The Should Have Been Friday, Saturday News Post

Well, I had the best of intentions, I really did.  I had a bunch of great news items and events to post yesterday.  Then I didn’t.  The good news, is I’m doing it now.  And it’s not too late!  So if you’re just getting back in from brunch, and wondering what to do with yourself, grab a beverage, your day-timer and get planning! But first, as it’s Saturday morning:

Bikes and Dikes and Canals*

Canals of Amsterdam

Not behind the new Longos

Well, I kind of went on and on about Amsterdam on New Brew Tuesday.  Sort of proposed to their brewer Iain. And maybe you’re thinking I’m going overboard or am being dramatic.  Well, for one thing, thanks for having faith in me.  And for two, go find out for yourself.  Amsterdam runs free tours of their new brewery in Leaside every Saturday from 1-5pm, every hour, on the hour.  Located at 45 Esander Dr (behind the new Longos), Amsterdam’s new digs are well worth visiting.  A beautiful example of building a brewery to spec, rather than growing it with the business, it’s a great chance to see how a brewery runs, and also sample some of Amsterdam’s excellent beers.  While you’re there, stock up for the rest of the weekend.  The retail store (which, by the way, is open to 11am-11pm Monday-Saturday and Sunday 11am-6pm) has all the usuals, like 25 packs of Blonde and Big Wheel for $31.95 and growlers of their main line, but also probably still has some Vicar’s Vice Old Ale and will definitely have their Spring Bock, a Maibock, which was just released this past Thursday. If you watched Brewmance this week and were really disappointed with the ending, you could grab a few bottles of this, and maybe splash some on the curb for us.

*While there will likely be some bikes in or around the brewery, I don’t believe there are any dikes or canals. Nor are there magic brownies, war criminals or miniature figurines

Drink Beer; Raise Money

He'Brew LogoIf there’s a better win-win than drinking beer at a fund-raiser, I haven’t found it yet.  If you want to try some really awesome beers and raise money for a great cause, you should be at the R&R Brewer’s Launch Party in support of United Chesed.  Roland and Russel (the awesome beer importers) will be pouring samples of He’Brew Jewbelation, Souther Tier IPA and Bush Pilot Stormy Monday. “Dessert” will be a sample of Mackmyra First Edition single malt Whisky.  Ben Shillow will be guiding the tasting, as well as providing some history of Jews in craft brewing.  There will be live jazz and kosher hors d’oeuvres.  All this in support of United Chesed. United Chesed of Toronto is a not-for-profit organization established by Dr. Brian Price in 2003. Its vision is to foster a community that supports and stabilizes those struggling with poverty. It offers urgent, short-term relief to families and individuals in crisis situations. The organization responds with immediacy, care, and discretion to the pleas of Jews from all walks of life and affiliations. This Sunday, March 3rd, 2013. 7:30-11:30pm at 36 Harbord St. Early-bird tickets are $35.

For more information and to buy tickets, check out: or call 905-738-3339.

Taking Over

Know what I love? Tap Takeovers.  It’s a fact.  And the great news is, there is one this Tuesday, at C’est What, featuring Black Oak Brewing! Starting at 7pm, on draught there will be Pale Ale, Nut Brown Ale, Double Chocolate, Cherry Stout, Belgian Winter Spice, Nutcracker Porter, 10 Bitter Years, Salt n Peppa – C’est What/Black Oak Collaboration Beer, and on cask Coffee Porter, 50 shades of grain (ale with 50 ingredients), and  Snowman Brewing – Scarlett Monk (a red ale fermented with Belgian Yeast 4.5%). Best part? It’s Ken Woods’ birthday! So now you have no excuse not to be there. So be there!

Details here:

See Above

Okay, you can’t make Tuesday?  That’s kind of lame, but whatever.  You have a chance to redeem yourself. Because Davey D (of Beau’s fame) and Barhop are hosting another takeover, Dark Water Series 2013. But rather than being a brewery feature, they’ve assembled 36 kegs and 2 casks of amazing dark beers from all over the province, with beers from Beau’s All Natural, Sawdust City, Neustadt, Great Lakes, Amsterdam, F & M, Beer Academy, Spearhead, Grand River, Black Oak, Granite, , Wellington, Indie Ale House, Nickel Brook, Flying Monkeys, Bellwoods, Lake of Bays, and Railway City. As an added bit of interest, Geoff Polci from CREMA coffee will be there pulling shots of espresso, to drop into a special double IPA Davey made with Iain at Amsterdam.  I’ve never tried this, but apparently it’s amazing!

Full details here:

It Begins

Strong Patrick Irish Red Ale — Beau's All Natural Brewing Co.Indeed, we’re coming up to St Patrick’s Day, and, believe it or not, this is the only special beer release I’ve heard about yet. But it’s a good one! Beau’s is releasing their Strong Patrick, a strong Irish red ale.  It was magic last year, and I’m sure will be again this year.  A big strong red ale that is roasty and malty, part of the brew gets aged in whiskey barrels, giving it a touch of oak and vanilla.  It will be on tap at 50 bars across Ontario, and there will be a single-bottle release at the LCBO.  If you’re way out east (and still in Ontario) it is also available at the brewery and via the BYBO program.  There are also other bottles of the feBREWary releases at the brewery retail store.  Cheers Beau’s!

Celebrate 100

Well there you have it. According to Mom n Hops, Ontario has reached 100 craft brewers.  Now, to be fair, this list includes breweries/brewpubs that are in the planning phase, but it’s exciting none the less! Check it out here: I’ll drink to that!

And I think that’s it, for now. As a side note, I’m away from March 10-19th, so won’t be posting anything at all.  I could be all professional, and schedule some posts ahead of time, but knowing me, that’s not likely…. In case you’re wondering, I’m taking a group of teens from my church to Nicaragua for a “Learning and Service” trip.  We’ll be working in a fairly impoverished area of Managua, building some affordable reliable homes, and also spending time meeting with people from various walks of life in the city, to help the teens connect how our lives and choices in Toronto impact the lives of people in the developing world.

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