One of my good friends Peter, of guest post fame, just took a job near Firefly. In preparation for Sundin’s return to the centre of the universe, we did a little beer shopping on our lunch breaks. It is always fun to introduce a friend to the glorious bounty held within Vancouver’s specialty beer stores. Both of us came home with some tasty treats:
- Bear Republic Racer 5 IPA
- Mill Street Organic Lager
- Westmalle Trappist Tripel
- Green Flash Barley Wine (should I cellar this one?)
- Samuel Smiths Oatmeal Stout
- Thomas Hardy’s Ale 2006 (one for The Cellar)
I recently noticed a full page Mill Street ad on the back cover of Taps and was reminded of my Mill Street quest. I’ve already sampled four of their five bottled brews, notably the Tankhouse and Stock Ales, and more recently their Coffee Porter and Belgian Wit. I enjoyed the Coffee Porter, a Canadian Brewing Awards gold medal winner. I was not as fond of the Wit, which I found to be too flavored by its adjuncts. In any case, I figured I should give the Organic Lager a try.
What struck me about the Mill Street ad was their emphasis on recent awards, which include Canadian brewery of the year. I have the utmost respect for the CBA organizers and judges, who impartially conduct blind tastings. However, I’m wondering if the beer provided by the brewers for the judges is the same bottled beer waiting for consumers on liquor store shelves? I am not accusing any brewery of foul play (I hate the Leafs, I like Mill Street), but I’m sure the breweries see the marketing value in winning these awards. I may be out of line, but I consider this food for thought.