Tuesday, 31 December 2013

Beer Not Bread

It is official: beer preceded bread in the development of human food.  Using the same ingredients, and having the same nutritional value as bread, beer, it turns out, probably was the motivation for early grain farming, not bread as was previously assumed by archeologists.

And why not?  It is obviously tasty and pleasant to drink. “Beer had all the same nutrients as bread, and it had one additional advantage,” says Solomon H. Katz, anthropology professor at the University of Pennsylvania. "Namely, it gave early humans the same pleasant buzz it gives us." In fact, it is even more nutritious than bread, argues Patrick  McGovern, the director of the Biomolecular Archaeology Project for Cuisine, Fermented Beverages, and Health at the University of Pennsylvania (what a title!)  "Beer," he says, contains “more B vitamins and [more of the] essential amino acid lysine,” Check out McGovern's book, Uncorking the Past: the Quest for Wine, Beer, and Other Alcoholic Beverages. He points out it was also safer to drink than water, because the fermentation process killed pathogenic microorganisms. “With a four to five percent alcohol content, beer is a potent mind-altering and medicinal substance,” McGovern hypothesizes that ancient brewers acted as medicine men. 

McGovern and colleagues found traces of sage and thyme in ancient Egyptian jars. Luteolin, which is in sage, and ursolic acid, which is in thyme, both have anti-cancer properties. Similarly, artemisinin and isoscopolein from wormwood fight cancer, and were found in ancient Chinese rice wine. “The ancient fermented beverages constituted the universal medicine of humankind before the advent of synthetic medicines.” 

For more about the role beer played in "civilizing" man, read Gloria Dawson's excellent article, "Beer Domesticated Man."  Subtitled, "Early man chose pints over pastry.  Wouldn't you?"

Wednesday, 18 December 2013



No, I'm not talking about the Canberra Academy of Music and Related Arts.  Not Chilboton Advanced Meteorological Radar.  And not Center for Advancing Microbial Risk Assessment. Although all three of these sound like kick-ass great things.

I'm referring to the British-originating club called "Campaign for Real Ale."  Created as a consumer group to promote the production AND CONSUMPTION of traditional ales, beers, and ciders; this has now branched out into clubs throughout the world, including the BC organization and local chapters in Vancouver, Victoria, etc.

According to the UK parent organization, CAMRA's mission is to:
  1. Protect and improve consumer rights.
  2. Promote quality, choice and value for money.
  3. Support the public house as a focus of community life.
  4. Campaign for greater appreciation of traditional beers, ciders and ales as part of our national heritage and culture.
  5. Seek improvements in all licensed premises and throughout the brewing industry.[4]
  Benefits of membership include:

  • 10-20% discounts at member liquor stores, pubs, breweries, and beer-making supply shops
  • Special events
  • Newsletter

Friday, 29 November 2013

Stockholm Beer & Whisky Festival

In case you needed another reason to travel!

Everyone has heard about Oktoberfest, but have you heard of Stockholm's Beer Festival?

An annual event, this year happening 2 weekends, September 26 and October 3rd 2014. You have a chance to taste Beer, Whisky, Wine, Champagne, Rum, Tequila, Cognac, and much more.

Must be 20 years to attend, and there is a small entrance fee.

Friday, 15 November 2013

East Van Vodka, opens their doors

Looking for an alternate to a night of beer tasting? Visit the newly open "Odd Society

The distillery is currently only bottling its East Van Vodka, which is made from 100% B.C. malted barley. But the three people behind Odd Society are promising their gin (Wallflower) and whisky (Mongrel) will be available soon.

Odd Society tasting room hours:  Thurs – Sun 1 p.m. – 7 p.m.

Distillery tours
Fri., Sat. and Sun. at 4 p.m. (no reservations required).

Friday, 27 September 2013

Louisiana Brewery Trail

Just in time for the first-ever Louisiana Craft Beer Week that began Monday September 23, 2013 Lt. Gov. Jay Dardenne unveiled the Louisiana Brewery Trail, highlighting each of the state's seven craft breweries: Abita, Bayou Teche, Chafunkta, Covington, NOLA, Parish and Tin Roof.


Friday, 30 August 2013


1 cup beer
juice of half a pink grapefruit
1/4 cup sugar


Gently stir all ingredients together until sugar is dissolved, and pour into molds.
Freeze for at least 6 hours


Friday, 23 August 2013

Beer Pairing

Spicy food, barbeque, hamburgers, chili, bread pudding, poached pears, fruit flan.
Pale Ale
Meat pie, English cheese, grilled meats, duck liver pate, blackened chicken, pumpkin flan, banana foster.
India Pale Ale
Spicy food, Thai and Mexican food, curries, grilled steak, mussels, carrot cake, caramel apples pie, fig crème brulle
Rib-eye steak, salmon, mussel, calamari, sausage, Thai and Vietnamese food, fruit tart, citrus sorbet.
Lambic, Gueze (sour)
Sockeye salmon, duck a l’orange, sweet & sour pork, apricot tart, baked pears.
Sockeye food, barbeque, blackened fish, sausage, roasted meat chocolate, toasted coconut.
Imperial Stout
Beef carpaccio, foie gras, smoked goose, chocolate, salted caramel pot de crème, expresso cheesecake.

Friday, 9 August 2013

11 new breweries to open in Vancouver

which will make 2013 the biggest year in BC craft brewing history!

Here are the ones we know about so far....


   Brassneck Brewery, 2148 Main Street, Vancouver

   Deep Cove Brewers & Distillers, 2270 Dollarton Highway, North Vancouver

   Main Street Brewing, 263 East 7th Avenue, Vancouver

   Wheelhouse Brewing, 211 1st Avenue East, Prince Rupert


   33 Acres Brewing, 15 West 8th Avenue, Vancouver

   Four Winds Brewing, 7355 72nd Street, Delta

   The Heid Out Restaurant and Brewhouse, 821 Baker Street, Cranbrook


   Beachcomber Brewing

   Four Mile Brewpub, 199 Island Highway, Victoria


   Bomber Brewing, 1488 Adanac Street, Vancouver


   Steel Toad Brewing, East 2nd Street, Vancouver

Friday, 2 August 2013

Iceberg Beer, St. John's Newfoundland

It has been said by many brew masters, “water makes the beer.”

This refreshingly light lager is brewed with 25,000 year old iceberg water harvested from Newfoundland’s awe-inspiring icebergs.

The appearance is clear and golden, a gently hopped, light-bodied brew offering a clean, sparkling finish, crisp with no aftertaste.


Monday, 1 July 2013

Beer that shaped Canadian history


Canada can learn a lot about its history by looking at five types of beer, says author and beer connoisseur Ian Coutts. This Canadian author said Canada became a beer country due to environmental factors because wine has only been made in small areas throughout the nation.

Here are the five types of beer that have shaped Canada, as defined by Coutts:

Brown ale

Brown ale.A pioneer beer made by "guys in the tub" in rural areas in the late 18th Century.

The beer was simple to make but unpredictable because you could not control much about the taste or colour.



The first industrial beer, which  Canadians started importing from overseas.

Pale ale

Pale ale.The drink of saloons, found in "handsome establishments" in towns and patronized by young guys.

It looked good in a glass and it coincided with the rise of the idea of brands — marking the growing urbanization.



Lager.The "star" of every beer commercial from 1955 to 1975, it came in during Prohibition and became the focus of lifestyle-based advertising. It's an industrial beer and you need a refrigerator for storage.

It is good for people raised on soft drinks. It is very connected to postwar affluence and the assembly line.

Craft beer.

 Craft beer

It is what's current, so history is still being made. Craft beer is not exactly a beer, but a "state of mind." It's like music or fashion or anything else.

"It began as a rediscovery of lost beers, but now it is moving into exciting new territory, taking an increasingly sophisticated audience with it," Coutts said.

As for the future of Canadian beer, Coutts said it's looking bright. "This is the golden era of Canadian beer. We've never had more varieties of beer. We've probably got more breweries going now than we had in any time in the last 100 years," he told Robyn Bresnahan, host of CBC Radio's Ottawa Morning.
"You can walk into any bar and get absolutely amazing drinks — pale ales, porters — and it's just going to get better and better."

CBC News June 2013 


Friday, 28 June 2013

Vintage Island Lager !

In celebration of our history as Canada’s original microbrewery, Granville Island is proud to feature their vintage packaging.
Available for a limited time, Island Lager will be available in our vintage 1984 packaging.

Wednesday, 22 May 2013

Friday, 19 April 2013

Beer on a Diet

It seems I always know someone that is on a diet, this usually happens after the Christmas season where everyone has had too much turkey and Christmas treats. Do I have great news for you!! You don’t' need to give up your lagers entirely while watching your waistline, just a change in drink.

There are many low calorie beverages out there. And I have compiled a list of my top 3 low-cal beers. Try them out let me know what you think, or if there is something I should try let me know.

Guinness Draught
Contrary to popular opinion, a dark color doesn't necessarily indicate a high calorie count. And while Guinness has more than twice as many calories as the lowest-calorie beer on the market, it's also much more filling. I’m sure you’ve heard it referred to as a “meal in a glass.” One 12-ounce serving delivers a buzz that's nearly on par with one regular beer, making it a dieter's best bet.

Bud Light
This triple-filtered premium light beer's packaging is super cute ~ blue! and its alcohol content (high!). "Drinking it will make you look cool at the club." For a satisfying bite without the typical bitterness of heavier beers, we say go blue!
STATS: 137 CAL / 4.4 CARBS / 6% ABV

Sam Adams Light (not available in Canada)

This one scored highest marks overall among the taste testers. It's a darker beer with a rich, nutty flavor and a scent akin to multigrain bread. The tasters agreed that this brew's bitterness is just right and "what beer should be".
STATS: 119 CAL / 9.6 CARBS / 4% ABV


Saturday, 6 April 2013

Will you be enjoying a Belgian Beer today?

Today, April 6th is Belgian Beer Day.

It is a unique event organized by the Captain Beerheart Foundation and uniting the world in a toast to Belgian Beer.
More than 6000 people from 92 countries already support Belgian Beer Day. Will you be 60001?

Friday, 5 April 2013

Looking for a way to cool down on a hot day? Try a chocolate Guinness milkshake

1 Cup Guinness Stout
1 Teaspoon Vanilla Extract
6 Scoops Vanilla Ice Cream
2 Scoops Chocolate Ice Cream
1/4 Cup Whole Milk

For The Topping
    Whipped Cream


  1. Place all ingredients in a blender (except for the topping ingredients) combine.
  2. Pour mixture into tall glasses, top with whipped cream and grate some walnuts and chocolate shavings on top!

Friday, 29 March 2013

Hot Chocolate Stout Float

  • 1/2 cup Fudge Sauce
  • 1 12 - 16 oz chocolate stout beer or stout beer 
  • 1 quart vanillla bean ice cream
1. In a small saucepan heat Fudge Sauce and 1/4 cup of the stout until warm and combined.
2. Place two scoops of ice cream into each of six soda glasses. Spoon 2 Tbsp. warm fudge sauce-stout mixture over scoops of ice cream. Pour stout over ice cream in each glass.
Serve at once with long-handled spoons.

Friday, 22 March 2013

Quick and Easy Beer Bread

2 1/2 cups flour
2 tsp baking powder
1 tsp salt
2 Tbsp brown sugar
1/4 cup butter
1 cup dark beer
In a large mixing bowl, combine flour, baking powder, salt and sugar.
Melt butter and add to dry ingredients.
Pour beer over all and mix with a wooden spoon. Batter will be very soft.
Spoon into a greased loaf pan.
Bake at 375 for 45 minutes or until deeply browned.
Cool on a wire rack before slicing.

Friday, 15 March 2013

Beer pairing with Cheese

Have you ever wondered what beer goes with what cheese ? Here is a quick cheat sheet to impress your friends at your next party.  A local classic, Molson Canadian. Best served with Canadian Cheddar     

A local classic, Molson Canadian.
Best served with Canadian Cheddar
If you have an Aged Cheddar it works better with a Blonde Ale.

Asiago cheeses are served best with a dark beer, try Richard's Dark, it's a good match.

For you Havarti fans, a good Dutch Heineken is a great match!

Try pairing a low cost Coors Light with Provolone. Neither are a stong flavor and work well together.

 Looking for something to impress, try a Richard's White, with Camembert.


Friday, 1 March 2013

Have you ever had a drink from a boot ? Learn how it all became !

In the sixteenth-century German fraternities would settle their differences via sword-fight duels. Following the duels, the students would stitch their wounds up with horse hairs and reconcile the differences while drinking beer. As the tradition went, a fraternity brother's own boot would be filled with beer and drunk while the members would cheere him on. The advent of glass blowing allowed the drinking to take on a more hygienic and appetizing structure. The boot, called a "stiefel" in German, traditionally holds two liters of  beer, and today is commonly made of glass.

Friday, 15 February 2013

Beer Marshmallows

Beer Marshmallows coated with crushed pretzels 

1 1/2 tablespoons unflavored gelatin
3/4 cup flat dark beer (suggested: an imperial stout)
1/2 cup + 2 tablespoons (5 ounces) corn syrup
3/4 cup (6 ounces) granulated sugar
1/2 cup finely crushed pretzels

Spray one standard loaf pan with nonstick cooking spray.

For the bloom, sprinkle the gelatin in the bowl of a mixer. Pour 1/2 cup of the beer over the gelatin. Whisk until no lumps. Set the bowl back into your mixer and fit the mixer with a whisk attachment.

For the sugar syrup, combine the remaining 1/4 cup of beer, corn syrup, sugar, and salt in a 4-quart saucepan or larger.  Turn the heat to medium-high and bring the sugar mixture to a boil. Keep an eye on the syrup so it doesn't boil over. 

With the mixer on low speed, carefully pour the sugar syrup down the side of the bowl into the gelatin bloom. Turn the mixer to high and let it whip for 8-10 minutes, until it looks like glossy meringue and is very thick. Pour the marshmallow into the loaf pan and let it cure, uncovered, for 10-12 hours or overnight.

When the marshmallows are cured, turn them out onto a cutting board. Rub all sides of the marshmallow brick with some of the crushed pretzels. Cut into about 18 squares of equal size. Throw the marshmallows into a large bowl or ziplock bag with the remaining crushed pretzels to coat.

Store marshmallows in an airtight container, they will keep for a few weeks.

Friday, 8 February 2013

A blend of four barrel-aged beers

Called “Collage.” A very limited edition collaboration between Deschutes Brewery and Hair of the Dog Brewing Co. A blend of four barrel-aged beers, two (The Dissident and The Stoic) from Deschutes and two (Fred and Adam) from Hair of the Dog. Aged in rye whisky, cognac, sherry, pinot noir, bourbon, new American oak, and new Oregon oak barrels.

Friday, 1 February 2013

Beer Garden at Munich Airport

Lufthansa Airline guests can relax in their lounge featuring its own beer garden. In cooperation with Munich's Franziskaner brewery, Lufthansa passengers can enjoy draught beer tapped from the barrel and Bavarian Pretzels while relaxing at traditional beer tables overlooking the Bavarian Alps!

Tuesday, 22 January 2013

"They melt in your mouth like fluffy vanilla pillows.with a slight hint of......BEER"

 ~ Judy Cakes of Naples, Florida  
Not yet available to purchase, Judy is currently raising funds to mass produce these little puffs.
Keep an eye out for them.

Friday, 18 January 2013

Beer facts you should know, and might.

In Sierra Leone, jewellers immerse diamonds in beer to study the way they reflect light and prove their authenticity.

Ancient Babylonians were first to brew beer. They took their beer-making so seriously, that if one brewed a bad batch, they were to be drowned in it.
The record for the fastest beer drinker is still held by Steven Petrosino. His record was made in 1977 when he drank 1 litre of beer in 1.3 seconds.
The most expensive bottle of beer ever sold was a bottle of Lowenbrau that was rescued from the wreckage of the Hindenburg (http://bit.ly/XBXgGG), an ill-fated air-balloon that burst into flames and crashed dramatically in 1937. The bottle was sold on auction for £10,000.

Most beer drunk in South Africa is lager, as the hot climate favours cold drinks and this is how lager is best enjoyed. Ales are very rare and are only made by small breweries or imported.  

Beer is the world's most widely consumed and probably the oldest of alcoholic beverages; it is the third most popular drink overall, after water and tea.

A 2005 Japanese study found that low alcohol beer may possess strong anti-cancer properties.

Beer makes you pee a lot.

Monday, 7 January 2013

What's in a beer glass?

"The vast majority of glassware is just marketing", is said by most novice beer drinkers, but have you ever watch the way a Guinness shifts and turns in the proper type of glass? It is mesmerising the way it settles making your mouth water just before that first sip. 
Sure some of it is about marketing, but what isn't? The proper beer glass can make the beer colour pop, the aroma spiral into your nose and the taste hit your tongue with a the rich flavor it was ment to have. Starting with the most common

The Pint Glass
Near cylindrical, with a slight taper and wide-mouth. Comes in two standard sizes, the 16 or 20. A slight ridge towards the top, a grip of sorts and helps in stacking them.
Benefits: Cheap to make. Easy to store. Easy to drink out of.

Nothing beats serving your Weizenbier (wheat beer) in an authentic Bavarian Weizen Glass. These classy glasses, with their thin walls and length, showcase the beer's color and allows for much headspace to contain the fluffy, sexy heads association with the style.
Benefits: Specifically produced to take on volume and head, while locking in the banana-like and phenol aromas associated with the style.

The Pilsner Glass
Typically a tall, slender and tapered 12 oz glass that captures the sparkling effervesces and colors of a Pilsner while maintaining its head. A Pokal is a European Pilsner glass with a stem.

 Benefits: Showcases color, clarity and carbonation. Promotes head retention. Enhances volatiles.

The Mug
Heavy, sturdy, large and with handle, the mug is a fun and serious piece of glassware that comes in many sizes and shapes. The best part of using a mug is that you can clink them together with more confidence than other types of glassware. Seidel is a German mug, while a Stein is the stone equivalent that traditionally features a lid, the use of which dates back to the Black Plague to prevent flies from dropping in.
Benefits: Easy to drink out of. Holds plenty of volume.


A traditional German glass, stange means "stick" and these tall, slender cylinders are used to serve more delicate beers, amplifying malt and hop nuances.
Benefits: Tighter concentration of volatiles.

The Goblet
Majestic pieces of work, ranging from delicate and long stemmed (Goblet) to heavy and thick walled (Chalice). The more delicate ones may also have their rims laced with silver or gold, while the heavy boast sculpture-like stems. Some are designed to maintain a 2-centimeter head. This is achieved by scoring the inside bottom of the glass, which creates a CO2 nucleation point, and a stream of eternal bubbles and perfect head retention as a result.
Benefits: Eye candy. Designed to maintain head. Wide-mouthed for deep sips.

An obviously tulip-shaped, wherein the top of the glass pushes out a bit to form a lip in order to capture the head and the body is bulbous. Scotch Ales are often served in a "thistle glass," which is a modified tulip glass that resembles Scotland's national flower. (a thistle)

Benefits: Captures and enhances volatiles, while it induces and supports large foamy heads.

Used for brandy and cognac, these wide-bowled and stemmed glasses with their tapered mouths are perfect for capturing the aromas of strong ales. Volumes range, but they all provide room to swirl and agitate volatiles.
Benefits: Captures and enhances volatiles.

Oversized Wine Glass
An oversized 22oz wine glass will be most suitable for serving most Belgian Ales. Its size allows for headspace, while the open bowl creates an amazing nose. A lot of smart beer bars are now serving their Belgian Ales in these. It also makes for a great crossover conversational piece.

Benefits: Replacement for a Tulip or Goblet. Conversational.

Flute Glass
A long and narrow body ensure that carbonation doesn't dissipate too quickly and showcase a lively carbonation or sparkling color. Stems will often be a bit shorter than the traditional champagne glass, but not necessarily.

Benefits: Enhances and showcases carbonation. Releases volatiles quickly for a more intense upfront aroma.


Friday, 4 January 2013

How would a 170 Year old Beer taste?

Wine gets better with age, but does beer ?  How do you think a beer that is 170 years old would taste?

Finnish researchers say they may be able to recreate beer from the 1840s after finding living bacteria in beer from a shipwreck discovered near Aland islands, Finland.

Researchers analyzed two bottles of beer, which they admitted "had not stood the test of time well" but retained a pale golden color and could originally have had hints of rose, almond and cloves.

"Based on the chemical analysis we made of the beer and with help from a master brewer it would be possible to try to make beer that would resemble it as much as possible," Annika Wilhelmson from VTT technical research centre of Finland told Reuters.