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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 comfortable with their beer choices and not really interested in the craft beer scene. But as you and I know, dear reader, the world of craft beer is exciting, delicious and always changing. And a great way to introduce your Uncle Billy to this magical wonderland is to gift him Hockley Valley Brewing Co.’s holiday Taster Pack.

The trio are all smooth, drinkable and tasty, leaving no hint of scary bitter hops, syrupy alcohol content or cloudiness of some craft beer that can take some getting used to. Pick it up at the LCBO, and at a very competitive price of less than $8 for three tall boys, your Uncle Billy can savour Hockley’s Classic Lager, Dark and Amber beers. Grab a few extra packs for you to sip, or drop some off to your neighbour or colleague who may be looking to earn their craft beer stripes.

The Classic Lager is my favourite of the pack. Smooth, refreshing and balanced in every way you’d want a lager to be. This beer would appeal to seasoned craft beer drinkers looking to enjoy all the taste of a classic lager, as well as newbies. I was pleasantly surprised at how much I enjoyed this lager!

The dark could look ominous to some when poured, but I promise it’s light and delicious, while still maintaining the dark beer roasty flavours of coffee and chocolate. Slightly sweet, but very drinkable, it’s perfect for winter time and pairing with hearty meals.

The amber is milder tasting, which means it landed third on my list. But again, the lighter taste could be helpful to get Uncle Billy to dip his toe in the frothy craft pool.

Here’s how Hockley describes their beer:

Classic Lager: A rare find – this rich, crisp, traditional golden lager is the perfect balance between hops and malt, crafting a beer that is as refreshing as it is flavourful. A true connoisseur’s lager, it’s the ideal choice for those looking for an easy-drinking beer that won’t soon be forgotten.

Dark:  A hybrid of a Northern Brown Ale and a Midlands Mild, with a body tweaked to give it a lighter, more North American appeal. Hints of roasted nuts, caramel, chocolate, and coffee combine to make this award winner one of Ontario’s best-selling craft beers.

Amber:  Inspired by the rich warmth and colour of a Canadian autumn, you’ll experience aromas of toasted malts, warm biscuits, and fresh bread with a delicate caramel finish that ends with the crispness of a spring morning.