Wednesday, December 27, 2017

Niche Brewing Opens This Week in Fredericton, NB

Photo from Niche Brewing
(Fredericton, NB) - Announced back in September Niche Brewing have cleared the new brewery legal hurdles will have regular beer releases coming in the new year. That being said they just kegged their first beer, which was the second brewed on their 2 BBL system. Single Origin is a Coffee Sweet Stout is 5% ABV that is described as "a dark beer brewed with lactose powder to give it a lingering sweetness to balance the roast and chocolate character. After primary fermentation, we added freshly-roasted coffee from Jonnie Java Roasters in downtown Fredericton, to really boost the coffee aroma and flavour in the beer."
They hope to be delivering kegs over the next few days, and will post via social media on where you can find them on tap. Niche asks if you’re eating or drinking out to ask if they are on tap, and maybe even requested it if it wasn’t, you’d be doing them a favour to get the word around about a new business.
They will have two other beers ready to package shortly.

North Brewing Releases 2017 Saison de Pinot

Photo from North Brewing 
(Halifax, NS) - North Brewing is releasing its collaboration with Benjamin Bridge for a second year. They are releasing Saison de Pinot 2017 edition on Thursday December 28th. This year’s version was made with Pinot Meunier must from the vineyards of Benjamin Bridge in the Annapolis Valley. North says the tasting notes are "honeydew, strawberries, tart orange, rose hips and a light funk". 
The bottles will be available at both North Brewing retail locations and on tap at Battery Park Beer Bar

Tusket Falls Brewing Opens for Business

Photo from Tusket
Falls Brewing
(Tusket, NS) – Tusket Falls Brewing opened its doors on the week end . The owners of Nova Scotia's latest craft brewery are Melanie Sweeney and Jeff Raynard, who returned to the area after working a decade in Alberta. 
They received help on their first brews from Ryan Moncrieff, head brewer at Ribstone Creek Brewing,  and Aaron Hogarth, owner of Hogarth Malting. The brewing duties for the 20 BBL brewing system will fall upon Jeff and his sister Brandy Landry. 
Tusket Falls Brewing is located at 20 Slocomb Crescent in Tusket, about 15 minutes outside Yarmouth off highway 103. It features a taproom, retail space and will have 2 decks in the summer. 
Photo from Tusket Falls Brewing
The beers currently available include Crack of the Rock Golden Ale 4.8% ABV, Twice Barrel Shotgun Oatmeal Stout 5.5% ABV, Hanging Oak Red IPA 6.3% ABV and Smoked Kiack Smoked Ale 5.6% ABV. 
Look for one of their cans to hit the NSLC in February and another one in the April timeframe.

Wednesday, December 20, 2017

Garrison Brewing Releases Three Beers

(Halifax, NS) - Garrison Brewing released three beers over the week end. First off, they are releasing their 2017 version of Spruce Beer. Made with local spruce and fir tips are harvested from Meander River Farms to re-create this historic east coast beer. The evergreen mix adds bold aroma and crisp bitterness while Blackstrap molasses creates a sweet, dark complexity. This year rather than releasing it in the NSLC they will have more limited of a distribution. They will be selling it at their retail store as well as at Liquid Assets in the airport. There will eventually also be some distribution to Newfoundland and Labrador. 
Secondly, they have been sitting on Bourbon barrels filled with last year very popular Imperial Chocolate Stout, Wintervention, for 11 months now are finally releasing the finished product The result is a deliciously complex brew with flavours of bourbon, cacao, cherry, vanilla and coffee. Perfect for the cellar or gifting to the beer lover in your life. 
Lastly, they have Leroy Imperial Brown. This beer was a collaboration with Sawdust City Brewing and is finally bottled, labelled, and ready to go. It boasts a smooth aroma and flavour of molasses bread and milk chocolate with a subtle molasses and dark chocolate finish. 

Uncle Leo's Brewery Releases Barrel Aged Smoke'n Oakum

Photo from Uncle Leo's Brewery
(Lyons Brook, NS) - Uncle Leo's Brewery released their first ever barrel aged beer, Smoke'n Oakum. It is a tribute to the Phantom Ship of the Northumberland Strait. Smoked Porter was aged in a Glenora Whiskey barrel resulting in beautiful flavours from the whiskey and the oak. On sale at the Brewery and select private stores, the 200 L produced of the 9.2% ABV ale will disappear fast. 

Tuesday, December 12, 2017

North Brewing Marks Battery Park's 2nd Birthday With Beer Release

Photo from North Brewing
(Halifax, NS) - North Brewing will mark Battery Park Beer Bar's 2nd birthday this Saturday, December 16th, with the release of their barrel aged 2016 Saison de Pinot. This beer was originally made in the fall of 2016, using estate pinot noir grape must from Benjamin Bridge. They tucked away 220 L of this beer in a red wine barrel from Benjamin Bridge, and let it age for 4 months. The beer was then conditioned in the bottle. They packaged 258 bottles that will be available in both the Halifax and Dartmouth shops. 
On Saturday Battery Park Beer Bar will offer bottle pours of both the 2016 Saison de Pinot and the 2016 barrel-aged version as well as the 2016 Saison de Pinot being available on tap.

Tide & Boar Announces First Bottled Product

Photo from Tide & Boar
(Moncton, NB) - Tide & Boar Brewing announced its first bottled beer and what a beer it is. It is a Sour Ale was first soured with lactobacillus, aged for three months in a freshly emptied Napa Valley Pinot Noir French Oak barrel, and then placed on top of 30 lbs of New Brunswick raspberries. Fermentation was finished with brettanomyces and finally bottle conditioned. It is an acidic beer with the raspberries standing out and blending well with the Pinot Noir and oak. The Brettanomyces gives it the funky characters you need in a beer like this. This is an extremely limited release with only 200 - 750ml bottles being produced and they will only be releasing 100 bottles this week end to the public.
The ale will be available this Friday, December 15th, at 5 PM in Duo cafe. Depending on sales this beer will be available after for sale 'to go' during regular Cafe Hours.
It is priced at $18.99 a bottle and they will also have a deal on, buy a bottle and a shirt for only $28.99.

Monday, December 11, 2017

Tatamagouche Brewing to Release Feronia American Brett

Photo from
Tatamagouche Brewing
(Tatamagouche, NS) - Tatamagouche Brewing has a new beer coming out in 750 ml cork and cage bottles on December 14th, Feronia American Brett (5.1% 20 IBU). Named after the Roman goddess of untamed nature, this American Brett is a blend of three strains of wild yeast. Fermented with 100 % brettanomyces, aged on organic plums and bottle-conditioned, allowing this beer to naturally carbonate. They say the result is dark fruit and classic funk, a description befitting this wild goddess. 
There are 650 bottles that will be in the brewery as well as a few going to the private stores in Halifax. Tatamagouche also have some kegs that will find their way to a few bars in Halifax next week.

North Brewing Releases Baldrsbräu Rustic Saison on December 14th

Photo from North Brewing
(Halifax, NS) - North Brewing Company will be releasing the next installment in their Finite Series on Thursday December 14th. Baldrsbräu is a rustic saison made with hay and chamomile and conditioned in the bottle. North describes it as "Herbal, floral, delicate and refreshing". There are 720 bottles packaged and will be available at both bottle shops and on tap at Battery Park this Saturday.

Upstreet Craft Brewing Releases Details on Flipside Series

(Charlottetown, PE) - Upstreet Craft Brewing announced the Flipside Series that will introduce regular one-offs that provide fresh new flavours, ingredients and beer styles. These single-batch releases will be sold in their standard 500 ml bottles and be available in the taproom and at liquor stores across Prince Edward Island, BUT once they're gone, they may be gone for good.
The first release in the series is Amber Saison, 5.5% ABV and 20 IBU, that will be hitting shelves on Thursday, December 14th. It is described as hazy amber in colour, a dry finish with a subtle vinous character.
"Combining classic and contemporary techniques and ingredients, Flipside Amber Saison maintains a firm malt physique while still delivering the soft sensations of spicy, fruity and floral hops. UK Archer and French Triskel hops in tandem with PEI Vienna malt help deliver this yeast driven delight."

Friday, December 8, 2017

Picaroons Announces the Return of 12 Beers of Christmas

(Fredericton, NB) - Picaroons Traditional Ales announced the return of the 12 Beers of Christmas. Starting on December 12th at noon they will start tapping a new beer each day through December 23rd at The Picaroons Roundhouse, The Brewtique in Downtown Fredericton, The Picaroons General Store in Uptown Saint John, and The 5 Kings Restaurant & Picaroons Brewhouse in St. Stephen. Everyday they will announce the beer, learn each one by keeping your eye on their Facebook, Instagram and Twitter feeds for the updates. 

Backstage Brewing released Black Dog Stout

Photo from Backstage Brewing
(Stellarton, NS) - Backstage Brewing released Black Dog Stout. Backstage says the stout is smooth, chocolate, nice roast, coffee aroma and finish. This beer is a collaboration with King of Cups in Stellarton using Nova Coffee’s Black Dog espresso, malt from a new Maritime malt house and hopped with Chinook hops. 

Upstreet Craft Brewing Announces Million Acres Series

(Charlottetown, PE) - Upstreet Craft Brewing has announced Million Acres Series. Million Acres will bring you unique barrel-aged and farmhouse-style ales, hand-bottled and bottle-conditioned in very limited batches. 
The first release in the series is Twice Hopped Sour with Centennial and Chinook. It was released today and is only available at their taproom. This is the first beer brewed to use PEI-grown barley from Spring Valley Farms as the base 2-row malt. The beer was soured in the kettle using a house-grown culture started from a handful of that grain a couple of days before the brew day. At that same time, their hop farmers at Moose Mountain Hops and Southam Farms in New Brunswick were harvesting their 2017 crop of Chinook and Centennial. Upstreet asked for a favour and were able to get enough dried and pelletized to pull off the brew day just in time. After fermentation was over, they added dry-hops at double the rate of any beer they’ve ever done before. 
Upstreet says "As with all of our Million Acres beers, we encourage you to gather more than one bottle. Enjoy it right away if you so chose, and then on a special occasion, crack into another bottle, and we really mean crack with all your might because those corks are in there tight!" The beer is 5.5% ABV and 15 IBU. 

Trailway Brewing Releases Emerald Pilsner

Photo from Trailway Brewing 
(Fredericton, NB) - Trailway Brewing released their newest beer today. Emerald is their take on a New Zealand Pilsner. Brewed with New Zealand Motueka and Wakatu hops and conditioned on fresh lime zest. Trailway says "Upfront juicy-candied-lime character coming from zest as well as the hops, with a tropical fruit element. Toasty and bready thanks to complex pale malts. Reminiscent of a key-lime pie". They also say it is dry and crisp like a Pilsner while maintaining a full body and creamy mouthfeel. The 5% ABV beer has limited cans at the brewery only and will also be on tap for pints and fills.

Wednesday, December 6, 2017

Brasseux d'la Côte Opens New Facility

(Tracadie, NB) - L'Acadie Nouvelle reports Brasseux d'la Côte opened it new facility. The one million dollar project required the support of 43 investors from the Acadian Peninsula of New Brunswick, as well as loans and grants. For now, three beers are brewed and customers may purchase growlers for filling. The brewery is hoping to have cans available before Christmas to be sold on-site and at ANBL stores.
There is no plans to have a tap room at the brewery, only retail sales with a plan for rapid expansion growing from its current five fermenters to 15 by the end of next year producing 200,000 liters of beer by 2018. The project in Tracadie began about five years ago after the establishment of a beer cooperative in the area.
Read the full article here

Where to Start When Starting Up A Brewery

In 2016, I was the lucky recipient of The Pink Boots Society’s scholarship to Oregon State University’s Craft Brewery Start Up Course — a course geared towards highlighting important factors to consider when planning a brewery.

While most people who are planning on starting a brewery are aware of the importance of making beer that people want to drink, all too often small details are overlooked and end up costing a small business more time and expense than necessary. OSU’s five-day course is geared towards drawing attention to these small details and providing solutions to problems that arose for professionals who have had success (or failures) in the industry.

I should probably point out at this point, that I wasn’t exactly new to brewing when I attended the course. I started working at my first brewery in 2008 and in 2009 I completed Brewlab’s Diploma of British Brewing Technology. Since then I have worked in multiple departments of breweries (usually as a brewer) in both Australia and Canada and over the years have learnt a lot about what works and what doesn’t. Despite these lessons, I still found a course like OSU’s — which taught us how to set up a brewery in detail and what details not to over look in the setup process — invaluable. With so many tasks to be completed when planning a brewery, it can be extremely easy to overlook something.

With this in mind, I decided to write this article last week, when I heard that there are over 20 breweries in the planning process here in Newfoundland, the Province where I too am planning on starting a brewery. While I am excited that there will be more craft beer to access in a currently limited market, it does make me wonder: how many of these breweries are being started by people who actually know what they’re doing, or at least have made the effort to hire someone who does? 

I’m not trying to discourage anyone from following their dreams here, I’m just simply trying to point out that this industry isn’t for everyone. If you’re planning on doing it to get rich, do yourself a favour and contact your Provincial government to see what you’re going to be paying in taxes. Once you’ve picked yourself up off the floor, and you still want to start a brewery, I implore you to educate yourself. 

If you’re business minded (and you probably should be if you’re starting a business), the best advice I can give you is that the more research you do, the more money you’re likely to save yourself down the road. There are however a few more reasons you should apply yourself and here are my top three: 

1. Protecting the environment: Let’s be honest — making beer can produce a lot of waste and use a lot of resources. If waste is not handled correctly, it can cause environmental damage that may result in large fines and you’ll be destroying our beautiful planet. Failure to protect the environment makes your brand look bad and this will cost you in sales.
You’re going to have to do a bit of research on environmental concerns, long before you even choose your location. Septic tanks are a bad idea for breweries and the alternatives can be costly. This could make a lot of locations unsuitable. It’s unfortunate, but it’s realistic. Your water sources also need to be considered. Sure, your location may have great water for making beer, but will there be enough of a supply for you and the people surrounding you for many years to come?

2. Protecting your employees: As a result of having many friends in the brewing industry, this is a subject very dear to my heart. Over the years, I’ve heard of quite a few nasty accidents in breweries, some resulting in deaths. I’ve witnessed a couple of bad accidents and have missed work as a direct result of a workplace accident. My accident, like so many, could have been prevented by proper planning and execution of building a cellar. Unfortunately in my case, shortcuts were made and I ended up with a back injury from a fall. The sad thing is, I’ve lost count of how many brewers I’ve met with back conditions now.
I understand building a brewery is costly —VERY costly — so is an injured employee who you will be liable for.
Are you and your employees well trained? Is everyone aware of the dangers of working in a factory? Handling chemicals? Working with pressure? Working with hot liquor and surfaces? Working with CO2? Carbon monoxide? Confined spaces? Machinery lock outs? Forklifts? I could go on, but if any of this is new to you, you need to get yourself up to speed. People’s safety is reliant on it.

3. Protecting the craft beer industry; Craft breweries around the the world have been dedicating their time and money to producing quality products, which are drawing consumers over from domestic beers made by large breweries with big marketing budgets.
Not many craft breweries have the luxury of big marketing budgets and as a result it is extremely important for their product to do the talking.
Consumers unfamiliar with the craft beer market may very well lump all craft beers into one category — so if they continually encounter poorly produced beers, they may very well start to avoid craft beers all together, making it hard for the craft brewing industry to gain market share.
While you might be able to sell poorly produced beer at the start, the novelty will fade and repeat customers will be scarce. Don’t expect your beer to sell well simply because it’s made locally.

There’s clearly a lot to research and develop when starting any business, but I feel like all too often this R&D is not sufficiently carried out for small brewery start-ups. There’s a lot more to this process than I have outlined in this article, but it’s a place to start and if you’re still not put deterred, do yourself a favour and get yourself some experience in the industry (no, home brewing doesn’t count) and invest in a brewing education.

For more information on courses go to:

Nardia McGrath
Nardia McGrath has been involved in the craft beer industry for close to 10 years. She received her Diploma of British Brewing Technology from Brewlab in 2009 and since then has worked in breweries both here in Canada and in Australia. She was an associate judge at the Australian International Beer Awards and is currently studying for the Beer Judging Certification Program (BJCP).
She is currently in the process of looking for investors for her own brewery, ‘Pig and Pepper’ in Newfoundland.

Tuesday, December 5, 2017

PEI Brewing Releases Ice Boat Barrel Aged Imperial Stout

Photo from PEI Brewing
(Charlottetown, PE) - PEI Brewing Company has returned Ice Boat Barrel Aged Imperial Stout to its shelves. Ice Boat is 6.9% ABV and the result of aging their dark, roasty brew in freshly retired Tennessee whiskey barrels. They say "Aging smoothes the flavours of the stout while the whiskey barrels usher in aromas and flavours of vanilla, toasted coconut, caramel and – yes – whiskey".
Available in the Taproom right now and in PEI Liquor stores later this week.

Roof Hound Brewing Introduces Dooflicker Tropical Brown Kettle Sour.

Photo from Roof Hound Brewing
(Hillgrove, NS) - Roof Hound Brewing introduced Dooflicker Tropical Brown Kettle Sour. Brewer Les Barr says it is "Mashed with shredded coconut, and kettle soured with house made coconut milk yogurt cultured with locally sourced 100 year old bacteria and fermented with five strains of yeast". It is available now in draft and early December in bottles. 

Monday, December 4, 2017

Pump House Brewery Releases Winter Threesome

(Moncton, NB) - Pump House Brewery released the Winter Threesome at its restaurant and Fill Station. The three pack consists of Winter Warmer 8.1% ABV, a traditional malty-sweet English style that is brewed and spiced with cloves, nutmeg and cinnamon. Deep dark amber coloured with a big malt presence and lingering spicy notes. Scotch Ale 5.5% ABV, is deep brown-amber coloured with a rich smokey aroma. Flavours of caramel, chocolate and peated malts. With it's silky smooth, lightly smokey, roasty character. Dopplebock 8.4% ABV, The colour is a very dark brown with a reddish tint, the foam is beige, thick and long lasting. The phenolic taste from the high alcohol content is barely noticeable, an intense maltiness, which is accompanied by a pleasant dark chocolate taste, ties it all together. 

2 Crows Brewing To Release Linnea Imperial Stout

Photo from 2 Crows Brewing 
(Halifax, NS) - On December 6th 2 Crows Brewing releases its interpretation of a Russian Imperial Stout using a lot of flavours that are used in Finnish cuisine — salty liquorice and cardamom. Linnea used a bit of sea salt, liquorice root, star anise, and cardamom pods as well as about 95% Finnish malt too, from Viking malt. 
It is the Finnish 100th year of independence this year (100 years independent from Russia).Brewer Jeremy Taylor lived briefly in Finland where his brother currently lives there with his family. The beer is named after Jeremy's niece. Linnea is 9.1% and 62 IBU and was brewed back in late August, to allow it time to mellow and condition for its release.

Friday, December 1, 2017

2 Crows Brewing and Kilter Brewing Release Hawaiian Ivory

Photo from 2 Crows Brewing
(Halifax, NS) - 2 Crows Brewing are releasing their collaboration with Kilter Brewing of Winnipeg this week end. Hawaiian Ivory is a milkshake IPA brewed with coconut, banana, lime, pineapple, mango, lactose and vanilla. It was brewed at the beginning of November will Kilter was in town at 2 Crows. In addition to being here at the brewery cans will also be sent out to Manitoba Liquor Mart to help generate a bit of excitement for Kilter..Hawaiian Ivory is 6.3% ABV and 49 IBU.

Meander River expands and Releases Perry Noel

Photo from
Meander River Farms 
(Ashdale, NS) - Meander River Farm‏ and Brewery expanded its facility adding a large cider making component. They released Perry Noel to celebrate. It is 5.5% ABV with 100% Nova Scotian Pears from Davison Farm in Falmouth Nova Scotia. Aromas of earth, crisp grass notes and delicate tropical fruit. Light, dry palate with a natural, unsweetened expression of Nova Scotian pears. Get it now at the farm.

Trailway Brewing Drops a Duo

Photo from Trailway Brewing
(Fredericton, NB) - Trailway Brewing have a couple of new beers out today. First off is Good Times in the Fridge an 6% American IPA, named after all the wonderful hours they spent in the walk-in moving and rotating kegs, cans, and hops. Brewed with a ton of fresh Aussie Galaxy and New Zealand Motueka hop they say "No way around this one, it is straight up fruit juice. Very tropical, minimal bitterness, pillowy mouthfeel, extremely drinkable."
Photo from Trailway Brewing
Parallel Session Ale is Trailway's newest winter seasonal and has started seeing distribution this week. "Absolutely crushable at 4% ABV and moderately hopped with all mosaic hops - the result is a super balanced session ale that showcases an incredible 100% German pale-malt grain bill and the freshest mosaic hops". They say not to expect their typical hop bomb, but rather subtle tropical fruitiness with a solid crackery malt profile.