One aspect of the craft beer scene that has been missed during the past twelve months of blogging is the Canadian beer industry outside of Ontario and Quebec. Thanks to provincial regulations, bringing in a beer from another province is just the same as importing alcohol from another country. Craft beer is booming on the East and West Coasts, but you usually have to travel in order to find them (the other options being private orders, where you get to wait in line at the LCBO with licensees for a beer that you hope is good).This problem goes beyond Ontario – ever seen a beer from B.C. in the corner stores or supermarkets of Quebec? The American craft beer industry can be talked about as a whole, but here we must separate our provinces as distinct entities. Everyone I know compares the Ontario craft beer to American, not Canada versus the U.S., because the brewers in other provinces are so independent of each other. This problem is exaggerated in Toronto, where Buffalo is a short hour or two drive compared to a four-hour flight to Edmonton.
But luckily I can amend that problem in a small way thanks to a bottle of Garrison Hop Yard Pale Ale that was gifted to me by a Bar Toweller that had recently come back from the East Coast. Considering the name and the fact that it is dry-hopped, it was no surprise that this beer features many of the lovely qualities that hops can depart. Floral and citrus aromas, plus a touch of resin. A grapefruit explosion is the first taste, followed by a touch of peach. A sweet start that is balanced out by a finish of pine and grassy hops. A nice toasted malt backdrop helps anchor the beer. The body was a bit light, but it was a delicious beer that made me wish for a second (or third) bottle.
Today: 340mL. Year-to-date: 159.19L.
Sorry for the delay in finishing off these posts – a minor family emergency got in the way. The “last” post will be up today or tomorrow.