PRESS RELEASE: Nickel Brook Converts Burlington Brewery To Funk Lab

Awesome news from the good folks at Nickel Brook Brewery! With sour beers becoming a huge trend in Ontario, it’s harder for the bigger breweries to participate without contaminating some of their equipment and their core brands. This is an innovative move, and a great way to utilize the facility. Read below for full details: 

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Nickel Brook Converts Burlington Brewery to Funk Lab

For Immediate Release
BURLINGTON, ON – September 28 2016 – Nickel Brook Brewing Co. announced today that its original brewery at 864 Drury Lane, Burlington is now operating as a full-time funk and sour beer facility known as The Funk Lab, making Nickel Brook the foremost funk brewer in Ontario.

The announcement follows Nickel Brook’s purchase of a new production facility in Hamilton, Ontario.  Their award-winning lineup of core beers, including Headstock IPA and Naughty Neighbour APA, are now produced in the larger brewery, which they co-own with Collective Arts.  The Funk Lab is dedicated to brewing small-batch funk and sour beers using rare and wild yeast strains, as well as barrel-ageing beers such as fan-favourites Cuvée and Winey Bastard.

Nickel Brook has already made waves with some of its earliest funk creations, including winning a Gold medal at the Canadian Brewing Awards for their Uber Raspberry Berliner Weisse, a sour German wheat beer aged on Canadian raspberries. The delicious Uncommon Element Brett Pale Ale and Brett Saison will be year round staples of the Funk Lab, with other unique recipes, such as a Cucumber-Lime Gose, being released throughout the year.

To celebrate this announcement, Nickel Brook will be hosting a Funk Lab Launch Event at BarHop, 391 King Street, Toronto on October 3rd, 2016. A by-invitation  event will begin at 5pm, with an open-to-the-public tap takeover starting at 7pm. Further details will be available on the brewery’s Twitter, Facebook and Instagram pages.

For more information, please contact:
Matt Gibson, matt@nickelbrook.com (289) 208-8295

About Sour and Funk Beers
Historically, beer became funky when wild bacteria found their way into open-air fermentation tanks.  Over time, brewers and scientists worked to isolate the good bacteria from the bad ones, creating a catalogue of delicious funk strains.  The three most common strains of funk bacteria are Lactobacillus (aka Lacto), Brettanomyces (aka Brett,) and Pediococcus (aka Pedio), each of which contribute their own unique flavours and aromas.  Some brewers avoid the use of such bacteria for fear of cross-contamination, but Nickel Brook’s dedicated Funk Lab embraces the unique and wild flavours these microbes impart on beer.

About Nickel Brook Brewing Co.
Nickel Brook Brewing Co. was founded by John and Peter Romano in Burlington, Ontario in 2005. They have since expanded operations to Hamilton, Ontario where they co-opened the Arts and Sciences Brewery with Collective Arts Brewing.  They are committed to using only the finest natural ingredients from around the world, and brew them in small batches for the highest standard of quality.  This award-winning Ontario craft brewery constantly strives to push the boundaries of brewing culture.

Brand Loyalty and Craft Beer

Brand loyalty and craft beer. These two things don’t have much to do with each other anymore. If you consider yourself a beer nerd then you know what I mean. How often are you going back for the same beer, let alone buying a six-pack of a single type of beer…almost never. As craft beer drinkers we are inherently curious, we want to taste everything out there, we need to know if the next new beer is the best beer we’ll ever have. We are not our parent’s generation who found a beer they liked and stuck to it, afraid that they might “waste” their money trying something that they don’t like, kind of like reverse FOMO. We are a riskier folk who also require copious untappd badges. This poses some interesting challenges for brewers, how do breweries continue to grow and make money once they are no longer “new”?

If you think about current trends in the marketing and retail of craft beer with this question in mind, a few patterns become obvious and begin to make a lot more sense:

Firstly, there is a lot more emphasis placed on the release of seasonal and one-off beers. Core brands are typically not outrageous hop-bombs and sours but tried and true pilsners and well-balanced pale ales (a.k.a. boring). Thus breweries are tending to focus more on their seasonal releases rather than core brands.

Secondly, breweries are coming out with “session” beers in all types of styles. This could very well be a response to the palate fatigue we experience when drinking full flavoured (and high alcohol) craft beers all night. Instead of grabbing six different 6% abv brews from different companies, you might prefer six 4.5% session IPAs so you can still drink flavourful beer all night without getting too drunk and having the bitterness of 30 different hops sitting on your tongue for the next two days.

And finally, the growing popularity of prepackaged mixed packs in the LCBO and beer store. This is a hypothetical win/win, you get still six different beers but all from the same brewery so they are able to make more money on one sale.

These are all perfectly reasonable solutions to selling beer in an increasingly saturated market. But I feel there is some responsibility on us as consumers to recognize the efforts of those breweries who are making really amazing beer, and it’s not exactly what you might call “brand loyalty”.

As a craft beer drinker I cannot be loyal to one brewery, let alone one beer. I am loyal to craft in that I try to support local industry while also drinking interesting and flavourful beers. So in order to ensure that my favourite breweries stay in business I suggest that craft beer drinkers express their appreciation for the hard work that goes into the beer we drink. I don’t just mean tweeting and instagraming what you are drinking, this helps but it is not tangible. If you find a beer that you like, make sure you are vocal about it and not just on social or to your beer nerd friends, but to the people who have control over the purchase of that beer, your server or the cashier at the LCBO. These are the people that the managers are asking, “what sells well?” If you tell them you like it, they may suggest it to another table or customer, and then when the manager asks, they will tell them to order more. If you don’t tell them, they will move on to the next new thing because that is what craft beer drinkers want right?

Thanks for reading! I hope this has inspired you to put in a little extra effort into your small talk during craft beer purchases.

Cheers!

BC’s Wheelhouse Brewing Co.

The following is a post in our ongoing welcoming of guest writers to the Bottomless Pint.  Find out more about Dylan in his bio below the article.  


Prince Rupert, a small fishing town of about 13 thousand people in Northern BC and home to Wheelhouse Brewing Company. Opened in 2013, The Wheelhouse set to fill a void that the small city was missing and they did just that. Walk into the cozy brewery and you’ll get the instant feeling of community. Fishing décor, dim lighting, open doors and the sound of strangers having conversations provides the perfect environment for a small-town brewery aiming to be everyone’s go-to drinking spot.

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Whellhouse Brewing Co.’s expansion being built

The Wheelhouse came together when Craig, the head brewer at Wheelhouse and a few of his friends (now partners in the brewery) decided to try homebrewing for the first time. Like many novice homebrewers do, the boys bought some kits from Dan’s Homebrewing Supply in Vancouver, owned by the late Dan Small. The beginners began their brewing experience with a grain/extract batch of Pale Ale.  Eventually the homebrewing lead to conversations about starting their own brewery and planning, without an actual timeline, began. The homebrew meet ups turned into business conversations over a few beers and slowly, a business plan was pieced together.


Fast-forward to 2016 and Wheelhouse Brewing Company is doing just fine. Owned and operated by Kent, James and Craig, three of the guys who began their homebrewing experiences together. The brewery was the winner of Prince Rupert’s 2013 Rookie Business of the Year and Canadian Beer Awards Bronze Medalists in the smoked category.
I met with Craig at Wheelhouse Brewing Company. He was nice enough to share some words with me during the end of his brewing day in order to get a more in depth look at the plans for the brewery and himself as a brewer.

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Craig, head brewer at Wheelhouse Brewing Co.

Craig became more invested in the brewing aspect of the brewery than the others and continued on as the head brewer. He currently brews about 5-6 batches a week on the 4-hectolitre system, qualifying them as a nano brewery at the end of each year. Currently the two most popular beers brewed by Craig at the Wheelhouse are the Flagship Pale Ale and Gilnetter Golden Ale. The First Mate White IPA being his personal favourite of them all.
Craig spoke on the expansion plans of the brewery. Currently only open to the public Thursday through Sunday, he prefers not to be in everyone’s way while he brews on the other days. The current expansion being built will hopefully be finished by mid spring, allowing for more brewing and drinking space.
Fairly limited with what yeast they can currently handle at the brewery, Craig expressed that the expansion will allow for him to begin experimenting with new beers, possibly integrating some Belgian styles that he enjoys to the brewery.  Amongst the current trend of craft breweries making beers simply to push the envelope and potentially losing sight of quality, it’s important to note a few points that were said to me by Craig during our conversation.  “I don’t need to take over the world,” He said when discussing the current state of the craft beer industry, “I would rather brew everyone’s go-to beer”. The boys at Wheelhouse are very well in tune with their current market and aware that people are not requesting the newest and most complex styles in Prince Rupert, however they plan to keep introducing newer styles to their market step by step.

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The menu at Wheelhouse Brewing Co.

Thankfully for them, not everyone is looking for the newest sour or aggressively hopped IPA. The Wheelhouse Brewing Company is consistently producing quality beers that people can rely on every time they drink them and hopefully with the expansion plans, the brewery will be able to introduce new varieties while still remaining consistent to their locals.
Nearing the end of our conversations, Craig was nice enough to give me an early taste of a Saison he’s been working on before its release. It has since been released and did very well in the uncharacteristic heat Prince Rupert experienced this Summer. We shared a beer and wrapped up our conversation as a truck was arriving to pick up some kegs, which Craig loaded himself.
Wheelhouse Brewing Co. has kept us beer geeks sane with sporadic and very limited cask releases. Most of these casks contain ingredients local to Prince Rupert, keeping the hometown vibe alive and creating a product truly unique to Wheelhouse.


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Dylan Palozzi, fresh out of Brampton, ON, quickly fell in love with the world of beer a couple years ago. He spends his time cramming as much beer knowledge as he can, in hopes to one day know a thing or two. Currently living in Prince Rupert, BC, a small fishing town on the north-west coast. He is passionately working as a CYW, rolling around on his skateboard and seizing every opportunity he gets to explore new beers and places.  Find him on twitter here.

Bar Hop Brewco to host Beer Dinner with Stephen Beaumont to celebrate book release

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Holy beer pairings!  Just as I was reading about this on Twitter, I recieved this over email!  As if anyone needs more reasons to attend BarHop Brewco.  Thanks a lot, Matt.

This looks fantastic.  If you’re a beer nerd in any capacity, I highly recommend you attend this.  Well-respected beer writer and traveller Stephen Beaumont will host a beer dinner on October 4 at BarHop Brewco!.  Tickets available here.

 


On October 4 beginning at 6:30 pm, Bar Hop BrewCo at 137 Peter Street presents a four-course beer dinner hosted by Toronto beer luminary Stephen Beaumont to celebrate the release of his ALL NEW, completely revised and updated second edition of THE WORLD ATLAS OF BEER, co-authored with Tim Webb.


unnamedThe new WORLD ATLAS OF BEER is a richly illustrated and comprehensive guide that kicks off in Europe and travels through the Americas and Asia before ending in the Middle East and Africa. Beaumont and Webb are tireless beer travellers who in this newly revised and expanded edition add coverage of nations such as Poland, Switzerland, India and China to fully updated information on beer lands both traditional and untraditional. In total, close to one hundred countries are covered, so that with this ultimate companion in hand readers can explore the best beers the world has to offer.

The dinner at Bar Hop BrewCo on October 4 will be the first beer dinner Stephen has hosted in Toronto in over a decade! He will relate stories about the creation of the new ATLAS, share insight into the changing nature of the world of beer today and generally talk about everything beer-related, all while sharing an outstanding four-course dinner designed by Bar Hop BrewCo chef Mark Cutrara and expertly paired by Stephen with an array of exciting and delicious international beers. After dinner, Stephen will stick around to chat and sign copies of the new WORLD ATLAS OF BEER.

The dinner tales place at BAR HOP BREWCO on Tuesday, October 4, beginning at 6:30.

Tickets are $75 (including all taxes & gratuities) and are available online at www.universe.com/worldatlasofbeer.

Pre-release copies of THE WORLD ATLAS OF BEER will be available for the reduced price of $32, tax included.

 

WIN Tickets to ‘For The Love Of Beer’ with Jim Koch

Toronto Beer week is in full swing! During this wonderful week full of amazing events showcasing the beverage we truly love, Samuel Adams (Boston Beer Brewery) will be throwing their ‘For The Love of Beer’ event with the unique opportunity to meet Jim Koch.samadamslogo

Join us in Toronto, Ontario at “For The Love Of Beer”, a Toronto Beer Week Event, and enjoy a night of premium craft brews, beer infused appetizers, and live entertainment, with an appearance from Jim Koch. We’re going to be serving some truly unique, small batch craft brews straight from the Boston Beer Brewery, as well as our Samuel Adams classics. The evening will be a celebration of beer, joining the Toronto beer community with one of the world’s most renounced craft beer influencers.

Bottomless Pint will be giving away 10 pairs of tickets for tomorrows event! All you have to do is tweet @bottomless_pint and @SamuelAdamsCA using the hashtag #FORTHELOVEOFTO and tell us about your love for beer!

Didn’t get a chance to give the tickets? The first 30 people to go on the site (http://www.samueladams.com/TorontoBeerWeek) and use this specific code upon check out get $5 off the ticket price: BOSTONLAGER

See you there!

The 5 Events We Will Be At This Toronto Beer Week

Image result for toronto beer week

Ah, Toronto Beer Week.  It’s the most wonderful time of the year!

There are tons of events to be found this week, from tap takeovers, to beer dinners, to awards shows – there’s something for both the grizzled beer veteran and the fresh-faced newcomer to the Toronto beer scene.  The full event list can be found here!  Italic text denotes the events as described by those running it.  

As much as we love beer and all the amazing events there are to attend, we simply cannot hit them all!  With that said, we wanted to select a few events – one per night of the week – that you’re likely to see one of us at this week.  Keep an eye out for myself, Matt, Beth, or Victoria at any or all of the events below and be sure to say hi!


Monday, Sept 19 – Toronto Beer Week Industry Pub Crawl

Junction Craft Brewing and three Toronto bars have teamed up for a Monday to remember!  (be sure to buy a beer for Beth, this event lands on her birthday!)

Toronto’s BEST Industry night Pub Crawl begins at the Queen and Beaver Public House at 8pm Monday, September 19th with a special Cask Ale offering from Junction Brewery. We will be hitting up Duke’s Refresher as we continue the pub crawl. Then on to the Antler Room at The Loose Moose to finish off the party. Admission is free. Come thirsty!


Tuesday, September 20 – GLB x Rainhard Tap Takeover @ The Wren

Two of our favourite breweries, GLB and Rainhard, have got together in what will sure be hoppy glory – with a full tap takeover and the first ever GLB x Rainhard collab suprise beer on tap, we’re almost guaranteed a great time.  Look out for Mike and/or Matt, as well as a ton of ther friendly and familiar faces!

Great Lakes Brewery and Rainhard Brewery are teaming up to take over the taps at The Wren!

Each brewery will split the taps, including a special collaboration beer that all parties will brew.

Start time 4pm.

Beer list to be announced closer to the date of the event.

 


Wednesday, Sept. 21 – Baseball, Beer, and Brewery Tours

lfwed

The Great Left Side is an ESB, collaborated on by Left Field, Great Lakes, and Side Launch – and we can’t wait to get our hands on some!  Left Field exemplifies some of the friendliest and most captivating hospitality at their east-end brewery, and you just may spot all 4 of us Bottomless Pint writers out for this tasty, tasty event.  This, of course, is only two days after the release of Left Field’s Vermont IIPA, Laser Show, so hopefully they have a bottle or two left for us…

Join us at the brewery on Wednesday, September 21 to celebrate Toronto Beer Week. Enjoy a day full of beer, food, baseball and free tours. No reservations, just show-up and enjoy!

Festivities include:

– Tapping The Great Left Side at 11 am, an ESB brewed in collaboration with Great Lakes / Side Launch / Left Field

– Toronto Blue Jays vs Seattle Mariners showing in the Tap Room with full audio

– Arepa Republic Food Truck will be serving up delicious eats from 4-8pm

– FREE Brewery Tour starting at 6 pm

 


Thursday, September 22 – The Golden Tap Awards

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The Golden Tap Awards are Ontario’s most democratic beer awards, handed out every year as voted by the public!  Voting closed September 18, but we look forward to hearing about the winners in beer, breweries, beer-related activities, and most important to us, beer writers! Our friend, originally-Toronto-based-but-now-lives-in-London writer Ben Johnson is attempting to three-peat (having won the last two Golden Tap Awards for writers in a row), so we look forward to either basking in his defeat (maniacal laugh) by another deserving writer, or to raising a glass to his win (we’ll get you next year, ya haircut)!  Look out for us here and say hello!

The gala awards event to hand out the Golden Tap Awards will be taking place on Thursday, September 22nd, 2016 as part of Toronto Beer Week at beerbistro (18 King Street East) in downtown Toronto.

Our event will feature an all-Ontario craft beer festival as we announce the winners.  Doors will open at 5pm, where you will be able to try sample sizes of all the beers available.  The awards show occurs at 8pm, and after the show all beers will be available in full pints.  Admission is free and no tickets are required.

We hope to see you at the Golden Tap Awards as we reveal this year’s winners and enjoy the best beer Ontario has to offer!

The Golden Tap Awards are presented in 2016 by the Ontario Craft Brewers.


 

Friday, September 23 – Taps Of The West @ Wickson Socialwest

Lots of love for the west this year at TBW – and it doesn’t stop here, as Rainhard, Junction, and Henderson take over the taps at the Wickson Social just off of Yonge St.    What a great party for a Friday!  Look out for all 4 of us here too.

Join us at The Wickson Social for the second stop on the Taps Of The West Tour! Junction Craft Brewing, Rainhard Brewing Co. and Henderson Brewing Co. are taking over the Wickson’s back room taps to bring you exclusive small batch brews!


Did we miss an event or get something wrong?  Tweet me @beermostly, or all of us @bottomless_pint.   See you at Toronto Beer Week!

Sexism & Beer

The following is a post in our ongoing welcoming of guest writers to the Bottomless Pint.  Find out more about Susannah in her bio below the article.  


It starts with the feeling of being invisible.

After several attempts to join the conversation going on immediately around you, to no avail, you realize your attempts are futile. You could say anything right now and it would go completely unheard and unacknowledged. Or, conversely, the ground could open up and swallow you whole and, unfortunately, still nothing. Because you are a woman… a woman at a beer event. 

It doesn’t matter how many articles about beer I write, how many free media passes to beer events I get, or how many facts I spout off about Brettanomyces lambicus, the fact remains that most people (women included) working behind the taps at beer events completely ignore my existence and choose to only speak to, engage in conversation with, acknowledge or even make eye contact with my (male) fianceé. I can’t tell you how angry and disappointed this makes me. First of all, in the words of our Prime Minister as well as, you know, common sense, it’s 2016! No matter what the scenario this behaviour is unacceptable, but since I don’t have enough years left in my life to write about all of the feminist travesties happening around us constantly, let me, for the moment, focus on my experience as a woman in the beer industry.

Let me begin by saying that I know for a fact that I’m not alone in my experience, and that far worse happens to women who are more deeply entrenched in the industry, brewers, brewery owners, etc., but someone else’s experiences don’t negate mine, and I can only speak to my own. Frankly, I am fed up and disgusted with some of the behaviour I have seen, and treatment I’ve received, from people serving at these pricey beer events that people are paying good money to attend.

It is unfathomable to some of these people that I’M the one who earned these media passes and that I, a wittle girl, could be knowledgeable about beer. Every single time this happens, my fiancé makes a point to say I’M the beer writer, and to try to bring me back into the conversation that the third party has decided I’m not worthy of, but by this point we are usually so discouraged and we just move on. This has happened at the booths of some of my favourite breweries, and these are not one-off situations.

The sexism in the beer industry is known to rear it’s ugly head in many different ways. Whether it is me being unable to profile or promote certain breweries because when I try to ask questions about their brews they completely ignore me and talk to the man beside me (penis = beer, didn’t ya know?), or when we order our samples (10% double IPA for me, 2.8% Berliner for him) and they mindfully hand him the strong one (this happens 9/10 times).

Luckily, I’m an aware and confident enough person that I don’t take it personally, rather I take it generally on behalf of all women, which makes me even more rage-y. Let it be known that, as a general rule in life, I believe in giving everyone the benefit of the doubt (I even call it the B of the D in case you needed further proof of my easy-going and understanding nature). But when I’m covering dozens of events over the course of the year, and see the same behaviour over and over again, it’s time for me to get on my soapbox, mainly because I’m 5’2″ so I mean, if I want anyone to see me… Now, do I have sudden urges to turn the tap on them and blast their faces with Sriracha stout? Of course, but where would that get us beside wasting delicious craft beer?

So instead I turn to you.

You, the breweries, brewers, readers, event volunteers, coordinators (… uh, humans?) to stop the cycle, and stop perpetuating the stereotype that women are good enough to sell beer (what half-naked young women have to do with beer I’ll never know, this coming from a former promo model) or be the face of beer (if I see another friggin’ pin up girl or “sexy” cartoon woman on a beer can I’m going to scream, use your imagination, creatives!) but couldn’t possibly actually be knowledgeable on the subject. This way, it can appear to be an inclusive industry, without ever actually having any intention of including women in this world. If we get rid of preconceived notions and perceptions of this former boys-club and eliminate sexism in the beer industry, maybe it’ll spill over to other areas in life, and the world will become a little more equal. (See what I mean? Total B of the D, you may say that I’m a dreamer, but I’m not the only one.)

So what say you? Let’s smash this Pilsner-glass ceiling together and all drink from the same stein, shall we? 

Wait… oh my God… you haven’t heard a word I’ve said, have you? You’ve been talking to the guy behind me this whole time haven’t you?

Sigh.


susSusannah Kiernan is a writer, actress, singer, and comedian who currently resides in Toronto. She has worked extensively in stage, film, and television in Canada and the United States. Her female comedy duo, “L’il RasGALS”, writes and performs shows across the country and regularly
in Toronto, and were nominated for “Best Sketch Troupe” by Now Magazine. In the summer of 2014, Susannah sang back-up for the band Heart at some of their Canadian tour stops. She is also a graduate of the Fashion Management Program at George Brown and is acting as Managing Editor and writer at Chloe Magazine and is a writer for Bev Nine to Five.  Find her on Twitter and Instagram.

PRESS RELEASE: The Return of Samuel Adams Utopias coming to LCBO

The return of the highly-coveted Samuel Adam Utopias is coming to the Summerhill LCBO on September 23rd. If you miss the limted run of the $114.95 bottle of this one of a kind beer you will be able to buy it through the LCBO Vintages Shop Online Wednesday, September 28 at 8:30 a.m.  This 2015 edition of Utopias will go fast. I am personally looking to add a bottle to go along side my 2012 edition of the beer.

To celebrate the launch of Utopias in Ontario, Jim Koch Samuel Adams Founder and Brewer  will be hosting a tutored tasting of a number of Samuel Adams beers, including Utopias, at the LCBO’s Summerhill location at 2:00 p.m. on the day of the launch. He will also join a celebration of Samuel Adams beer at a Toronto Beer Week event called For the Love of Beer. Although Utopias will not be available to sample at this event, beer fans will be able to meet Jim and sample several Samuel Adams beers not typically available in Canada. For the Love of Beer starts at 7:30 p.m. on Thursday, September 22 at 99 Sudbury.

Full Press Release Below


FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

LIMITED RELEASE OF SAMUEL ADAMS UTOPIAS ARRIVING AT THE LCBO SEPTEMBER 23
Samuel Adams Founder and Brewer Jim Koch to host tutored tasting in Toronto prior to launch

TORONTO, ON (September 7, 2016) – On Friday, September 23, the LCBO will release a limited number of bottles of Samuel Adams Utopias. A total of 700 bottles of the highly-coveted beer will be available both in-store and through the LCBO’s Vintages Shop Online at a price of $114.95 per 710mL bottle.

In-store, 350 bottles will be released for sale to the public at the LCBO’s Summerhill location (10 Scrivener Square, Toronto) at 4:00 p.m. on September 23. The remaining 350 bottles will be sold through the Vintages Shop Online beginning the following Wednesday, September 28 at 8:30 a.m.unnamed

For beer fanatics, Samuel Adams Utopias has become one of the most sought-after beers on earth. Meant to be savoured like a fine cognac or port, Utopias is known for its extraordinary flavour profile; wood, toffee, cocoa, raisin and maple aromas contribute to the distinctive flavour, which includes notes of molasses, earthy wood, dates, and light smoke, nuts and toffee. Utopias is a blend of batches, some of which have been aged for more than 22 years in a variety of barrels at Samuel Adams’ Boston Brewery. This Utopias release is 28% ABV.

To celebrate the launch of Utopias in Ontario, Samuel Adams Founder and Brewer Jim Koch will be hosting a tutored tasting of a number of Samuel Adams beers, including Utopias, at the LCBO’s Summerhill location at 2:00 p.m. on the day of the launch. A total of 24 tickets are available for the tasting at a cost of $75 each. The ticket also guarantees the right to purchase one Utopias bottle before its general release at 4:00 p.m. Tickets for this experience go on sale tomorrow, September 8, through helloLCBO at 1-800-668-5226.

While Koch is in Toronto, he will also join a celebration of Samuel Adams beer at a Toronto Beer Week event called For the Love of Beer. Although Utopias will not be available to sample at this event, beer fans will be able to meet Jim and sample several Samuel Adams beers not typically available in Canada, including Cinder Blonde Gratzer, Grumpy Monk and Chai Saison. For the Love of Beer starts at 7:30 p.m. on Thursday, September 22 at 99 Sudbury.

In summary, beer lovers should mark the following dates and times on their calendars:

Thursday, September 8 (8:30 a.m.) Tickets to tutored tasting with Jim Koch (including the opportunity to purchase one bottle of Utopias) go on sale through helloLCBO at 1-800-668-5226 (limit of 2 per customer).
Thursday, September 22 (7:30 p.m.) For the Love of Beer with Samuel Adams Founder and Brewer Jim Koch at 99 Sudbury Street. Tickets and information available at http://www.samueladams.com/TorontoBeerWeek.
Friday, September 23 (2:00 p.m.) Jim Koch will lead a tutored tasting of Samuel Adams beers (including Utopias) at the LCBO Summerhill location.
Friday, September 23 (4:00 p.m.) Utopias released for sale to the general public at the LCBO’s Summerhill location (350 bottles available, limit of one per customer). Jim Koch will be available from 4:00 p.m. to 6:00 p.m. to meet with Samuel Adams fans and sign bottles.
Wednesday, September 28 (8:30 a.m.) An additional 350 bottles of Utopias released to beer fans across the province through the LCBO VINTAGES Shop Online (note that pre- registration with the VINTAGES Shop Online is required for telephone or online purchase, limit of one per customer).

For more information on the Utopias launch, customers can contact the LCBO through helloLCBO at 1-800-668-5226.

ABOUT SAMUEL ADAMS UTOPIAS
Beer collectors and connoisseurs already know Samuel Adams Utopias is unique among beers. Utopias is an uncarbonated blend of batches, some of which have been aged in different wood barrels for more than 22 years. The 2015 blend was aged in single-use bourbon casks from the award-winning Buffalo Trace Distillery.

With an alcohol content of 28%, Utopias is best enjoyed as a two ounce pour in a snifter glass at room temperature like a cognac or fine port. This latest batch has notes of fig, chocolate, molasses, tobacco and spice with a subtle sweetness and a deep, rich, malty smoothness.

Samuel Adams Utopias is considered by some beer collectors to be the culmination of the art of brewing. The 2015 batch produced less than 10,000 bottles, of which the LCBO is offering 700 for sale.

Rainhard Brewery Releases Gold Medal-Winning Sweetback’s Milk Stout

Image care of @rainhardbrewing on Instagram

Whoa, whoa.  In case you have never had Jordan Rainhard’s award-winning Sweetback’s Milk Stout – it is now available at the Rainhard Brewery at 100 Symes Rd. in the Stockyards – the real news here is that it is going to be available year-round.  Thank you, based Jordan, for your awesome beer and what I’m sure is difficult brew-schedule-movement that allows us to get tucked into stouts right as we round the corner into fall!  Full press release below, folks.

 


TORONTO, ON: This Thursday, September 1st marks the return of Sweetback’s Milk Stout to the Rainhard Brewing taproom and bottle shop and to good beer bars in Toronto and throughout Ontario. It’s the first release of this beer since winning the Gold Medal in the Stout category at the 2016 Ontario Brewing Awards.

Milk Stout is a traditional beer style unique in its use of lactose, an unfermentable sugar, to add sweetness. Also known as Sweet Stout, it’s the alternative to the Dry or Irish stout. Our take on the style is creamy and easy-drinking, with notes of cocoa and cold-brewed coffee, and sits at 5.25% and 25 IBU.

With this release, Sweetback’s will be part of Rainhard Brewing year-round lineup, along with Armed ‘N Citra Pale Ale, Unfiltered Pilsner, and Kapow! IPA.

About Rainhard Brewing Co.

Located at 100 Symes Rd. in the Stockyards, one of Toronto’s last standing industrial areas, Rainhard Brewing showcases the craft and passion for developing our signature brews in a friendly, welcoming bar setting. We have designed our event space, taproom and bottle shop in the heart of our brewhouse. Once a refinery, our facility has been completely renovated with sandblasted walls, exposed ceilings and a glass paned store front. When you visit our brewery, you will be able to enjoy a fresh glass of our hand-crafted brews surrounded by the brewing vessels, fermenters and aging tanks and see firsthand the brewing process and the devotion that goes into making all of our small-batch craft brews.

Awards:

2016 –   Lazy Bones IPA, Gold Medal, Canadian Brewing Awards

Hop Cone Syndrome IIPA, Silver Medal, Canadian Brewing Awards
Sweetback’s Milk Stout, Gold Medal, Ontario Brewing Awards
Nosbeeratu Black IPA, Silver Medal, Ontario Brewing Awards

2015 –  Best Newcomer to the Beer Scene in Ontario, Golden Tap Awards


 

The ABCs of success to Steam Whistle’s Roundhouse Craft Beer Fest

Photo credit Mike Palmer

August 13th & 14th is the return of Steam Whistle’s Roundhouse Craft Beer Festival (RHCBF); a summer must. Hosted in Roundhouse Park in Toronto, the festival embodies the laid-back, friendly nature synonymous with Ontario’s craft beer scene. Come experience the flavours from over 40 craft breweries and over a dozen gourmet food trucks as they share their bests in suds & bites.  Tickets are available at http://www.craftbeerfest.ca/.

Photo credit Jeff Rogers

Here’s your #RHCBF warm-up  a.k.a the ABCs of success to the Roundhouse Craft Beer Fest.

 

Appreciate: With + 40 craft breweries it’s tempting to over-indulge in sudsy deliciousness. Remember it’s not a race. Pace yourself and appreciate the flavours & the atmosphere, because what other festival can you bring a blanket, find a patch of grass and relax as you soak it all in?

Photo credit: Mike Palmer

Be strategic: While a high IBU may be your go-to brew, it may blow-out your taste buds. It’s best to start by getting a feel for the breweries and their offerings (any limited editions?). Then make a plan – start off with lighter beers such as Steam Whistle Pilsner or blonde ales, then head into the darker ales from ambers to stouts. Save those Double IPAs and high-hopped brews for the grand finales.

Conquer your fears: Don’t be afraid to break the mold, be bold and step out of your comfort zone. If you’re committed to one style, try that style from a few breweries so you can appreciate their subtle (or big) differences.

Photo credit: Mike Palmer

Drink water: Stay hydrated; match a water for every beer. Not only does water keep you hydrated it also helps cleanse your palate leaving you ready for the next taste. Complimentary waters stations are available at the #RHCBF.

Photo credit: Mike Palmer

Eat, drink and be merry: Live by this rule! Eat first then worry about your thirst! With over a dozen food trucks to choose from, there is sure to be something to satisfy any craving. Start your day with a good meal and snack in between to ensure your day isn’t cut short.

Photo credit: Jeff Rogers

Find a friend: Or make some new ones. Take the opportunity to chat with brewers and learn about their craft. Not sure what to try next? Ask fellow patrons for their recommendations!

Photo credit: Mike Palmer

Get dressed: It’s an outdoor festival, be sure to dress for the weather (whether rain or shine), bring a hat and keep the SPF coming.

HAVE A BLAST! And check out the full listings of breweries at www.craftbeerfest.ca