Featured Review – Maudite from Unibroue

Our next “old” beer that I want to highlight is a dubbel from Canada, Maudite and the flying canoe from Unibroue.

This is how the brewery describes the flavor, “Velvety palate of caramelized sugar and marmalade, slightly roasted with a spicy finish.”

First off, Belgian yeast esters wave over along with a nice spice profile as well. A very full mouthfeel to this beer. Carbonation adds a playful tone to the beer as well. I also pick up a bit of red apple juice. I don’t think that Unibroue makes a bad beer.


Jason Lee Norman, an Edmonton publisher and author, has come up with an ingenious use for a can of beer.  Norman teamed up with Blindman Brewing for custom can labels for the brewery’s limited edition summer ale.  Each can had a micro-short stories from local writers on the label.

For those who love to have something to read on cereal boxes this is perfect.  Pour your beer and then read your story while you taste the ale.  I could see this being a great idea for a brewery that has a large distribution footprint that can add local flavor by having a different label for different markets.

Canadian Brewery Tour # 3 – Bent Stick Brewing

Our last stop in Canada is in Edmonton, Alberta and Bent Stick Brewing.

Here are some options from their website that piqued my interest…

First Pull Coffee Amber
“​This amber ale was cold-steeped with Sanson No. 7 coffee beans from our chums at ACE roasters here in Edmonton, Alberta. If there was ever any doubt, we’d say the coffee makes this a legitimate morning beverage.”

Swap the Hops
“Gotta have my hops! Dive into our Swap the Hops pale ale for your hop needs. Brewed on a semi-regular basis.

It’s the same but different ‘cause we swap the hops every time! Version # 8 – Simcoe Single Hopped?? [Early 2018!!]”

Rush Job IPA
“There was some tasty Galaxy & Ella hops in the freezer with a gap in the brew schedule, so we whipped up a West Coast IPA! Rush Job has big fruit and floral notes with light toffee to balance it out.”

and a past menu item….
Wakatu Wheat
“Not your poppa’s wheat beer. Wakatu Wheat has a savoury cotton candy sweetness with a nice grainy edge. It’s got a full body and smooth long linger.”

Canadian Brewery Tour # 2 – Mt. Begbie

To Revelstroke (great city name) we go to e-visit Mt. Begbie Brewing.

The brewery is named after Mt. Begbie, and the mountain is named after Matthew “Hanging Judge” Begbie, a character from Revelstoke’s history and it was voted Canadian Craft Brewery of the year 2017.

Here are the beers that I would put into a taster tray….
Bob’s Your Dunkel (Winter seasonal)
“Brewed in the Dunkelweisen tradition, this is a rich, unfiltered wheat beer (Weissbier) loaded with chocolate and Munich malts.”

Tall Timber Ale
“A dark, full-bodied English Brown Ale alive with rich malt flavour, caramel undertones and a slight residual sweetness. The use of Goldings finishing hops and an authentic top cropping ale yeast round out the traditional Brown Ale character.”

Powerhouse Pale Ale
“A generous portion of lightly roasted malt gives this beer a smooth yet distinctive character.”

Nasty Habit IPA
“A generously hopped IPA, balanced by a diabolical blend of rich specialty malts and pure mountain water.”

Canadian Brewery Tour # 1 – Strathcona Beer Co.

We head to one of the oldest neighborhoods in Vancouver, Strathcona to see what beers are on offer from Brewmaster Michael “Fezz” Nazarec

Vienna Lager
“Vienna-style lager, amber in colour with a subtle caramel and toasted quality. Subtle hop presence with a crisp, malt finish. An easy drinking, mildly carbonated, premium lager.”

British IPA
“This is first and foremost a classic, English IPA. This style is recognized for a flavouring more balanced between hops and malt as opposed to the more hop-forward IPAs of the Pacific Northwest. This is also reflected by the low hop aroma. The light hop flavouring comes from the traditional English hops Fuggles and UK Goldings. This light gold coloured beer has a moderate citrus flavour, low fruityness and a dry finish.”

“Our Rye English Special Bitter has an abundance of well-rounded malts, a crisp bitter finish, and a hop character that is moderate and balanced with a touch of dark caramel flavours.”

Belgian Gold 40
“A pale, complex, effervescent, strong Belgian-style ale that is highly attenuated and features fruity and hoppy notes, with a complex aroma, significant fruity esters, moderate spiciness and low to moderate alcohol and hop notes.”

In the Tap Lines for February 2018

We are back around the horn to birthday month! Time to decide what beer I want to imbibe as a special treat to me. While I do that, the blog will keep going with…

~ e-visits to three breweries from Canada
~ special featured reviews of beers NOT IPA’s (except for one)
~ Heads-Up on Los Angeles Beer Events
~ Three suggested beers to buy this month. One light, one medium and one dark
~ A Book & A Beer reads The Twelve Lives of Samuel Hawley
~ I will tap the Firkin and give my no holds barred opinion on the craft beer world.

Here are two events to get your February started in the Los Angeles craft beer world:
1) February 6th – Bruery, Bruery Terruex & Offshoot Beer Co at Tony’s Darts Away
2) February 10th – L.A. Ale Works 1st Anniversary


I am a voracious reader so when I heard that there was going to be a new beer magazine, and interestingly enough, this new magazine covers “the culture of craft beer in Canada.”

It is named Mash and it wants to “focus on stories about the people who are driving Craft Beer innovation – what inspires and drives them.”

This is cool because here in the U.S. do not know much about the Canadian beer scene so this will be a good way to check in on the beer and people behind it. And plan vacations too.

The premiere issue of MASH will be available this month.

Brewery Tour ‘around the World – Microbrewery La Castor

Scottish cask ale was the inspirations from where Le Castor sprung and now this Canadian brewery is creating their own footprint.
Here are the four beers I would put on my first taster tray….

“The India Pale Ale is without a doubt the most popular craft beer style in the world. But sometimes we want all those hops, without so much alcohol. Sometimes the night is young, the conversation is great, and we want to have more than just one. The India Session Ale was born out of this unsatisfied thirst. This is our interpretation of the fledgling style – an unbridled level of hop-thusiasm, in a package that lets you get on with your day, or night.”

“English Bitter was a major beer style in the 19th century. Brewed and packaged very quickly, it was a type of “running beer”. Before the widespread adoption of stainless steel tanks, this beer almost certainly had Brettanomyces yeast in it. But there simply wasn’t enough time for Brett character to develop before it was served in pubs. What if the publican accidentally left a cask to age for a few months before serving..? You might have a beer that tastes just like this one.”

“New Zealand isn’t just famous for its Maori culture, rugby team, and a cute little flightless bird. To beer lovers – it’s revered for its unique hop varieties. This beer is a marriage between the fruitiness of the New Zealand hops, and the floral character of the saison yeast strain.”

“What you have in your hands is our 2015 American Barleywine, that we brewed with a considerable amount of organic malt and American hops. Strong, malty, super-hoppy, and a bit unruly, the beer has had a nine month slumber in El Dorado rum barrels from Guyana. And it appears to have been time well spent! Alcoholic heat has mellowed, while assertive hops have melded with brown spirit and oak, creating layered fruitiness with a dry oaken finish.”

Canadian Brewery # 3 – Blindman Brewing

Lacombe (ravine) in Alberta is the home to our last new Canadian brewery tour, Blindman Brewing.

Who have helpfully labeled all of their beers thusly:
batch 010 2015-november-21 longshadows ipa
batch 009 2015-november-7 blindman river session ale
batch 008 2015-october-30 to-be-named imperial stout
batch 007 2015-october-23 saison lacombe: automne
batch 006 2015-october-17 robust porter
batch 005 2015-october-9 longshadows ipa
batch 004 2015-october-8 blindman river session ale
batch 003 2015-september-17 blindman river session ale
batch 002 2015-september-14 saison lacombe: automne
batch 001 2015-september-13 blindman river session ale

When you are small you can add this much detail to your beer releases and I think it is super cool for this brewery that if Twitter is to be believed, opened this very month.

Canadian Brewery # 2 – Twin Sails Brewing

Screen Shot 2015-11-12 at 7.44.06 PM

I could not point out Port Moody on a map if I had to save my life but that is where Twin Sails Brewing has set up shop under the leadership of twin brothers Clay and Cody Allmin, who have been home brewing for more than three years.

Out of the gate and with a new head brewer on board they have started with a line-up that consists of a hefeweizen, a marzen, a pilsner and a roggenweizen like a good like German brewery except in Canada.

Considering that the town is also home to Yellow Dog Brewing and Moody Ales, this might just be a destination all by itself.