Monday, December 16, 2013

A beery good weekend

I suck at puns.

I picked up a whole whack of beers on Friday. Unfortunately for this blog, I spent more time enjoying them than taking notes for review. So, in keeping with the blog theme of "half-assed" reviews... here we go!

Kentucky Bastard Imperial Stout - Nickel Brook

I really enjoy this one. It was very dark brown with a creamy head. Aromas of coffee, smoke and a hint of rye were present. Not surprising since this was aged in Kentucky bourbon barrels. The taste followed pretty much the same, dark chocolate, coffee, light smokey taste, and a hint of rye. My wife wasn't too keen on the rye flavour, despite enjoying a sip of a rye sample at the LCBO earlier that evening. As with many that I picked up, this one was 10% ABV.

Black Magic Woman - Hornbeer

Another stout for the evening, and another 10% ABV.

This one poured a dark brown with a brown creamy head. Aromas of smoke and coffee were one again present. The taste was a smooth, dark chocolate with a light smokey finish.

A couple of others that I picked up, but didn't keep notes on were...

China Wall Vienna Dark Lager - Lake of Bays Brewing Company

It was very good. Crisp, clean, lager. I should really pick this up again and review it.

Trappistes Rochefort 10 - Brasserie de Rochefort

One of a few non-stouts in the Friday haul, and I loved it.

I still have four other bottles of assorted beer beverages sitting in my fridge for this Friday. I'll try not to enjoy them as much so I can keep notes. :)

Thursday, December 12, 2013

Dominion City Brewing Co. finds a home

New craft breweries opening in my city is always an exciting time.

When they're going to be located within walking distance of where I live, it makes me ecstatic. :)

Dominion City Brewing Co. has found a home at 5510 Canotek Road and they get the keys on January 1st, 2014. If you haven't heard about them before, you can read a recent article about them at Ottawa Beer Events.

Welcome to the neighbourhood!

Beyond the Pale grows beyond expectations

Check out the interview with Shane Clark and Robert McIsaac from Beyond the Pale at here.

Beyond The Pale

It looks like they're planning to expand again, and the LCBO may also be in their sights.

I would love to see find their tasty beverages at the LCBO.

Wednesday, December 11, 2013

2014 Gatineau Winter BeerFest

Thanks to a friend at work, he let me know that the 2014 Gatineau Winter BeerFest (aka Festibiere d'Hiver) will be January 31st and February 1st.

This year it will be held at the Canadian Museum of Civilization and is also listed as an official Winterlude event.

Tickets for the 2-day event are $10 and more information can be found on their web site at

Wort Blending

If you've read my posts before, you know that I currently use Festa Brew's pasteurized wort for my home brew.

This afternoon I discovered that there are other styles of Festa Brew wort that aren't even listed on Magnotta's web site.

To date, the list that I know about is as follows:

  • Pale Ale
  • Bock
  • Wheat
  • West Coast IPA
  • Double Oatmeal Stout
  • Red Ale
  • Brown Ale
  • Blonde Lager
  • Continental Pilsner
  • Cream Ale
  • Mexican Lager
  • Dry
  • Czech Pilsner

If you know of any others, let me know.

During my search for a more complete list, I came across a Festa Brew wort blending matrix to create other styles:

I'm anxious to try a few of them, but it'll also mean making a double-batch of whatever I choose, unless I measure half of each 23L bag. If you've ever poured one of those bags into a pail, you know that won't be an easy (or clean!) job.

Friday, December 6, 2013

I've been published... and other beer stuff

A little while ago, I was contacted by someone from TAPS Magazine for permission to use one of my beer photos in the Nov/Dec issue of TAPS. The photo in question was one of my many Instagram #beerporn photos. I gave permission in exchange for credit and a courtesy copy of the issue that they offered.

Yesterday I was contacted by the same person, apologizing for the fact that my name somehow got dropped from the photo credit during the printing process. I work in the graphics industry with software that prints. I know that things like this do in fact happen. They apologized and said they would publish a correction in the Jan/Feb issue, as well as list me as a Contributing Photographer in the issue credits. They sent me snaps of the correction and credit. Pretty sweet deal. :) I'd post them, but since the issue isn't out yet I'll hold off.

The issue that my photo was published in finally arrived today.

That's my Pink Fuzz. :)

In other news, my son and I racked the Double Oatmeal Stout yesterday. We had a bit of trouble with the hose to transfer the beer, but aside from that it went OK. The hose we used seemed like it may not have been cleaned properly from the last time we used it. We cleaned and sanitized it the best we could last night, so my fingers are crossed that we didn't compromise the brew.

My very low-tech home brewery, for now.

This evening, I drove out to the Orleans DeFalco's and picked up one of their two remaining Red Ale Festa Brew malt bags, and we started that brew this evening. This is the first time we've got two going at the same time. The Red Ale should be ready by Boxing Day if we stick to the the "normal" schedule.