Peculiar Pumpkin (William Street Beer Co.)

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Origin: Cobourg, Ontario, Canada

Beer Style: Pumpkin Ale

Alc./Vol.: 7.0%

IBU: 19.5

Malts: Pale Malt, Munich Caramel and Biscuit

Hops: Cascade, Czech Golding

Suggested Glassware: Tulip, Goblet, or Snifter

Suggested Serving Temperature: 10° Celsius

Availability: William Street Beer Co., Cobourg Ontario

This review features a beer from William Street Beer Co. , which is located at 412 William St in Cobourg, Ontario. On my recent trip to the brewery, I was lucky enough to go on a day in which they were releasing their pumpkin beer Peculiar Pumpkin. The beer is a strong, English style spiced ale, which Sean the brewmaster describes as a traditional pumpkin pie in a glass. The bottle displays well designed art, similar to all the other beer the brewery produces. Peculiar Pumpkin came in a 650ml bomber style bottle, which I poured into my William Street branded glass.

When poured in a glass, the rich dark copper colour of the beer appeared. The beer had a beautiful cloudy appearance to it which at first look gave the beer an appearance of warmth. Peculiar Pumpkin had a bold, rich pumpkin note to it. As the beer warmed up, I noticed the spices the beer offered. As I lifted the beer to my nose, I could smell notes of nutmeg and clover, with a hint of allspice. The beer did not have a powerful aroma to it, but it was the right mixture of sweet and spiced.DSC02806

At first taste, I experienced rich pumpkin that had a sweet texture and flavour to it. The pumpkin was not overly sweet, like many pumpkin beers out there, but was a rich creamy taste with a hint of caramel. As the beer settled, it slowly faded from sweet, to a nutmeg and spiced finish. It was a great transition from the sweet to the spiced finish, which was very balanced. The mouthful of this English style pumpkin ale was pleasant. I experienced a medium body, creamy beer that was lightly carbonated. Though the beer is a 7.0%, and marked as a strong ale, it was very easy drinking. As the beer warmed up, I noticed more and more spice which just added to the overall taste of the beer.

My overall impression of this beer was amazing! Sean wanted to achieved the traditional pumpkin pie in a glass, and I have to say he hit his target. The beer was a great entry into the pumpkin ale market. It was very balanced and enjoyable. For me, the beer would be a perfect with desert, and of course a slice of pumpkin pie. I definitely recommend this beer, and I suggest drinking it at a slightly below room temperature to truly enjoy the beer.

I give this beer an overall score of 44/50. Be sure to go and pick up a couple to try for yourself. Shoot me a message or follow me on Twitter (@_bottomlesspint) and let me know what you think.

Cheers!

The Northumberland Hill Brewery

During my trip to Cobourg, I decided to swing by the 9 week old Northumberland Hill Brewery. The brewery is located at 1024 Division St, in a small unit just off the main street. Upon arriving at the brewery, I was greeted by two gentlemen, one being Rick Bailey, the brewmaster and owner. Rick, who was very busy helping the flood of customers walking into the retail area of the brewery, was very friendly and was able to talk to me about the brewery and business inbetween helping others.

The brewery has a small footprint but utilizes the area very well. Upon entering, you will notice the bottle fridge, which was full with 5 beer selections. As the brewery is very new, things are slowly starting to come together. The retail area is being built, where they will offer flights, glassware, and apparel. The sampling area was a bar top infront of a large chalkboard which displayed all the brewery news, it also displayed beer that are coming soon and what they are currently sampling. During my time there, I sampled all their offerings, all of which were very different and unique.

When the brewery died down, Rick took me into the brewhouse. The brewhouse uses 300L tanks, which after the brewing process, ends up with about 250L of beer per batch. Though the brewery isn’t large, they have a wide range of beers that they are currently offering, and the list is always growing. Northumberland Hills Brewery (NHB) has truly been found by the locals. During my time there, the customers never stopped coming in, and Rick tells me the brewery was busy all weekend. Its great location combined with their well balanced beers, will surely make for a successful combination.

I wish I had a chance to spend more time there and speak to Rick longer, but my short time there has me wanting to go back. With their ever growing new beers being brewed, you’ll be sure to get something new everytime you head into the brewery. So be sure to head over to Northumberland Hill Brewery and pay the guys a visit, you won’t be disappointed.

William Street Beer Co.

I had a great opportunity to take a trip out to Cobourg, Ontario recently. While in town, I decided to pay William Street Beer Co a visit. William Street Brewery is located at 412 William Street, which is a prime location at the corner of William Street and University Ave. The brewery isn’t hard to miss as you can see the sign, which is high in the air, as you drive down William St. The brewery is located in a old automotive shop, which really suits the brewery well. During my time at William Street, I had the opportunity to be shown around and to speak with Sean Walpole, who is the brewmaster. Sean welcomed me with open arms. Sean was very knowledgeable about brewing, the beer industry and business. I left the brewery having learned a lot from him.

William Street Beer Co is a nice small local brewery. As you walk in the door to the right, you will see the stores two fridges, which house all the beer that the brewery is offering at the time. The fridges themselves have great graphics, which are some of the beer labels, displayed on the sides. The designs are very well done and with everything William Street does is very consistant. Just down the hall, you enter the tasting room, where you have the chance to sample selections of their beers. The tatsting room incudles a bar that runs the length of the room. A garage door, which in the summer, opens up to wlecome everyone into sample. As the tour continued, we ended up in the brewhouse, which is a 3BBL brewing system. The brewhouse is able to brew 300L batches of beer at a time. On the day of my visit, Sean was just releasing their pumpkin beer, Peculiar Pumpkin.

William Street has been open for about 8 months, and like most breweries going through their ups and downs. At first, the brewery was having troubles keeping up with demands for the beer. This forced them to close down for a few weeks to catch up and perfect the beers. Now, the brewery is fully stocked and very busy. While in the tasting room, I had the chance to try 3 of the breweries beers, Red Sky Amber, Cliff Top Pale Ale and Peculiar Pumpkin. All three of the beers were very good and unique. I will review a couple very soon. Sean was very helpful in telling me all about the beers and the process in which they were made. During my hour or so at the brewery, I could see how well William Street fits into Cobourg. There was a steady stream of customers coming in, not only for their new beer offering but for some of their staples, which are the Cliff Top and Red Sky. A lot of the customers that were coming in, Sean knew by name. Currently you can only pick up their beers at the brewery and your able to order a pint at a handful of local bars.

Sean’s main message to me was “We are committed to brewing simple, high quality and hand crafted ales for Cobourg and the surrounding communities. In addition, we make our beer with premium ingredients with preference always given to local, natural or homemade products over extracts, chemicals or shortcuts.” So, if you are ever in the Cobourg area be sure to check this place out and go and pay Sean a visit. You will get great beer and very friendly and knowledgeable service.