One of GIB’s more recent additions is the Two Tides India Pale Ale is a excellent beer for those who are new to the IPA category. Typical Pacific Northwest IPAs are hops heavy and tend to turn off newbies from this wonderful style of beer. GIB has done an excellent job with the labels of there beers, the backside of the bottle has info on colour, IBUs, and even a suggested food pairing. When poured, the liquid is a delectable rich golden colour with a nice tight, white head which receded quickly. A gentle hop aroma draws one in to your first taste. Sweet malts are chased with subtle hoppy bitternes.
Rating: 4/5 A nicely balanced IPA that went down way too easy on this hot summer afternoon.
Muskoka Brewing Mad Tom IPA
Opened in 1996 in the heart of Ontario’s cottage country, Muskoka Brewing has grown to employ over 70 employees. They have a strong belief in purity, freshness, independence and creativity. I was introduced to their brews several years ago while on a trip to Toronto, and given my love of IPAs – Mad Tom was the first one I tried.
Mad Tom comes in a 341ml long neck brown bottle, but what caught my attention was the Adirondack chair with a bottle on the arm rest on the neck.
In the glass, this beer poured a beautiful honey colour with good carbonation and a decent off white head. The nose has hints of citrus as is common in most IPAs. The mouthfeel is has some weight to it with average carbonation on the tongue. The flavor has strong Chinook and Centennial Hops which definitely sticks around in a pleasant fashion.
Rating 4/5 – Overall a great IPA that i could definitely see myself have a few of in a sitting.
Brewed by Andalou Efes Brewing in Turkey, the Efes Dark is a delicious example of a dark lager. At 6.1% abv this beer tricks the palate into expecting something much different. In the glass, we see a clear, rich dark cola colour with a quickly receding tan head. The nose is distinctly sweet with sumptuous molasses brown sugar aromas. The mouthfeel is light and crisp with definitive dark malts and sweet molasses flavors. The finish is crisp with a slight hop character.
Rating: 4.5/5 – this is one of my favorite styles, crisp clean finish with rich dark beer flavors. Efes Dark would pair nicely with meaty stews and tangy tomato based pasta sauces.
Retailing at BCLDB for $11.95 for a six pack
The Persephone Golden Ale comes in a 355ml can. When poured, the liquid is a clear rich honey colour with average levels of carbonation. The slightly off white head disappeared to the edges of the glass rather quickly. The nose had hints of herbs from the hops and a touch of floral notes. The mouthfeel was fairly light with a savory hoppy bitterness the end note that lingered subtly on the tongue
Rating: 3/5 – an enticing ale that would pair well with some poached white fish with citrus slices.
Retailing for $11.50 for 6X355ml cans
Bomber Brewing’s Pilsner is a great example of a Czech Pilsner style of beer. This particular Pilsner has a stronger hop flavor than what the average consumer would expect. Coming in at 4.8% alc./vol., this crystal clear apple juice coloured beer was light on the tongue with high level of carbonation. The initial taste was crisp and smooth with a nice amount of Saaz hops bitterness. A great beer to pair with a white fish such as a nice fish and chips with fresh homemade tartar sauce.
Rating: 3.0/5 a delicious Czech Pilsner that went down fairly easily.
650ml bottle retailing for $5.50 at the BCLDB
Steamworks Jasmine IPA caught me with a bit of a surprise as most beers with a Flower in their name usually come on too strong for the average beer drinker. This IPA poured a clear honey coloured liquid with medium levels of carbonation yielding a rich white head that disappeared rather quickly. The mouth feel was light with a delicious white grapefruit bitterness yielding to a sweet floral flavor in the after taste. Steamworks has always impressed me with the artwork on their labels, very much centered on some of the most famous landmarks in the lower mainland.
Rating: 4/5 with IPAs being one of my favourite styles, this offering from Steamworks stands out with a pleasant floral finish.
Retailing for $7.75 for a 1L bottle at the BCLDB
I poured the Howe Sound Brewing Devil’s Elbow IPA rather aggressively resulting in a rich tan creamy head that seemed to hang around for a while. The nose had a subdued sweetness to it with hints of caramel and a touch of malts. In the glass, the beer was a tempting caramel colour and a higher level of carbonation resulted in a crisp start with distinct hop character. What I found lingering on my tongue had definitive grapefruit bitterness with undertones of caramel sweetness. The great thing about Howe Sound brews is that the re-sealable 1L bottle means you don’t have to drink the entire bottle in one sitting. I tried this beer again about 4 days after writing the original review and the flavours did not suffer one bit.
Rating: 4/5 a distinct IPA with hints of caramel and a re-sealable bottle definitely give this beer a high rating.