My Kind of Beer With Chris Goddard
NEW BEERS FOR THE FALL
September marks the beginning of a very hectic beer launch season here in Ontario at the LCBO. We have the Autumn release followed by the Halloween release with the Winter release right on its heels. When you smatter in this year’s Gift Packs and all of the local brewery releases there is more than enough excitement to go around.
The other great thing about these upcoming releases is that many of them are big and boozy enough that you can cellar them for a while without worrying about them going “off” or having to drink all of your bounty in the next couple of months. You can stretch them out throughout the winter and drink with confidence.
Here are a few of my picks for this autumn:
Weihenstephan Vitus — This beer is one of my favourites but has been gone for a couple of years from the LCBO. Winner of multiple gold medals at the World Beer Awards, this beer is from the World’s Oldest Brewery and has quite a bit of street cred to back it up. It is a pale bock beer that’s aged extra long and drinks much smoother than you would expect from a 7.7% ABV beer. Your biggest mistake would be to buy only a couple of these bottles.
New Holland’s Dragon’s Milk — Actually one of the beers that my agency brings in each season; it’s a big, delicious imperial stout brewed not too far away in Holland, Michigan. This beer is aged in bourbon barrels for over 4 months and then those barrels are used to make 60 www.onthego.to New Holland’s Beer Barrel Bourbon (there are a few bottles of this left at the LCBO too). It’s a 98 on ratebeer.com (which is very good for those who are in the know) and comes in at a warming 11% ABV. This is another one that you want to grab a few of and keep in the cellar for special occasions or to share with a beer fan in your life.
MacLean’s Luck & Charm Oatmeal Stout — MacLean’s has been around for only 3 years but their beers have the balance, refinement and sessionability that is usually only observed in a more mature brewery. I haven’t had this award-winning beer myself yet but I’ve always liked the MacLean’s beers and I love a great oatmeal stout. I find they usually have a little more body than regular stouts and this one in particular looks like it has a fine balance between spice and sweetness which should make it both rich and drinkable.
Great Divide Yeti — I will never forget the first time I had Yeti direct from their taproom in Denver, CO. Not only did I like Great Divide’s branding and brewery, their beers were outstanding and Yeti was my favourite. It has a rating of 100 on ratebeer.com — which is a very rare occurrence — but their brewery does boast a high number of beers that have a 97–99 rating as well. Yeti is big on everything — 75 IBUs balanced with a massive malt bill that helps this beer range from coffee and chocolate to piney and citrusy. I hate to sound like a broken record here but you should probably grab a few of these bottles when you see them. They won’t last.