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Inspired by Ireland’s patron saint and my favourite Irish band, Thin Lizzie, I bring you Shamrocker Potato Stout. A beer brewed for spring, this stout, much like the music that inspired it, has a complexity that belies its simple list of ingredients.

Amped up with tones of coffee, malts, barley and a hint of caramel, Shamrocker is a dry Irish-style stout brewed with delta hops and crystal malts – with potatoes added to the mash as a special nod to the Emerald Isle.

Chiming in with a 4.8% abv and 35 BU, Shamrocker is the latest addition to our Black Notebook Small Batch series. A black but not heavy medley of Celtic proportion, this potato stout has a dry finish that will leave you begging for an encore.

Shamrocker Potato Stout is available now for a limited time at our Granville Island Taproom and in selected liquor stores in BC.

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Under the cover of malty darkness and mighty hops, we find a brew that could have only come from one place, Cascadia – the inspiration behind our latest re-release, Cloak & Dagger Cascadian Dark Ale.

One of the newest beer-styles to hit the beer scene, Cascadian Dark Ale is named after the geographical area that inspired it. With a dominant hop flavour typical of a CDA, the hop-factor of this year’s brew has been upped; having increased the amount of aroma hops found in the beer. We kept the bitterness the same, but switched Amarillo hops for the Ahtanum variety before dry hopping with Chinook – two of the hop varieties found in Cascadia.

Though black in colour, the roast malt flavour of the brew is refined – rounded out with mildly sweet caramel malt flavours and a dry finish which is credited to the roasted malts and copious amount of hops added to the beer.

Gold medal winner at the 2012 World Beer Championships, this year’s batch of Cloak & Dagger may have more hops than in previous brews, but is still packed with the complex blend of flavours you have come to expect of the Ale.

Back for a limited time, our 2014 Cloak & Dagger Cascadian Dark Ale has an ABV of 6% and a BU of 60. Look for it in our Taproom & retail store on Granville Island, as well as in selected stores in BC, Alberta and Manitoba.

Cheers!

Auld Skool Label

Back for a limited engagement and with a flavour as bold as the lochs, hills and coastline that inspired it, we introduce our newly named Auld Skool Scottish Ale.

The Scottish Ale category is at least as diverse as the Pale Ale category but tends more towards malt flavours, whereas Pale Ale’s tend to be more hop-forward. Scottish ales can range from light amber to dark brown in colour, dry to sweet, low alcohol to high. This year’s Auld Skool sits towards the bold end of things.

Full-bodied and malt-forward, this re-vamped re-release is a bold brew of pale malt, crystal malt, roasted barley, a touch of wheat malt and Sterling hops.

With bold coffee-like aromas and an off-dry finish, Auld Skool Scottish Ale has an ABV of 6.25% and a BU of 20 – making it the perfect brew to enjoy on a cold (or in Vancouver’s case, wet) day.

Pick up a bottle and toast to Robbie Burns Day. This one pairs well with, (you guessed it) haggis or a hearty meat or veggie stew – thanks in part to this beer’s roasted and caramel malts.

Dark, strong and moderately sweet, look for our 2014 Auld Skool Scottish Ale is available in our Taproom & retail store on Granville Island and in select stores in BC and Alberta.

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December brings cold temperatures and the threat of snow, (code for rain in Vancouver’s case) making beers with a little warmth and character that much more appealing. This December we see the return of the warm and jolly, with two holiday Small Batch releases – our 2013 vintage Barley Wine and Chocolate Imperial Stout.

Now there’s nothing small about our latest batch of Barley Wine. Aged in Jack Daniels barrels, this year’s brew has an abv of 11.5% and a BU of 60. Full of flavour, our Barley Wine is loaded with NZ Motueka hops – which balance the beer’s sweet malt character and dried fruit flavours; while allowing the oak, vanilla and alcohol characteristics of the barrels to shine through.

The perfect accompaniment to a cold day, (and any beer aficionado’s stocking) we have also cellared a few cases of our 2012 batch of Barley Wine – which will be released alongside this year’s brew. Look for both batches in our retail store, sold separately and as a 2-pack holiday box set.

As you know, the big news this December was the announcement that our new Burly Goat Weizenbock would be replacing our Chocolate Imperial Stout. A popular brew, (and if truth be told one of my favourites) I received more than a few email’s inquiring about the beloved Stout – and quite a few more pleas to reconsider its demise. A fan of giving the people what they want, (and in the holiday spirit of giving) I have bowed to the pressure and have decided to brew one special batch of Chocolate Imperial Stout – but with a twist. This year’s batch – like the Barley Wine – has been aged in JD Barrels.

Appearing in both 650ml bottles, and on limited draught, look for our new Barrel-aged Chocolate Imperial Stout this December.

Cheers, happy holidays and stay warm!

Vern’s latest batch of Barley Wine is available in our Taproom & retail store on Granville Island, as well as in select stores in BC for a limited time. While the Chocolate Imperial Stout will be available and in-stores on Wednesday, December 18th.

I don’t think its any secret that one of my favourite styles of beer is a nice Bavarian Hefeweizen. Given Hef’s refreshing nature, most associate the brew with the summer; but that doesn’t always need to be the case. Enter the latest from my Black Notebook Series, the Burly Goat Weizenbock.

Inspired by one of my all-time favourite beers – Aventinus by Schneider Weisse – this German-style wheat beer has been brewed to the strength of a Doppel Bock, (hence its deep ruby, almost black colour) and has a BU of 35 with an ABV of 8.4%.

Full-bodied with caramel malt sweetness and a subtle banana and clove flavour, the Burly Goat Weizenbock is a unique brew and the perfect pair to winter. A season my first taste of Aventinus took me to – closer to 20 years ago than I care to say.

A brew filled with nostalgia, the Burly Goat will be replacing another nostalgic release, the Chocolate Imperial Stout. This may come as sad news to some, but diehard Chocolate Stout fans fear not! We will be producing one batch of the beer as part of our newly minted Growler Series.

Dark, rich, strong and full of flavour, this Weizenbock is one goat you’ll want to mess with this holiday season.

The latest addition to Vern’s Black Notebook Series is available in our Taproom & retail store on Granville Island, as well as in select stores in BC & AB for a limited time.

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Treat your taste buds and celebrate fall with the latest additions to our Small Batch series – The Pumpkining & Mad Dash Fresh Hop ESB.

Mad Dash Fresh Hop ESB is not to be messed with. Brewed with fresh picked Centennial hops from Sartori Cedar Ranch, this wet-hopped ESB literally went straight from bine to brew – which is evident in the flavour. Featuring citrus and floral hop notes and the aromas typical of a Centennial brew, Mad Dash is the perfect pair to roast chicken or a Ploughman’s Platter.

Weighing in at a healthy 45 BU with an abv 5.6%, The Mad Dash Fresh Hop ESB is a copper brew that is sure to leave your tongue tingling. Don’t believe us? Try it for yourself. But be quick about it, there are very limited quantities of this one.

Next we’re taking a trip to the pumpkin patch for our latest Belgian-style specialty ale, The Pumpkining. Both trick and treat, this burnt orange brew is a combination of pale, Munich and black malts paired with killer organic pumpkin puree and our own sinister blend of hops and spices – which were fermented with a Belgian abbey yeast to really scare that flavour in.

More on the pie camp than the dry camp, this twisted ale pairs well with dessert courses, roasted root vegetables and the obligatory turkey.

With a BU of 15 and an abv of 6%, The Pumpkining’s lower bitterness level, bigger body and spice character make it the perfect pair to your Thanksgiving dinner. The Pumpkining pie anyone?

The latest additions to our small batch Black Note Book series are both available in our Taproom & retail store on Granville Island and in select stores across BC and Alberta.

Our Brewmaster

Always wanted to know the difference between an Ale and a Lager? Or when hops are added? Or the correct serving temperature for a stout?

Whether you're a 10th level beer mason or just a guy who picks up a six pack for the game, you can ask the Brewmaster. Simply leave a comment for Vern and check back for an answer. Who knows your question could be the topic of Vern's next post.

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