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Local craft beer news and reviews

Hold on to your Tartan Pants!

  Scottish things are usually pretty fun. From what I hear, the weather is mostly crappy in Scotland, so the locals have invented creative ways to pass the time: Kilts – (some) of them choose to wear a skirt without underwear on cold, damp days. Crazy. Bagpipes –... read more

Salut, Montreal!

Montreal is a magical city, as most people know. There are more restaurants per capita in Montreal than New York City. Montrealers are known for their fashion, passion and creativity, and joie de vivre. (They have BYOB picnics at city parks!) Lesser-known to me was... read more

Chai love this ale

WILD NORTH GOLDEN CHAI ALE – LAKE OF BAYS BREWING COMPANY   I’m declaring it: winter cold season is over. Can I get a hell ya? I wish I knew a statistic that showed how Canada’s productivity takes a nose dive every winter from the time we spend holed up on our... read more

Four Fathers movin’ on up

THE STARTER SESSION IPA, FOUR FATHERS BREWING The folks behind Four Fathers are proof some of the best craft beers in the province are coming out of small places. Rockwood, Ontario isn’t known for a whole lot other than its annual Farmer’s Parade of Lights, when... read more

Holy smokes, this is something

BAMBERG SMOKED LAGER – ROYAL CITY BREWING This week, we found a new beer that really blew our lids. We haven’t stopped talking about it since our first taste earlier this week, so we went back today to get more. Royal City’s Bamberg Smoked Lager (a smoked German... read more

It ain’t heavy, it’s my scotch ale

WARD HEAVY, ROYAL CITY BREWING The Scottish call it ‘wee heavy,’ and it’s an ideal beer for these grey, cold, rainy days when spring still feels a long way away. The folks at Guelph’s Royal City Brewing must have had miserable March weather in... read more

With Strong Patrick, you can!

STRONG PATRICK IRISH-STYLE RED, BEAU’S  I believe Strong Patrick might be the perfect beer for March 17 festivities, with friends or by yourself cheering on the green in front of a good Christy Moore concert video. Here are 10 reasons why: 1. It has an ultra cool... read more

It’s a Fem Ale(s) thing

Twenty women walk into a bar to drink craft beer. It’s no joke. It’s the Fem Ales revolution. This past Sunday I had the pleasure of joining several other beer-loving ladies at The Grand Trunk Saloon in Kitchener, where we raised a glass to womanhood and well-crafted... read more

Three cheers for Royal City’s Tripel

TRIPEL ENTENTE – ROYAL CITY BREWING CO. It’s always great to see old friends. And even better when they bring you beer. This weekend, we recently had a visit with a baller named Melissa, who made it big and moved to the city. (By baller, we mean that she played... read more

Unleash the Jutsu

BELLWOODS BREWING, JUTSU AMERICAN PALE ALE It’s no secret some of the best beers being brewed in Ontario right now aren’t ones you can find on LCBO or Beer Stores shelves. Bellwoods Brewery’s Jutsu pale ale is a fine example. I had two 12-ounce glasses of it at... read more

Battle of Guelph…Er, Waterloo

WATERLOO 1815 RYE SAISON – INNOCENTE BREWING COMPANY It had been one of those weeks – the kind that have you start dreaming about Friday evening on Tuesday morning. The toddler battles seemed overwhelming and I needed to give myself something to look forward to, to... read more

I saw the light with Elora Borealis

ELORA BOREALIS, ELORA BREWING CO. I found Elora Borealis on a recent night out in downtown Guelph, just about the time I was losing all hope I’d be drowned in an endless sea of Alexander Keiths and Sleeman Original. Nothing against those inoffensive beers, but when... read more

Beer and wings – what a combo!

One of our favourite watering holes is The Woolwich Arrow Pub, or The Wooly, as frequenters call it. One of our favourite nights to go to The Wooly is wing night – every Tuesday! So on a cold wintery night, we walked down to The Wooly in search of (what we... read more

Yulebier glad this survived the holidays

YULEBIER (BARREL-AGED JUNIPER RYE ESB) – TWB The holidays have come and gone. Our pants are a bit tighter, our wallets much lighter, and the snow is a mess of slush. In these early days of January, many folks are returning to work in the post-Christmas fog, having to... read more

A Winter Ale for a winter afternoon

Today is last day of holidays before we rise in the dark tomorrow morning, and head into the office. Gone will be the days of eating and eating and eating, and drinking beer at 2pm just ’cause we can. These holidays have been filled with many a brew. And today... read more

A cream ale a hundred years in the making

HERITAGE CREAM ALE, TOGETHER WE’RE BITTER Over a century ago, the Preston Hops Yard was one of the biggest hops farms in Canada. But few people have tasted beer connected to this former 70-acre plot in Cambridge for a very, very long time. But thanks to a special... read more

Hockley Holidays Uncle Billy!

HOLIDAY TASTER PACK – HOCKLEY VALLEY BREWING CO. Greg’s Uncle Billy is an awesome guy. He’s a retired truck driver — a straight shooting guy’s guy and rides motorcycles. He’s a one-type-of-beer kind of guy. I think everyone has an Uncle Billy that’s pretty... read more

Warm up with this local Irish stout

100 STEPS STOUT, ROYAL CITY BREWING If you’re like me, these first cold blasts of winter get you thinking about hibernating indoors, and stalking the fridge for darker, more roasted-tasting beers. One of the better local stouts on offer out there is Royal City... read more

The Les Paul of IPAs

HEADSTOCK IPA – NICKEL BROOK BREWING CO. It’s Friday night. The Celtics are playing the Raptors. The Raptors are struggling; they’re down by seven at the half. I pop a top on a Headstock IPA. The Raptors catch fire and dominate the third quarter 33-18.... read more

Ransack the LCBO for this Hamilton-made IPA

COLLECTIVE ARTS BREWING, RANSACK THE UNIVERSE Like a lot of people, I had to learn to love India Pale Ales. IPAs, the best-selling style of craft beer brewed in North America, are bitter and demanding at first blush. There’s a reason why my wife acts like she’s had a... read more

Not so hot for this amber ale

I know Hockley for their location, not their beer.  Growing up in Creemore, and now living in Guelph, Hockley Valley sits pretty much right in the middle. So on a recent cold Saturday night, upon opening the fridge, I found a can of Hockley Amber. (Writing for a beer... read more

‘Tis the Saison

KING STREET SAISON – BLOCK THREE BREWERY The scene: it’s Friday night and the kids are in bed. Dishes are done and there’s an hour and a half before one of the grownups falls asleep. We open the fridge, and ‘ta-da’ (as our 2 year old likes to exclaim), there’s a... read more

A ‘stout nouveau’ to warm the winter

SHINNICKED STOUT, MUSKOKA BREWERY As beer tastes become increasingly refined, and ingredients are better understood and described by brewers, discerning drinkers can have a blast dissecting the minutiae of whatever they’re tasting, and comparing tasting notes with... read more

These ‘session’ ales miss the mark

GOLDEN BEACH PALE ALE, SAWDUST CITY BREWING So-called session ales are popping up all over Ontario’s craft beer scene, and that should be no surprise. With the success of Muskoka’s Detour session beer, other brewers have scrambled to emulate the mildly hoppy, yet... read more

Über sour

RASPBERRY UBER BERLINER STYLE WEISSE – NICKEL BROOK BREWING CO. I recently discovered Nickel Brook’s Raspberry Über Style Weisse, and while it’s not quite as game-changing as the similarly-named discount taxi service, this Über is unique. I’ve tried some sour beers at... read more

Stonehammer branches out with one-off IPA

ANDREWS 2ND WISH, STONEHAMMER BREWING Tucked out of sight in a commercial plaza on Guelph’s west side, it’s sometimes easy to forget Stonehammer has been brewing away in our own backyard for many years. An established micro-brewer that tends toward more traditional... read more

This is a slam dunkel

DUNKEL – STONEHAMMER BREWING The latest treat to come out of the Mercer tickle trunk (a.k.a our fridge) was a beautiful bottle of Stonehammer Dunkel, a dark German lager. I’m usually a big fan of European beers, and this one has a pretty castle on the label, so I was... read more

Autumn meh?

AUTUMN ALE – ROYAL CITY BREWERY When you find yourself in the vicinity of Royal City Brewery, say, at the Grotto or Gawley’s Performance Centre, it always pays to poke your head in and see what’s new on tap. We happened to be in the plaza for a... read more

This naughty neighbour satisfies

NAUGHTY NEIGHBOUR – NICKEL BROOK BREWING CO. Setting aside Donald Trump, we should admit America has given our world a few wonderful things, including rock n’ roll, southern barbecue and baseball. Craft beer fans might add to that list American-style pale ale, a... read more

Wellington shakes things up

ARKELL BEST BITTER – WELLINGTON BREWERY   In an era when every craft brewer is trying to out-do one another with bigger, bolder, more in-your-face flavours, Wellington’s Arkell Best Bitter had always remained a throw-back craft beer, an old-school, roasted,... read more

Hibiscus say-what?!

HIBISCUS SAISON – ROYAL CITY BREWING CO. The first time I had Royal City’s Hibiscus Saison, I was at a December birthday party for a one-year-old girl. Apparently, she knows her beer. Her parents had a keg of the Guelph-made saison out on the front porch, and... read more

For the love of chocolate

CHOCOLATE MILK STOUT – WELLINGTON BREWERY Having two very young children at home means my husband and I get our thrills by visiting the local craft beer section at the LCBO. Greg’s latest trip was right to Wellington Brewery itself, however, where he... read more

A fine roasted rye pale ale

FIRE IN THE RYE Double Trouble Brewing Co. If our cat Peete cares about which brand of kitty litter we buy, he doesn’t show it. I’ve heard horror stories about cats dumping all over the house if their owners switch litter. Ours could care less. Owners are a different... read more

A cool American Pale Ale, from Kitchener

HARBINGER AMERICAN PALE ALE Descendants Beer & Beverage Co. You know those times when beer tastes really good? I mean, really good, so good you can’t remember a beer ever tasting that good? That was my beer at Guelph’s The Albion Hotel on a recent Wednesday night... read more
Our Rating System

favicon2   One mug | Is there anything else in the fridge?

favicon2-2-beers   Two mugs | A lot like a lot of others

favicon2-3-beers   Three mugs | Above average

favicon2-4-beers   Four mugs | Must try

favicon2-6pack   Six pack | Can’t get enough!

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