Ice Breaker Winter Ale

We picked up a party pack of Stanley Park Brewery brews.  The very next day, I went and bought a 6 pack of the Ice Breaker winter ale, because oh my god it is so good.  I might have a new favourite…

I really love the rich malty not at all hoppy styles of beers, so I typically gravitate toward the porters and stouts and then get disappointed when I get hit in the face with a mouthful of bitter hops. This one, though, is right up my alley.  Very rich and silky malt, and not at all bitter.  But not only that… on the label it says “Cherry and Dark Chocolate Specialty Ale”.  Normally when a beer review says things like “notes of cherry and dark chocolate” or something about noses I will scoff and be like “yep, tastes like beer”, but this one… I can taste the chocolate!  I TASTE IT!

I don’t taste any cherry yet though.  Maybe I just need to drink more of them!  Experiment commenced…

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Innis and Gunn Irish Whiskey Cask Beer

The St Patty’s Day beer is popping up on the shelves and we decided to try this one tonight.  It’s a scottish beer, except it’s brewed in Irish whiskey casks so that qualifies it for St Patrick.  Innis and Gunn has all sorts of offerings at the local store but I’ve never been overly taken in by any of them.  They were all good, but nothing that made me rush back and buy more next time.

Holy shit this beer.  This is a dark beer.  It looks dark but then you drink it and it’s like “woah.  That’s some malt.”  The ingredients actually say “Contains barley malt.” and nothing else.  It doesn’t even list water and I actually believe it.  I’ve heard people refer to some dark beer as something you can “chew on” and this is thick and full enough that I understand where that saying comes from.  My husband compared it to Guinness, then said “actually it might be better than Guinness.”  They should be along shortly to beat the shit out of him.

Also it is 7.4% alcohol and doesn’t taste like shit!

There are signatures on the outside of the bottle, and a seal indicating that it won gold at the international beer challenge.  I am sort of regretting only picking up two bottles…

Canterbury

PWB-Canterbury-3551-157x300This is one that I bet not many have seen, which makes it a perfect candidate for an entry on my blog.

Canterbury is a beer produced by the local brewery, probably less than 10km from where I am sitting right now.  They proudly advertise how it is brewed with “fresh spring water”, but given the brewery’s location smack on the banks of the river, I often wonder…

Canterbury is apparently Canada’s first Dark Mild.  That’s what the can says, anyway.  What I can tell you is that it’s got a delicious malty flavour without any overpowering “ear wax” hops taste that I find a lot of “dark” beers try to go for.  I like malt and I dislike strong hops, which means I like this beer.

Additionally, since it’s locally produced, there are two major benefits:  It’s cheap, because there are no real shipping costs involved (and also rah rah support local business and whatnot), and it’s always fresh.  We’ve had the occasional “off” batch of imported beer and it’s always unfortunate.  Canterbury is always crisp and fresh and we haven’t run into a bad batch yet.

Don’t get me wrong… it’s a cheap beer, and there are better options out there if you’re looking for quality.  I’m not terribly crazy over the other brands produced by the local place either (although the honey lager is decent, and there are probably others I haven’t tried yet), but Canterbury is definitely my default “grab something quick” choice from the local shops.