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Evidence of How the Beer World Has Changed

From This…

I was at a party this last weekend. Invited by a couple of close friends, but mostly an event where I didn’t know most people. You know what those kind of nights are like.

The evening was fine. I took a couple growlers of homebrew, which seemed to warm up a segment […]

Ola Dubh! Oh My!

I have admitted before that I am quite good at stashing away quality cellaring beer, but that not so great at taking those beer out again to drink. Which means I have too many beer in my cellar.

But I am trying this summer to pull some bottles out and actually drink them. The latest […]

Are Contract Brewers Craft?

Does having a real brewhouse matter?

Yesterday in the Globe and Mail, Ontario-based beer writer Ben Johnson wrote a piece exploring whether contract brewing helped or hindered the growth of craft beer. You can read the original article here.

Johnson offers a very balanced and fair piece, asking questions and letting different people in […]

Vue Weekly’s Beer Issue is Out!

Vue Weekly’s annual Beer Issue is out, available at racks around town and online. The venerable alt-weekly in Edmonton has offered a corner of its magazine to my beer column for over a decade now, but I always get excited when they devote the cover and additional space for beer.

This year I contribute three […]

Beer 101: Graduation Day

You all, simply, have gotten too smart. You know too about beer these days. So, congratulations you graduate!

A couple weeks back Sherbrooke Liquor posted my final Beer 101 column on its website. You can read it here. I started writing Beer 101 back in 2009. The explicit mission was to provide a range of […]

The Ichorous Trinity Compared

Photo courtesy of Oak and Vine

I love side-by-side tastings. They really isolate the effects of a manipulation to a beer. Some are more challenging to operationalize than others.

Blindman Brewing recently released not one, but two barrel-aged versions of its imperial stout, Ichorous. Not long before they also released a new version of […]

An Old Time-y Beer from Olds College

Photo courtesy of somebody on Untapped

I admit I am writing this post so I can type the word “Kottbusser”. It would be even better if I could say it out loud 10 times, it is such a fun word.

What is Kottbusser, you wonder? I am glad you asked. Kottbusser is an historic […]

The Value of Blind Tasting and Other Lessons

This past weekend I served as the Head Judge for the Northern Lands Festival beer competition. For those who don’t know Northern Lands, it is a premiere beverage and food event profiled, exclusively, Canadian wine, craft beer and craft spirits along with some of Edmonton’s best restaurants. The second iteration of the event runs May […]

Swap the Malt? Troubled Monk’s Malt Experiment

Photo courtesy of thebeerdiaries.tv

So lots of breweries engage in hop experiments – swapping out varieties of hops to experience the flavour effect. Most breweries are not so fast to play around with their malt. Malt is the anchor for a beer. It lays down the core flavours that create a beer’s character.

I […]

New England IPA You Say? Yes, Indeed!

The original New England IPA??

A couple weeks back I introduced CBC listeners to a new kind of IPA – new at least for these parts. New England IPA. You can listen to the CBC column here if you wish.

The column was inspired by my sampling of the three-way collaboration brew Troubled Waters […]