, and tasting glasses for the event. Check out how to enter here.

Atlantic Canada’s northernmost brewery, Lab City’s Iron Rock, is turning 3 and to celebrate they’re hosting a party at the brewery next Saturday, October 15. The day’s events will include lots of special beers, an appearance from Hurley’s Texas BBQ, a pumpkin carving contest, and a giant jenga tournament (register by October 12 for that one), with donations going towards the Hurricane Fiona Relief Fund. The day will be capped off with an 80s dance party starting at 9:00 PM for which tickets are available at the taproom.

Halifax’s Stillwell(‘s?) continues to spoil Halifax and area beer fans with events and next week is no exception. The crew from Manhattan’s As Is Beer Bar will be in town and they’re somehow planning to sneak 12 kegs and over 25 beers/ciders into their checked luggage. The event will take place Thursday, October 13, with tickets available now. The taplist will feature ciders from New York’s East Hollow and beer styles including IPAs, Kölsch, and sours from some New York state legends, including Grimm Artisanal Ales, Threes Brewing, Evil Twin, Finback, and Hudson Valley. This is the first time that most of these breweries have graced a taplist in Atlantic Canada. Only 20L is available of each of the 12 draught offerings, and for that reason, Stillwell is including an early-bird ticketed event from 4:00 PM to 7:00 PM. Tickets are available now on their website with the option of a seated ($20) or standing ($10) session. At 7:00 PM, the doors will open for the rest of the public to try whatever’s left (which may not be much if your favourite bloggers have anything to say about it).

While it’s still January (how?!), there continues to be updates and changes with guidelines and restrictions across Atlantic Canada. Breweries are opening taprooms again, upgrading their online stores and may have changed deliveries. As always, it’s important to check out the social media from your favourite breweries and keep an eye out for any deals, as our breweries are trying to keep business going. Please support as you can and live within your means! Lastly, if you’ve been saving up your drinks for Dry January (that’s how it works right?), hopefully you’ll enjoy these updates below so you can line up your Wet February. 

Let’s kick off the week’s news with some cider from Halifax, courtesy of Sourwood Cider. Kissabel is a red-fleshed apple that the Sourwood crew have used in ciders before, namely their Kissabel Pet-Nat, a low intervention spritzy cider made with the 2020 harvest and released last year. After removing the cider for that release, Jake wasn’t done with the leftover fruits just yet, adding some water to the pomace and allowing another fermentation to take place. The result is Kissabel Piquette, a 3.0% low abv release that is bubbly and light, while still allowing the fruit flavour to shine through. Grab this at their store on Cornwallis, or for local delivery or shipping.

We’ve got a pair of treats coming out of Cornwall, PEI. Village Green brings out two new ones, marking their first releases of 2022. Starting out, we’re going with a throwback to the west coast days of C-hops and Crystal malt. Winter Classic IPA is a Classic IPA at 6.5% featuring Crystal malt and Chinook and Centennial hops. With plenty of IBUs and 6.5%. Featuring citrus and pine notes with a great hop bite. This is available in cans now from the brewery.

Second up, a nice alternate to the West Coast IPA, we get a Vanilla Milk Stout also available now. A sweet and roasty Milk Stout, conditions on Madagascan Vanilla Beans for a nice sweetness, this comes in at 5.6% available in cans today. And a big HBD to Head Brewer and Keg Washer Bryan Carver, who celebrates the big 4-0 today. While you can’t enjoy a pint at VG this weekend, at least pop by for some growler and can fills and toast the fella!

From Sussex, New Brunswick, the crew at Sussex Ale Works is re-releasing a hit from last year’s Valentine’s Day with Tarts Content, a raspberry sour taken after the Berliner Weisse style.Using the classic German-style ale recipe with added raspberry puree gives a nice sweet and tart flavour, with the right amount of pucker. This is 5% and 8 IBU. This is available today in crowlers for pickup and delivery from the brewery. 

Another brewery bringing back an old favourite is Dildo Brewing, straight out of Dildo, Newfoundland. Bitter Cold is an Ordinary Bitter style that is light, malt forward and delicious. At 4%, this brings notes of orange pekoe tea, sweetness like marmalade and toasted biscuits. Highly drinkable at anytime, this is available in cans today from the brewery and their St. John’s shop, along with a few NL Liquor Express, Marie’s and Orangestores.

Berwick’s Smokehouse Nano Brewery celebrated Robbie Burns day this week with a release paying tribute to the Scottish poet, Grandfather’s Tartan. Delving into the Scottish Wee Heavy style, this 7.8% beer is malt-forward, with plenty of rich caramel and toasted notes, while remaining smooth, despite its higher alcohol content. You’ll have to find your way to the Annapolis Valley for this one, as it’s only available on tap at their spot at 134 Union Street!

Straight out of Shelburne, but available province- and Canada-wide, is the latest offering from Boxing Rock Brewing. Perfect for the apres-shovelling crowd and cold nights we’re experiencing, is a big and hearty stout, and it doesn’t get much bigger than 9.0% ABV. Proletariat Russian Imperial Stout is full of dark malts to bring massive notes of roast, coffee, chocolate, with a fine level of bitterness to balance its full mouthfeel. Released in 473 ml cans, it’s joined on the shelves by the returning Unobtanium Intrepid Amber Ale, ready for pickup or delivery. Speaking of, a reminder that Boxing Rock is doing free daily delivery in HRM and Shelburne, on a minimum order of just $50. And those who live between Halifax and Shelburne can take advantage of free weekly delivery with orders over $80. Check their website for more details.

From the South Shore to the North Shore of Nova Scotia, we head to Tatamagouche Brewing, who have a brand new beer coming out that’s been a little while in the making. Starting its life as a pale ale built on pale malt and both raw and malted rye, hopped quite heavily with classic Cascade and Centennial late in the boil, it was initially fermented with wine yeast to encourage biotransformation, the release of bound hop oils, and ester production. It was then transferred to neutral wine barrels where it was further inoculated with Escarpment Labs’ Mothership Blend of Brettanomyces strains and allowed to condition for six months, giving the brett time to convert the majority of the banana and bubblegum esters to more desirable pineapple and citrus aromas. A dry hop with new variety Elixir completed the picture before packaging. Sounds like some science! to us, so it’s fitting that it’s been named Glad Alchemy. Coming in at 6.1% ABV, it’s funky, with citrus and pineapple up front and a little lingering banana in the background, with a suitably dry brett finish. You should be able to buy it early next week in cans from the Tata web shop, and possibly at other places that carry your favourite Tata brews in the coming weeks. Also, look for the returns of fan-favourites Sero Czech Dark Lager, Haywain English Bitter, Après Cream Ale, and First Light Czech Pilsner all either newly- or soon-to-be-canned and available for purchase.

The gang at 2 Crows Brewing in Halifax has been in the news (sometimes literally) over the past couple of weeks talking about the way they’ve managed to minimize some of the effects of the beer ingredient supply chain issues that have been affecting the industry. It’s nothing complicated, they just started sourcing more things locally! If you’ve been following the brewery for the past few years you already know that they’ve not been shy about integrating local ingredients, but they’ve now taken that to the nth degree and made a mainline beer using Shoreline Malting Pilsner malt from PEI, Lakeview Hops from New Brunswick, and crisp, clean Halifax water. AC Lager is maybe your new go-to for a light and refreshing banger, perfect for après ski/hockey/softball/etc., watching sportsball on a Sunday afternoon, lawn mowing, or any other traditional or non-traditional beer time!! At 4% it’s not going to knock you over if you have a couple, and at $2.09 per 355mL can (that’s $12.51 for a six, or $50 for 24), it’s not going to break the bank either. And look at that label: puffins!! Read more about the journey to this beer on the 2C website and then put your order in!

Also coming out of Brunswick Street this weekend is the return of Space Words, or, as those who remember the first batch might refer to it, Rocket Fuel!! A 10.1% trip to parts unknown, it’s packed with Galaxy, Eclipse, and Comet hops and it was co-fermented with a yeast that evolved to make nectar attract pollinating insects (Metschnikowia reukaufii). To quote the brewery, “Tastes like some kind of galactic mango juice.” We don’t think much more needs to be said. Find it in 473mL cans at the brewery now.

We also mentioned that this would be the weekend of the 2 Crows 5th Anniversary Celebration at the brewery and boy howdy are they planning some things. Bearing in mind that all in-person events are subject to Provincial COVID regulations, including social distancing requirements, you might still want to head down and check out what’s going on at the taproom this weekend. Saturday will see NS Winery and frequent 2C collaborators Lightfoot & Wolfville in the house from noon to 2 PM for beer/flight pairings, followed by R&B Kitchen with some sweet, sweet soul food from 2 – 7 PM. The first 50 folks in the door will receive a free anniversary glass as well. Then on Sunday is the return of SOUR SUNDAY. There will be 8 rotating taps of sour beers, including Five Petals, Terry (2018), Dandy, Good Air, Cloud 9, Deux II, Surefire, and Hoopla, with complimentary shots of Pepto Bismol available at the bar. For your snacking pleasure, Gingerbread Haus will have Bavarian soft pretzels on the go. This is all from noon to close; maybe some of us will see some of you there!!

Some parting shots with returning beers …

We’re happy to report that St. Johns’ Bannerman Brewing has opened their doors once again for in-person dining and drinking. Open 7:30 AM – 11 PM weekdays, and 8:30 AM – 12 AM on the weekends, start your day with a pour-over and scone, and then transition to beer and food from the talented Nam Jim crew preparing Thai-inspired plates in the kitchen. Local delivery (of both food and beer) is still available, including the freshly-canned Only Shadows, a light, toasty, and chocolatey Dark Lager, also pouring for pints, of course!

A bit of news from the Farmshed crew at Delta Force, as they updated their website with a new online store and payment portal. They’re “How to Buy” section is always very useful with where to buy their beer and now there’s a link to their online store with direct delivery, where you can grab their latest releases like Tom Hardy English Barley Wine and Bap – Nurungji Lager, inspired (and featuring) Korean toasted rice. Use those mice and keyboards, or thumbs to check it out!

Deer Lake’s Rough Waters Brewing is thinking back to summer with this week’s re-release of Lock and Key. A mojito-inspired beer, it features mint and lime on a tart refreshing base. No need to wait 4 months to be drinking in summer when you can grab some now! Available at their taproom and Corner Brook NLC.

Speaking of returning beers, Truro Brewing has a fresh batch of their Cobequid Bay IPA on tap now. At 6.3% ABV and brimming with bright citrus and pine hoppy goodness, you can grab a pint or fill your growler today at their spot on Inglis Place!

A few job postings for you as we settle up this week’s news, plus a bonus for your ears …

The fine folks at Upstreet are putting out a call to hire a Lead Production Brewer as they’re looking to expand in 2022. Check out the link here for the full job description and how to apply. 

The fine folks at Field Guide in the North End of Halifax are looking for an experienced bartender to fill their Head Bartender position. They’ve got a great reputation for cocktails and their drinks, so it’s a good opportunity for someone with a lot of passion. They’re encouraging people to reach out in person, email or send a DM on Instagram, but be sure to have a resume and cover letter on hand. 

Another one in the North End is the second location from Tusket Falls. Their Beer Project on Gottingen is looking for an Assistant Kitchen Manager! Check out the full details in the post here, and send them an email if you’re interested along with your resume and a bit about yourself. 

We mentioned it at the top of the post, so let’s close out with a movement that’s been gaining momentum over the last few years, Dry January. If that’s your thing, know that your bloggers support you 100%. And so do the fellas over at the 902 BrewCast, who did a deep dive into all things non-alcoholic this week. Their latest tasting episode features non-alcoholic beer from Propeller and Upstreet, as well as Benjamin Bridge Piquette Zero, and Bulwark’s Original NA cider. Give it a listen for inspiration on what you could keep in your fridge for when you’re feeling like drinking a beer, but don’t exactly want a *beer*.

 

We’re heading for a weekend of weather and COVID restrictions across the Atlantic region, so we strongly encourage you to read quickly and make your moves if you haven’t already stocked up on beer for the weekend. After you’ve checked your fave brewery’s social media to make sure they’re open, of course. Hopefully they are, because plenty of them have new beers on the go that you’re sure to want to try. So read on!

Kicking off this week is an inter-provincial collaboration between two breweries with deep, interconnected roots. Alicia MacDonald of Port Rexton Brewing grew up in Truro, and in fact had originally planned to open a brewery in the town, before co-founding PRBC in 2016. While returning to the area this Labour Day, MacDonald spent the day at Truro Brewing Company with Jana Dellapina, concocting something for the coming months. The result of that wondrous day is available now! Quiet Company is an English-style Barleywine, where the hops take the back seat to bold caramel and malt notes. After fermentation, it spent several weeks in a Bourbon barrel from Raging Crow Distillery in nearby North River, where it took on plenty of great vanilla and spirit notes. Originally conceived as an accompaniment to the Matt Anderson song of the same name, Quiet Company is available now in bottles at TBC’s Inglis Place location.

Tanner & Co Brewing in Chester has a brand new hybrid release available exclusively in their Duke Street taproom/retail spot this week. Maybe even a hybrid of a hybrid, as one half of Ambrosia began life as their Kuhlmann featuring Rye and Vienna malts complementing the base Pilsner malt, which was fermented with the natural wild yeasts of the Lucie Kuhlmann grape pomace that was added to the wort. While some was drawn off for the original release, this portion was allowed to age for an additional year on the skins, grabbing more complexity and drying the beer out further. Blended to it was Original Mead, and the resulting assemblage allowed to develop for longer still. As there were only a few cases of Ambrosia produced, you’ll have to go straight to the source to grab them, but we can attest that the visit is worth your time! Also on the shelves and draught is the returning Dunkelweizen, their take on the classic dark wheat beer, featuring banana and chocolate notes.

Quidi Vidi Brewing is celebrating the latest release in their on-going series of homebrewer contest winners from the Newfermenters competition. Wisdom and Wit is the winning beer from Howard Haby, and is true to the original Belgian Witbier style as it features notes of Coriander and citrus, with a hint of chamomile. This 4.1% ABV can is available at their Hops Shop as well online for same-day delivery. 

Also available online now are memberships for Flight Club. Limited to fewer than 200 people, this membership will allow folks early (and sometimes exclusive) access to new and returning beers, their own 20oz mug (to be stored at the taproom), as well as five private events throughout the year. Check that link for more details!

Not many details on this one, but Grimross Brewing has released the latest in their Scratch series this week, Scratch 26: IPA. At 6.5% ABV, this looks to be a West Coast style IPA, with grapefruit, pine, and floral notes coming through. Also out now is a collaboration with the GTFO Adventure Club, Local Legend. $1 from every pint of this juicy pale ale poured will go to their “Give The F Back” Fund. While the taproom may be closing due to return to Level 3 restrictions, both of these are available for growler fills to take away. Stay safe, NB pals!

Propeller Brewing has three pilot-batch beers out now/coming soon, so let’s get you up to speed with them. Available in growlers today at all three of their retail locations, as well as on tap at the newly-reopened Gottingen Street taproom, is Vic Secret Dry-Hopped Sour. This 4.8% tart and refreshing sour ale features loads of fuzzy peach, tangerine, and grapefruit notes thanks to plenty of Vic Secret hops added post-fermentation, on top of a clean acidic base.

Coming soon to the taps are a couple more from their Quinpool Road 300 litre pilot system, in two totally different styles. Bru-1 IPA showcases the hop of the same name, with a fruit salad of flavours like pineapple, melon, and strawberries, and thanks to the Sacch Brux yeast, it finishes fruity, dry, with a hint of acidity. At 6.0% and 70 IBU, rest assured there’s a lot packed into this one! And at the other end of the spectrum is Pineapple & Banana Hefeweizen, a 4.5% switch on the traditional German wheat style, as it was fermented on pineapple puree to bring out that fruit and complement the banana notes from the yeast. Hopyard Halifax has picked up a keg of this to pour soon, and Dartmouth’s Battery Park has grabbed all three to be tapped sometime soon.

Tusket Falls has a new one out this week in their Experimental Beer series, for fans in both Yarmouth County and HRM. The mysteriously nameless Session IPA comes in at 4.6% and features lots of tropical fruit notes from the auditions of Amarillo, Citra, Simcoe and Columbus hops. You can also expect notes of melon, pear, lime zest and stone fruit to accompany a soft body and moderate finishing bitterness. This one is on tap-only at Tusket’s two taprooms. 

Fredericton’s Trailway Brewing is ringing in the new year by revisiting one of their core brands with a bit of a refresh. You might have noticed over the past few months that many of Trailway’s products have received the proverbial “lick of paint” in terms of their branding. Today we can tell you that one of their original core brands, Rype has had that treatment, but also a modification to what’s in the can. The name “Rype” was a play on rye malt, which was originally one of the ingredients. Well no more! Both the rye malt and the crystal malt previously present in the recipe are no longer there, and you can think of “Rype” as a nod to the ripe fruit notes provided by the showcased Mosaic hops. A little drier than it was, thanks to the lack of crystal and the addition of bready Munich malt and some wheat as well, and more refreshing, look for the same tropical fruit notes and dankness, but with a more pure hop expression. Look for it to start appearing wherever you get your Trailway fix, it’s already on the shelves at the brewery.

We’ll leave you today with a ton of news coming to you from Brunswick Street in Halifax, as 2 Crows Brewing celebrates their 5th Anniversary this month. Not ones to do anything in half measures, they are releasing 9 new beers in celebration of their Wood Anniversary (fitting, as several of these will have spent time in their barrels and foedres). The first to be released are a pair of grape-heavy beauts, Bunch and Tobeatic Wild. Bunch is a Berliner Weisse, that is a low abv (3.2%) wheat beer, low in hops, and co-fermented with Lactobacillus to give an acidic kick. Starting life back in February 2020 (ah, the Before Times), the beer lived in its Port barrel primary fermentation vessel until the end of the year, when it was transferred to stainless to rest, before the addition of pureed Concord grapes in the summer. After a couple of months on the fruit, the beer was bottled and allowed to carbonate naturally in the bottle. The resultant beer shows a lovely purple hue, is zippy and spritzy due to the acidic component, with the grape notes shining through. Available in 375ml bottles in store and online now.

Tobeatic Wild is also available now, but in the 355ml can format. Its history is a little more recent, starting from the same base beer as Molten Mirrors, a recently-released collaboration with London’s (ON) Beerlab!. MM was billed as a “Saison/Lager hybrid”, with base grains of Pilsner, rice, and spelt, hopped with Saphir and Huell Melon, and fermented with their house Saison culture. After completion, the temperature was lowered, and an actively-fermenting lager yeast was added (krausening technique) and the beer allowed to further condition and develop at cold temperature. After removing the bulk of the volume to package Molten Mirrors, the several hectolitres left were hit with 800kg of freshly-pressed L’Acadie grape skins (aka pomace) from the Valley’s Lightfoot & Wolfville winery. With plenty of sugar and tannic acid still left in those skins, it also picked up a touch of wild yeast which will no doubt show through the delicate 5.4% beer. Carbing was also done in-can, so expect a little bit of (safe to enjoy) yeast residue at the end. Spritzy Saison/Grisette citrus vibes galore with floral and honey aromatics as well. Like Bunch, TW is available for ordering and pick up today. For more on their love affair with grapes, and L&W, check out this post.

2 Crows have also shown their hand for the rest of the Anniversary releases, which can be consulted on their IG page. As a few of them are extremely limited, they opened up early pre-order access to their newsletter subscribers. So if you are keen on getting early/first access to other releases, we figure it’s the second-best beer list you should subscribe to. For those who want to grab one of each of the Anniversary releases (minus the pastry stouts) in a bundle, you can order yourself a bundle now. Note that the bundle is not available for pickup, delivery, or shipping until January 28th, when the final beer will be released. And if you become a subscriber, you can unlock the Newsletter-only version of that bundle, which features a special branded Arome glass in the box.

“Pastry Stouts?”, you say? Yup! Next week will see the release of two extremely limited Pastry Stouts based on Big Turk and Nanaimo bars, both topping the scale at “11.9%” ABV. While half of the bottles were offered and snapped up by newsletter subscribers, the other half (16 bottles of each) will be available at noon, January 20th, split evenly between online and in store options. Think grape, cherry, and chocolate with Big Turk, and vanilla, coconut, and chocolate for the Nanaimo offering. Also releasing on the 20th is Mountain Shadow, a 10.3% Baltic Porter, which was conditioned with Marquette grape pomace, and features cacao nibs for extra dark chocolate character. 355ml cans of this will be available both online and in store.

Let’s bring this in for a landing with their plans for the final weekend of the month. On Saturday, Jan 29th, they will have a food pop-up in the brewery, as RNB Kitchen serves up some warming and satisfying soul food, with both dine-in (assuming regs allow it) and take-out options available 2 – 7 PM that day. And the oft celebrated (and almost as oft maligned the next morning) Sour Sunday will be Jan 30, with a full board of recent and returning favourite sours on draught, plus shots of Pepto and Tums in case anyone needs them.