Wednesday, June 22, 2016

beer column

Everyone knows that beer tastes great with all things bbq and picnic, but did you also know that you can make bbq and picnic foods with beer?  

Oh, friends, you can!  
Let me count the ways for you!

You can poacha sausage in beer;
Or make marinade for your deer;
You don’t have to have skills
To add chills and thrills
Your chili will pop
Your potato salad’s the tops
Beer soaked chickpeas for hummus
Taste so good with hops like Columbus!

Seriously though, beer is a great flavour enhancer in cooking and lends itself well to barbeque fare and summer side dishes.  The possibilities are endless, really.

Let’s start with the mains:

Beer poached sausages – For vegetarians and meat eaters alike there are plenty of recipes available online.  The very simple premise though is that you take your favourite sausage, poke holes in it, then poach it in beer before grilling it.  This adds even more flavour to your sausage and halves the grilling time required!

And then you could serve the same beer as you poached the sausages in for an easy pairing.  I have listed some great beer choices for poaching the sausages in (and drinking with them) below.  Now, before anyone calls me on it, yes, I’m a vegetarian!  Because I'm swell, I did check with meat eating folks to confirm that meat sausages as well as veggie sausages pair with these beers!  

For spicy sausages, a crisp wit beer like Powell Street’s award-winning Witbier with ginger and cardamom is a nice pairing.  A regular old frank pairs nicely with a cream ale like Phillips’ Slipstream Cream Ale, a sweet Italian sausage pairs well with a saison like Four Winds’, Kielbasa goes hand in hand with a pilsner, chorizo and lager pair well.  A turkey or chicken sausage pairs nicely with a gose... but really, you can’t go wrong with beer and sausages.  The beer’s acidity and carbonation cut through the fats in the sausage, cleansing your palate between bites so that you can taste every single mouthful of juicy sausage.

Beer poached fish - You can also poach fish on the grill with beer – just make a trough out of your bottom layer of tin foil to hold the liquid inside.  Add butter and seasonings as usual, then pour beer over the top of the fish and seal up the foil pocket.  IPAs with citrusy hops are ideal for this recipe.

And then there are side dishes!  Which is where I think the most fun comes in – you can pretty much use beer anywhere you’d be adding a liquid in a recipe.  

Use beer as part of your soupstock, as part of the liquid you cook rice, risotto or quinoa in, for bakedbeans and the like, you would put the beer in the slow cooker.  You can add stout to mac and cheese.  A friend of mine even soaks chickpeas in ipa when making hummus. 

While there are no hard and fast rules for which beer to use in a recipe, you might want to consider the flavour you are looking to boost to decide which style of beer to use.  For the baked beans you are probably looking to increase the rich sweetness, so a maltier beer would be preferable, like a stout or a Belgian dubbel.  If you’re putting bacon in the beans and want to emphasize that flavour, use a smoked beer.

If you’re serving salad, you can replace the vinegar in the vinaigrette dressing with sour beer.  Sour beer can also give a kick to a bbq sauce or marinade.

I'm no whiz in the kitchen, so believe me when I tell you that anyone can cook with beer!
But if you're still not confident to just start experimenting, click on the links above to take you to some tried and true recipes.

cbc website

from yesterday's beer column on cbc radio one's on the coast:

Beers are great at barbecues 

for drinking — and eating?

Plus, check out Rebecca Whyman's beer picks for the week

CBC News Posted: Jun 21, 2016 7:06 PM PT Last Updated: Jun 21, 2016 7:06 PM PT
If you're looking to add a little something to your sausages, consider poaching them with beer, Rebecca Whyman says.
If you're looking to add a little something to your sausages, consider poaching them with beer, Rebecca Whyman says. (Austin Keys/Flickr)
Cold beer is an essential part of any good summer barbecue, but On The Coast beer columnist Rebecca Whyman says beer isn't just for drinking at barbecues: it's also for cooking.
She says beers are great for poaching sausages: just poke holes in the sausages, meat or vegetarian, let them soak in beer for an hour or so and throw them on the grill.
"Really, you can't go wrong with beer and sausages," Whyman told On The Coast guest host Michelle Elliot. "The beer's acidity and carbonation cut through the fats in the sausage, cleansing your palate between bites so that you can taste every single mouthful of juicy sausage."
Whyman says for spicy sausages, a crisp wit beer like Powell Street's witbier with ginger and cardamom is a nice pairing; a frank pairs nicely with a cream ale like Phillips' Slipstream Cream Ale; a sweet Italian sausage pairs well with a saison like Four Winds'; Kielbasa goes well with a pilsner; chorizo and lager pair well and turkey or chicken sausage pairs nicely with a gose.
There are plenty of other ways you can cook summer barbecue foods with beer, and Whyman says The Beeroness blog has lots of good ideas.
Here are Whyman's picks for beer this week.
Strange Fellows' Reynard Oud Bruin
"A style for which brewer Iain Hill is renowned.,This one has been aging and souring and becoming awesome in barrels since the brewery opened a year and a half ago. The Oud Bruin is a Flemish style of sour, reddish brown in colour, and not to be confused with the light, fruity and tart kettle sours available. This is a barrel-aged, medium-bodied, dark and rich sour, with notes of vanilla, oak and cherries. 6.5 percent, available in 750 ml bottles from the brewery."
Main Street/Powell Street's The Streets collaboration
"If you like peaty flavours, then this golden ale is for you! It's a Scottish golden ale of a mere four percent alcohol. Quite smokey and full-bodied for its modest alcohol level, this is also a very carbonated beer, adding to its refreshing qualities. This is a blended beer: half was fermented at Powell Street in oak whiskey barrels and half at Main Street in stainless steel. Available on tap and in 650 millilitre bottles at both tasting rooms."
Parkside Dusk Pale Ale
"Billed as a relaxed West Coast pale ale, the Dusk is an easy-drinking beer with light northwest hopping and smooth malt character. 5.3 percent, available on tap at the tasting room currently, and eventually in cans."
With files from CBC Radio One's On The Coast

Saturday, June 18, 2016


arrival press release
yvr food fest insta
For Immediate Release
Thursday, June 16
Street Food and the Culinary Arts Collide at Vancouver’s Premiere Celebration of Food Culture on August 5-7, 2016.
Arrival Agency's popular summer food event—formerly known as Food Cart Fest—is back, bigger and better. Now known as YVR Food fest, it has evolved into a into a weekend-long celebration of food culture in Vancouver and beyond. Consistently named one of the city’s top food events by the Georgia Straight and WestJet Magazine, Food Fest is now in its fifth year.
"YVR Food Fest’s new direction expands on our previous work by including different communities, generating dialogue and pushing boundaries around food culture. With the help of the top food and beverage minds in our city, we hope to turn the festival into the best food event in North America,” says Arrival Agency’s Ernesto Gomez.
New this year are local and international culinary talent collaborating on long table dinners, food talks, private dinners, and cocktail parties. The flagship event is the Street Food Showdown: a two-day gathering of 80+ food carts, restaurants, wineries and breweries in the Olympic Village. During this event, participating food vendors will be offering up an unlimited tasting menu for a two-hour feeding frenzy. At the end of the event, attendees will vote on their favourites and winners will be declared in a variety of categories.
“Over the festival's run, people have told us they want to be able to sample all the food carts. With this new format you’ll be able to try to them all for two hours as well offerings from some of the city’s top restaurants, who will be bringing their creative, culinary touch to the event,” says Daniel Fazio.
A signature event at YVR Food Fest that’s sure to become a yearly tradition for many is Gather, an outdoor long-table dinner on Saturday, August 6 on the patio at Science World. This 10-course tasting dinner made by local and international culinary talent will also feature pairings from the province’s top wineries, coordinated by Kurtis Kolt. There are only 150 tickets available and attendees can come with a group or come alone and leave with new friends.
“Guest chefs will be invited to showcase their upbringing and creativity through the use of seasonal, local ingredients. We’re in talks with some amazing local and international chefs for the event, and they’ll all be announced shortly,” says Ernesto Gomez.
Also new this year is Food For Thought, a speaker series on Sunday, August 7 in the Omnimax Theatre at Science Word. Food For Thought is an evening of genuine and personal stories about food-related topics that engage, provoke, and inspire. Speakers will include chefs, farmers, entrepreneurs, and thought leaders who bring their unique insight to the stage. The full list of speakers is TBA.
“It’ll be like a food-centric TED Talks,” says Danny Fazio. "We’re inviting people that we consider to be truly contributing to our society though food. We wanted to create an event that’s fun and engaging, but at the same time addresses the real issues food culture creators are facing.”
Early bird tickets for YVR Food Fest are on sale now at, and more events like cocktail gatherings, private dinners, and late night parties will be announced shortly. Follow YVR Food Fest on Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram for the latest news and announcements.

press photos

Full Event Details
August 5, 6, & 7, 2016
YVR Mixer
VYR Food Fest Launch Party
Friday, August 5
Patio at Science World (1455 Quebec Street)
Tickets are $45
Ticket includes three drinks and canap├ęs
Street Food Showdown
80+ Food Carts, Restaurants, Wineries, and Breweries
Saturday, August 6 & Sunday, August 7
Olympic Village (215 West 1st Avenue—between the Cambie Street Bridge and the Olympic Village)
Doors at 11am
Event runs from 12pm - 6pm
Unlimited Taster Menu is served from 12pm - 2pm.
Early Bird Tickets are $59 and $10
$59 ticket includes access to the Unlimited Taster Menu from 12pm-2pm and two alcoholic drink tickets.
$10 ticket includes access to the Street Food Showdown after 2pm and one non-alcoholic drink ticket.
Please note these are Early Bird prices and tickets are only valid for one day.
Collaborative Long Table Dinner with 10 Local and International Chefs.
Saturday, August 6
Patio at Science World (1455 Quebec Street)
Tickets are $199
Ticket includes a 10-course tasting menu with wine pairings
Food For Thought
Speaker Series: Fresh Ideas About Food Culture
Sunday, August 7
7pm - 9:30pm
Omnimax Theatre at Science World (1455 Quebec Street)
Tickets are $24
More events TBA!
Tickets for all these events can be purchased online at:
Visit our press page for the latest news:


Friday, June 17, 2016

upcoming event

Vancouver’s Newest Craft Beer and Cider Sampling Pulls the Tab on Downtown Vancouver, July 30

On Saturday July 30th from 2pm-8pm, Vancouver’s Queen Elizabeth Theatre Plaza will play host to the city's newest Craft Beer & Cider sampling event - but there's a twist; everything is coming from a can!

Burnaby’s West Coast Canning work with BC’s up and coming breweries to can their brilliant brews with their state of the art mobile canning unit.

“We wanted to create an event that allowed us to first highlight the quality of the craft beer being brewed here in BC, as well as the unique care and attention that each brewery is putting into both their product and packaging,” said Matt Leslie, co-founder of West Coast Canning.  “There has long been a stigma associated with cans as we immediately equate them to the mass produced brews we were stealing out of the family fridge as teenagers, but they are quickly becoming the preferred package to get these amazing craft beers and ciders to market.”  

It’s easy to see why cans are a popular choice here on the west coast; they are easy to take up the mountain or out on the boat while protecting the beer from UV exposure and are easily recyclable.

West Coast Canning (WWC) is collaborating on this new celebration with Music Heals, a Vancouver-based charitable organization focusing on increasing accessibility to music therapy across the province. WCC is paired up with Wet Ape Productions for the production and promotion of CANcity, working with Liam Peyton, founder of the Whistler Village Beer Festival (Whistler, BC) and Great Okanagan Beer Festival (Kelowna, BC).

Amongst the 20 breweries in attendance are Field House Brewing Co. (Abbotsford, BC), Barkerville Brewing (Quesnel, BC), The Parkside Brewery, Moody Ales, Twin Sails Brewing (all of Port Moody, BC), Hearthstone Brewing (North Vancouver, BC), Longwood Brewing (Nanaimo, BC) and Category 12 Brewing (Victoria, BC). Guests can also expect fun interactive games, cool vendors, and some of the cities favourite food trucks.

A limited number of Early Bird passes for CANcity will be on sale for $20 at 9am, Wednesday, June 15th, at Regular passes are $25.

About West Coast Canning
Canada’s first mobile canning company that provides craft breweries (cideries and wineries) in BC and Alberta with a full service packaging solution so they can focus on making great beer. They work hard to maintain the highest standards of packaging and cleanliness so they can continue to expand their client’s opportunities to reach new consumers and markets. For more information, visit

About Music Heals
A group of music enthusiasts and music lovers who have come together to help raise awareness of the healing powers of music. The Music Heals Charitable Foundation supports a wide range of music therapy services to communities in BC and across Canada. They fund increased access to music therapy for patients in children’s hospitals, senior centers, palliative care, AIDS, HIV programs, at-risk youth, rehabilitation, and bereavement support. For more information, visit Music Heals is a not-for-profit society incorporated in British Columbia and is registered with Canada Revenue Agency as a charitable foundation.

About Wet Ape Productions
Wet Ape is a progressive event company focussed on inspiring people’s favourite moments. Wet Ape brings unforgettable event experiences to life through creativity, innovation, and passion. Wet Ape has created and produced a wide variety of large scale outdoor events including four uniquely inspired festivals: Center of Gravity, the Keloha Music & Arts Festival, Unbuckled, and Harvest Haus. As well, Wet Ape promotes and produces a number of concerts and client events across BC. Check out for more information.

Thursday, June 16, 2016

Vancouver Island Brewing announcement

Vancouver Island Brewing announcement.

Today, our president Barry Fisher entrusts Vancouver Island Brewery to new ownership and new leadership to carry on our craft tradition.


I'm not hip with the new ways of meeting people.
Like meet-ups.
But, I went to one last night, and discovered that they're a great idea!  Go internet!  Way to use the thing that has taken the face-to-face out of life to find people to face-to-face with!

So, if you're a gay man looking to socialize, and you can stand the idea of doing it over beer, I strongly suggest you hit the next Gay Men's Beer and Social Meet-up.  They meet quite often, at different tasting rooms around Vancouver.

If you're something else, I suggest looking through the various meet-ups and finding one that works for you.  It would appear that whatever you're into, a bunch of other people are too.  (The invisible coffee one intrigues me the most - I think they may be my kind of people.)

Fortunately for beer geeks, pretty much every day there's an unofficial meet-up at every tasting room in town.  Which is also the way that pubs in the UK work.  Everything old is new again!

Wednesday, June 8, 2016

cbc website

from the cbc website, here are the highlights from yesterday's beer column on 'on the coast'
with stephen quinn:

B.C. breweries tap into success at
Canadian Brewing Awards

Check out beer columnist Rebecca Whyman's picks from the 2016 awards

CBC News Posted: Jun 07, 2016 5:00 PM PT Last Updated: Jun 07, 2016 5:00 PM PT
The Four Winds team celebrates with their hardware at the 2016 Canadian Brewing Awards. The Vancouver brewery won the Beer of the Year award for their dry-hopped sour, Nectarous.
The Four Winds team celebrates with their hardware at the 2016 Canadian Brewing Awards. The Vancouver brewery won the Beer of the Year award for their dry-hopped sour, Nectarous. (@FourWindsBrewCo/Twitter)
It's been a busy week for craft beer fans, says On The Coast beer columnist Rebecca Whyman.
Vancouver Craft Beer Week wrapped up over the weekend, and this year's event was unique because at the same time, Vancouver and Richmond hosted the Canadian Brewing Awards at the end of May.
It's the first time the event was held in B.C., and Whyman says local breweries took advantage of their time to shine, winning 52 of 163 medals.
"Last year's Brewery of the Year, Four Winds, came away a big winner again this year, winning four medals as well as the highly coveted Beer of the Year award for their dry-hopped sour, Nectarous," Whyman told On The Coast host Stephen Quinn.
"In years past some people had felt there was an Eastern bias to the awards. Having Vancouver host the awards, at the same time as Vancouver Craft Beer Week, sends a message to the rest of Canada that B.C., and Vancouver in particular, are major players in the beer world and that our explosive growth is not happening at the expense of quality."
Other local podium highlights include:
Three medals for Off The Rail and Main Street Brewing
  • Gold medals for Dageraad, Brassneck, Coal Harbour, Parallel 49, Postmark and Howe Sound.
  • Silver medal for Granville Island, Strange Fellows and Hearthstone.
  • Bronze medals for Steamworks, Brassneck, Bomber, Fuggles and Warlock, Central City and Deep Cove.
If you want to taste some award-winning offerings, here are Whyman's picks from the award winners.
Powell Street's Old Jalopy
"A multi-award-winning pale ale. This one was the beer of the year in 2013, and won silver this year at the Canadian Brewing Awards, as well as taking a bronze at the World Beer Cup.
"Old Jalopy is a traditional English style pale ale combined with spicy, citrusy and floral North American hops. 5.5 percent, available in 650 ml bottles at liquor stores and the tasting room and on tap around town."
Four Winds' Nectarous
"Beer of the year according to the 40 accredited beer judges at the Canadian Brewing Awards — and every beer geek I know, as well! Sour, peachy, and nectariney, with citrus and passionfruit notes from being dry-hopped with Galaxy hops.
"It's tart, it's refreshing and you owe it to yourself to try it! 5.5 percent, available in 650 ml bottles at liquor stores and at the tasting room."
Off the Rail's Raj Mahal India Ale
"Gold medal winner at the Canadian Brewing Awards, this is a delicately spiced ale. Not to be mistaken for an IPA, this is an India-inspired ale.
"With a hint of lemongrass, notes of lime and gentle hopping, this a really drinkable and refreshing beer, perfect for the hot summer weather. Five percent, available in 650 ml bottles and on tap at the tasting room."
With files from CBC Radio One's On The Coast