It’s that time of year when cooler weather spreads across the region like an icy mist. But that doesn’t mean you have to hibernate until next spring. Instead, fortify yourself for fall and winter with some delicious seasonal beers made right here in Richmond. We touched base with local producers Britannia Brewing, Monkey 9 Brewing and Fuggles Beer to find out what they’re planning for the chilly months ahead.
Brewer Mike Nicholson has three seasonal specials lined-up for fall and winter. First is a Barke Vienna Kellerbier, which he says combines “lightly toasted cracker and slight caramel sweetness flavours with a subtle touch of noble hops.” Hop fans will also enjoy his autumnal New Zealand Hazy Pale, which uses Nelson Sauvin and Riwaka hops to deliver a taste treat Nicholson describes as “gooseberry, papaya, passion fruit and citrus.”
Once winter arrives, stronger brews rise in popularity at Britannia. “More people drink darker beers here as the weather changes,” says Nicholson, who is planning a limited-release Forty Fathoms Imperial Porter for early December. The heady, deliciously spicy creation will blend dark grains with ginger, nutmeg, vanilla, cinnamon and cardamom. “It’ll keep you warm with its rich tones of chocolate, toffee, dried fruit and hints of spiced rum,” he says.
But that’s not the only dark-hued beverage to consider on your cold-season visit to Britannia’s cozy Steveston Village tap house. “Our Ashore Porter and Sea Hound Oatmeal Stout are also great choices in fall and winter. The porter has more chocolate and caramel flavours, while the stout is darker with a more roasted, coffee-like flavour.”
Not sure what to try? Ask Britannia’s friendly staff for recommendations––the Wave Crusader IPA is a year-round favourite––or consider a sampler selection of four small glasses. And since you probably can’t get through the cooler months on beer alone, there’s more than ale to fortify you here. “We also have great food and cocktails,” says Nicholson. “Our intention is to be accessible to everybody, not just beer drinkers.”
Belly-warming comfort food (we love the wings here) is also a huge hook at Monkey 9. But this popular Richmond brewpub is just as serious about the beer they make, according to new head brewer Jules Dubus, whose professional background includes ale-making stints in France and Montreal. His first autumn at Monkey 9 will include a fortifying slate of tasty tipples for cold-season quaffers.
“For the fall, we’re updating our line-up with an English-inspired Porter,” says Dubus. “And we’ve taken it a step further by also brewing a special batch with coffee beans––great for a pick-me-up on a cool day.” He also has a second seasonal special on the roster. “Towards the end of fall, we’ll be directing our creative efforts towards a delicious Pastry Stout. Make sure to keep an eye out for that one!”
But cold-season drinking at the brewpub isn’t just about these intriguing seasonals. The menu of regular Monkey 9 beers also has plenty of perfect fall and winter options, according to Dubus. “I would suggest a pint of Mizaru, our award-winning Brown Ale. On the first note you have a rich, malty and nutty aroma from the English malts we use, and towards the end you are left with a really refreshing finish. Personally, it’s the beer style I’m looking for during fall.”
But hunkering inside to avoid the rain isn’t just for dark beer fans at Monkey 9. “We have something for everyone here,” says Dubus. “The adventurous can try our limited-edition smoothie beers and pastry stouts. But for more traditional beer drinkers, we have classic European styles that you’ll also love.”
Over at Fuggles, CEO Aisha Maretz is gearing up to pour some decidedly delicious brews for fall and winter drinkers. “The newest addition to our core line-up is Javaverse and it’s a vanilla cream cold brew coffee stout,” she says, adding that this fusion of beer and coffee is “a unique and decadent stout that’s rich and full in flavour.”
But Javaverse isn’t the only reason to pick-up some colourful Fuggles four-packs at the liquor store or on your future visit to the brewery’s ever-inviting tasting lounge. New and seasonal brews are always worth sampling at Fuggles, but the southeast Richmond brewery’s award-winning classic beers are also great for fall-season imbibing.
“As the leaves change colour and you start to bring your sweaters out, there’s no better time to sample the aromatic flavours of our Destiny IPA,” says Maretz. “This iconic, amber-coloured brew is dry-hopped and features fresh citrus and juicy tropical aromas balanced by a light honey and caramel malt finish––some call it fate, we call it Destiny!”
And if you do manage to sidestep the rain and reach the brewery’s pub-like tasting lounge, you’ll discover a warm and friendly welcome perfectly calibrated to ensure you forget all about the inclement weather. “Our happy hour specials, video games, pin ball, shuffleboard, live music and weekly special events will keep drinkers coming back here throughout fall and beyond,” says Maretz.
Last Updated on October 21, 2022 by Tourism Richmond