Sunday, April 22, 2007

Chat-O Stout

Chat-O Stout from Alley Kat

Finally picked up a few singles of Chat-O Stout, a local oatmeal stout brewed and sold exclusively for the Chateau Louis liquor store here in Edmonton. It is brewed by Alley Kat.
The above photo shows it soon after it was poured, and due to the limitations of my digital photography skills it appears a lot darker (black even) than it was. It was dark brown, though not opaque, it had reddish brown highlights. The head settled quite a bit as well, leaving only a thin covering of fine bubbles on the surface. It posessed a light roasty aroma with cocoa hints. Flavour had dark chocolate, and light roastiness. There was a bit of watery coffee at the end with some dry roasted malt. Some reviewers complained that the stout was overcarbonated, I didn't find that to be the case, it did have a fine prickly carbonation and a light but slick somewhat oily mouthfeel, neither of which detracted from the beer. Rating 3.4

Thursday, April 19, 2007

Edmonton's Festival Of Beer

Edmonton's Festival Of Beer has just been announced for Friday, June 8 and Saturday, June 9.

Here's the link: Edmonton's Festival Of Beer Website

Not much on the site, a list of attending breweries would be nice. Hope the crowds/lineups are handled better than the last 'fest we had here at the U of A Dinwoodie Lounge.

Anyways, not a bad time to beer a beer geek in Edmonton as of late!

Tuesday, April 17, 2007

New local micro?

Just came across this on BA. It was posted to the ProBrewer forums.

"Talented, outgoing brewer required for a Microbrew startup in Edmonton. Needs to be able to develop and produce outstanding beers. Will oversee all production from cradle to grave, including brewing, fermenting, conditioning, kegging and bottling. Must be willing to take an active role in ongoing sales and marketing including such roles as attending festivals, visiting bars and liquor stores, appearing on televison and radio and others as required. Must love to promote, promote, promote. We are in a great spot, with a fantastic facility and we will be reintroducing one of Alberta's best loved beers (as well as our own flavours). Salary is negotiable and will vary based on experience. Bonus and incentive programs, with no upper limit, are available. This is a great opportunity for someone who wants to get in from the ground up. email your resume in complete confidence."

Beer in Banff

Recently took a trip to Banff. Wasn't too impressive beer wise. Popped into a few liqour/beer stores around town and found the usual macro swill aimed at tourists looking for some cheap quick suds, though one did carry 2 Cooper's beers (Sparkling Ale, and Original Pale Ale). I picked up a 6 of the Original Pale Ale and 6 Sparkling Ale (even though I can get them in Edmonton) to drink at the hotel. The Original Pale Ale was a new rate, and it was decent. It has the same fruitiness as the Sparkling Ale, as well as the same creamy body and tight carbonation owing to it being bottle conditioned. It was a good session beer and might hit the spot in hot weather. Rating 3.3 Strangely I couldn't find any Grizzly Paw beers around, being so close to Canmore I thought they might show up somewhere. The hotel I was staying at was out of the Powderhound Pilsner when I tried ordering it. Oh well, I can get those locally as well, but was looking forward to trying them close to the source.

I did visit a nice pub. The St. James Gate is located in downtown Banff on Wolf Street. It's a pretty homey palce, very laid back atmosphere, dimly lit, traditional Celtic tunes playing in the backround. There's lots of seating, booths, tables, and all kinds of nooks and crannies. Food was decent pub grub, nothing too adventurous, generous portions, served quickly. The draught selection was decent, there were about 25 taps on when I was there dispensing a mix of macro and micro stuff (Big Rock, Sleeman, Shaftebury/Okanagan Spring). I had a pint of Yukon Artctic Red from the Yukon Brewing Co. It was the only one I hadn't tried. I'm happy to report that it was an excellent pint. It's an amber ale with a decent level of hopping, not one of the usual sweetish, caramel-y or bland examples you usually find branded as Amber Ale in Canada. Will be picking up more of this one, I think I found my house Amber Ale. Rating 3.6

Sunday, April 8, 2007

Recent Rates

A quick look at what I've been drinking lately.

Rogue Monk Madness - Despite the name, not a Belgian beer at all. It was a great looking beer, deep brown with red highlights and a persistant foamy head. Light malt, caramel and hop aroma. Flavour wise it was hop forward, with a light malt character. Citrusy, grapefruity lingering aftertaste. I enjoyed it. Rating 3.5

Mt. Begbie Cream Ale - Cream ales have been pretty popular in Canada, particularly in Ontario, I think in part due to the sucess of Sleeman Cream Ale. They are alive on the west coast too, this was a decent offering from BC's Mt. Begbie. It was fruity and floral both in aroma and flavour, a lighter ale/lager crossbreed. Would be a good summer quaffer. Packaged in a brown 650ml bottle. Rating 3.1

Pike Pale Ale - A good example of the American Pale Ale style. Citrusy flavour and aroma with light toasty malt notes. A good session beer, one I'll be revisiting. Rating 3.6

Deus - A Belgian strong ale done in the method champagnoise. Awesome presentation, gold foiled, corked and caged green 750ml bottle. 2005 vintage. It gushed a little when uncorked. Flavour was a bit herbal, notes of honey, white grapes and herbs. Unique beer, quite pricey ($22cnd) but something interesting that I might pick up for a special treat. Rating 4.2

Garrett Oliver Video

Found this Garrett Oliver video on youtube. The subject is "Cheese Wars: Beer vs Wine".

Sunday, April 1, 2007

First post

Welcome to this beer blog. My name is Shawn, you might know me as pintbypint, a handle I used on various beer websites. I'm a beer geek. I love trying new beers. My hobby started in the mid 90s in Ontario, when I began sampling various micro brews and finding them much superior to the mainstream beers I was drinking. Some classics at the time were Upper Canada, Wellington, Brick and Alqonquin. From there, I found a copy of Michael Jackson's Beer Companion at the local library, and also a copy of Charlie Papazians Joy of Homebrewing. I read both cover to cover hundreds of times and got the beer bug. From there I started trying every and any beer I could get my hands on. Early eye opening beers for me were Unibroue Maudite, Hart's Dragon's Breath Pale Ale, Formosa Springs Bock, Guinness (I was facinated by the widget!), Newcastle Brown Ale, Waterloo Dark, and a few others (Now I realize some of those beers aren't that great, but if it weren't for the gateway beers I wouldn't be where I am today). I visited the LCBO often to see if any new strange beers arrived and was rewarded by finding brews such as Schultheiss Berliner Weisse, Hennepin, Orval, Chimay Red, Ommegang, Xingu, Trompe La Mort and others (looking back I can't believe how lucky I was to find some of these brews, sadly the LCBO has never stocked most of them again). One day while surfing on the net I found the Oxford Bottled Beer Guide which was the first beer rating site. From there I searched for other beer rating sites, found ratebeer and so began my career as an amatuer reviewer. If you're reading this blog, please comment on my posts, I'd greatly appriciate it! Cheers!