Off to the CAMRA Cask Fest at Big Ridge Brewing with some of my favourite fellow beer testers!
This event was held out in Surrey at the Big Ridge Brewing Co. on September 21st. Big Ridge Brewing sent a van to pick us up at the Sky Train Station, and later dropped us off back at the station.
The casks didn’t open until three and as we were there early we started with a flight of Big Ridge brews: Harvest Lager, Chimney Hill Wheat, Rodeo Red, Clover Ale (IPA), Old Sullivan Porter, and a ‘seasonal’ Kolsch. All were excellent examples of their style, and we rated them at least 3 stars out of 4, with a 3 1/2 stars going to their Clover Ale IPA. (Noting that the standard for our rating is Driftwood ‘Fat Tug IPA’ with 4 stars.)
This event was sponsored by CAMRA, ‘Campaign for Real Ale’, in support of Craft Beer (http://camravancouver.ca)
The casks were opened and the place became a hectic zoo. From the eight casks we chose the following line up: Yaletown IPA, Red Truck Ale, Dead Frog India Golden Ale, Four Winds Nectarine IPA and Central City Pale Ale.
The Yaletown IPA rated number 1, and the Central City Pale Ale number 2, followed by 3. Red Truck Ale and 4. Four Winds Nectarine IPA. The Dead Frog India Golden Ale didn’t rate, it was awful!
Spicy Garlic Squid – this kept wafting by all afternoon until we finally figured out what that incredible smell was and then had to order it.
We met some other interesting taster testers – the ‘Daughters of Beer’ don’t have business cards, they have coasters. Their blog keeps track of beer events both near and far: http://daughtersofbeer.tumblr.com .
In the mood for some completely different beer? Here is our experience with Belgian beers, as served in a few traditional pubs in Brussels:
TRADITIONAL PUBS WE VISITED WHILE IN BRUSSELS (BRUXELLES)
- Au Bon Vieux Temps: a 300 year-old bar in Brussels, where we had an interesting beer tasting experience
- A la Becasse, where Al had a slab o’ bread with Ardennes ham, and of course we both tasted more Belgian beer
- A la Mort Subite, a historic brasserie in Brussels