Brewer's Blog

Brews News

Monday, May 3, 2010

All is right with the world of beer, although you never guess it given how quiet it's been on our blog here.

Over the past few weeks, we've been on a whirlwind tour of all points so I'll try to sum it up best I can.

A.L.E.S. Club NHC 1st Round Qualifier Competition
For the last few years we've sponsored the Sour Ale category at this national homebrew competition held at our old stomping grounds in Regina. This year's competiton took a decidedly relaxed position to judging the beers and there were some real quality entries as per usual.

As a beer judge, sometimes you get to taste some really amazing beers and sometimes you have to troubleshoot problems for homebrewers. Thankfully, we had more of the former, and you can see the level of competition getting stiffer as the event matures. We specifically sponsor the Sour Ales category to get people brewing these "throw caution to the wind" syles, and I dig em, even if I'd probably never unleash the bacteria required to brew them in my own brewery.

You can check out my Sunday morning lowdown on the event and our wicked brewers dinner at Beer Bros. right here. Chef Malcolm's a delight to work with and the type of guy you just wanna drink beers with. Great attributes for a passionate chef!

Brew Ha Ha @ the Winter Club
We had a great meal at the Winter Club for the annual Brew Ha Ha event. Fortunately, we were able to tag team the night and sample some beers out at a Scotch tasting right across the hall from the dinner. Fun was had by all, and designated drivers were certainly a requirement for the scotch folks.

In other news:
Turns out that Fritz Maytag has sold his stake in the Anchor Brewing Company. While this isn't news in itself and may seem too far away to make a difference, it is important to understand the maturity of the craft beer market in the good ol' USofA.

Mr. Maytag has been a tireless champion for craft brewing in general, and as such has earned his stripes (so to say) and his retirement in fine form. Congrat's on sticking to your guns, Mr. Maytag and saving a piece of brewing history for another generation to enjoy.

Wheat Chiefs:
The Weizen Heimer is making waves at the Liquor Marts and further, with plans to ship a few out the Alberta way. If you're in Calgary this weekend, don't forget to stop by the Palomino for the Transistor 66 Rock and Roll Weekender. 2 nights, good bands, no kidding. Something tells me they won't be doing any line dancing or "booty shake competitions" at their Palomino. Not like Winnipeg's Palomino at all, there's probably less cougar print halter tops to boot. WOOO!

Closer to home:
Chris has tasted his brew from the barrels and says he's getting close to wanting to release it. We'll keep everyone updated as to when so they've got fair warning. In the meantime, we'll have to get some labels together for it and get another brew ready for the empty barrels.

It's interesting to note how many of the $ellout bottles are making their way across Canada and the world. If you check out the reviews for it on Ratebeer or Beeradvocate, you can see people from everywhere are enjoying it. For those who aren't, they've proved my reason for brewing it in the first place. It's fun to brew beers that don't arbitrarily fit beer geek definitions. Does it fit a style, no. Is it an enjoyable romp in the beery hay, yes!

Tank you, tank you, tank you:
A brewery upgrade is in the works with a couple new quadruple sized unitanks in production as we speak courtesy of our friends at Newlands in Abbotsford, BC. It'll be about 4 weeks before the new tanks come online and will help to ease the summer pressure and demand for the St. James Pale Ale a bit.

Ontari-ari-o:
Still waiting for the LCBO to release the shipment of beer that's been pre-ordered and pre-paid for by our beer fans in "central Canada" <--- that makes me smirk every time I hear it. Sorry, I couldn't resist. In actuality, it's only been booked in their system since April 12th, but it seems longer given that in other provinces we can ship out an order on Friday, and have fans drinking it by the next weekend. I have a feeling that beer fans in Ontario feel a lot like Mr. Miyagi trying to catch houseflies with chopsticks. Every once in a while they get one, and yet somehow, it still feels like beginners luck.

Let's hope everything shakes out before too long. In the meantime I plan on standing around like Daniel LaRusso, waiting...

Cheers,
Brewmaster Dave

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