I often feel that the Granite Brewery is the sad, oft forgotten member of the Toronto/Ontario brewing scene. It’s also mostly their fault: they have no LCBO or Beer Store distribution; they are located at Eglinton and Mount Pleasant; and not available at most bars around the city. I’ve only had a few Granite encounters before, having visited their brewpub once and trying their beer on cask a couple of times. But my experiences have been good, so I was looking forward to revisiting their brewpub, a trip that was a long time coming.
Soph and I ordered the Granite IPA (left) and Granite Best Bitter Special (left), both on cask. We essentially split them, so that’s why both are mentioned. The one-inch foam for both beers was surprising, given that they were from a cask. The IPA was slightly hoppy, but had a very watery feel. The BBS provided a nice balance between hops and malt sweetness, but also came off very watery. All in all, it was a rather lackluster trip that did not live up to my previous Granite experiences, making me think that something was off with the batches. I’ll definitely be heading back up there when the Gin Lane Ale is available (try keeping me away from a barley wine) and hopefully things will be better at that time.
Side note: There’s something terrible about brewpubs that makes them seem really touristy. Perhaps my expectation of them is that they should appeal to the serious beer drinker. (Whatever that means, I know it sounds snobbish and elitist. Guilty.) The food is never special and sometimes down right atrocious. In Toronto, the Mill Street, Granite and 3 Brasseurs pubs all feel wrong. Dieu Du Ciel in Montreal has it right – make it about the beer, not about getting overpriced food and putting butts in seats. It felt like a pub, not a bad restaurant.
Today: 500mL. Year-to-date: 7.27L