All posts tagged Oktoberfest

Another week, another grind, more beer for all of our times. Read below for our weekly update, a share with your friends, we would appreciate. A hurricane is coming, Lee is on the move, buy some beers for the weekend, for you it will behoove. There’s lots of news, so let’s start from the top, beer and events, they never stop!

Up first this week is a beer that we almost told you about last week, but we were advised at the eleventh hour that it could have been a premature…declaration, as a label snafu prevented a timely release. That, however, was sorted and thus the gang at 2 Crows in Halifax has a brand new beer available in their series of consonantly-named juicy hazy IPAs. Perfect Revelation features the same grist that they’ve perfected over the various iterations, namely Golden Promise, flaked oats, wheat malt, and dextrin malt, and it’s also fermented with the same juice-forward yeast. As always, however, they’ve switched up the hops (and the label and the name, natch) and this batch saw massive amounts of Citra, Centennial, and Sultana. It’s safe to expect plenty of citrus, in the form of mandarin orange character, along with some pineapple and melon notes, and even some resinous pininess. You can grab this 6.1% beaut in cans from the brewery.

The team at North Brewing and their friends at Battery Park Beer Bar collaborated on a brew last year that was extremely well-received, at least by the hazy IPA loving portion of the public. Named after BP regular Dave Wilcox, whose own homebrew recipe was scaled up, brewed, and packaged, this one is packed with hops, namely Columbus, Amarillo, Simcoe, Citra, and Mosaic. Hazy and definitely as juicy as you’d expect given the name, it’s 6.2% ABV and features the lovely (and/or creepy) mascot of Battery Park on the label. While only available for a limited time, and we believe only at BP and North locations, to celebrate this re-release, the North kitchens in Cole Harbour and Timberlea are putting Soft Pretzel Bites with Hazy Dave’s IPA Cheese Sauce on the menu all weekend.

Nestled in the back of Banished Brewing’s space in Paradise, NL, Mauzy Cidery continues to put out limited edition fun things for local folks to sip on. This week’s offering is the cheekily-named Kissy Kissy Juice, their first foray into the world of grapes. Comprised of a blend of whole cluster De Chaunac grapes from Jenning’s Homestead and Nova Mac and Honeycrisp juices from Mt. Scio Orchard, the resulting wine-cider hybrid was bottle conditioned, as usual, with Baccalieu Trail Honey. Arriving at 5.5% ABV and packaged in 750ml bottles (only 13 cases produced!), you can only find this beautifully pink product at Banished.

Lunenburg’s own Shipwright Brewing has a new release that is something we would like to be drinking as we type this up right now. Litekeeper is a Belgian Grisette (like a lighter version of a Saison) that manages to bring lots of complex flavour and aroma in a lower ABV form. The malt bill for this was Pilsner, wheat, munich and oats and the hops in the boil were Loral and Hallertau Blanc, with a Belgian yeast from Escarpment Labs to bring it together. Finished with a dry-hopping of more Hallertau Blanc, all of it came together to become something very refreshing and fruity with a bit of pepper for interest and a dry finish. The finished product is 3.7% and 28 IBU and can be had today from the brewery for pints on site or to-go in crowlers or growlers. 

A welcome release out of Annapolis Brewing this weekend sees a style perfect for the changing of the seasons (which we’ve been advised is still very much going to happen, eventually). Munich Dunkel is what the beer is named and exactly what it is! A classic Bavarian-style dark lager that boasts flavours of bready malt with a bit of chocolate and caramel, all complemented by a bit of noble hop bitterness, this is an extremely balanced and drinkable style that is perfectly suited for outdoor German beer gardens or your own dwelling. It’s 5% ABV and 23 IBU and is available now in cans and on tap from the brewery in Annapolis Royal. 

Tusket Falls Brewing keeps things busy with their two locations and they’re also keeping it fresh with a brand new release that you can pick up today. Long Way Around is a triple berry sour ale that isn’t your standard kettle sour. They’ve put a lot into this beer (literally), as it’s something that’s been under development for awhile, but has been helped out with a new Lactobacillus blend from the good folks at Escarpment Labs. The bacteria was the souring agent but also provided some guava and lemon aroma and flavour. Smooth mouthfeel and a bit of balancing sweetness was introduced by a lactose addition, and it was all brought together with a hazy IPA yeast strain, as this sour also featured a dry hopping of Strata and Citra, which brought orange citrus and strawberry aromas. And we haven’t even got to the berries yet! Bringing this one home was infusions of real blueberry, raspberry, and blackberry, AND a bit of vanilla bean AND ALSO sea salt! Definitely a brew from the “But Wait, There’s MORE!” category. Arriving in your glass at 6.5% it’s definitely worth grabbing a can or pint at their Halifax or Tusket locations to see how all of those elements meld into a tasty beverage.

Don’t forget it’s Pumpkin SZN, as the kids say, or used to say? Don’t forget, we’re old. In addition to our guardian roundup last week, Schoolhouse Brewing has brought back a seasonal beer with Pumpkin Paddler, their annual pumpkin ale. First released back in 2017, this beer was first introduced to celebrate the annual Pumpkin Regatta in Windsor, Nova Scotia, an event where people hollow out giant pumpkins and race them in the water. When Lake Pisquid was no longer able to provide a home for the race, some enterprising folks up and moved the whole durn thing to the South Shore, where it is now part of the Shelburne County Giant Pumpkin Festival. This year will be the second year on the Shelburne waterfront and if you’re interested in guiding a gourd to glory on Thanksgiving weekend, you can find out more information here. But meanwhile, back to the beer! Schoolhouse had been known to put an entry of their own in the regatta, so the Pumpkin Paddler Pumpkin Ale is a perfect release to remind folks in Windsor of an event that meant a lot to the brewery and community. The beer is 6.0% and featured additions of pumpkin puree, cinnamon, clove, ginger and nutmeg. A mix of noble hops provided the bitterness and balance to this dry and drinkable fall ale. Expect it to show up soon in private stores in Halifax, but rest assured it’s available in cans and on draught at the brewery. 

Over the summer, Landwash’s Czech-style Lager got a bit of a makeover, with a light name change to Landwash Cold Lager. To celebrate the new name and branding, they are holding a launch event tomorrow, Sept 16 in the taproom. All day, they will be offering $5 mugs of Cold Lager in three distinct pour styles straight from Plzeň. Hladinka is a full mug with a full head of dense foam, Snyt is a 50/50 mug with half foam and half beer, and Mliko is also known as a Milk Pour, and is almost entirely foam. DIfferent pours for different situations, we say! They are also taking the opportunity to invite their Friends in Lager on tap for the day, with Bannerman, Dildo, and Port Rexton all pouring lagers too. And from noon until 11 PM, they are giving away a 12-pack of LCL to one lucky attendee every hour, on the hour! And for those unable to attend, look for the new branding of 12 packs of Cold Lager for your very own Beer is Nice crested coaster, which will win you a full flat of Landwash beer of your choosing. Look for those packs at NLCs, and your favourite small retailer.

A few events to tell you about this weekend and the near future! For those in areas affected by Hurricane Lee, be sure to check the conditions, and confirm your spots are opening, before heading out!

Hopyard is hosting Godspeed Brewery Tap Takeover this weekend, with seven beers from the Toronto-based brewery pouring right now. Sklepnik Pilsner (fermented in pitch-lined foedres), Tmavý Ležák 12º Dark Czech Lager, Fukami Munich Dunkel, Arbeit Hefeweizen, Yuzu Saison, Kekkon Raspberry Sour, and Ochame Green Tea IPA. This also marks the return of their original chef Jane Crawford, who is back in the kitchen again, and who has prepared a Japanese-inspired Ekiben meal to fit with the Montreal-to Japan-to Toronto story of Godpseed’s history. The beer and menu will be on until they sell out, so be sure to pop in today to avoid disappointment!

The Lower Sackville beer bar Tapestry Beer Bar kicks off our Oktoberfest news as the official Oktoberfest in Munich is September 16th to October 3rd. Tapestry will be featuring 12 German style beers from 12 different Nova Scotia breweries. If you’re reading this and itching to try some of them before Hurricane Lee hits, you can order a Mystery Flight of the beers. You’ll have to keep track of them manually though, as the full tap list won’t be revealed until later this weekend. The plan is for the event to start on Saturday, but keep an eye on their socials. It’s not looking good for Saturday, and you don’t know what kind of damage could happen with the hurricane, so check out the venue online before heading out this weekend.

Hopping over to Moncton, the wonderful folks at Tire Shack are next on the Oktoberfest lineup. Every Saturday and Sunday this month they’ll have food from Euston Park, special branded 1 litre maß mugs and they’ll be filling them with their delicious Helles Yeah! Munich style Helles lager. They also have a re-release of their award-winning The Wickerman, which is a Pumpkin Vienna Lager that is out today.  Again, this is planned to start Friday, September 15th, to beat the hurricane, but keep an eye out for the rest of the weekend if you plan to head over. 

New to the block but staying true to the tradition, Smokehouse’s new Agricola street location will be doing Oktoberfest beers from September 16th to October 3rd (again, check the weather and their socials for any delays!). They’ve brewed 5 traditional beers for the celebration and will also be planning to serve Brothers sausages on the BBQ. They’ll have special steins for serving the following special pours: Munich Dunkel, Märzen, Bavarian Wheat, Kölsch and a Festbier

Next up we’ve got a familiar pairing from the last few years, as The BG (formerly the home of the original Stillwell Beergarden and previously named the Stubborn Goat Beer Garden on the Halifax Waterfront) and Garrison Brewing are teaming up for their annual Oktoberfest! Just like previous years they’ve got a full menu of German platters (Knackwurst & Schnitzel), snacks and beer. This will be lasting for 10 days and will start on Monday September 18th. On Friday Sept 22nd there will be a big rocking party with Rankin MacInnis too. Stay tuned to their socials for any details or changes.

A few last quick mentions to send you into a (hopefully uneventful) weekend!

Out of Fredericton, Maybee Brewing has a new Double IPA just in time for the weekend. Retrograde is a DIPA that is big on citrus and fruit aromas. Lots of orange and ripe tangerine flavour for a dry finished and drinkable DIPA. At 8.3% you can grab this in cans or on tap from their taproom.

If you’re near Quidi Vidi and have been keeping up with the brewery’s Arts & IPA series, we can tease that the 10th iteration in the series will be available next week. Featuring new can art and featured artists for each release, new hop and flavour combinations are also explored. This Arts & IPAs 10 will feature Idaho 7 hops and will be a 7.5% IPA. Keep an eye out for it next week, featuring artwork from Molly Margaret!

After its launch at the end of last month, the non-alcoholic Nomad Pilsner sold out within days. Good news for those thirsty for more, as it is now back in stock! Brewed by Tatamagouche Brewing, the Pilsner is just the tip of the iceberg in the NA space. Look for several more styles to come through the taps in the next few months. Check their taproom and retail shop on Main Street Tatamagouche, or their online shop for local delivery or nationwide shipping.

Good morning, fellow craft beer lovers!

• This September 21st, Garrison Brewing Co., in collaboration with the German Canadian Association, will be holding their 5th annual Halifax Oktoberfest. There will be lots of German food, live music, and Garrison beer and Stutz cider available. The celebrations will be spread out over the day in two sessions: a free, market-wide afternoon session, and a 19+ evening session beginning at 7:00 pm. Tickets for the evening event will be $12 ($11 for students/military), and can be purchased at the Garrison retail store, or the day-of at the location at Pavilion 20 downtown. We’ll have a more-thorough post on this soon!

• The number of beers available from Grimross Brewing in Fredericton continues to grow. Joining the Cheval D’Or and Destrier Farmhouse Stout is Ben’s Bitter Pale Ale, a Belgian Pale Ale with slightly more bittering hops, according to owner/brewer Stephen Dixon. With healthy doses of Cascade hops for bittering and flavor, and Saaz hops for aroma, Ben’s Bitter will come across as quite floral, with earthy and citrus-fruit tones, and a lasting bitterness in the finish. Currently available in refillable growlers at the Picaroons Brewtique, and hopefully on tap in the area soon.

• With the Seaport Beer Festival happening this weekend in Halifax, it’s time to start planning for the next beer fest… the Prince Edward Island Beer Festival will occur the first full weekend in September, Friday the 6th and Saturday the 7th. Last year, there were two beer festivals in PEI within a month of one another; the province decided in the spring to allow only one festival this year. Details are a bit slim right now, but we’ll do a post on the event as soon as we learn more. We can report that there will be over 75 different beers available, from breweries such as Amsterdam, Garrison, McAuslan, Hop City, and Erdinger. There are several tasting sessions planned; ticket prices range from $20-$120, depending on the session. You can follow the event on Twitter and Facebook for up-to-date notifications.

• Not satisfied with only growler fills of Bridge Brewing beer? Looking to get more than pint pours at Halifax bars? Well, you’re in luck… they are now offering 19.5 L party kegs for sale, for all beers that are available at the time. There is a $100 refundable keg deposit, and pricing will be $105 for the Gus or Summer Ale, $110 for the Farmhouse, and $120 for the Strong Dark (taxes not included). Call ahead to order yours!

• Greg Nash is tapping a few special beers at Rockbottom Brewpub in Halifax today, starting at 4:00 p.m. Accompanying a few of their regular-release beers will be “X”, an Imperial Brown Ale aged 18 months on cedar wood (11% ABV); “Vintage Wreckoning”, a Russian Imperial Stout on nitro, fortified with Macallan single malt whiskey (11% ABV); the regular “Wreckoning” RIS (10.5% ABV); the popular “Oaked-Aged Double Hoppelganger” DIPA (10% ABV); and “Barrel-Aged Desecration”, an Imperial Red Ale (11% ABV). Some nice sessionable (!) beers for your weekend! Get down to the Rockbottom ASAP – these beers will only be on tap until Sunday close.

• And, in case that’s not enough big beers for you, the Hart & Thistle will be putting on Nashfest again, with several OTHER Greg Nash beers for you to enjoy! These include “Columbus DIPA”, single-hopped with Columbus (9.1% ABV); “Commissar”, a Russian Imperial Stout, this time fortified with Bulleit bourbon (11% ABV); “Hop Mess Monster v3.0”, another DIPA single-hopped with Columbus (10% ABV); “Old 87”, an American IPA with lots of Columbus and Falconer’s Flight hops (7% ABV); and “Kneecapper”, an India Red Ale, or “Red IPA” with plenty of… yep, hops (6.1% ABV). It all starts at 4:00 p.m. today, and ends at close on Sunday.

Uncle Leo’s Brewery may have just opened not too long ago in Pictou, NS, but their beers have already made it to Halifax! Both their Red Ale and IPA became available in 650 mL bombers at Premier Wine & Spirits earlier this week. Premier doesn’t expect them to last long, so get in while you can.

• Looks like Barnone Brewing in PEI has started filling growlers. You can drop by the brewery in Rose Valley every Thursday between 6:00 and 8:00 pm; both their Pale Ale and Summer Sessions will be available for fills.

Sea Level Brewing has extended the hours of their retail store, where you can stock up on their canned beer, as well as 1-L refillable growlers. Their official hours are now Monday-Friday 10 am-6 pm, Saturday 10 am-5 pm, and Sunday 12 pm-5 pm.

That’s it for this week… have a safe and beery weekend!

Pump House Brewery has two new products and a variety pack available now on ANBL shelves in New Brunswick (as of this writing only in Moncton and Dieppe).  The same products are also available broadly in Nova Scotia on NSLC shelves.

Thai Wheat is available in 6 packs and is described on the Pump House website as:

A blonde thirst-quenching wheat beer with the aromatic bouquet and flavours of spices, lemongrass and ginger. Lightly acidic and tart with a very clean finish. Pair it up with your favorite seafood dish or some spicy wings! 5.0 – 5.5% ABV

Oktoberfest is available in 6 packs as well and is described as:

Reflective of the season Oktoberfest has a rich amber hue, medium body and malty bouquet. Blending together 4 roasts of barley to create a delicious harmony of sweet flavours including caramel and toffee. The elegant bitterness imparted by the German Noble hops keeps it perfectly balanced and provides a wonderful transition from the lighter beers of summer to the winter’s heartier brews. Prosit! 5.5% ABV.

When I met with Shaun Fraser earlier this year, he mentioned that he was planning on rotating some seasonal beers in bottles or cans so I’m guessing the Oktoberfest, if not both, are seasonal offerings.  (Updated Oct 9th:  I can confirm that both the Oktoberfest and the Thai Wheat are available in generic seasonal 6 pack packages.)

Twelve pack sample variety packs are now available as well.  Neither the NSLC or ANBL sites specify which beers are available but I’m going to guess it is two each of the original six bottled beers:  Cadian Cream Ale, Fire Chief’s Red Ale, Scotch Ale, Blueberry Ale, S.O.B. and Premium Lager.  (Updated Oct 9th:  Call me Nostradameus, the variety pack comes with two each of the identified beers.)

I’ll update the post when I can confirm or correct the above assumptions.