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Posts Tagged ‘Storm Brewing’

For today’s post, my good friend Colin (of Impossibrew) and I decided to collaboratively drink the Brews Brothers Collaboration Mixer Pack recently released by Parallel 49. We also consider ourselves Brews Bros of a sort, so it seemed fitting.

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Unfortunately, Colin lives in Winnipeg, while I’m here in Vancouver. But thanks to the wonders of modern technology we were able to spend an evening drinking over Google Hangouts. In Part 1 – we drink six beers from the P49 box. Here are our thoughts:

House of the Rising Sun – Table Saison – with Dageraad Brewing

Colin – Definitely not very funky. Lacking in body, I think. It’s not often you get a saison that’s 4.5%, which explains the lack of body. There’s basically no hop profile. Actually, that might be why it’s called a table saison and not just a saison.

Bryan – I feel like it’s good but not great. It has a bit of subtle spiciness to it and the basic saison flavours. It does what it needs to be good but it’s almost afraid to get out and try something crazy to differentiate itself.

Colin – The atomic elements of a saison are there, but it’s missing what you would expect to make it great. Like a session IPA. All steak and no sizzle, baby. This is a starter beer. You might go out and mow the lawn, and then come back in and drink this beer.

Bryan – Yes! Which makes it a good choice for us to start off with.

Little Red Rooster – Red India Session Ale – with Bomber Brewing

Colin – That’s not bad. There’s actually a surprising amount of flavour there.

Bryan – Truthfully, I’m enjoying this more than I did the first time too. There’s more hop than I remember.

Colin – I’m impressed how full the malt profile is, considering it’s a session ale.

Bryan – I have to change my expectations with session ales. I know it’s wrong to judge a style based on another style, but I’m still adjusting to it. I keep waiting for a session that doesn’t sacrifice anything in terms of flavour. This seems to come as close as any I’ve tried.

Colin – Hey what song is that? I don’t recognize it. (Note: All the beers are named after songs)

Bryan – (Googles the answer) Wow it’s a Rolling Stones song! (Queue grooving.)

Backdoor Man – Basil India Pale Ale – with Storm Brewing

Bryan – Dirty jokes aside, prepare yourself to be slapped in the face by a heavily spiced Italian dish.

Colin – (After drinking) Honestly, I kinda feel like I want more basil. I know that’s weird, but…

Bryan – What? Really? You aren’t German, you’re Italian. I’m going to start calling you Mario.

Colin – Hah! What’s nice is that the base beer is really good. It’s a really good amount of hops and bitterness. And it balances really well with the basil, this is something I would definitely drink again.

(At this point we spent about 10 minutes talking about how awesome James Walton and Storm Brewing is.)

Bryan – You know what, Storm does their own Basil IPA. I wonder what the difference is between the solo version and this collaboration version?

Colin – That would be an interesting experiment! I’d like to try that.

Bryan – For sure. But as is, this is a great beer. There’s a lot of basil, but I’m totally OK with that. Makes it different, but in a good way. James makes a lot of crazy beer and he knows how to balance it. In general, it’s all up to taste, of course. Some stuff might be too much, but I’m almost always a fan of amping up flavours so I’m totally down with it.

Colin – You know what, now that it’s warming up a little bit. I change my mind, this is just the right amount of basil. I don’t want more now.

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Boom Boom Boom – Triple Hop Belgian Tripel – with Moon Under Water

Bryan – You’ll see that this beer suffers from a bit of a misnomer, in terms of what sort of expectations the name sets. (more…)

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Another year, another great Vancouver Craft Beer Week come and gone. I had the pleasure of partaking in the wrap-up event this past Saturday at the Olympic Village Event Grounds and let me tell you, it was a beauty.

It was a bright, sunny day, and over 70 breweries were on hand to share their hoppy wares with us. If that sounds like a lot…it’s because it is. As much as I would have loved to sample every new and interesting beer I could, it simply wasn’t possible to do so (although I tried).

Vancouver Craft Beer Week Closing Event

Events like this can be a double-edged sword for breweries and beer fans alike. On the one hand, it’s a great way to sample all kinds of awesome beer and hang out with like-minded beer enthusiasts. For breweries, the power of exposure cannot be understated. On the other hand, with so many beers to sample, the variety inevitably wrecks your palate, making it difficult to form a realistic opinion on many of the brews, particularly ones sampled later in the day. This becomes a problem for the breweries as well, how to stand out, how do you make your beer/brand stand out when so many people can’t taste the nuance in your brew anymore?

I think the pros far outweigh the cons, however. Otherwise events like this wouldn’t be so successful, and continue to grow and expand. You can count me as one of the people happy about that.

The List

With regards to the actual beers, I kept a sort of diary on my phone of what beers I sampled and what I thought of them. So without further ado, here’s the list (in no particular order):

Steel & Oak Brewing Co. – Beechwood-Smoked Hefeweizen

S&O is opening up this year just a few blocks from my condo, so I was very excited to see what my possible future watering hole had to offer. Jorden, Jamie and Pete didn’t disappoint with their excellent Beechwood-Smoked Hefeweizen. I admit I was dubious at first – I’m not usually a fan of smoked beers – but this is absolutely one of the better Hefes I’ve tasted. Score one for the new guys.

Steel & Oak Brewing Co.

Powell Street Craft Brewery – Old Jalopy

The 2013 Canadian Beer of the Year. This is one of the best pale ales you’ll find. Though the market is becoming more and more crowded with great competition, Old Jalopy still holds up well.

Storm BrewingOrange Creamsicle, Basil IPA, Imperial Flanders Sour Ale

Brewmaster James Walton is known as a “mad scientist”, and for good reason. (more…)

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