The Church Brewing Company

All posts tagged The Church Brewing Company

As we did the rounds on social media this week and checked our messages for missives from the (much beloved) folks who send us regular updates or even just notable releases and happenings, it became pretty clear that we’ve reached that magical point in the late summer when many, if not most, of the breweries in our region are pretty much running on fumes. Sure, there’s some new releases out there (Hello 2 Crows), but there’s a definite feeling that the industry is heaving a collective sigh this week and we wouldn’t be surprised to see it stretch one more before the big push for Oktoberfest and fall beers comes on. We know that beer never really sleeps and that new beers are out there, they’ve just got to get out of their fermenters. And into packages. And labeled. And distributed. And…and…and… So while we know that nobody’s actually taking much of a rest, this is a good week to look for what’s left of your summer faves and consider what might be coming down the pike in a couple of weeks. That said, there’s definitely some news this week…

Halifax’s reigning Tiny Tasty Taproom and Good Time Emporium, Tidehouse Brewing, has announced on social media that they will be closing their doors this weekend. After 5 years of slinging the good beer and conversation on Salter Street, welcoming visitors from across the province, country, and world, they will be shutting down at the end of service Saturday night. Not ones to leave anything unsaid or undone, they are closing out with a bang(er) today. Salad Days is a celebration of Tidehouse’s heydays and foray into all sorts of fun adventures, resulting in a 10.5% Triple Milkshake IPA. Big fruit juice character thanks to the massive amount of mango, raspberry, and orange zest added, with Galaxy and Azacca hops lending even more fruity esters. The use of vanilla and lactose/milk sugar help complete the milkshake mouthfeel and sweetness. Salad Days is available on tap and in cans from 4 PM today (and again from 4 tomorrow), as friends, colleagues, and beer fans new and old are welcome to celebrate what Shean, Peter, Shannon, and everyone in the extended Tidehouse family have accomplished. Congratulations folks, plenty to be proud of!

The folks who regularly give these weekly posts a skim are probably well aware that when they see Halifax’s 2 Crows there’s likely several paragraphs afoot and this week is no exception. We don’t know what they put in their coffee over there (although we’ve seen their coffee pot and, well, be glad they sell you beer) but we’re betting it could cost someone an Olympic gold medal.

First up are a couple of beers that we should warn you are not likely to be easy to come by if you’re not planning to be in the environs of St. John’s, NL, a week from today. We previously mentioned the 2C tap takeover at Brewdock on September 17th and, as they tend to do, the gang is bringing some heavy artillery that will no doubt delight the crowd on the Rock. Nanaimo and Big Turk started out with the same base, a base that 2C’s own head brewer has termed “ridiculous.” The grist was based in pale and Vienna malts, with just a touch of specialty grains added, you know, the usual, some flaked oats, Caravienna, Caramunich, chocolate AND light chocolate, Honey malt, Extra Special malt, and Midnight Wheat. That tremendous pile of grain was then double mashed to produce a wort with a sky-high original gravity of 1.127. After fermentation was complete, the batch was split to produce the two beers: Nanaimo received a massive dose of cocoa nibs and coconut, plus a bit of honey and cinnamon. Big Turk was also treated to a massive nibbing, along with vanilla, concord grape, and black cherry. It’s not hard to see what the inspirations for these two were! Described as “super thick, super chewy, super super,” they come in at a bowl-you-over 11.9% ABV, and, for an added touch of awesomeness, will be occupying the nitro taps at Brewdock which will impart maximum smoothness. Boy howdy. Tickets are required for the event, BTW, and can be purchased at Brewdock and now through their online shop. That guarantees your spot inside, as well as your first pint in your own take-away glass.

Also pouring at Brewdock will be the latest in the 2 Crows series of incredibly hoppy NEIPAs. We’re past the point of being able to rhyme off all the various names, but we believe that this is the first new one since Cause for Celebration was released as part of a 4-pack for their 4th anniversary in January of this year. Well now comes Vivid Imagination, which began, as all the others have, with Golden Promise, flaked oats, wheat malt, and chit malt, and hopped in the mash and at first wort with something inconsequential (i.e., for brewing magic reasons, not so much for flavor or aroma). On its way to the fermenter it passed through a pretty good dose of newish hop variety BRU-1 in the hopback, but the real heavy lifting was done by “outrageous” amounts of Nelson Sauvin and Galaxy (along with a little more BRU-1) in the dry-hop. Carbonated via spunding like all the cool kids are doing to lock in the aroma and flavor, you can expect it to be really and truly juicy, with tropical and gooseberry notes. This one will be canned on Monday, at which point it’ll be available for purchase at the brewery.

Already out in the wilds of Halifax and beyond is Signals, a new smoked lagerbier that some (like us!) might consider an ideal style for the transition from summer to fall. Built on a simple grist of floor malted Pilsner and smoked malt, and using a double decoction mash to provide body and foam stability, heavy amounts of traditional Saaz hops were added in the kettle before the beer was fermented low and slow with Escarpment Labs’ Czech Lager strain, known for producing clean and crisp beers and revealing malt and hop subtleties. Coming in at 5.1% ABV and a healthy 38 IBU, the focus here was on drinkability with the smoke providing some interest. Although it’s already been seen on tap at the Stillwell Freehouse and Stilly HQ, packaging logistics won’t allow this one to be released in cans until the 24th or so, at which point you might see a beer and sausage event just about right on time for Oktoberfest. Until then, keep an eye on 2C tap accounts to give it a try! 

Would you believe there’s more? Of course you would, this is 2 Crows! Folks who’ve been fans of the brewery since they opened might remember one of their first barrel-aged offerings, a gin barrel aged sour with blackberry and lemon they called Blackberry Collins. Well there’s a new version of that beer in the offing, finally coming out tomorrow after starting its life as a batch of their standard golden sour base in May, 2020. Aged largely in gin barrels (with a soupçon in a vermouth barrel), it was fermented in oak with a wide variety of house cultures. After a year of aging, it was blended and then conditioned on 200 kg of blackberries and a whackton (3 cases worth) of lemon zest and juice. After the sugars from the fruit had fermented out, it was packaged into clear bottles and allowed to bottle condition. Fruity to the point of jamminess, zesty, and super-bright, you’ll be able to grab this one at the brewery as of this afternoon.

Continuing to put out plenty of new beers, especially considering their size, Truro Brewing Company is back with a new release you can get today. Earlier in the year they held the Hubtown Homebrew Competition and this release is the second featured beer from that event. Cool Shade Stunner was the highest scoring entry in the competition, which tasked brewers to all use the Krispy Kveik yeast from Escarpment. Chelsea Meisner (also known as Lady Scotia Brewing) brings this 5.1% IPA that is crispy, refreshing and hoppy flavour that is balanced and mild in bitterness, with the Cascade, Idaho 7, and Citra hops used late in the process. This is available on tap at the brewery and also in 650 mL bottles.

If you’re like some of us, you think of this time of year and Grimross comes to mind. But then again, we think of all the breweries all the time. First up in beer release news, Bishop Belgian IPA is a seasonal re-release that is back after its debut 2 years ago. A meeting of new world citrusy hops and old world spice, the IPA side brings bold hops and Belgian yeast character brings a beautiful balance to a great style at 50 IBU and 6.0% ABV. This is available on tap at local restaurants all around New Brunswick and 473 mL cans at ANBL locations and the brewery. 

Other news from Grimross is their Grimross Gardens is open! Think of crisp fall days at beer gardens in Europe and go right to Fredericton at 600 Bishop Drive to check out Grimross’ offering. Directly behind the brewery, they’re open from 2pm-10pm, but be sure to check their social media for the latest updates. We hope this is a trend that continues around the region and we hope to get there ourselves!

Never a stranger to new releases, Village Green in Cornwall, PEI, brings another tasty IPA release this week. Fuzzy IPA is a hop-packed, fruity, juicy and balanced IPA that should be sticking around for their regular year round selection. Featuring a malt backbone of Golden Promise with generous amounts of Galaxy hops along with Simcoe and Citra, this brings citrus and stone fruit flavours in a 6.5% tasty package! This is available on tap and in cans directly from the brewery. 

Big congratulations to Moncton’s Tire Shack Brewing who brought home some big competition hardware this week! Repeating and improving on their 2020 win at the US Open Beer Championship (Gold in Fruit Gose for Lime Margarita), they have taken home three medals in 2021. The recently-returned Love at Midnight Piña Colada IPA took home Bronze in Fruit IPA, and Parts N Labour took Silver in New England/Juicy IPA (which understandably is a hard-fought category!). And in Gold medal-winning news, their soon-to-return The Wickerman Vienna Pumpkin Lager took top spot. This Best of the Best is slated for release next week on tap and in cans at the brewery, so be sure to stop in to celebrate the new winners in the region! We’ll give you even more reasons to visit next week, as we expect to have more information on a fun multi-week event coming soon!

It’s no secret that Fredericton’s Trailway Brewing makes some of the hoppiest (and haziest!) beers in this end of the country; and although they’ve spread their stylistic wings considerably since they opened, there’s always room in the rotation for a new juicy banger. Enter the rather recent Talus hop, related to Sabro, but considered to have a more robust and complete flavor profile, and one that has not been seen much in these parts, but has definitely been part of some popular beers (e.g., Propeller Brewing’s Cold IPA earlier this year). Who better to give a fresh new hop a spin through the Hopinator5000™ than Trailway? Talus Your Secrets is exactly that, a single hop IPA using Talus so you can see for yourself what the fuss is about. Look for a soft, juicy, and drinkable IPA with notes of pink grapefruit and sweet stone fruit, with elements of coconut, pine resin, and oak as well. You can grab some at the brewery on tap for pints or fills, or in cans to go. And this weekend as a special treat, they’re doing $9.99/box shipping until Monday at 5 PM! So if you’re looking to try this one and/or any of their other offerings, you can do up an order and have it sent anywhere in Atlantic Canada or Ontario for a little cheaper than usual!

It’s back to school, back to Acadia University for some, and back to Church! Two new releases from Wolfville to chat up this week, starting with Gaspereau Gold. A 5.7% Festbier (think of a stronger Oktoberfest beer), with a malty body and a bit higher ABV than your traditional lager. With notes of caramel balanced with Magnum and Tettnanger hops, it’s still an easy drinking, crisp lager that you can’t get enough of. 

Second batter up from Church is New Wave, a Kölsch brewed in the traditional lagered ale style with a North American take. Brewed in collaboration with hop supplier, Brew Culture, it features a new German hop, Callista, used for a dry-hop. The mouthfeel is crisp, but has hop-forward flavours and aromas of pineapple, stone fruit and citrus from the dry-hopping and the Spalter hops that were added to the boil. Both of these beers are available only at the brewery on tap or $10 crowlers to go.

In Bay Roberts, NL, Baccalieu Trail Brewing Company has a new beer that’s not quite available yet, but should be real soon now. Tidy was designed to fill a perceived gap on their taplist, where everything was around 5% ABV and higher. So Tidy is a tiny pale ale, coming in at 3.9% and hazy, with some apricot character from the yeast used. Large low-temperature whirlpool additions of Cashmere, Columbus, and Simcoe provide all the hop character you could want in a little beer. That said, once they figure out what they’re going to dry hop it with, it’ll have more hop aroma for sure! Look for this one to come available next week sometime, so keep an eye on the brewery’s social media accounts (Fb, Ig).

Given their penchant for throwing one of the biggest Oktoberfest bashes in the province, it’s no surprise that Halifax’s Garrison Brewing has their fest-ready beer all queued up and ready to go to get your whistle wet and your appetite set for bier und wurst. Rise ‘n’ Stein is a Hefeweizen, a yeasty (hefe) wheat beer (weizen) known for a lower ABV, hazy appearance, soft mouthfeel, and subtle hints of banana and clove. Although to some it might sound a little odd, if you’ve never had one we suspect you’ll be pleasantly surprised by how refreshing and quaffable that combo is. You can grab this one as of today at Garrison’s Seaport and Oxford locations, and don’t be surprised if it pops up at some or all of the private stores in the city. And stay tuned for more details on this year’s Oktoberfest event, which is set to run the week of September 24th to October 1st!

Plenty more events coming at you in the next couple of weeks!

Halifax’s Bar Stillwell is continuing their trend of ramping back up to some kind of normal with feel good events. This Saturday, September 11 (that’s tomorrow!), look for an all-day, all-Ontario event featuring ciders from Revel Cider, Wines from ibi Wines (also a Revel joint), and beers from Bellwoods. This is your opportunity to try some of the funkiest things being produced for your mouth in this fine country of ours. The flow starts at noon and runs all day; “no reservations, just good times.” Maybe we’ll see you there!

If your next Friday, Sept 17th, dance card isn’t already full, let’s change that! Chris Conway from Landwash Brewery, and the author of Newfoundland Beer History, will be giving a talk at the Admiralty Museum in Mount Pearl at 7 PM that evening. Chatting about the past, present, and future of beer in the province, your ticket includes a Landwash beer and charcuterie from the always excellent Chinched Meats. Grab your ticket from the Museum to take part in the fun!

Sticking in St. John’s, the following day is sure to be fun one, as Quidi Vidi Brewery continues to celebrate their 25th Anniversary all 2021-long. From noon until 9 PM on Saturday, September 18th, they are hosting a Dayboil in Bannerman Park, complete with live music, food vendors, games, and of course plenty of tasty beer! This is a ticketed event, so grab yours today!

And for those of us stuck on the mainland, Lwr Sackville’s TAPestry Beer Bar is kicking off their Oktoberfest event next Saturday, September 18th. We’ll have more details next week, but rest assured they’ll be pouring plenty of debuting and one-offs beers from breweries across Nova Scotia, all in their stylish spot at 833 Sackville Drive.

And before we let you go…

We’ve mentioned Candid Brewing’s Lagerish Blonde Ale in previous posts, but what we failed to mention was that this lagered ale is also gluten-reduced, thanks to Brewer’s Clarex. While that means different things to those on the Celiac/gluten-intolerant/-hesitant/-reducing spectrum, it is worth sharing when there are more options. Candid’s take on the classic German kölsch has been restocked and is available now on College Street, in cans and on tap for all of your beer drinking needs.

Annapolis Brewing has a new NEIPA out this week if you’re looking for something hazy and juicy. Fundy Haze is double dry-hopped with Galaxy, Sabro and Mosaic, giving notes of citrus, stone fruit and melon. You can find it on tap at the brewery in picturesque Annapolis Royal.

Thanks to those who have donated to our web hosting/beer fund. Did you know the reason that you don’t see ads on the site is because we *pay* for it? I know, it’s crazy, eh? But we think you’re worth it. 🙂

Happy Friday all you cool cats and kittens! We hope your July has been going well, and will continue to get even better. With COVID restrictions continuing to relax, for those able to travel in (and outside of) the Atlantic region, checking in on a new or favourite brewery is a great way to support those who keep you well stocked in excellent local beer. As we took last week off (and it was glorious!), this will be a bit of a longer post, so strap in and let’s get going!

Hardisty Brewing in Cole Harbour, Nova Scotia, is celebrating Pride with the release of a brand new Amber Ale. Thirst Trap continues Hardisty’s mission to celebrate diversity and inclusion in all things they do, with this approachable 5.8%, 37 IBU, copper-coloured beer featuring plenty of biscuity malt character with a touch of bitterness, finishing with a dark caramel toast flavour. As with all of their releases, the cans feature a quote about the beer, with Thirst Trap’s featuring one inspired by their love of Schitt’s Creek. So, how can you get your hands on TT and other Hardisty beer? If you’re fortunate enough to live in Cole Harbour (or willing to move there), they’ll bring the beer to you, through their weekly deliveries. If not, you’ll have to make your way to Harvest Wines (or request delivery), where you can grab it. And be sure to check out Hardisty’s webstore for a big selection of merchandise, including tees and hoodies inspired by Pride and Thirst Trap.

Heading to the Hub City, Truro Brewing Company has a couple of new beers on the board, including Stone Fruit Butch, a 5.7% hazy IPA featuring big additions of mango purée and coconut, to go all-in with the tropical theme. Plenty of fruit character, with just a touch of bitterness, great for enjoying on their patio at 53 Inglis Place. Proceeds from Stone Fruit Butch are going towards Truro Pride Society, supporting the great work they do in the community. SFB joins Tenacious B, a 5.8% Black IPA that marked their 100 brew since opening in February 2020, as well as Citrus Got Real, an 8.0% West Coast Double IPA featuring tons of Citra and Idaho 7 hops.

And last weekend, Truro held a gala to announce the winners of the inaugural Hubtown Homebrew Competition, which tasked amateur brewers to come up with their best Patio Beer. A wide variety of styles were submitted, and the Best in Show was Derek Wood’s Polish Grodziskie, a light Smoked Wheat beer. You’ll soon be able to enjoy Woody’s beer on the patio at TBC, as well as a Session IPA brewed by Chelsea Meisner, which took honours as the top score-getter in the first round of judging. Congratulations to all entrants and the hard-working judges who had the difficult task of picking the winner!

Delta Force Brewing, the elusive brewery located in REDACTED Nova Scotia, has another big beer drop available for delivery within a 1 hour radius of HRM. In fact, they have two big beer drops, in the form of two Six Packs available now. The Farmshed Summer 6 Pack features a wide variety of options, including the brand new Operation Jaromir Lagr (a 6.0% Czech Dark Lager), Operation Stronghold (West Coast IPA), Operation Assay (Kveik Pale Ale), Operation Jug (a 5.6% Saison), and Operation Wessex with Brett (Brett Barley Wine). Also available is Time Travel 6 Pack, featuring a pair of bottles each of three variants of their Mean Time Brett Bitter: The original, featuring their own farmshed-grown hops and PEI Malt, Mean Time Atlantic leaves out the funky Brett yeast to allow the locally-grown ingredients to shine through on their own, and Mean Time Pacific swaps out their hops for some classic West Coast hops to better experience the left coast… In addition to these 6 packs, there are a few singles available for purchase, as well as some Anderlecht Farmshed Brett Single. You can order, pay, and arrange delivery by contacting them via email (deltaforcebrewing@gmail.com) for delivery this weekend!

Cross Creek Brewing located near Woodstock NB, has sent their beer on quite the trip this week, with it being available outside the province for the first time ever. Those of you in Charlottetown should keep an eye on the social media and taps at HopYard Beer Bar, as they’ll be pouring 5 different CCB offerings over the course of the next few weeks. In addition to their eponymous Cross Creek Pale Ale, look out for Two Divas Blonde Ale, featuring Carleton County-grown Cascade and Centennial hops, Outhouse Stout, a 4.8% Oatmeal Stout that is extremely easy-drinking and lightly hopped with Fuggles, Blueneck Kentucky Common Ale, and Headpond Cream Ale. And word on the street is that there are big things coming in CCB’s region, with major plans underway to be drinking the good stuff at a place of their own before too long!

Wolfville’s Annapolis Cider has announced their latest Something Different, and it really is a departure for them. Grapefruit Cider Radler is a lower alcohol (4.7%) cider featuring Amarillo hops to complement the Red Grapefruit and Lime juices in the blend, with bright citrus acidity being perfect to refresh after a bike ride (the original impetus for Radlers in Germany), or just to cap or start a great summer’s day. As with all Something Different releases, Annapolis partners with a local group, with $0.50 of each refill of the Radler going to the Adrian Campbell Scholarship Fund, assisting young Nova Scotian athletes to pursue post-secondary education while still engaging in their passion for sport.

Halifax charmers Tidehouse has a new release this week that is hot for the summer. Hip! Hip! is a summer crusher ale from the brewery that is their lightest beer brewed to date. This 4.8% ale brings a very neutral release from the brewery, not hoppy, crisp, a touch of white wine character. Using a base of pilsner malt, along with flaked corn and a small amount of hopping from Nelson Sauvin, this is available today from the brewery. Enjoy it to celebrate out in the sun with friends and family. 

Just outside of Antigonish is Half Cocked Brewing, located in North Grant. Since opening their expanded location and welcoming visitors into their taproom daily, they often hear “Do you have anything sour on tap?”. For the first time, the answer is now a resounding “Yes!”. Something Sour hit the taps yesterday afternoon for samples, pints, and growler fills. At a light and breezy 4.9% ABV, the sour features massive dry hopping of Citra and Idaho 7, complementing the bright citrus notes from the underlying beer, but without any bitterness. Pair a pint with food care of the Crafty Cooks food truck set up onsite, and you’re in for a wonderful evening or weekend brunch destination!

The whippersnappers at Tatamagouche always keep us on our toes with amazing releases. The latest to join the fray is Intertidal: Ekuanot Rye IPA. A first release of the Intertidal series, this one showcases the Ekuanot hop, those familiar will know it has a complex profile with some spiciness, cedar and tropical fruit flavours. First settling on the hop, the spicy-biting style of Rye IPA was chosen to play with the profile of Ekuanot. Starting with a base of Horton Ridge pale, with about 20% malted rye, there are small additions of light and medium caramel malt as well. This was mashed in at a slightly cooler temperature to try and create a drier finish for the IPA. Joining Ekuanot, El Dorado and Centennial played supporting actors in the kettle and was distributed throughout the boil. The big hop drop blend also joined in the whirlpool. Fermented with mostly English yeast for its high attenuation and a bit of wheat beer yeast. Finally (!) this ale was dry hopped with Ekuanot and El Dorado. Trying to play with all of these flavours has been a careful decision by the brewery and it sounds like a hit. The final product is a 6.7% Rye IPA that is available today from the brewery in cans and kegs, and hitting their webstore any minute now, for Canada-wide delivery.

One from last week’s release that can’t be ignored (not that we ignore anything!) is a new release in that lovely, familiar can design from Propeller. Mosaic Pale Ale joins the single hop featured lineup from the Halifax brewery. Featuring Mosaic hops exclusively, this 5% pale ale gives notes of fresh-picked berries and should have a bit of piney resin flavour as well. Crisp and clean, this 35 IBU pale ale is one to pick up for the summer. Available in 473ml cans, you can pick this up in 4-packs from Propeller online or in-store and likely around some of the private shops in HRM. 

Cornwall’s Village Green has a draught-only release this week. Nelson Table Bier is a (you guessed it) table beer,or a “session Saison” if you’re not familiar with the style. This comes in at 3.7% and has a very generous dry hop featuring Nelson Sauvin. Some peppery notes accompany this slightly herbaceous and very refreshing beer. On tap only for now, cans should be coming next week. Be sure to stop in if you’re passing through!

The new releases keep rolling out of Nyanza, with Big Spruce’s newest one-off, Tripel Belgian Pale Ale. Coming in at 9.3%, look for traditional notes of spice, banana and citrus, with a hint of residual sweetness. This one was brewed in collaboration with award-winning Halifax homebrewer Ian Wheatley, who should be no stranger to the readers of this blog, having collaborated with several Nova Scotia breweries throughout the years. The new Spruce releases continue, but for this one, you’ll need to make a trip to Sydney. Brewed for exclusive release at Governor’s Pub and the Sydney location of the Old Triangle, Bizarre Gov Triangle is a 6.4% hazy IPA with notes of tropical fruit. You can find it on tap at the two downtown Sydney watering holes today. 

We’ve got a couple of important newsworthy items from Dartmouth’s Brightwood Brewery today. First off, they recently debuted Hard Over Harry, a 4.5% Light Beer brewed to honour the commissioning of HMCS Harry DeWolf, an arctic and offshore patrol vessel, the first coming out of the Irving Shipyard as part of the National Shipbuilding Procurement Strategy, and the first in its class of vessels. Named after Vice Admiral Harry DeWolf, Canada’s most highly decorated naval officer, and known for aggressive ship manoeuvering while commanding the HMCS Haida during the Second World War. Available on tap and in cans now at their taproom at 35 Portland Street, as well as their Waterfront Beer Garden at Alderney Landing.

And you’ll soon be able to enjoy a third location, as the Brightwood crew are opening BrightYard in the coming days… Located at 53 ½ Portland Street in Downtown Dartmouth, this outdoor beer garden will feature plenty of Brightwood beer on tap, and feature a BBQ-inspired menu, courtesy of Emma Strubank and her team (best known for Café GoodLuck and other great spots around HRM). Centering around an authentic Southern BBQ offset smoker, look for brisket, chicken, and veggies too, prepared in the low and slow technique that has kept people happy and satisfied for years. And you too can be happy and full this afternoon, as BrightYard is holding a pop-up in Brightwood’s taproom this afternoon, 4 – 9 PM, with brisket and smoked chicken sandwiches, pulled pork, and great veggies options like charred carrots and grilled broccoli and radicchio available. Live Music from Ryan Stanley on the go from 8 PM in the taproom as well. Check out Brightwood’s social media for the full scoop, and follow both accounts to keep up with the opening date and full menu.

A few more newsbites to finish off today’s post. Stay dry but well hydrated this weekend!

A short bite out of Antigonish, Candid Brewing has updated their hours and has some beer available in HRM. Two of their beers were dropped off to Battery Park, so keep an eye out for Working Joe (4.7% Breakfast Stout) and No Brainer (5.2% Blood Orange Pale Ale) hitting the wall at the Dartmouth favourite. Their regular summer hours are currently 3 -6 PM Wednesday through Saturday, so be sure to stop by if you’re in the area. 

Always a popular destination spot, Wolfville’s Church Brewing sees a few brewery exclusive releases this week. Available now for crowler and in-person pint fills, Persephone Strawberry Pale Ale and Hades Blueberry Pale Ale should be summer-y, refreshing, fruity and slightly tart twists to crisp pale ales. 

News from Lone Oak sees Noble coming at you in cans! Noble is a 0.7% ABV ultra light pale ale with notes of field berries up front and some citrus on the finish. Perfect to add to your summer, weekday or drinking rotation, you can get this in person or online. And mark your calendars to support Lone Oak as they take on Keith’s in the semi final of the HopYard Battle of the Breweries next Thursday, July 15th. The winner of that battle faces Upstreet in the finals July 29th.

Following up from an editorial note two weeks ago, the 2 Crows & Luke’s Small Goods pop-up from July 1st is now tomorrow, July 10th, from noon until sell-out. The event sees the re-release of Cool Kid (blog favourite, RIP Niche), celebrating with a Fried Chicken pop-up! Details are in the Instagram post here and our post from last time.

A quick hitting re-release from Unfiltered sees Edgy making a return last week. Using the base recipe from DOA, this Double IPA uses Centennial instead as it’s single hop all throughout the mash, wort, kettle and dry-hopping. This is available now for growler fills, pints at Charm School and 473ml cans online or at the brewery.

 

If you felt the heat wave earlier this week, we hope you were stocked up with local treats to keep you cool. Or if you live on the Avalon or Labrador, maybe something to keep you warm during yesterday’s flurries! This weekend looks like another sunny one across Atlantic Canada, so why not stock up and enjoy them safely at home or get out on a patio if you’re comfortable! Either way, we know our local libation lovers will support their own establishments as best they can and we’re back again to help spread the news!

As PEI Craft Beer Week winds down this weekend, Upstreet Brewing is launching an annual favourite collaboration with The Inn at Bay Fortune. Fireworks, named after the kitchen at Chef Michael Smith’s on-farm restaurant, is a Farmhouse Ale featuring a whole bunch of local grain, malt, and other special ingredients. Island Malt House-grown and -malted Pilsner, Biscuit, Wheat, Toasted Wheat, Buckwheat, Malted Oats, and Rye made up the grist bill, giving the yeasty beasties a whole bunch of different sugars and other carbs to munch on over the course a several months. After the boil of the wort was completed, Ekuanot and Pekko hops were added to the whirlpool (during a rest before cooling), and once fermentation subsided, Lemondrop was added to amplify a citrus character. During that conditioning time, ingredients straight from the Culinary Farm on Bay Fortune were added, including more than 200 kg of crab apples, dried marigold, and citrus basil, all hand picked and curated by the IaBF team and Upstreet crew. The resulting beer has floral and earthy notes, with barnyard and hay on the nose, with a light acidity and carbonation to keep it refreshing. The beer is debuting tomorrow at the Upstreet tap room on Allen Street in Charlottetown, with a tasting kicking off at 3 PM. Bottles will also be available at their Craft Beer Corner location downtown, and of course at The Inn at Bay Fortune. And those in HRM may soon be able to grab bottles at their Upstreet BBQ Brewhouse in Burnside and private stores as well, so keep your eyes peeled!

Upstreet is also continuing the releases today with the second in their Libra line of non-alcoholic beers, with Libra Hazy IPA. Bumping up the hops from their Libra North Cape Pale Ale, but still in a sub 0.5% ABV package, the beer features loads of Idaho 7, El Dorado, Citra, and Mosaic late in the process, to keep it from being too tongue-coating bitter, while still imparting plenty of great citrus, tropical fruit character those hops are known for. Available in short cans at the taproom, CBC, and online for delivery Canada-wide (soon), as well as other spots in the coming weeks (remember, not alc = wider availability!). Cheers to Mitch, Hogie, and the crew for providing more low- and non-alc beer alternatives to those looking to moderate their intake of alcohol while still having a flavourful drink!

Let’s keep it going with more PEICBW info, as one of the OG PEI breweries welcomes their younger pals to take over their taps tomorrow. The Gahan House will be pouring several of their own After Hours seasonal and one-off brews, while also welcoming Bogside Brewing, Copper Bottom, Lone Oak, Upstreet, and Village Green to pour their latest and greatest beers. Look for new releases, old favourites, and cool change-ups from everyone involved! The pouring starts at 11:30 AM and goes all day and night. And of course be sure to check out the cool new beers and events from Evermoore, Moth Lane, and PEI Brewing Co this weekend, and the rest of the year!

To the mainland we go, stopping in at Spryfield, Nova Scotia’s own Serpent Brewing, with two new beers to tell you about this week. Both are part of their Beer Creation Experience, where the public had a chance to design a Serpent beer, from style, recipe, ingredients, all the way to the label on the bottle. Released last weekend was Pavo Tropical IPA, and while it does not contain any actual fruit, the hops chosen, namely Amarillo, Magnum, and Mosaic, do a fine job of imparting a ton of berry and citrus, with a touch of pine too. At 5.4% and 50 IBU, the hazy IPA (XPA? Big APA?) is perfect for enjoying on their patio this weekend, or in bottles to take away. 

Debuting today is the next in the Serpent BCE, Whatermelon is Wrong Wit You? Taking a cue from NS Premier Rankin’s question to those not following COVID protocol by reducing interactions, this pun-tacularly named beer is a spin on their White Mountain Belgian Witbier, but elevated to the next level. Long-time friend-of-Serpent Nick Sanford has been sampling owner Glen O’Keefe’s homebrew for years, assisted during the brewery construction, and even stepped in to become a Founder of the brewery, and designed Whatermelon based on a homebrew he and Glen had enjoyed on a camping trip years ago. Taking the already flavourful White Mountain recipe as a starting point, even more orange peel was added to brighten the beer, with watermelon added post-fermentation to let the fruit shine through with little distraction. The 5.5% beer is available now in bottles and on draught at the brewery for imbibing on their patio this weekend (and indoors next, Strang-willing). And stop by Saturday and/or Sunday to grab some great Jamaican snacks and meals from Jamdouns Food Truck who will be parked adjacent to the patio!

Heading up to Newfoundland and in particular, Port Rexton Brewing, where the gang have managed to get their beery paws on some 355 mL silver bullets. In celebration of this minor coup (seriously, cans are in wretchedly short supply across North America right now), they’re filling them up with delightfully crushable liquids for your enjoyment. Up first is Whitecap, a bright and refreshing session NEIPA that began its life as a taproom favorite Wet Yer Whistle. With a nice light body and a “sounds like another one” ABV of 3.8%, you’ll find it available today at the PR taproom and also at their St. John’s retail shop. These are only being sold in singles right now and once they’re gone they’re gone until more can stock comes in, as they’re holding some aluminum aside for another light and tasty release next week! And if you’re into beer and outdoor activities in the PR area, you should check out the guided hike around the Skerwink Trail being hosted weekly by PR, Paul Dean and Fishers’ Loft Inn. No fee or registration required, just a desire for a lovely walk and an ear for Paul’s geologic knowledge and stories. The hike will end at Port Rexton where you’ll get your first pint at 50% off. Sounds like a pretty good deal to us! More details available from this Fishers’ Loft Ig post.

Further island vibes from Newfoundland bring a new release from Bannerman this week. Vibe Architect is a 5.0% Witbier which is the first of its kind from the St. John’s crew. Brewed with pilsner malt, flaked wheat, flaked corn and some malted wheat, the hop profile is a blend of European hops that provide great balance. With a true to style flavour profile, expect orange and coriander notes with some nice sweetness from sweet orange peel and spices. This is a renowned and respected style (see: Allagash White) that is complex, subtle and refreshing. This one is available now in cans, on tap at the brewery as well as select Marie’s locations. 

Back down to Nova Scotia, where in the Northern part of the province Tatamagouche Brewing is getting their summer on the go a little early. We told you a couple of weeks ago about the return of Dekorum Lime, which sees their ultra-sessionable Dekorum lager meet treatment with tonnes of lime flavor. Well they didn’t stop there! This week two more variants on that ABV base are available that leverage organic juice concentrates to provide a little summery pizzazz. Dekorum Mandarin and Dekorum Blood Orange are both still 2.9% ABV crushers, each with a slightly different citrus twist. Sounds like an opportunity to grab (at least) 4 cans (OG, lime, and the two debutants) and commence with Dekorum Battle 2021!! That all said, if you’re a Dekorum lover, but not interested in the new fruity variants, check out their current online-only deal, $45 of your finest Canadian dollars for 24 refreshing cans!

Meanwhile, the Tata gang is gearing up for some birthday shenanigans next week as they turn seven years old! We’ll have all the details for you in next Friday’s post, but in advance of that, know that they’ll be running happy hour pricing from Thursday to Sunday on pints at the taproom along with some other on-site promos. There will also be four new beers for you to sample, including two low-abv funky offerings. Check back here next week for the full details on those and maybe keep an eye on Tata’s socials (Fb, Ig, Tw) for more info on the celebrations.

As Halifax and Nova Scotia are getting hopeful with their re-opening plan, Garrison is bringing some new releases for everyone to enjoy. First up, they have a new series called Hop Mess, which will be a mix of summer releases where the brewers will be experimenting with hop stands (adding hops at flameout and letting the hops stand in the hot wort before chilling) and heavy handed dry-hopping. In their own words they want to “create some messy, dank & crazy flavourful IPAs.” The first release of this series is Hop Mess IPA #1:  Aussie Rules, where they’re adding Eclipse, Topaz and Australian Cascade hops post-flameout and in the fermenter. At 6.7% this is going to be hop-forward upfront with low lingering bitterness. This is a limited run that is available now in cans only at their taprooms in Halifax. 

The other new release at Garrison taprooms is a partnership with Bulwark, as their Blush cider will be available in cans at the Garrison Seaport and Oxford locations. Using the fresh juice from Bulwark, this is fermented and canned at Garrison at their locations. If you know Blush, it’s a tasty local cider that balances wild berries and apple flavours at a very drinkable and fresh 5.8%. 

The newest addition to the Antigonish beer scene continues to put out new and interesting beers during their soft opening phase. This week, Candid Brewing Company is releasing Working Joe Breakfast Stout. Described by the brewery as “if cold brew were beer”, this one features Ethiopia-sourced coffee from renowned Halifax roaster, Java Blend. Working Joe is the first release in Candid’s Side Door Series of one-off batches. You can find it today (Friday), at Candid’s weekly pop-up sale (reminder that Candid will be opening for retail hours every Friday from 1:00 to 6:00 PM until it’s grand opening), for takeaway in pre-filled 1L growlers. Cans of their Northeast IPA, Party Line, and APA with blood orange, No Brainer, will also be available. 

From one university town to another, Wolfville’s Church Brewing also has a new small batch release ready for your weekend. Pomona is a cranberry sour that comes in at 4% ABV for your summer session enjoyment. Brewed with barley, wheat, flaked wheat, and oats, and lightly hopped with Magnum to the tune of 8 IBUs, you can expect notes of rhubarb and lemon zest on the nose, with a puckering cranberry flavour and tart finish. Pomona is named after the Roman goddess of fruit trees, gardens and orchards, something Wolfville and the surrounding Annapolis Valley can boast plenty of. You can grab some today in crowlers from their onsite Beer Market, or enjoy a pint on their expansive taproom/restaurant patio. 

You may recall that we passed on some info last week concerning two brand new Saisons from Big Spruce; well, they’re continuing that trend this week with yet another Saison, Fruit Bomb. Fermented with two different Brett strains (B. anomola and B. bruxellensis), along with a “clean” Saison strain, it was hopped with organic French Barbe Rouge. The yeast and hops blend together to produce “a nose of summer strawberries spilling into a bowl of peach and nectarine”, to complement the floral and spicy flavours you’d expect from any well-brewed Saison. Refreshing and dry, and 6.8% ABV, it’s the perfect warm weather sipper. Look for it on tap right at the source, and at your favourite Big Spruce watering holes across NS; looks like there should be some bottles available, too! 

But that’s not all, as Big Spruce has been busy as usual! They’re also (re-)excited about the first beer that was fermented and aged in their 500 L foedre, which has been fittingly named Début. Now technically this one was released back in April and may have been spotted in the city at Battery Park, but it’s not been seen in the HRM since then, so you could maybe suggest that this week marks a re-debut of Debut, which is debuting at Stillwell Freehouse right now! Described as “crisp and herbaceous,” it’s Oak-fermented, dry hopped with Huell Melon, and 4.9% ABV. Sounds like a debut that’s worth checking out!

Just one event to tell you about (beside the PEI Craft Beer Week goings on above)

Despite having to navigate through closures, pivoting to online sales, reopenings, and managing one of Halifax’s most popular outdoor watering holes, Stillwell continues to bring us the goods from out of province. This Saturday at the Beergarden, they’ll be pouring seven bangers from British Columbia’s Four Winds Brewing. Your intrepid beer bloggers have had the privilege to share several Four Winds bottles over the years, and we can confidently say that the quality is up there with the best that Canada has to offer. The event will feature styles that appeal to every beer palette, including lagers, a variety of IPAs, a table saison, and their flagship dry-hopped sour, Nectarous. Check out Stillwell’s Instagram post for more details on the beers and event. While we’re talking Stillwell, a friendly reminder that the 2021 version of Preach dropped in the Stillwell Brewing webstore and is now available for Friday deliveries in HRM and shipping country-wide. Look for Preach and the newest batch of Stilly Pils on rotation at the Beergarden and the Stillwell Freehouse patio, before indoor enjoyment comes next week.

A couple more things to look out for, before you hit the patios this afternoon…

It’s Pride Month all over the world (though the parade in Halifax this year will be in August) and Truro Brewing Company has something light, fresh and bright to celebrate. Pulp’d Fiction is a Berliner Weisse with Blood Orange. Always a delicious style that is tart and refreshing, this comes in at 4.0% and is available on tap today at the brewery. 

Another quick hitter from Halifax’s own Bishop’s Cellar as they’re bringing in some bottles from Quebec’s Brasserie Dunham. Always a pleasure to see in our local shops, there are 3 new bottles now available at Bishop’s with more releases from Dunham in the coming month. You can pick up a Mata Hari Gose, Berliner Passion Weisse and the classic Saison du Pinnacle on Saturday in-store or online.