If Grand River Brewing was located in Toronto, they would probably be known as one of the premier breweries in Ontario. While they have still gained considerable respect, operating in Cambridge has also let them fly under the radar (the first time I tried a Grand River beer was probably twelve to fifteen months ago). Instead of a brewery like Mill Street that has a mix of good and bad beers, Grand River is consistently putting out excellent brews and doing so in styles that aren’t always loved by beer geeks (lagers, amber ales and pilsners). With some of their beers now getting distribution through the LCBO, perhaps it is time for Grand River to come out of the shadows.
The Grand River Russian Gun Imperial Stout is probably one of their finest brews, but that just might the imperial stout lover in me talking. It poured almost black with a tiny, cream coloured head. Dark fruits really dominate this beer, mixed with some dark chocolate. The taste is closer to an old ale until the extremely bitter finish. The mouthfeel is more slick and oily, rather than a dense, chewy imperial stout. It is obvious that there is some alcohol in the brew, but it lingers nicely in the background. The beer was also really fresh (bottled March 14th), so it will probably improve over the coming months as the flavours become integrated.
Today: 500mL. Year-to-date: 76.64L.