Do you love good beer?
If so, I hope you have heard that it is Craft Beer Week here in Vancouver! (http://vancouvercraftbeerweek.com/2012/)
Over the past few years Vancouver has put itself on the map with the likes of Portland and Philadelphia when it comes to small scale, unique brews. It wasn’t all that long ago that the choices at the liquor store consisted of Kokanee, Canadian or an import. Now, however, you can order a beer as pretentious as your Starbucks coffee; maybe a Gluten-free, Organic, Belgian-Style Wheat/Fruit Ale, fermented with hand-picked raspberries (grown locally of course) and specialty hops imported from the finest fields of Austria. Amazingly, a beer like this would probably still cost less than your next extra-hot, venti, half-caf, soy, mocha frappuccino (hold the foam)… But that is a conversation for another post.
All I am trying to say is that our options for a fresh pint of beer have exploded over the past decade, thanks to some very crafty brewers from Phillips, Howe Sound and even the newest addition to the Vancouver beer scene, Parallel 49 Brewery (from the great folks that have been serving us pints from St. Augustine’s at Broadway and Commercial), just to name a few.
This years event will feature 60+ Breweries at 60+ Venues over 9 days of drinking joy!
An event like this gives brewers a chance to show off their best beers of the year, as well as feature some of the new and innovative brews they are working on for special realeases in the near-future.
I have been fortunate enough to try many of the Limited Editions that hit the pubs and stores with the change of every season, and look forward to many more. It has become a pretty standard gift for me to receive a “sampler” of specialty beers from here and abroad – I can’t think of anything better!
If you are able to get out to one of the events this weekend, I highly recommend it. If you can’t work it into your schedule, I suggest that the next time you are into the liquor store you browse the beer aisle a little bit and pick out a few unique beers from our local breweries. And if you happen to come across a tasty new brew, I’d love to hear about it – I just might be able to fool around with one of my Urban Vintner batches, to make something similar.