Did you know October is BC Craft Beer Month?
Over the past few years, this province’s beer scene has exploded like a poorly-tapped keg. In the lower mainland, we can barely keep up with all the craft breweries opening each month, and the libation lists in pubs just keep growing. In celebration of this wonderful time of year, here’s a roundup of places in Richmond you can find craft beer, and some suggestions for trying BC brews!
Big River is Richmond’s only brewery, led by brewmaster Michael Stewart. This spring they teamed up with Fuggles and Warlock, a craft brew team I met during 365 Days of Dining at a Pumphouse Pub long table dinner. They describe themselves as “gypsy brewers” who “keep beer weird!” and have branding that very much demonstrates their love of video games and Star Wars.
May I suggest trying……the Fuggles and Warlock Hue Heff Hefeweizen? They describe it as “a smooth German style wheat beer with sexy Aussie hops to give it a citric finish with slight banana overtones. Or give one of their house beers a try, like the White Mage White Ale, “a clean, refreshing Belgian-style wheat ale with a creamy mouthfeel and a delicate hop presence.”
I celebrated St. Patrick’s Day at O’Hare’s during 365 Days of Dining, and it’s a great neighbourhood joint. They’re so into beer, they started a BEER CLUB! For a monthly fee, members gain access to all kinds of perks, including priority access to new releases and limited bottles; invites to exclusive tastings; and a bi-monthly “Beer Box.” It contains approximately ten different craft beers, as well as tasting notes and food pairing suggestions.
Might I suggest you try……..the Driftwood Fat Tug IPA? Driftwood is a super popular brewery out of Victoria, and with an 80+ IBU, Fat Tug is great for a hops lover.
BBQ and BEER. BEER and BBQ. That’s what the guys at Hog Shack are all about, and why it’s an awesome place to visit; it’s also “the Lower Mainland’s only establishment offering a 100% Craft Beer brew list.” They work with Beer Thirst to ensure an ever-changing draught list, and regularly host events. These usually combine pig + brews in one form or another, as demonstrated by the upcoming Swine Fest on October 27th! They’re roasting a whole pig and tapping a special edition cask from Parallel 49 brewery. FUNNNN.
Might I suggest trying……the Pothole Filler by Howe Sound, or the Ugly Sweater Milk Stout from Parallel 49? The latter one is obviously named for the season, and as Jan Zeschky describes it, “There’s a fresh creaminess combined with bright coffee and mellow caramel-chocolate notes that immediately presses the “comfort beer” button and makes you want to dive in.” Ok, will do!
For beer drinkers, the Pumphouse Pub is another Richmond go-to. They host regular long-table dinners, and often pair food specifically with beers, like the event I attended a few years ago. They’re hugely supportive of the BC scene in particular, and have had all kinds of specials running for Craft Beer Month, including kegs from Cannery, Moon Under Water, Crannog, Storm, and R&B. Check out what’s coming up on their Facebook page, which they update daily.
Might I suggest trying……the Phillips Blue Buck Ale or the Four Winds IPA? Four Winds, in addition to having some of the darn nicest branding around, has had huge success since they opened in Delta in 2013.
Other good places to get your beer on:
*Cover photo credit: www.khgroup.ca