Monday, April 30, 2012

brew day

i finally brewed my own beer yesterday!

with my intrepid friends bridget and amanda (and coaching from the one and only matt anderson) we boiled water like champions!

we brewed a stout based on this recipe, called bitch's brew:

i got all the ingredients from dan's homebrew shop, bridget got all the equipment from broadway brewing, and away we went

we overlooked getting a grain bag, so i made one out of cheesecloth
handy, aren't i?

the grain bag held up to the job, the pennies saved us from a boil-over, and all went well on the inaugural brew!

steeping the grains in the grain bag
steeping the oats and 2-row malt
bridget adds the oat water to the grain water
malt extract is in, hops are in, on the boil!
now we just have to wait two weeks to see how we did on our first try...

happy birthday

happy birthday to me
happy birthday to me
happy birthday dear myself
happy birthday to me!

Friday, April 27, 2012


i posted a photo of the beerbulance before
but had no idea about the story behind it!
thanks laughing squid, and minerva and giselle for for forwarding it to me at what was practically the same instant as each other
its like my friends know i like beer or something...

Thursday, April 26, 2012

green flash

new green flash and founders collaboration brew!

Green Flash has done it again! We have teamed up with another World Class Brewery, Founders Brewing Co. to produce a new collaboration, Linchpin IPA! Join the Green Flash team in the Tasting Room on Tuesday, May 1st for a special Release Party!

“There’s a lot going on in this beer with two yeast strains, copious amounts of wheat malt, and a big focus on ‘C’ hops to deliver a citrus explosion,” explains Green Flash Brewmaster, Chuck Silva. “In fact we lined up more than a dozen hop varieties in the brewery to select three hops with the biggest citrus character to dry hop the beer.

“This golden beer pours with beautiful, frothy white beer foam that lasts due to bottle conditioning. Gently rousing the yeast that settles in the bottle will result in a fuller texture and a more cloudy white appearance. The citrus aromas that jump from the glass are largely tangerine up front with other types of citrus notes that mingle with the Belgian yeast esters. Hop flavors of bitter orange zest dominate the brew and linger to the finish with a nice play of American and Belgian yeast combo.”

A beer with so many components can be held together with a “Linchpin”. The official “Linchpin” of this beer is the skillful collaboration between the two breweries to create a unique hop-forward brew. Linchpins are symbolic: two simple shapes that combine to strengthen a bond amongst many different pieces.

redhook update

redhook brewery issues update about lethal keg explosion

Tuesday, April 24, 2012

kits cask carouse

the camra vancouver kits cask carouse on sunday was chock-ful of good beer and good times!
and it only mostly kicked my ass!

the carouse was divided up into two groups, hitting pubs in a scissoring order
i was one of the fearless leaders of group b
b for beer
b for best

stop one:  darby's pub
yay for bright and cheerful and wifi!  wonderfully attentive service
(and the new summer food menu looks ah-mazing!)
talk:  paddy treavor of camra vancouver talked about... camra
verdict:  interesting and informative and got us several new members!

cask:  lighthouse switchback ipa
verdict:  as tasty as outta the keg or bottle - pretty carbonated for a cask though!

carnivore food:  wimpy burger with roasted garlic polenta fries
veggie food:  vegetarian wimpy burger with roasted garlic polenta fries
verdict:  delicious and perfectly sized!

stop two:  displace hashery
lousy cell reception and no wifi, but pleasant surroundings and attentive service

talk:  brent of r&b brewing spoke about cask ale
verdict:  trivia with prizes!  who doesn't love prizes, especially when they're pints of beer!

cask:  r&b strawberry ipa
verdict:  not much strawberry apparent, didn't seem to be anyone's favourite, but when offered seconds, we all partook!

carnivore food:  meat and mushroom pizza
veggie food:  eggplant and fig pizza
verdict:  the other group got antipasto, we got pizza, i'm down with pizza!  especially when there were seconds!

brief translink interlude between stops
we coulda walked, but why waste time between beers walking when your drunk ass can ride?

stop three:  sunset grill
nicely reno'd and welcoming atmosphere, we had a nice sunny section to sit in
and yay - they have wifi!
talk:  rachaal steele on prohibition and that darned temperance movement that's to blame for it - fun, interesting and intemperant!

cask:  red truck french oaked strong ale
verdict:  total crowd pleaser, on the sweet side making it a dangerous little number!

carnivore food:  lion’s head meatballs served over a bed of baby bok choy
veggie food:  arancino crispy risotto wrapped around bocconcini, served on bed of lightly seasoned marinara
verdict:  this was the best pairing of the day for me, and another example of the amazing food that craft beer destinations have on offer - muah!

stop four:  bimini's
we had the whole top level to ourselves!  there was a service shift change during our sojourn that wasn't seemless, but otherwise service was attentive, and there's wifi!
talk:  there wasn't one...

cask:  parallel 49 imperial wit
verdict:  not at all my preferred style, but i stuck with it most of the way through and it paired nicely with my tacos

carnivore food:  slow roasted pork tacos with smoked pepper hot sauce, pickled vegetables & avocado mash served with a side of roasted corn & potato salad
veggie food:  squash and asparagus tacos with smoked pepper hot sauce, pickled vegetables & avocado mash. Served with a side of roasted corn & potato salad
verdict:  i've never had a crispy vegetable taco before, but i would do it again. unfortunately the corn tortillas were dried out.

there was a second cask available for purchase at bimini
also from parallel 49, it was their "lord of the hops" ipa
and damn, was it ever a tasty beast!

the carouse was a fabulous way to spend a sunny vancouver spring afternoon
kudos to amanda of camra for putting it together,
thanks to the four breweries for providing the casks,
and the four venues for extending us such fabulous welcomes and food,
thanks to everyone who came out and paid their money and tooks their chances!


sad news from red hook today
one of their employees was killed when a keg exploded
a very sad day for red hook and all craft beer drinkers

more coverage of the story

official statement from red hook

Friday, April 20, 2012


tuesday night at the railway club the cask was central city's dry-hopped esb stout
it was so delightful i had too many of them!

thursday night at the yaletown brewpub the cask was their nagila pale ale "straight up"
it was alright
i thought it had a bit of an aftertaste...

summer brews

what's coming out this summer?
lots of delicious local beers!

Thursday, April 19, 2012

note to self

Here is a list of 15 things which, if you give up on them, will make your life a lot easier and much, much happier. We hold on to so many things that cause us a great deal of pain, stress and suffering – and instead of letting them all go, instead of allowing ourselves to be stress free and happy – we cling on to them. Not anymore. Starting today we will give up on all those things that no longer serve us, and we will embrace change. Ready? Here we go:
1. Give up your need to always be right. There are so many of us who can’t stand the idea of being wrong – wanting to always be right – even at the risk of ending great relationships or causing a great deal of stress and pain, for us and for others. It’s just not worth it. Whenever you feel the ‘urgent’ need to jump into a fight over who is right and who is wrong, ask yourself this question: “Would I rather be right, or would I rather be kind?” Wayne Dyer. What difference will that make? Is your ego really that big?
2. Give up your need for control. Be willing to give up your need to always control everything that happens to you and around you – situations, events, people, etc. Whether they are loved ones, coworkers, or just strangers you meet on the street – just allow them to be. Allow everything and everyone to be just as they are and you will see how much better will that make you feel.
“By letting it go it all gets done. The world is won by those who let it go. But when you try and try. The world is beyond winning.” Lao Tzu
3. Give up on blame. Give up on your need to blame others for what you have or don’t have, for what you feel or don’t feel. Stop giving your powers away and start taking responsibility for your life.
4. Give up your self-defeating self-talk. Oh my. How many people are hurting themselves because of their negative, polluted and repetitive self-defeating mindset? Don’t believe everything that your mind is telling you – especially if it’s negative and self-defeating. You are better than that.
“The mind is a superb instrument if used rightly. Used wrongly, however, it becomes very destructive.” Eckhart Tolle
5. Give up your limiting beliefs about what you can or cannot do, about what is possible or impossible. From now on, you are no longer going to allow your limiting beliefs to keep you stuck in the wrong place. Spread your wings and fly!
“A belief is not an idea held by the mind, it is an idea that holds the mind” Elly Roselle
6. Give up complaining. Give up your constant need to complain about those many, many, maaany things – people, situations, events that make you unhappy, sad and depressed. Nobody can make you unhappy, no situation can make you sad or miserable unless you allow it to. It’s not the situation that triggers those feelings in you, but how you choose to look at it. Never underestimate the power of positive thinking.
7. Give up the luxury of criticism. Give up your need to criticize things, events or people that are different than you. We are all different, yet we are all the same. We all want to be happy, we all want to love and be loved and we all want to be understood. We all want something, and something is wished by us all.
8. Give up your need to impress others. Stop trying so hard to be something that you’re not just to make others like you. It doesn’t work this way. The moment you stop trying so hard to be something that you’re not, the moment you take of all your masks, the moment you accept and embrace the real you, you will find people will be drawn to you, effortlessly.
9. Give up your resistance to change. Change is good. Change will help you move from A to B. Change will help you make improvements in your life and also the lives of those around you. Follow your bliss, embrace change – don’t resist it.
“Follow your bliss and the universe will open doors for you where there were only walls”
Joseph Campbell
10. Give up labels. Stop labeling those things, people or events that you don’t understand as being weird or different and try opening your mind, little by little. Minds only work when open. “The highest form of ignorance is when you reject something you don’t know anything about.” Wayne Dyer
11. Give up on your fears. Fear is just an illusion, it doesn’t exist – you created it. It’s all in your mind. Correct the inside and the outside will fall into place.
“The only thing we have to fear, is fear itself.”
Franklin D. Roosevelt
12. Give up your excuses. Send them packing and tell them they’re fired. You no longer need them. A lot of times we limit ourselves because of the many excuses we use. Instead of growing and working on improving ourselves and our lives, we get stuck, lying to ourselves, using all kind of excuses – excuses that 99.9% of the time are not even real.
13. Give up the past. I know, I know. It’s hard. Especially when the past looks so much better than the present and the future looks so frightening, but you have to take into consideration the fact that the present moment is all you have and all you will ever have. The past you are now longing for – the past that you are now dreaming about – was ignored by you when it was present. Stop deluding yourself. Be present in everything you do and enjoy life. After all life is a journey not a destination. Have a clear vision for the future, prepare yourself, but always be present in the now.
14. Give up attachment. This is a concept that, for most of us is so hard to grasp and I have to tell you that it was for me too, (it still is) but it’s not something impossible. You get better and better at with time and practice. The moment you detach yourself from all things, (and that doesn’t mean you give up your love for them – because love and attachment have nothing to do with one another, attachment comes from a place of fear, while love… well, real love is pure, kind, and self less, where there is love there can’t be fear, and because of that, attachment and love cannot coexist) you become so peaceful, so tolerant, so kind, and so serene. You will get to a place where you will be able to understand all things without even trying. A state beyond words.
15. Give up living your life to other people’s expectations. Way too many people are living a life that is not theirs to live. They live their lives according to what others think is best for them, they live their lives according to what their parents think is best for them, to what their friends, their enemies and their teachers, their government and the media think is best for them. They ignore their inner voice, that inner calling. They are so busy with pleasing everybody, with living up to other people’s expectations, that they lose control over their lives. They forget what makes them happy, what they want, what they need….and eventually they forget about themselves. You have one life – this one right now – you must live it, own it, and especially don’t let other people’s opinions distract you from your path.

100 mile diet

the 100 mile diet means something a little different in ontario
here in southern british columbia, we can easily live off what's around us, especially in terms of beer ingredients
no such luck in onterrible!

Tuesday, April 17, 2012

12 beers of the apocalypse

next instalment is due for release:

top 50 u.s. craft breweries

according to these are the brewer's association top 50 breweries in the u.s. of a. in 2011:

Top 50 Craft Brewing Companies
(Based on 2011 beer sales volume)

RankBrewing CompanyCityState
1Boston Beer Co.BostonMA
2Sierra Nevada Brewing Co.ChicoCA
3New Belgium Brewing Co.Fort CollinsCO
4The Gambrinus CompanySan AntonioTX
5Deschutes BreweryBendOR
6Matt Brewing Co.UticaNY
7Bell's Brewery, Inc.GalesburgMI
8Harpoon BreweryBostonMA
9Lagunitas Brewing Co.PetalumaCA
10Boulevard Brewing Co.Kansas CityMO
11Stone Brewing CompanyEscondidoCA
12Dogfish Head Craft BreweryMiltonDE
13Brooklyn BreweryBrooklynNY
14Alaskan Brewing & Bottling Co.JuneauAK
15Long Trail Brewing Co.BurlingtonVT
16Shipyard Brewing Co.PortlandME
17Abita Brewing Co.Abita SpringsLA
18Great Lakes Brewing Co.ClevelandOH
19New Glarus Brewing Co.New GlarusWI
20Full Sail Brewing Co.Hood RiverOR
21Summit Brewing Co.St. PaulMN
22Anchor Brewing Co.San FranciscoCA
23Firestone Walker Brewing Co.Paso RoblesCA
24Sweetwater Brewing Co.AtlantaGA
25Rogue AlesNewportOR
26Flying Dog BreweryFrederickMD
27Victory Brewing Co.DowningtownPA
28CraftWorks Breweries & RestaurantsChattanooga/LouisvilleTN/CO
29Oskar Blues BreweryLongmontCO
30Odell Brewing Co.Fort CollinsCO
31Stevens Point Brewery Co.Stevens PointWI
32Ninkasi Brewing Co.EugeneOR
33BJ's Chicago Pizza & Brewery, Inc.Huntington BeachCA
34Blue Point Brewing Co.PatchogueNY
35Bear Republic Brewing Co.CloverdaleCA
36Lost Coast Brewery CafeEurekaCA
37Big Sky Brewing Co.MissoulaMT
38North Coast Brewing Co. Inc.Fort BraggCA
39Saint Louis Brewery, Inc./Schlafly BottleworksSt. LouisMO
40Gordon Biersch Brewing Co.San JoseCA
41Breckenridge BreweryDenverCO
42Founders Brewing Co.Grand RapidsMI
43Saint Arnold Brewing Co.HoustonTX
44Karl Strauss Brewing Co.San DiegoCA
45Real Ale Brewing Co.BlancoTX
46Mac and Jack's Brewery Inc.RedmondWA
47Smuttynose Brewing Co.PortsmouthNH
48Utah Brewers CooperativeSalt Lake CityUT
49Left Hand Brewing Co.LongmontCO
t.50 Anderson Valley Brewing Co.BoonvilleCA
t.50 Four Peaks Brewing Co.TempeAZ

Monday, April 16, 2012

kits cask carouse

i'm leading a group for the camra kits cask carouse - join me wontcha?!?
four stops
four casks
food, food, food!

Displace Hashery
BeerR&B Raspberry IPA
Food Pairing – TBA
Guest Speaker – Duncan Stewart on ‘Cask beer 101′

Darby’s Pub

BeerLighthouse Switchback IPA
Food Pairing - Wimpy Burger (Fraser Valley beef patty, with lettuce, tomato, crispy onions, mustard & mayo on a brioche bun) with roasted garlic polenta fries, or Vegetarian Wimpy Burger with roasted garlic polenta fries.
Guest Speaker – Paddy Treavor, CAMRA Vancouver President

The Bimini
BeerParallel 49 Imperial Wit
Food Pairing – Slow-roasted pork tacos with smoked pepper hot sauce, pickled vegetables & avocado mash. Served with a side of roasted corn & potato salad. The vegetarian option will replace pork for squash and asparagus.
Guest Speaker – Mike Tod of Parallel 49 on ‘Laws surrounding opening a brewery and the challenges’

Sunset Grill Tap House & Whiskey Bar
BeerRed Truck French Oaked Strong Ale
Food Pairing- Lion’s Head Meatballs (braised pork meatballs served over a bed of baby bok choy), or Crispy Risotto-wrapped Bocconcini, served on bed of lightly seasoned marinara.
Guest Speaker – Rachaal Steele on ‘A brief history of Canadian breweries post prohibition’

Tickets for CAMRA Vancouver’s Kitsilano Cask Carouse April 21 are $45 for members and $50 for non members. Participants will be split up into 4 groups, so if you would like to be in a group with your friends, email


look!  they like craft beer in toronto too

Friday, April 13, 2012

cask night

the cask last night at the yaletown was cory's trojan horseradish ipa
you gotta like horseradish if you're gonna get through this one!
me, i like it so it went down just fine!
and kudos to cory for making this experiment work

the seasonal at yaletown is now the framboise
a sour little number!  delicious!
get some before its gone
and speaking of sour, there's still some ould bruin on tap as well


i am thoroughly exhausted
and cranky!

stayed up last night to buy tickets to hoppapalooza
(the went on sale at midnight and were guaranteed to sell out before the morning)
only to have the vcbw ticketing site crash repeatedly
i kept trying for half an hour and then gave in and went to sleep

lucky for me one of my friends kindly stayed awake and kept on trucking until she got me my ticket
yay friends!

boo! on the ticketing people though
and vcbw for releasing tix at midnight in the first place
that was just mean
and now i'm tired and cranky and wondering if any of it was worth it

and wah, wah, wah, first world problems