Located mid-town in Calgary, Last Best's unassuming exterior belies an oasis in the heart of the city. This brewpub is comfortable, tasty and refreshingly elegant. And, the beer is excellent.
The Craft Lager is smooth if uninspiring. Enter peanut tamarind sticky wings and spicy dumplings. The next sip of lager is entirely drowned out by the spice, but the Belgian inspired Oddity is suddenly toned down, accompanying rather than dominating the awesome snack flavours.
“If I had a nickel for every time I heard ‘you can’t do that, this is Labatt’s town,’ I’d be a rich man,” he says, but look at it now. There are four different places brewing beer in town and there is space for many more. It’s definitely getting better than it was.
Sitting in Bar Hop five years later it’s easy to see why. The atmosphere is as beautifully comfortable as ever, and, while the place may be busier, the bartenders and servers are no less friendly or helpful, and the beer selection has only grown.
This iconic bar, located in the northeast of downtown Montréal, has an impressive forty tap lines, serves great food, and carries an extensive bottle list.
Stillwell has not only given valuable tap space and promotion to good local breweries; they have also participated in collaborations and are even brewing their own beer.
Most folks know me for my black lager. It’s what I competed with for many years before the brewery. When we opened, it was our flagship beer, then it was our first at the LCBO and at groceries. Today’s it’s called BLACKLIST, it’s a black German lager. It started off being called Shit Show because the first time I made it, everything that could’ve gone wrong at every step of the process, did. It should’ve been a write-off but, instead, it won Best of Show at Toronto Beer Week in 2013. Then I thought, how the hell am I ever going to make this beer again? Today we’re brewing our 150th batch of it, and we’re still making tiny changes. Just so we don’t get stuck in a rut.
There’s no brewery that I wouldn’t try. As far as Canada goes, everything from BC is really interesting, and Alberta’s not far behind. I respect everyone who’s trying to get into this business. It’s not easy, that’s for sure.
For some unknown reason, I have been absolutely obsessed with beer since I was pretty young. I started home-brewing when I was 17 and thought it was the most interesting thing in the world. I got a job at Stack Brewing basically as soon as I was 19, and really can't imagine being in any other industry.
Seriously, there is no more quintessentially social beverage than beer. Beer practically created modern agricultural societies. No wonder it is the social drink of choice worldwide. Communities do good by supporting breweries and breweries attract people to communities.
Honestly? Some of the most rewarding feelings come from emails out of the blue – people saying they just tried my beer, love it and can’t wait for a new release. A tremendous feeling of accomplishment.
I have the best job in the world. Everybody in the breweries are so close. We’re all working together to make a better industry. That’s what I love about the business. And this area where Auberge Sutton Brouërie is situated is beautiful.
Craft Beer Reviews
The fun thing about this imperial stout, part of the brewery’s new Devil’s Right Hand series, is that it was aged in a mix of Jack Daniels and Ardbeg barrels.
Out of principal, I’ll call this an IBA, since beer can’t be black and pale. That said it’s pretty typical of the style that was developed in the Pacific Northwest, with bitterness from both roasted malt and hops.
This would actually be a really nice beer to pair with some good ol’ fashioned saucy barbeque. Ribs, chicken, and brisket would all be phenomenal pairings for this beer
Pours very hazy (naturally) with a nice rocky white head that holds up very nicely.
The aroma packs a punch with tropical fruits up front backed with a slight hint of grapefruit. In the taste there’s mango, cantaloupe, orange peel, and grapefruit,
Overall, while I wish the taste delivered a bit more on the lovely fruit notes promised in the aroma, this is still a rather enjoyable beer with a flavour combination that works well for it.
Although sweeter than expected, it would no doubt be a welcome addition to one’s summer drinking arsenal.
Citra Grove, the first in a series of single-hop, dry-hopped sours, tempers the bright acidity of lactobacillus souring with a rich, pulpy fruit profile.
Depending on how you do the math, Walkerville Brewery is the oldest small brewery in town. The name has been worn by three separate operations, including one that Hiram Walker started in the 19th century and another that made a go of it during the 1990s microbrewery wave before declaring bankruptcy in 2007.
Located in the 'Junction Triangle' area of western downtown Toronto, Hendersons prides itself on product beer that harps back to the city's traditions. Hendersons' BEST has won many awards.
The team of Justin da Silva (brewmaster) and Mallory Jones (marketing) have created an iconoclastic little brewery that could, in downtown Kingston. Justin's finessed experimentation has everyone waiting on the edge of their seats for his next concoction.
With so many directions to match, the best beer pairings are the solid, on-style options that offer support. In this sense, the Model A Amber and Wanker ESB are good cornerstones to build a tasting flight around.
The Mackinnon Brothers mission statement: using hops and malt grown and harvested on their farm, they would brew beer that was born from, and become part of the unique character of rural Canada.
Bringing high-calibre breweries to Abbotsford has further raised Field House’s profile in its short lifespan. At the BC Beer Awards last October it was named Rookie of the Year, an honour that Vanderheide believes vindicated his decision to open shop in the Valley.
Inhabiting an historic building once known as the Southampton Hotel, the location was for years in a state of disrepute and even enjoyed a period where it was known as The Blood Bucket given the frequency with which patrons liked to spill things other than each other’s beer.
Those familiar with Silversmith Brewing may only know it for its flagship beer, a black lager that has been making the rounds through bars consistently since 2011.
Everyone at Parsons wears their mission statement on their sleeve. Committed to local production and sustainability, the brewery and pub are housed in a charming building cobbled together from half of an old parsonage-turned-blacksmith’s shop (hence the name) and an old county homestead.