Ben's Beer Blog

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A Canadian-made Sierra Nevada beer comes to Ontario today

sierra-nevada-nc

In August, 14 beer-loving Canadians traveled to the Mills River, North Carolina brewing facility of famed pioneer craft brewery Sierra Nevada Brewing Co. for a collaboration.

The result of that collab, the unfortunately named “The Eh! Team” beer, is a peppercorn-spiced farmhouse saison that has just hit the draught lineups of a handful of great Ontario beer bars, all of whom were on hand for the beer’s creation.

The beer was made as part of Sierra Nevada’s Beer Camp collaboration series that welcomed Ontario beer writer Crystal Luxmore and the owners of Picton’s County Canteen, Kingston’s two Red House pubs, Toronto’s beerbistro, Birreria Volo, Bar Hop, and the Indie Ale House. Continue reading


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Stone Brewing Co. is coming to Ontario

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Something that has been a poorly-kept secret among gossipy Ontario hop fiends for a while can now finally be officially confirmed:  Escondido, California’s Stone Brewing Co. is coming to Ontario.

I spoke with Rob Hern, the Retail Sales and Marketing Manager for Horizon Beers, the agency that represents Stone in Canada and he confirmed that, yes, I can finally actually publicly state that Stone’s award-winning, West-coast-style, hop-forward beers will be here in February.

Stone IPA, one of the best-selling and well-respected IPAs in America will be joined on draught in the province by Arrogant Bastard, a beer that you probably don’t have a refined enough palate to appreciate. Hern says there will be a handful of launch events in the province the week of February 23rd (with obviously a majority here in Toronto, the centre of the universe) and, while he’s keeping the exact details under wraps for now, he suggested that visits from brewery officials and even a collaboration brew with an Ontario brewery might be in the works to publicize the beers’ arrival. Let the sexual favour offers from local brewmasters to Rob Hern begin.

The news of Stone’s arrival comes fairly recently on the heels of the news that both California’s Sierra Nevada and Scotland’s Brew Dog will be infiltrating Ontario’s beer market so this adds even further speculation to the oft-debated question of how Ontario beer will fare in competition with more established craft brands. For their part, Stone brings the credibility of not only being the the 10th largest craft brewery in the United States, but also one that was actually rated “the #1 All Time Top Brewery on Planet Earth” by the readers of Beer Advocate. No, seriouslyContinue reading


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Sierra Nevada is coming to Ontario

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There is exciting news for Ontario’s pale ale fans: Chico California’s Sierra Nevada Brewing Pale Ale will soon be available on tap in Ontario bars and sometime a little after that, on store shelves in your LCBO.

This weekend, I spoke with Andrew von Teichman, the president of Von Terra Enterprises Ltd, the agency responsible for bringing Sierra Nevada to Ontario, and von Teichman confirmed rumblings you may or may not have heard at Cask Days when that event’s organizers brought Sierra Nevada to Toronto along with a handful of other California beers for the event.

Von Teichman confirmed that Sierra Nevada Pale Ale will be available on tap in Ontario in February and that an LCBO launch will likely follow in March. The beer will launch exclusively on draught at all six Bier Markt locations on February 9th and then will roll out to other accounts in March. No other accounts are confirmed yet, but von Teichman tells me that they’ve talked to a number of restaurants and bars and, not surprisingly, they’ve basically just said ‘let us know when and we’re all over it.’ Continue reading