Our last batch of Spruce Tip is currently on tap, which signals the beginning of fall and the return of a few fall seasonal beers.
Our main fall seasonal is our Log Splitter Smoked Porter, which should be returning to our regular bottle line-up and tap list, mid-October. This beer is available all fall and most of the winter. If you enjoy that smoky, meaty flavour, this is the beer for you. It’s also amazing to cook with, so add it to chilis, stews, or homemade BBQ sauces.
These seasonal beers will soon be switching places, out with the Spruce Tip (on tap till it runs out) and in with the Log Splitter Smoked Porter.
While our summery High Noon Hefeweizen ran out last weekend, our fall version, Sundown Dunkelweizen, will take its place in late-September as our German-style wheat beer offering on draught (only).
We’ve also been sitting on an English-style barleywine (Tragic Vision) that’s been ageing in Port Chilkoot Distillery (Haines, AK) whiskey barrels for many months. This beer will deserve its own blog, but you should expect to see it early-October. Tragic Vision will be available in limited bottles and on draught.
In time for the Yukon Beer Festival (mid-October), we’ve teamed up with the fine, pedal-powered folks at Firebean Coffee Roasters, to bring you a Rye Coffee Porter. We will tell you more on the development of this beer recipe later.
You’ll also be seeing the return of some crowd favourites this fall:
- Sullen Riot Rye Pale Ale (end of Sept)
- Easy Listening ESB (next week)
- HazySexyCool NEIPA (late Sept)
Other than some changes in the fall tap and bottle list this fall, we’ve also had a few changes in the brewery and Tasting Room staff. You’ll see a couple new faces at the bar starting this month. We’ve hired a new part-time Tasting Room Ambassador named Robert, along with two new casual ambassadors, Veronica and Jen. And Kevin who started in our Tasting Room this past May has now moved back to the Brewery side of things, to join Matt and Alex, as an Assistant Brewer.
We’ll soon be increasing our capacity for the fourth time in 2.5 years! This time we’re adding 50% more cellaring capacity resulting in 50% more beer. The new equipment will arrive late September, when a mad game of tetris will ensue as we try to make space for everything in the brewery. Along with two new 15 bbl tanks, an additional 7 bbl brite tank, and larger chilling unit, we’ve invested in a new bottling machine and keg washer to hopefully help out with the beer load.
We'll make room somehow, right?!
October 5: This date marks our 1 year anniversary of opening the Tasting Room at the brewery, and we’d like to ‘ring’ in this milestone with some special treats (stay tuned).
October 13/14: 4th Annual Yukon Beer Festival – We’ll be serving at both nights of the festival, and will also be open all weekend long at the Tasting Room for your beer tasting enjoyment. Tickets are on sale now.
October 22: 2nd Annual - Pumpkins & Pints - Back by popular demand, we’ll have our pumpkin carving contest on the Sunday before Halloween. Stay tuned for details.
Most Saturdays: Beer & Bivalves, courtesy of the Wayfarer Oyster Bar every Saturday (unless otherwise specified) from 3-6 pm on Saturdays.
The winning pumpkin from the 2016 Pumpkin Carving Contest.
One of our favourite beers is returning this coming Monday! HazySexyCool, our New England Style IPA (NEIPA) will be hitting our taps July 24th. Released back in March 2017 for the first time, this beer only lasted 5 days. Thankfully this second batch was made on our newer, bigger 7 barrel brewhouse so we hope it lasts a little longer.
In case you’re wondering what the heck a NEIPA is and how it is different from a ‘regular’ American IPA we’ll break it down for you.
For the past few decades, American IPAs have typically been clear, crisp and dry, with an assertive bitterness from the copious amounts of West Coast hops. It was the West Coast breweries that made the IPA style so popular.
While the NEIPA style certainly doesn’t shy away from hops, the bitterness is not in your face like in a typical West Coast IPA. NEIPAs are characterized as being hazy, having a creamier mouthfeel, with the hops lending an extremely juicy citrus or tropical character, while overall having a softer, more rounded bitterness. It all boils down to an IPA that is a little more approachable with a higher drinkability factor (cha-ching!).
The differences in the two styles of IPAs comes right down to the malt bill and yeast, as well as how the hops are used. Don’t get us wrong though, we are huge fans of both styles of IPAs, we just want to make sure no one misses out on this latest craze for hazy, juicy IPAs.
We used flaked oats and wheat malt in addition to our regular 2-row pale malt, to provide that thicker mouthfeel as well as contribute to that hazy, unfiltered look and feel. Instead of our regular yeast, we used a yeast strain that contributes more of a fruity character. For hops, we used first wort hopping to provide a nice rounded bitterness, and then everything else went in at the end of the boil, the whirlpool or dry hop to focus on the aroma and flavour of the Citra, Mosaic and El Dorado hops.
Finally, the name HazySexyCool is a jab at how popular this style has gotten lately, because all the cool kids are brewing it, not to mention the TLC reference we couldn't resit. The haze craze has taken the craft brewing world by storm and the Yukon shouldn’t miss out. That's why we are here! The popularity of this newish beer style is no hype, this is truly a very enjoyable style of IPA, best enjoyed as fresh as possible. So get it while you can straight from the source, in a growler to go or a pint to stay at the Tasting Room, starting July 24th.
Our next batch of Spruce Tip Ale is hitting our taps Monday, July 10th! This is the second of several batches being released over the summer.
We are hoping the bottleing machine will cooperate this time around so that we will also have bombers available in addition to growler fills and pints. Last batch, the bottling machine was acting up and we didn't get any bottles. Now if only the nice weather would stick around long enough to enjoy a fresh pint on the patio come Monday. Here's to hoping!
We are releasing our first kettle-soured beer this Friday, a Gose (pronounced Goes-uh), named Surfer Gose (4%). Surfer Gose is a German-style wheat beer brewed with salt and coriander and soured with a lactobacillus culture. It has an almost lemon-like tartness and a mild saltiness, and is super refreshing. This is the ultimate thirst-quenching, session beer.
While you may have heard of coriander in beer before (most popularly in Belgian witbier), you may be wondering why salt? The Gose style dates back to the 16th Century and is named after the river Gose that runs through the town of Goslar where it originated. The groundwater of that area had high amounts of dissolved salt, and since they didn’t have water treatment facilities back then, this slightly salty water was used in the brewing of their local beer.
Alex and Matt finish up the brew day after the kettle sour process.
To get the characteristic sourness of this style, we added a lactobacillus culture (lactic acid producing bacteria, similar to what’s used in making yoghurt) to the wort prior to boiling. The bacteria were left to do their magic in the beer over a couple of days, in order to drop the pH to the desired sourness level. Then we boiled the wort to kill off the bacteria, and continued with the brew as usual, adding hops and then the coriander and salt towards the end of the boil. The beer was then cooled and fermented with our regular American ale yeast strain.
Surfer Gose is a great entry-level sour beer for those new to sour beer styles, and will be available for growler fills and on tap at our Tasting Room starting Friday, July 7th.
The wait is finally over! We will be releasing our first batch of Spruce Tip Pale Ale this Thursday (June 8th). Each Spring, we patiently wait for the most vibrant, juicy spruce tips we can find. We hand-pick each and every one to bring you this seasonal beer. At the very least, it will fend off any signs of scurvy.
This will be one of several batches we'll be brewing over the summer, but it is always one of our biggest sellers so don't delay if you want to get some as it never lasts long! Come by and try it on tap in the Tasting Room or grab a growler or a bottle to go!