O’Creek Brewing

All posts tagged O’Creek Brewing

This has been a tough week for our region, with localized spikes in the number of COVID cases bursting the Atlantic Bubble, and now the forced closing of in-person dining and drinking in Halifax and Hants County Zones. All is not lost, however, as most of your favourite breweries, cider houses, and Good Beer Restos are transitioning (back) to delivery and curbside take-away options. Or if your fridge is already full, consider picking up another set of gift certificates to help your local spot. Black Friday/Cyber Monday be damned, we’ll repeat here what we’ve seen elsewhere, “Buy Local, or Bye Local”. We’ll get our butts in gear with a full updated COVID list soon, but in the meantime, here’s the latest news on drinks to guide you to and through the weekend. As always, stay safe, stay kind, and drink well.

One of those affected breweries is Dartmouth’s North Brewing, who has closed their taproom at 899 Portland Street, though their retail shop is open (may we suggest Delivery and Curbside Click and Collect?), with the Side Hustle Snack Bar pivoting to Take Out only (Fri & Sat, 4 – 8 PM, menu here, must order by phone 902-444-7765). Hitting the shelves today is the latest in their series of collaborations with Benjamin Bridge, using a new variety of grape in the continuing hybrid releases. 2020 Saison de Lucie started life as a Saison base beer, to which 500 kg of freshly crushed, whole Lucie Kuhlmann grapes (juice, pomace, and skins) were added for a secondary fermentation. After sufficient tannic structure from the pomace and skins developed, the 7.4% ABV beer/wine hybrid was transferred a second time into bottles to complete conditioning, and carbonate naturally. The resulting bevvy is a wonderful melding of a crisp and effervescent Saison with a bold fruitiness from the Hazuki Vineyards grapes. Bottles of 2020 SdL are available for delivery (nation-wide, btw), and pickup at their Portland Street and Battery Park locations.

Also on shelves today is the Barrel-aged version of their 2019 Saison de Petite Pearl, which was allowed to build some oak character while sitting in a barrel for 10 months, before undergoing final maturation and natural carbonation in the bottle. Just one barrel was prepared, meaning this is a small release of just 25 cases, so seek it out today if you’re interested.

Adding to these two brand new releases are a dive in the cellar for the un-oaked 2019 Saison de Petite Pearl, as well as the Barrel-aged 2018 Saison de Chardonnay, both 7.4% ABV, and available online.

For those of you isolated in St. John’s (hey, there’s way worse places to be stuck!), you may want to mosey on over to Bannerman Brewing, where they have a pretty new beer on tap. Strange Overtones is a 7.5% ABV Sour IPA that was brewed with lots of flaked oats to increase haziness and give the beer a smooth, creamy mouthfeel, as well as a little lactose powder for some sweetness to balance the tartness. We’re unsure exactly what hop varieties were used in this one, but they’re describing the beer as “jammy, with flavours of berry, pine and candied citrus”. Oh, did we mention that it was also conditioned on plenty of blackberries? Yeah, that may explain at least a portion of the jammy descriptor! This one is available on tap only, so pop by for a pint and/or a growler.

Delta Force Brewing, Nova Scotia’s most clandestine brewery, has popped up again with another set of releases this week, and we’ve got the scoop for you! First up is Wessex, a 7.8% ABV English Barley Wine, featuring plenty of caramel and bread crust with a balancing bitterness to keep it from being too sweet. Full mouthfeel and maybe a touch of alcohol heat will reward those bold enough to take it on. Word on the street is that this one is in very short supply, so this may only be a tease for some readers (sorry not sorry, you can get on the shortlist for future releases by signing up to their mailing list via email, deltaforcebrewing@gmail.com). We understand there should be some Operation Barrow left at this point, however, so let’s expound on this one! This 7.0% English IPA started out traditional enough, using English malts and hops, but was instead fermented with Brettanomyces for a more funk-forward take on the style. While there is little doubt yeasts would have had some extra funky bugs in there due to a lack of modern sanitation practices, this is definitely a doubling down on this fact to gain complexity and character in the final product. Sounds like a winner to us!

Delta Force also has a trio of bottles from their previous releases with less-than-waterproof labels, which means they may not exactly be pretty, but the beers inside are still damn tasty. And with a bit of a discount, that’s pretty sweet!

  • Anderlecht is their Trappist Single-inspired ale, with a touch of Brett funkiness, a 6.0% ABV ode to Guy of Anderlecht, the patron saint of sheds. Delta Force is a Farmshed brewery, after all!
  • Mean Time is a 5.6% ABV English Bitter with a touch of Brett, featuring their own Greenwich-grown hops! Bit of funk, a bit of floral from the hops, all good.
  • Operation Assay is their Kveik Pale Ale, a 6.3% ABV quaffable elixir with just a smattering of hops.

All of the Delta Force Brewing beers can be ordered via email (deltaforcebrewing@gmail.com), $40 minimum for free contactless delivery within HRM (or so), and they’ll fill you in on anything else necessary.

Chester’s finest and pride of Lunenburg County, Tanner Brewing, have an Old Black Forest restaurant pop-up this weekend, as part of the Chester Village Christmas. Their latest release is right on theme, as Black Forest Milk Stout is available today!  From the brewery, “Inspired by the delicious cake itself, this stout was finished with milk sugar towards the end of the boil and then fermented with cherry puree, vanilla & chocolate.”  This 6.9% ABV and 25 IBU stout can also be ordered with a slice of Black Forest cake, available at the brewery or even online as part of their delivery. Online slice of cake orders? Welcome to 2020! We encourage you to follow local guidelines when placing in person and online orders, as they will deliver as far down as Bridgewater. Typical delivery days are Fridays if you can’t make it to the brewery. For those in Halifax, keep an eye on the online store and when local guidelines allow you to get this tasty new release.

After all the fantastic news this week (if your sarcasm meter isn’t going off, you’d better check its batteries), you may find yourself craving something a little on the stronger side. Those of you in Moncton are covered by Tire Shack’s latest bottle release, Into the Void, a Russian Imperial Stout weighing in at a whopping 11.9% ABV. No doubt brewed with a complex grist of multiple specialty grains, it’s showing off “prominent flavours of dried fruits (dates and figs) and some molasses, followed by espresso and a tinge of bitter chocolate.” Accompanied by a smooth, heavy body, the alcohol is warming, yet not one bit harsh. The perfect beer for sipping by a fire, or chugging in an attempt to escape reality (that being said, nobody really recommends that approach!). Lots of bottles at the brewery for the weekend, drop by to stock up, as this one should be a great beer for cellaring.

If you’re looking to scratch the spiced holiday beer itch, check out Good Robot this weekend for their release of El Zorro Spiced Dark Lager. Coming in at 4.4% ABV, expect the familiar spice notes of a winter warmer. This one is also gluten reduced, with less than 20 PPM of gluten. While their beer store is open for pickup, the Robots are encouraging you to stay home by doubling down on their BeerMiles delivery rewards this weekend, and Tripling them today only! Check out their webstore for more info. 

Just one event on the books for this week, but it’s a good one:

Borden-Carleton’s Lone Oak Brewing is celebrating the opening of their onsite kitchen today, The Abby. Run by the very capable folks behind the Wheelhouse in Georgetown and the bright pink Terry’s Berries food truck outside the brewery this summer. Think handhelds and sides, with plenty of pairing opportunities with the Lone Oak beers on tap. This kitchen opens today at 4 PM, and is open Tuesday through Sunday, 11:30 until 7 or later, all winter. And what better way to celebrate than with the return of Trivia with Dan and Spencer, starting at 7 PM. And from 9 PM until close, Fraser McCallum will take the stage for some live music. Tomorrow evening will see Brad Milligan & Griffen Arsenault playing 7 – 10 PM, and Sunday Brian Dunn ft John MacAllar,  1 – 4 PM. What a full weekend, jam packed with great beer, food, and fun!

This is where we usually say, “A few short things before we leave you to your weekend,” but really this week there’s a lot. So, enjoy a lot of short things (plus a bonus feature) before we leave you to your weekend!!

In Dieppe, NB, CAVOK Brewing has a brand new beer on tap, Pear”adise”. A 5.9% ABV Saison brewed with local, fresh pears (from Crooked River Farm, out of Memramcook), as well as an addition of Grains of Paradise, you can grab it in pints, crowlers, and growlers, for on-site drinking (in your bubble, naturally), takeaway, or delivery.

Also in Dieppe, we get a new IPA release from O’Creek Brewing, SOLOH IPA. Featuring Talus hops, a cultivated daughter of Sabro, this should come with big aromas of citrus, floral and fruit aromas, with big orange and tangerine flavours. Available on tap right now at CAVOK. 

Back in the big city, check out Garrison Brewing for their annual release of Spruce Beer. This year’s version features spruce and fir tips from their friends at Meander River Farm and the usual addition of Blackstrap molasses. In response to the current conditions, Garrison is also expanding its home delivery options. And have started a “Save the Tax” offering for all of their merch, on now until the end of the year. Check out their webstore for more info. 

Hopping over to St. John’s, Quidi Vidi Brewing Co. is releasing the second of their Sofa Sour Series with Peach Raspberry Sour. This 5.6% ABV fruited sour is available now at the QV Hop Shop in cans. Check out QV’s web store for local delivery, available today and Saturday. 

Upstreet has brought back their popular DIPA, Third Place, an 8.5% ABV hop bomb featuring additions of Galaxy, Azacca, Mosaic, and Citra. Lots of tropical fruit and citrus in this one, as well as notes of “caramelized brown sugar”, likely from the use of some Victory malt in the grist. Available on tap and in cans at Upstreet and Craft Beer Corner, it’ll also be seen at Dartmouth’s Upstreet BBQ Brewhouse soon, as well as in select ANBL stores in New Brunswick in the New Year.

And finally, In the grand tradition of holiday cheer venturing northwards from our neighbours to the south, no doubt combined with so many taprooms shutting down due to lockdown and affecting on-site sales, many of the providers in our region, but especially in Halifax, are adding a bit of incentive to their online ordering this weekend (and, in some cases, beyond). If you’re looking to take advantage, PLEASE do read the details carefully on the brewery’s/cidery’s website for full details (limits, timeframe, etc.) before placing your order:

  • 2 Crows has lowered their minimum for free shipping to $30 and is including a 4-pack of Hop Water with every order until December 9th.
  • Annapolis Cider is ceasing shipping for the Winter months (cider can freeze in transit, which is a Bad Thing™) so they’ve set a flat shipping charge of $15 on orders over $100 anywhere in Canada (with some exceptions) until November 29th.
  • Lake City Cider is offering 20% off on all orders over $70 this weekend; as always, order by 1 PM for sameday delivery.
  • Murphy Hospitality Group are offering a $10 cash card when you buy a $50 in MHG gift cards via the MHG Gift Cards site from November 27th to December 31st. A reminder that MHG cards can be used at any MHG property, which includes PEI Brewing Company, PEIBC Beer Station, and the Gahan Beer Store. The cash card will be for use in January and February, 2021. Today (Black Friday) only, you get 2 x $10 cards for your purchase. On Cyber Monday you can get free shipping by using the code “CYBER MONDAY.”
  • Propeller Brewing has a sale on their Lime Lite lime-infused light lager all weekend long, with a flat of 24 cans going for $60.
  • Tatamagouche Brewing is having a buy 5 Get (Square) One Free promotion on where if you order 5 bottles of tasty Tata brews they’ll throw in a bottle of their Canadian Beer Awards Silver Medal winning Square One Saison.
  • As mentioned above, Good Robot is doubling your BeerMiles reward miles if you order online this weekend, tripling them today only.
  • Also mentioned above, Garrison Brewing has a “save the tax” deal on Garrison merchandise running until the end of the year.

Here we are in November and, with absolutely NOTHING going on in the world, least of all potentially strange and frightening things of a political nature, we’re free to wax poetic about the local beer scene as is our wont on Friday afternoons. Or maybe things are just heartening yet terrifying all at once, and what we really need to do is distract ourselves with good news about beer and then procure some of that beer and drink it. Whee!

You may have noticed that since changing ownership not too long ago, Rothesay’s Long Bay Brewing has been flexing their experimentation muscles a bit more, with new, small batch one-offs being released every Friday for the past month and a half. While most of these releases have been available only on tap at the brewery, this week’s newest beer was brewed on their 15 bbl system, so will definitely be seeing wider distribution across the province. The beer in question is Return to the Moon, a 7.5% ABV, 50 IBUs New England DIPA. Brewed with a blend of English and Canadian base malts, as well as some wheat and oats, it was hopped and dry-hopped with three different varieties of American hops. With big aromas of stone fruit, tangerine and coconut, you’ll notice flavours “reminiscent of pina colada, with a pre-dominate amount of coconut and pineapple, followed by a complex mixture of cream and tangerine”. Aside from at the brewery, you’ll be able to find this one at select bars and restaurants in Fredericton, Moncton and Saint John. This joins The Half of It, a 4.5% ABV Session-strength New England IPA released late October, also on tap at the brewery and at licensees around the province.

In other Long Bay news, keep your eyes and ears open for coming info on their first canned beer, which should be hitting most ANBLs sometime in December… more details to come! They also plan to be officially opening their taproom this winter (while currently licensed, their taproom right now is set up in a standing room only capacity for extremely small groups, and best to contact ahead of time to ensure there’s room for your Bubble) with enough room for 25 seats, and a second expansion hopefully by the spring that will be much larger, and include an outdoor deck. 

Moncton’s Tire Shack is celebrating their First Anniversary this coming Monday (November 9th), so be sure to drop by the taproom that day to help celebrate with $5 pints all day! “We really appreciate the amazing support we have had from everyone this past year so come down and celebrate with us.” So, what to drink Monday? Or even better, today? They have a pair of new beers on draught (and also freshly canned this morning!), so let’s get you those details…

  • Black Forest Cake Sour is a take on the excellent german dessert that features a chocolate sponge base filled with cherries and kirsch, a cherry liqueur. Playing off of the flavour components, Tire Shack has gone all in with a glass full of dark malts for chocolate flavour in spades, along with cherry taste and a touch of tartness to bring it all together. As they say, it’s the perfect beer to get you ready for winter!” At 6.0% ABV, the beer is available in samples and pints at the taproom, and in growlers (and now cans) to go.
  • Hip Hop Vol 4: Nelson Sauvin is their latest foray into their hop-centric releases, this time heading to New Zealand for one of the most unique (and rare) hops on the market, Nelson Sauvin. Citrus up front with plenty of gooseberry, Sauvignon Blanc grape character, and maybe even a touch of black pepper, this hop is the queen of the kiwi hop scene, and for good reason! The 8.0% ABV Hazy Double IPA packs a punch, and will have you dancing all night long! Samples, pints, growlers, and cans are all available at the brewery right now!

Congratulations to Jerica, Alan, Henry, and the whole Tire Shack crew on Year 1, we hope Monday is a big success! And if weekend drinking is more your thing, keep your eyes peeled here for a couple of new releases and birthday celebrations continuing next weekend, in next Friday’s post!

In Lunenburg, NS, Shipwright Brewing released a continent-spanning Wheat beer this week, taking its inspiration, and ingredients from both European and North American sources. And named after an international sailing season! We’ll explain: Great Grain Race starts with a blend of Pale Ale, Wheat, and Malted Oats for a typical wheat grist. In the boil, Saphir and Hallertau Blanc hops were added in, as well as Sweet Orange Peel and Coriander, iconic additions for a Belgian Witbier. After fermentation with their Kolsch yeast, it was dry-hopped lightly with Topaz before further conditioning. Soft mouthfeel with extra effervescence give a refreshingly clean finish, complementing the wheat and citrus character of this 4.3% ABV beer. So, what’s in a name? Well, the Great Grain Race is the name of a historical sailing route race carrying grain (usually wheat) that generally left from South Australia’s grain ports at Spencer Gulf, all the way to Cornwall, UK. A particularly good passage via Cape Horn was considered anything under 100 days, with the fastest ever being 83 days. We know that the beer will definitely not last that long, so best to get down to Shipwright’s Taproom, or the Grand Banker below, soon to enjoy a glass or crowler!

Chester, Nova Scotia’s own Tanner & Co. Brewing has a brand new beer this week, Belgian IPA. Named after the hybrid IPA sub-style, it was brewed with a grist of Pilsner, Rye, and Munich malts, along with a touch of Honey malt for a bit of extra sweet malt character. Hopped with Amarillo, Citra, Simcoe, Centennial, and a little Mandarina Bavaria, it was fermented with a Belgian Ale yeast strain. Giving off characteristics of both spice and citrus, thanks to the use of both Belgian and American ingredients, it comes in at 6.7% ABV and 60 IBUs. Available right now in 500 mL bottles at the brewery. 

Over in Dieppe, O’Creek Brewing continues their run of hazy, hoppy IPAs with the latest in their two-hop-variety DUOH series. DUOH Sabro/Galaxy is a 6% ABV, 50 IBUs American IPA hopped with heavy amounts of the not-so-easy-to-find Sabro and Galaxy varieties, giving the beer a whole lotta tropical fruit, citrus, and coconut notes. Look for it to be pouring soon at CAVOK Brewing (and remember, guest taps at CAVOK can be taken away in crowlers!), with other accounts following in the near future. And as a sneak preview for next week, O’Creek will be releasing SOLOH – Talus, another 6% ABV IPA, but hopped entirely with one variety… in this case, Talus. Talus is a new hop that is a cultivated daughter of Sabro, and gives the beer “big aromas of pink grapefruit, citrus rinds, dried roses, pine resin, tropical fruits, and sage”. Definitely some descriptors in there that we’re not used to seeing in most hops! Look for that one at the usual O’Creek accounts.

Speaking of CAVOK Brewing, they’ve got another bottle release that just hit their shelves yesterday, Béta Germinorum. We don’t have too many details, but can tell you that the beer is a 4.5% ABV oak foeder-aged blend of two different beers, a Raspberry Sour and an Oatmeal Stout. That may be enough info to give you an idea of what to expect in terms of a tasting, but best drop by the brewery to pick up a bottle to be sure! As always with these releases, there is a limited amount of 750 mL bottles available, so don’t wait too long to drop in.

Coming out of Inverness in Cape Breton this week is a new beer from Route 19 Brewing, a first foray (we think) into the Saison style. Eventide references the old english word for evening, which might be the best time of day to enjoy this one. Gaining plenty of yeast character from Escarpment Labs’ Old World Saison blend fermented at a relatively high temperature, you can expect cooked apple and pear notes on the nose with some peppery phenolic spice as well. The grist featured Munich malt from Shoreline Malting, which provided a darker color than might be expected for the style, alongside 2-row, wheat and biscuit malts, the latter two contributing some breadiness and, well, “biscuit” character. On the hop side, the beer leverages a relatively unheralded hop called Celeia that we’ve not run into before, but which has a noble lineage and sports herbal and green tea flavors. Bittered to 30ish IBU, this 6.2% ABV saison will be available from the brewery this weekend and will also be making its way to NSLC locations around Cape Breton as part of their Hyper-Local program.

Those driving to/from Prince Edward Island, or lucky Islanders who just want to try the latest release from Borden’s Lone Oak Brewing, are well-advised to hop in the car and make a drive this weekend! There’s a new special small batch on tap, a style not often seen in the region. Taking the base beer of their Fixed Link Maritime Pilsner, they pulled it from the conditioning tanks a little early, and allowed it to carbonate naturally in the kegs before tapping. Dubbed a Kellerpils, it weighs in at the same 4.7% ABV as Fixed Link, but features a softer mouthfeel and just a little different aromatics. Just a few kegs of this are available, so don’t delay! And for all of their other offerings, Lone Oak has introduced an On-Demand Beer Delivery Service in the Charlottetown area. Place an order online 10:30 AM – 9:30 PM (12 – 8 PM Sundays), and your beer will be in your hands in 45 minutes or less! There is a 4 can minimum, and $6.99 delivery fee for this service.

It’s that time of year for Propeller fans; or, more specifically, fans of their annual release of Russian Imperial Stout. This year, things are just a touch different for the release of this dark, strong (8% ABV), rich, cellarable beer, in that it will be available in bottles only. No growlers this time around, but they will still be serving bottle pours at both taproom locations. You can find bottles at NSLC stores, and of course at both Prop Shops. And in other Propeller good news, they’re bringing back Cask Nights at the Gottingen taproom. Casks will be tapped bi-weekly, with proceeds from each going to a different organization every month. Today’s release (5 pm sharpish) is Nocturne Black IPA w/ Cacao Nibs, and two weeks from now will feature a sneak peek of an upcoming release. Proceeds for this month’s events will go towards the Ecology Action Centre

Spryfield’s Serpent Brewing has been pumping out the beers nice and steady, and are putting the final push on their taproom and retail space. In preparation for that, they’ve released the details of their Growler and Founder’s Clubs. Big discounts on growlers, merch, pints, special invite-only events, the chance to choose the name and style of one of their brews? All of this, and much more, can be yours by signing up! Full details are available on their website. Best to check it out quickly, as the membership is limited in numbers!

We’re pretty lucky to be living in a region where we can even have beer-related events in a non-scary fashion. Let’s make the most of it in a safe and responsible way!

Charlottetown’s HopYard Beer Bar is hosting their latest takeover this weekend, starting… right….. Now! Hosting Dartmouth’s North Brewing Co to pour some of their core beers as well as recent releases, and have brought along Halifax’s Chain Yard Urban Cidery to ensure there’s something for everyone! From North, you’ll see: Little Beast Lagered Ale, Lawrencetown Surf Session Ale, Gold Sounds Blonde, Dartmouth Dark Lager, Headline Milk Stout, Malternate Reality IPA, Raz Plush Dry-hopped Sour with Raspberry, Strollin’ Down Baldwin Street New Zealand Grisette, and Grape and Strawberry Rhubarb Seltzers. And keeping your tummy happy too is the first pop-up from Dough Boy Industries Pizza, who will be slinging pies Friday 4 – close, and again tomorrow from noon. Margarita, Pepperoni, Canadian, Donair and vegan pizza, with fresh and local ingredients, sounds great to us! And making this all even more awesomer, North is holding a contest on FB and IG, so check it out and have a blast this weekend! Maybe we’ll see you tonight. 🙂

Congratulations are in order for St Anthony’s RagnaRöck Northern Brewing, who are celebrating their First Anniversary this weekend! Saturday evening will see Sam and Tyler jamming some live music, and the debut of a very special beer debuting especially for the event. More details are available on their Facebook page, and we highly recommend giving them a shout to reserve your table at 709-454-3136. Congratulations!!

Halifax’s Garrison Brewing is taking advantage of our Atlantic Bubble status and keeping up with some (socially-distanced) Fall events. First up is a Remembrance Day Levee going on at both their Oxford and Seaport taproom locations, from 12 – 6 PM on November 11th (of course), with a portion of sales going to The Poppy Fund. After 6 PM regular business hours and operations will resume. And next week, from Thursday, November 12th, to Sunday, November 15th, The Oxford taproom will be celebrating their first birthday. Head on down and be part of four days of celebrations that will include prizes, and “Anniversary Beer Bucket”, and more!

Well lookie here, it’s October! One more month closer to this debacle of a year being over! That’s how it works, right? We get through a couple more months of this goat rodeo and then everything magically goes back to something like the normal we knew one or ten or twenty-five years ago? No? Well then, that must be why we have beer, folks. In the interest of helping you maintain your sanity (ours is a lost cause), here’s what you need to know to keep your beer levels up, thanks to all the latest news we could find this week about breweries, beers, and beery events in Atlantic Canada.

Halifax is getting a little more beery next week, when Serpent Brewing has their first beers available! While their taproom and retail shop is slated to open later this month, curbside pick-up and local delivery to the Spryfield/Armdale/Cowie Hill/further afield area will be available beginning Monday, October 5th. We’ll have a full Profile with them early next week for you to read while you sip on the beers, but in the meantime, be sure you hit their website to order their bottles. Serpent is a Belgian-inspired brewery, and their first three offerings certainly reflect that. White Mountain is a 5.5% Belgain Witbier, with strong clove spiciness, plus notes of orange and pepper thanks to the addition of bitter orange peel and coriander in the boil. Patey’s Bier is a Belgian Singel (aka, Patersbier), the lower alcohol brother of the monastic Tripel, light-coloured and 4.6% ABV with notes of floral and fruity malt and yeast. And finally, a hybrid of sorts, Eden Belgain IPA; 6.0% ABV, with a neutral Ardennes strain of yeast and a simple malt bill, allow the Amarillo hops used throughout to shinr through, with citrus and fruit in spades. All three are in 500 mL bottles, with online ordering still available!

We teased last week that we’d have more details on Siren, the “Tripel-style Braggot” collaboration between Truro Brewing and Mountain Meadworks, and since that’s right there in virtual ink on the internet… well, looks like we have to actually follow through on that promise! Brewed at TB, they mashed in with Pale malt from Shoreline Malting, and added local honey (from Tatamagouche) late in the boil, giving a 50:50 ratio between malt and honey. A splash of Hallertau Blanc hops were added in the boil, and the wort was fermented with a Belgian yeast strain. Finishing very dry and at 7.8% ABV, it’s pouring a light golden colour with aromas of “bright apple, honey, bubblegum, and banana”, with the malt coming through a bit more in the flavour, along with a bit of hop character and white wine notes. Siren officially launches at Truro Brewing today at 6 PM, with more details available on the party at the FB page

This week in “postcards from the edge” we got an update from one of our region’s most northerly breweries, RagnaRöck Northern Brewing Co. way up in St. Anthony, Newfoundland, who will be rounding the corner into their second year of operation come November. Like some other breweries that opened late in 2019, we’re sure they didn’t have any idea what was in store for 2020, but so far, thanks to the support of both their local community and the folks that found a way to make it up to the island’s Northern Peninsula, whether from the rest of the Province or from within the Atlantic Bubble. Originally opening with four ‘basic’ beers, Da Bold and Beautiful Blonde Ale, Boggy Bottom Brown Ale, Red Rover Red Ale, and Bit Snatchy Belgian Wit, they expanded the lineup to include an IPA called Hela’s Fury and a kettle sour known as Jormunder’s Sour thanks to the popularity of those two releases. Since re-opening post-COVID shutdown, they’ve also had a couple more beers on regular rotation, namely another sour, this one with cherries, called Surt’s Flaming Sabre, and a Session IPA they’ve dubbed Freyja’s Feathered Cloak. If you’re getting the feeling from these beer names that they’ve really leaned into the Norse Mythology connection implied by their name and logo, you’d be right! If you can get your hands on some of these beers, they’d make an excellent pairing for an evening of reading up on the Æsir and the Vanir. Meanwhile, some of the biggest news from the brewery is the addition of a canning system to the facility. For now they’ve been canning their Blonde and Sour and selling them from the brewery, but as we move into Winter, the system should allow the brewery’s beer to get a little bit of local distribution and possibly even travel a little further to the rest of Newfoundland and maybe even beyond!

Good news for you hopheads living in Miramichi – Timber Ship Brewing has released what they’re calling their most hop-forward beer-to-date, a New England IPA they’re calling Farewell Buoy. Named after the familiar opening words (well, familiar to those of you from Miramichi, anyway!) of the late “Hoppy” Dunn, a local sports broadcaster (“From the headwaters of the Miramichi to the farewell buoy…”), the beer features hops, hops, and more hops. Specifically, plenty of late-in-the-boil additions of Mosaic, an early dry-hop of Citra, plus a double-dry-hop of more Mosaic, as well as some Galaxy. Coming in at 6.2% ABV and 40 IBUs, expect plenty of citrus and pineapple, all in a hazy package. And in more good news, this one won’t be available just on tap; they’ve started canning some of the beers, including Farewell Buoy. Look for this one and a couple of their flagships in cans soon, at Carroll’s Distillery and Bakery in Douglastown. 

Looks like Grand Falls Brewing has added a new beer to their taproom lineup, with an American Pale Ale named High Five. Brewed with a grist of 2-Row, Oats, and Wheat, the wort was hopped with Cashmere and Vic Secret (emphasis on the Vic), before being fermented with a Norwegian Kveik yeast strain. Dry-hopped with more of both varieties, the final 5.25% ABV brew is full of citrusy, tropical flavours, with low bitterness and a soft mouthfeel. This one will be on tap only, for both pints and growlers, and is available now, so be sure to drop in over the weekend!

Dieppe’s CAVOK Brewing has just released the latest in their “Star” series, bottled beers that they’ve named after stars with Latin names. Their first, released in late December, 2019, was Alpha Canis Majoris, for example. The newest is Upsilon Ceti, a 6% ABV, 52 IBUs “Oak Aged Rye Ale”. We don’t have too many details on the beer, unfortunately, but we can assume that there was a proportion of rye malt used in the grist, and the beer was aged in oak for 3 months before being packaged in 750 mL bottles. Very limited quantities are available; you can pick yours up at the brewery today. There’s also a bit available on tap, if you’d like to give it a taste before committing to a bottle purchase!

Congratulations to Grimross Brewing owner Stephen Dixon on completing the multi-day Tri for Housing First 290 km Triathalon last weekend. Supporting the Fredericton Housing First endeavour, supporting those experiencing homelessness by providing permanent shelter first and foremost, allowing people a solid platform from which to concentrate on other aspects of their health, wellbeing, and livelihood. Just shy of $15,000 has been raised thus far, and you can continue the great work by donating at the link above. Grimross is continuing the good works by donating 100% of their cans of Radler to the cause, if you’re looking for a way to satiate your thirst while also providing assistance to those in need. And look for cans of their Oktoberfest Marzen to be hitting the shelves of their retail store and ANBL stores across the province in the next few weeks.

After the very successful launch of The Cherry Brook Wheat earlier this week, brewed in collaboration with the Change is Brewing Collective (more details in last week’s post), North Brewing has hit us with a second new release this week. Strollin’ Down Baldwin St. is a 3.0% Grisette (think Saison’s little cousin), brewed with Shoreline Malting Pilsner malt, lightly hopped with New Zealand Wai-ti and Wakatu hops, and fermented with Escarpment’s Old World Saison blend. Light and spritzy, lemon, peppery, with some tropical fruit and notes of hay, this is a lovely refresher in a tiny package. Grab both SDBS and The Cherry Brook Wheat at either North location, or for home delivery or shipping at their website.

Port Rexton Brewing is teaming up with the ever popular downtown St. John’s boutique Johnny Ruth to celebrate the store’s 15th anniversary. Win Hop Amber Ale comes in at 5% ABV and features the staple caramel malt flavours of the style (perfect for the Fall weather), with a herbal hop character that leads to a dry finish. Grab it in cans now at the brewery in Port Rexton or the St. John’s retail store. If you stop in to celebrate at Johnny Ruth, keep an eye out for the beer in a special gift pack. 

Halifax’s Propeller Brewing is bringing out their annual Nocturne Black IPA beer today, available in cans for home delivery and at the three Prop Shops in Dartmouth and Halifax. This 6.7% beer features significant dry-hopping from Amarillo and Falconer’s Flight, for tropical fruit, pine hop aromatics to complement the roast, chocolate, and coffee notes from the base beer. $1.50 from each can sold goes directly to the Nocturne: Art at Night festival, which is running October 12 – 17. While portions will be moved to the online sphere, there is an installation behind Propeller’s Gottingen Street location after 6 PM on the 17th. And there is also a mid-week Virtual party on the 15th, hosted by HEIST, featuring a DJ, live performances, Lip Sync Roulette, and prizes. It’s free, just requires advance registration.

Tis the Season for Oktoberfests! In addition to Tire Shack Brewing in Moncton and Garrison Brewing X Stubborn Goat Beer Garden events we’ve told you about previously, we have a few more to tell you about this week. However you celebrate, please do so responsibly! 

In Fredericton, TrailWay Brewing is holding their first Oktoberfest, which started yesterday and continues until Saturday, October 3rd. In addition to Milda’s Pizzas being on site (with homemade pretzels available on Saturday), TW is also debuting a new beer, Festbier. Similar to the Oktoberfest style of beer, but less richly toasted, TW’s take “has a caramel and honey-like sweetness, with some subtle breadiness” while remaining dry and crisp. No, it was not dry-hopped with 13 tons of the latest tropical hop variety, but it does have a touch of floral hop character. At 4.5% ABV, and served in pints from their new toy, a Euro-style side-pull tap, it’s intended to be consumed in quantity… hey, they ARE celebrating Oktoberfest, after all! No cans of this one, only available on tap, while it lasts. 

A reminder of the Stillwell Freehouse X 2 Crows Tiedhouse event is tomorrow, which will be the only place to grab a couple of special releases from the brewery, made especially for the slick cask facilities the Freehouse employs. While brewing into cask is outside of their normal wheelhouse, 2 Crows are never ones to back down from an opportunity for experimention. First up is Dulwich, an English Golden Ale, with a base of Shoreline Pilsner malt and a bit of flaked rice. Foggy Lodon Ale yeast did the heavy lifting, and the beer was dry-hopped with Centennial and East Kent Golding before conditioning in the cask. The result is a lower alcohol, bright fruity, floral, herbal and citrus ale, reminescent of those served across the pond. Also debuting is Aquifolium, a wild-ferment Saison, featuring captured yeast harvested from under a holly tree in Sackville, NS. After conditioning for several months, it was dry-hopped with Chinook before completing its life in the cask. Dry, light esters, earthy character, a lovely mix of features. Other casks include a Cask conditioned version of their Refresh Lager, and Paper Airplanes Brown Ale. The full draught lineup is available in last week’s post.

And the Stilly related events keep coming, so be sure to make plans to head up to the Stillwell Beergarden next Saturday, October 10th, for their annual Oktoberfest celebration. A little different than in previous years, tables must be reserved in advance, so grab your bubble buddies and set down your Euros to take part in the fun. In addition to the great food that will be available, the star of the show will be Delta Force Brewing’s first appearance on tap. After two quickly-sold-out bottle releases since Spring, this will be a great way for fans to enjoy a few pints of the brewery’s offerings. Bauernhofschuppen Märzenbier is 5.0% ABV, and as is tradition, was brewed at the end of winter (hence the name representing the month of March), and lagered ever since. This long process chilling out allows the bread and toast of the malts to shine though, but with the beer having plenty of time to develop a crisp finish to leave you wanting another! We’ll leave it as an exercise to the reader to find out what that name means (first person to hit us up on twitter, Chris will buy your first pint!). Attendees will see some goodies from Toronto’s Godspeed Brewery pouring that day, but you’ll have to show up to find out which! Keep an eye on Stilly’s social media that day if there are changes to the program/last minute seats opening up!

Those wanting to experience a taste of Ocktoberfest in the Saint John area should circle October 17 on their calendars. Uncorked Tours is transforming North Market Street into a German biergarten for the day, and featuring a Bavarian inspired food menu to go along with a selection of New Brunswick’s finest German inspired beers. Expect live music, patio heaters and good times all around. Keep an eye on the Facebook event page for more details. 

Quite a few quick hits this week as we leave you to your afternoon:

Keep an eye out for Cross Creek Pale Ale. Cans of this 5% ABV APA  are starting to hit ANBL shelves. Cross Creek Brewing’s first packaged offering is now available at agency stores in Woodstock in Fredericton, with wider distribution to follow throughout the month. Expect lots of citrus notes from the Citra and Mosaic hops used.

The annual return of Meander River’s Wet-Hopped Ale is here. This year’s version features Chinook, Centennial, Fuggle, Newport, Nugget and Galena hops, all grown at Meander River’s onsite farm. Available now in bottles and growlers at the brewery in Ashdale.

O’Creek Brewing continues to add to their evergrowing list of hoppy beers that they’ve brewed with their latest NEIPA, Skyrats. Hopped with Citra, Sabro and Simcoe, along with some Nelson Sauvin in the dry-hop, it’s 6% ABV and no doubt juicy and tropical af. You can find it on tap at CAVOK, Le BarBu, and Euston Park. They’ve also got more of their Route 117 IPA available in cans at local Moncton and Dieppe ANBLs, and some even made it to Fredericton York St. ANBL this time!

Bedford’s Off Track Brewing added a new beer to its lineup this week. Bullseye Red Ale comes in at 5.4% ABV and features notes of caramel, toffee and toast.  Swing by Rocky Lake Drive to try a pint or grab a growler to go.

Secret Cove Brewing has a new beer out, affectionately named after a local mountain, The Cabox. In terms of the beer, The Cabox is an 8.1% ABV West Coast DIPA that features multiple hop additions, including Columbus in the kettle, Citra, Simcoe and more Columbus in the whirlpool, as well as some Summit (natch) in the dry-hop. Available now. 

Know anyone who loves clean beer lines and meeting a lot of great people? They might be interested in this position:

Looking for a way into the beer industry, and have a need for clean? Great news, Nova Scotia’s BeerTech is hiring! They have a couple of openings to join their ranks, to keep brewery taprooms, restaurants, and bars, draught lines squeaky clean, so you and I can keep drinking fresh beer! It’s not only cleaning, however, as installs, maintenance, and updates are also important parts of the draught world. There will be a job posting soon, but in the meantime, reach out to Ken via email or social media (Fb / Ig / Tw) to learn more. See the region, one bar at a time! 🙂