I love porter; it is one of my favorite beer styles. I find porter to be quite easy and enjoyable to drink, which might be due to the moderate alcohol levels and pleasant roasty and chocolate flavors one finds in porter. What I don’t like about porter is its relative scarcity in these parts. I can’t think of one BC brewer that regularly sells six packs of porter. You’ll sometimes find 650ml bottles of porter from BC craft brewers available in BC Liquor Stores, but these examples are often brewed with an additional element such as chocolate, coffee, coconut, or other fruit. While I definitely like these beers, what I’d really like to see is a widely available six pack of quality porter from one of BC’s many fine brewers. In the mean time, Deschutes has recently made its way into BC. Thank heaven for their Black Butte Porter, which is definitely one of my favorite beers! I picked some up from Brewery Creek last week and, with a few friends, made quick work of them. With craft brewing gaining ground in BC, I can only hope that a widely available porter is on the horizon. I’d suck one, or six.
This week, I found three more beers to add to my favorites. The first is Phillips Accusation ale, which I’ve written about before. I’d had it a few weeks previously, but I decided to buy it again because I love a good Extra Special Bitter (ESB). I love ESBs because they are generally more flavorful, with a little more hop bitterness than your typical pale ale, but not as bitter and hoppy as an IPA. I also love India Pale Ale’s, but they can be a bit much sometimes. What puts Accusation Ale over the top for me is the great story behind it. Read my previous post to learn more about what happened with Phillips, as it says on the bottle: “sometimes bitterness comes from frivolous trademark disputes”.
In honor of Canada Day last Wednesday, Innis and Gunn released a special Canadian version of their whiskey barrel aged ale, also now one of my favorites. The Canadian Cask edition was aged for seventy one days in Canadian oak whiskey barrels imported to Scotland. This beer is a strong ale, full of rich malty flavors, and I loved it. This is a seasonal beer, so pick it up at BC Liquor stores and give it a try while it is still available.
Lastly, Brewery Creek recently started carrying Coney Island Lager from the Shmaltz brewery (famous for their He’brew ‘the chosen beer’ brand). This is not your run of the mill lager, it is amber in color and full of flavor. They use eight different malts and six different hops to brew this beer, and the complexity really comes through. I loved this beer and highly recommend it. It is only available at finer purveyors of beer such as Brewery Creek or Firefly and may not be in steady supply, so buy it if see it.
I hope you get a chance to try these beers. Phillips Accusation is also only available at the better stores. It’s a seasonal too, so grab it quick! If you don’t think you’ll enjoy my suggestions, I suggest chatting with the fine people at the better beer stores who’ll surely be able to help you find what you’re after.
I am overwhelmed. The world is filled with far too many breweries that brew far too many delicious beers that I must try. The number of breweries in BC may be relatively small, but I have yet to even try the small number of beers that BC has to offer. With only 55-65 years of life left in my body I am worried that I simply do not have enough time to accomplish the task of finding the world’s greatest beer.
Assuming that I live to 95 years of age (I have relatively good genetics), I have only 25,550 days left to enjoy one of life’s greatest pleasures – beer. Too many 25,550 may seem like a lot, but considering I will have to spend 49 weeks of every year locked away in an office until I am 65 I just do not have enough time. According to the trusted science of math, I have only 11,400 work-free days where I can travel and enjoy what the beer filled world has to offer. Sure I may have an opportunity to sample all BC’s offering, but the world is a big place – with many breweries. Unless I quit my job and find an investor willing to fund a completely profitless venture that consists primarily of a life long journey in search of the worlds greatest beer, I do not think I will have a chance to fully accomplish my goal of find the world’s greatest beer.
My concerns completely overlook the obvious: finding the greatest food pairing to enjoy alongside the perfect pint. In order to accomplish this I would have no other choice than to consume far more food calories than I could possibly burn. Excess weight gain would quickly become an issue. This weight gain would almost certainly shorten my life span by a good 20 years, which would mean only 18,200 days left to imbibe, and only 4,490 of these days would be work-free days. What am I to do?
I could quit my job, and jog from brewery to brewery becoming some sort of Forest Gump novelty. This far fetched idea may help to solve the obesity issue, and reduce the high cost of owning a vehicle needed to travel to the vast number of breweries located across the globe – air travel of course would be required for European breweries. However, by not working I would have zero income, making purchasing food and drink a challenge, and enjoying food and drink is sort of the whole point.
In the meantime, while I find a solution to life’s greatest problem, I have compiled a list of my favourite beers. It saddens me to say that only an insignificant fraction of the world greatest beers are represented on this list, but I must learn to live with limitations. Check out the favourites page to view my current favorites.
When people find out we are into beer we inevitably get asked one question, that being “what’s your favorite beer?” The trouble is, we never know what to say. It’s a tall task to pick one favorite from all of the great beers out there.
I have a really hard time picking favorites. I worry that I’ll be judged harshly for picking one beer above all others. I never want a friend to buy a beer I recommend and be put off, because everybody has their own tastes. There are many factors that go into choosing the right beer for an occasion and so many styles to choose from, how do I pick just one?
If anyone ventures to take our tastes seriously, I’ve created a new Favorites page where we’ll periodically list some of our favorite beers. This may come in handy when purchasing gifts for us, which you should feel free to do at any time.
Just this past week I drank the Old Yale Pale Ale I picked up when I stopped by Old Yale in Chilliwack earlier this month. It is one of the best pale ales I’ve ever had and has made its way onto my favorite list. Old Yale is a small brewery that I find is largely ignored, but I feel like BC beer drinkers should be giving it a lot more attention.
If you have a favorite beer that you think we should try, please let us know. We’d love to try it.