The Beer Brief is a round-up of all the local beer-related news and events we think you should know about. Got news brewing? Send it to thalia [at] scoutmagazine.ca and we’ll do our best to include it!
GET SHUCKED | That’s the almost offensive name of Twin Sails’ oyster shucking event, happening this week at the brewery. Participants will get to test their motor skills by learning how to shuck three different types of oysters (a dozen in total) while sipping on three different 12oz glasses of beer. Shellfish, beverages and tools are all included in the ticket price, and you even get to keep your knife as a souvenir. Up for the challenge? Get your tickets here and get shucked!
BEER + A MOVIE | Maybe a relaxing, knife-less beer activity is more your speed? That’s cool. Fraserhood’s beer-forward sports bar, Bells & Whistles, has a weekly (with the exception of special sports event-related interruptions) Sunday Beer and Movie night that might be just your thing. The beer is tasty, the screen is big and the popcorn is free. Past films have included classics like Jurassic Park and The Big Lebowski. Seriously, can you imagine watching either without a beer or two in hand?
BEER LIFE | Here’s a fun beer-related fact for you: Jorden Foss of Steel & Oak holds a degree in Radio Broadcasting. The brewery owner recently handed over this tidbit as a lead-in to his newest venture, a podcast called “Beer Life”, which bridges his love for beer and being behind a microphone. According to Foss, the idea is based on “candid conversations with unique personalities, peeking behind the scenes of the craft beer industry.” A link to the host site can be found here, but you can also subscribe via iTunes, Google, Spotify – the whole online airwave shebang. Currently, the first episode featuring Ben Coli (of Dageraad Brewing) is live on the site, with future slated guests including Brent Mills (Four Winds), Josh Vanderheide (Field House) and Mike Coghill (Yellow Dog), to name a few…We can’t wait to tune in!
BEER DINNER | Surrey’s Dominion Bar + Kitchen is launching a new dinner and beer pairing series called Tap + Table. It kicks off on June 22nd. The first dinner is featuring brews from Steel & Oak (these guys sure are busy!) paired with a five course meal. Dominion’s regular menu focuses on local ingredients with fresh takes on mostly standard fare and, according to their website, the beer dinner’s theme is sticking with their self-described “New Canadian” approach. I’m not exactly sure what that means but I’m guessing it translates into something delicious. Get your tickets here.
LUPPOLO + FRIENDS | The bond of friendship means a lot to the crew at Luppolo Brewing…especially when there’s beer involved! To celebrate the special relationship that happens when two breweries get along, Luppolo is hosting a very special collaboration release night on Thursday featuring beers that have been in the works over the past year. The event is called Amici Della Birra and includes collaborations with Brassneck, Dageraad, Backcountry, Category 12, Coalesce, Temporal and Dominion Cider. Find out more here.
SUNDOWN | There’s only about two months left until Sundown Beer wraps up their stint at Callister Brewing (by our estimation some time in late July). Back in May the beer scene newbies made headlines for winning top prize in the Wheat Beer German Style (Weiss) category at the Canadian Beer Awards & Conference in Toronto. The future seems bright yet uncertain for these pop-up brewers, so pin them down while you still can by enjoying a pint at Callister ASAP. This week they’ll also be at Timber as part of a line-up of nomadic breweries taking over the restaurant’s taps for the noble “Barley Pop Pilgrimage” event. More on that can be found here.
FRUIT BEER FEST | Things are coming together for the first ever Fruit Beer Festival on August 24th, which had to move to a bigger Abbotsford venue (Jubilee Park) due to selling out its old space. So far over a dozen beer collabs have been announced, including some delicious market debuts from Washington’s Dwinell Country Ales and Garden Path Fermentation, plus Ontario’s Nickel Brook Brewing. The festival’s official collaboration is with Kelowna’s Wild Ambition Brewing.
In alignment with the festival’s “anti-establishment” approach, poster advertisements are about as rare as the beers that will be pouring the day of the event (in order to keep the litter factor low), so keep your eyes trained on the event’s website for details as they come together. Also very limited: the amount of time remaining to take advantage of the Early Bird ticket option, which officially ends on June 15th! Get your tickets here. Here’s a bit more about the festival’s offerings and ethos, from organizer Mike Willis: “The scope of the event is to encourage the growth of Farm-direct products to breweries and in their beers. Much like Hopwired, it’s pretty anti-establishment in the sense that I am being very forthcoming to the breweries that they must work with a small and independent farm and use their fruits.”
OKANAGAN | Finding great beer in BC’s wine region has gotten a lot easier lately (see Wild Ambition Brewing, mentioned above, which opened in December 2018). Over the past year or so, the Okanagan has seriously stepped up its beer scene, with a few more brewery openings imminent this summer…In Penticton it’s the award-winning Slackwater Brewing (FKA The Hatchery), which is expecting to open mid-June. Meanwhile in Kelowna, Barn Owl Brewing is shaping up to open its tasting room – which includes a very apropos loft space – in a refurbished 1920s barn in the near future; and Copper Brewing Co. will be opening its doors in its airy, slick new space on Kirschner Road (in the same building as montREALfood diner) sometime this summer as well.