Posts Tagged ‘Beau’s Brewery’

Prost! It’s Oktoberfest

Posted by Debbie

Thursday, September 21st, 2017
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Did you know that Oktoberfest actually starts in the middle to late September and runs through to about the first week of October? It is the world’s largest Oktoberfest in Germany meaning ‘folk fest’, is a beer festival or travelling funfair. The history books stated that Oktoberfest originated in Munich, Germany on the 12th of October in 1810 when Crown Prince Ludwig (later to become King Ludwig I) married Princess Therese of Saxony-Hildburghausen. The citizens of Munich were invited to attend the festivities held on the fields in front of the city gates to celebrate the happy royal event. Since then, it has become an annual festival and celebration accompanied by attractions, fun moments with old and new friends, traditional Volkfest food…..and of course a lot of German beer.

Oktoberfest attendees experience a 16 to 18 day festival loaded with amusement rides, side stalls, games, and most obviously: tons and tons of beer is consumed. In fact, in 2013, a whopping 7.7 million litres of beer were served over the 16 days. You do the math!

It isn’t solely focused on drinking beer. Food is just as important. Festival-goers enjoy traditional foods such as Steckerlfisch (grilled fish on a stick),  Käsespätzle (cheese noodles),  along with Bavarian delicacies like Obatzda (a spicy cheese-butter spread) and Weißwurst (a white sausage).

“It’s a huge fun fair and there are a bunch of food vendors who most often sell roasted chicken and shredded radish. At the beginning of the festival, there’s a huge parade where each brewery gets a float which has their first beer barrels on the back,” recounts Dave Bradly who experienced Oktoberfest and lived in Munich, Germany for 7 years. Dave now resides in Ottawa, Ontario and at this time of the year longs to be hollering “Prost!” with his friends in the beer tents.

Photo credit: InterNations Blog

The Oktoberfest experience

“Prost” is German for “cheers”. Alternatively, you could also say “Zum Wohl” (“To your health”). Oktoberfest visitors like having a toast before drinking, a so-called “Prosit”.

We asked Dave about his favourite parts and memories of Oktoberfest. “It’s beer drinking with your friends in the late summer at a beautiful location. The whole city and country come together to celebrate the beer harvest, production, and tasting. Attendees range from infants to ancients!”

On the first day of Oktoberfest, the decorated floats parade into the large fields where the beer tents are equally decorated and at the strike of noon, the first barrels are ‘cracked’ to start the celebrations.  Beer continues to flow for 18 days….

The scale of Oktoberfest is hard to imagine, Dave explains, “There are usually about 11 breweries and each brewery had a tent which was about the size of a football field. Each ‘Bierzelt’ (beer tent) has a different vibe to the next and even though they’re big name breweries, they still feel local.” The serving staff are dressed in traditional Bavarian dress and are able to carry six heavy 1 litre glasses in one hand each! Dave mentions that, “It’s a neat concept. You can go from tent to tent as you sample the different beers. The tents are filled with benches that you simply grab a spot to sit with your friends or strangers and make many new friends as you go.”

 

Celebrating Oktoberfest Locally

Oktoberfest is now celebrated all around the world. Here’s a handful of local breweries that we think are worth raising a beer stein & shouting out “Prost!”

Four Degrees Brewing Company

Just opened this summer, this craft brewery is located in Smiths Falls, Ontario. With 4 beers on tap, we thought the True North of 7 and True South of 7 would be perfect for Oktoberfest. Named for Highway 7 which runs through Ontario, extending from Quebec to Detroit.

Our Savvy Brew Crew member & Sommelier, David Loan, describes True North of 7 as “a Helles Lager, defined as a mildly sweet, low bitterness Munich-style lager with very little foam and notes of honey. Indeed, it’s slightly sweet. A perfect accompaniment to spicy food, with no bitterness, clean and easy drinking.”

True South of 7 is a red ale and has a little lacy foam on top. David describes it as a beer with “flavours of toasted wheat, caramel, and medium bitterness. Lots of sweet malt notes and light effervescence. It’s refreshing a crisp, and very sessionable!”

Photo credit: Four Degrees Brewing Company

 

 

Calabogie Brewing Co.

An hour’s drive west from Ottawa, this brewery located in the heart of the village of Calabogie three friends and an ‘imported’ brewer, opened the doors to this brewery, which has been so popular, they are expanding their production facility into Kanata this fall.

Calabogie crafts a Kölsch-Style Ale called Front Porch. Did you know that “Kölsch” is an acknowledged regional designation and only two dozen brewers can legally call their beer “Kölsch”? This is why beers like Calabogie’s 4.2% ABV (Alcohol by Volume), 32 IBU (International Bitterness Units) Front Porch are often called Kölsch-styled – to protect the designation (much like French Champagne).  This ale-like lager pours a brilliant yellow with nice aromas of lemon with a slight honey malt note. There’s a good amount of biscuit malt base in the flavour with a complimentary herbal hop note ending with crisp citrus.

Photo credit: Calabogie Brewing Co.

 


Kichesippi Beer

Brand new this summer, Commissariat Old Stock Ale celebrates a milestone birthday for one of Ottawa’s oldest cultural attractions – 100th anniversary of the Bytown Museum. Kichesippi co-owner Paul Meek, explains that the inspiration for this beer “was a style that we feel would have been enjoyed back in 1917.  The Bytown Museum is a gem hidden in plain sight in our city and we hope this beer will help bring some well deserved attention to the museum.”

Commissariat Old Stock Ale is currently available in a limited run at the Kichesippi retail store, and it will also be available at special events at the Museum especially in October when it celebrates its official birthday.

Photo credit: CanadianBeerNews

 

 

 

Tuque de Broue

Does it take a family to make a beer? Founder Nicolas Malboeuf has involved in his entre clan at the brewery…including his mom! Located in Embrum, the beers are unique and are always made with local ingredients.

Tuque Dorée Canadian Pale Ale is a flagship beer is intended to be served very well chilled. It asserts itself as a “Canadian Pale Ale”, a new term that’s still being defined. Think about it as the craft brewer’s answer to Molson Canadian! As the name suggests, this is a clear golden colour. The head is thick and foam, with great retention. There’s a lot of flavour here, lightly bitter, a bit malty, and with a silky mouthfeel. With moderate alcohol (4.5% alcohol by volume), this is a terrific session ale. Overall, a great argument for the Canadian Pale Ale style! Pick up a can at the LCBO or The Beer Store.

Photo credit: The Beer Store

 

 

Waller St. Brewing

It still holds the bragging rights as Ottawa’s smallest brewery.  And despite its size, it doubles as a speak easy too– go see it for yourself!

“Hefeweizen is a German-style wheat ale, unfiltered and cloudy from the suspended yeast. Higher temperature fermentation increases the production of the flavour molecule (called an “ester”) isoamyl acetate, which tastes strongly of bananas. As a beer flavour, it can be challenging for some people. But many people DO love it, as seen by the amount produced these days by craft breweries everywhere”, explains David.

Waller St.’s beer Hideaway Hefe lives up to its name: lager coloured, with light foam. “The banana is strong from the beginning – more like over-ripe banana or even those yellow banana candies we used to get as a kid. There’s some yeasty brioche, here, too, along with cloves and bubble gum. It’s certainly an unusual beer!”, states David.

Photo credit: Beer O’Clock Blogspot

 

 

Local Oktoberfests

 

Beau’s Oktoberfest

Friday, September 22nd and Saturday, September 23rd at Vankleek Hill Fairgrounds.
http://www.beausoktoberfest.ca/  Photo credit: Good Food Revolution

 

Captital Oktoberfest Ottawa

Wednesday, October 4th
A fundraiser for Ottawa Heart Institute organized by the Bier Markt at 156 Sparks Street.

http://donate.ottawaheart.ca/site/PageServer?pagename=2017_Oktoberfest_Home#.WZcKbT6GPIU

Creemore Springs Oktoberfest Ottawa

Thursday, September 28th to Saturday, September 30th at Myers Volkswagen Auto Haus at Clarke Fields Park in Barrhaven.
Beer, food & live music.

http://www.oktoberfestottawa.com

 

And of course…. there is always the epic Kitchener-Waterloo annual 9-day festival from October 6 to 14. Over 700,000 people make the pilgrimage to  Canada’s Greatest Bavarian Festival, which turns out to be the second-largest Oktoberfest in the world…to Munich that is!

The annual Kitchener-Waterloo Oktoberfest

 

The annual 9-day festival has attendance of 700,000 people – now that’s a party! It is billed as Canada’s Greatest Bavarian Festival, and is the second-largest Oktoberfest in the world. This event runs from October 6-14, 2017.

http://www.oktoberfest.ca

 

This article appeared in the Sept/Oct 2017 issue of Ottawa Life Magazine

 

 

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Tips for your Valentine’s Day dinner…

Posted by Debbie

Friday, February 13th, 2015
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Have you been wracking your brains to plan the perfect dinner night out or have been trying to get a reservation at your favorite restaurant on February 14th? Have a romantic night in.  One of our catering partners, Thyme & Again has an elegant take home menu prepared by their creative chefs using local ingredients & they’ve asked us to pair Ontario wines…and craft beers with each course.

 Here is your Valentine’s Wine & Craft Beer Shopping List ♥ 

Savvy SommeliersTo make your Valentine’s celebration easy & simple, our Savvy Sommeliers  have selected Ontario wines and our Brew Crew has added in local craft beers that will WOW your love.  The wines are available at various LCBOs in Ottawa and the beers you can drop in to the brewery to pick up a growler or two.

Cheers & Happy Valentine’s Day to you and your love!
Debbie & the Savvy Team

 

 

Special Valentine’s Day Menu with Wine Pairings

HORS D’OEUVRES

Cherry Tomato Florentine with Basil Balsamic Drizzle (Cherry Tomato with Spinach and Parmesan Stuffing) (V, GF)

Bacon Wrapped Jalapeño and Cheddar Stuffed Meatballs (GF)

Seared Scallop with Champagne Jelly and Candied Lemon Zest on Rice Cracker (GF)

 

wine_tasting_sparklingKick off your special night with a bubbly! Savvy Sommeliers recommend:

Casa Dea Dea’s Cuvée Sparkling (Prince Edward County) $18.95

Huff Estates Cuvée Janine Sparkling Rosé (Prince Edward County) $29.95

Featherstone JOY Premium Cuvée Sparkling (Niagara) $34.95

 

Crack open these Craft Beers:

Beyond the Pale Pink Fuzz

Perth Brewery Euro Pilsner

 

STARTERS ♥

Tomato Saffron Bisque and Goat Cheese Crouton (V)

Baby Greens, Marinated Mushrooms, Pickled Beets and Lemon Garlic Vinaigrette (V, GF)

Crab Cake, Cucumber, Radish, Frisée Salad and Dill Mayo

 

Our Savvy Sommeliers recommend these wines:

Burnt Ship Bay Pinot Grigio (Niagara-on-the-Lake) $14.95

Malivoire Gamay (Niagara) $17.95

Fielding Red Conception (Niagara) $18.95

 

Serve one of these craft beers!

Bicycle Craft Brewery Belle River Blonde

Whiprsnapr Inukshuk Canadian IPA

 

MAIN COURSES ♥

Celtic Blue Cheese and Leek Crusted Beef Tenderloin with Roasted Garlic Thyme Jus (GF)

Herbed Potato Medallions; Heirloom Carrots and Chard

Wine to serve: Kacaba Single Vineyard Cabernet Franc VQA 2011 (Niagara)

Craft Beer suggestion: Kichesippi Wuchuk Black

 

Spinach and Shallot Stuffed Chicken Breast with Braised Fig, Orange and Port Wine Jus (GF)

Parsley Risotto; Heirloom Carrots and Chard

Wine to serve: Sue-Ann Staff Loved by Lu Riesling VQA 2012 (Niagara)

Craft Beer suggestion Beau’s St Luke’s Verse

 

Reif Estate WinesCocoa Chipotle Dusted Magret Duck Breast with Cherry Gastrique (GF)

Herbed Potato Medallions; Heirloom Carrots and Chard

Wine to serve: Rosewood Select Series Pinot Noir VQA 2012 (Niagara)

Craft Beer suggestion: Covered Bridge “Over the River Chai”

 

Togarashi Smoked and Seared Tuna with Wakame Salad (GF)

Bamboo Rice; Heirloom Carrots and Chard

Wine to serve: Redstone Chardonnay VQA 2011 (Niagara)

Craft Beer suggestion: Big Rig Brewery Session IPA

 

Roasted Vegetable Ratatouille Terrine (V, GF)

Parsley Risotto; Heirloom Carrots and Chard

Wine to serve: Southbrook Triomphe Cabernet Sauvignon VQA (Niagara-on-the-Lake)

Craft Beer suggestion: Cassel Brewery Honey Brown

                                                                                  

DESSERTS ♥

Passionfruit Crème Brûlée (GF)

Rose and White Chocolate Mousse, Mango Meringue & Dehydrated Raspberry

Hazelnut Crèmeaux (N)

Dulce Mousse, Brown Butter Blondie and Dark Chocolate

Apple Confit Cheesecake

Bacon Caramel Corn, Ice Wine Gelée, Spiced Shortbread Crumb and Maple Dust

Mini Sweet Selection

Red Velvet Cupcake, Spicy Chocolate Tart, Salted Caramel Macaron (N), and Passionfruit Cheesecake

 

Dessert wines to finish off the evening:

Tawse Riesling Icewine VQA 2009 (Niagara)

beercheeseStratus Red IceWine 2012 (Niagara)

 

A Craft Beer will go with dessert too!

Dominion City Brewing Earl Grey Marmalade Saison

 

Menu codes:
N = Contains Nuts or Seeds
V = Vegetarian
GF = Gluten Free 

 

Call on Savvy Company anytime…

Whether it’s Valentine’s Day, St. Patrick’s Day, Mother’s Day, Father’s Day…or any day of the year – you can call on us to make your get-together a special one. For more wine & craft beer recommendations from Savvy Sommeliers & Brew Crew call 613-SAVVYCO (728-8926)  or cheers@savvycompany.ca  

 

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Wheying in on Quebec’s top cheeses

Posted by Vanessa

Tuesday, April 29th, 2014
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Have you ever tasted cheese? I mean really tasted it. Rolled it around with your tongue and let it linger on the roof of your mouth? Cheese eating is a sensual and sensory pleasure according to Cheese Sommelier Vanessa Simmons. “You want the cheese to go right to the back of your mouth, popped up where the peanut butter used to get stuck when you were a kid, and swish it all the way around so you are absolutely coating your palate and getting all of your taste buds working,” she advises.

Vanessa Simmons is openly fanatical about artisan cheeses

Vanessa Simmons - Savvy Company Cheese SommelierI met Simmons at a tutored tasting for Quebec cheeses at The Great Canadian Cheese Festival in Picton, Ontario, in June. The Festival, showcasing the best Canadian cheeses under one roof, attracted 4,000 cheese lovers this year. Artisan cheeses from Ontario, Quebec, British Columbia, Newfoundland, Prince Edward Island, Nova Scotia, Manitoba and Alberta were all on offer.

One-third of the producers were from Quebec, Canada’s leading cheese-making region. According to Simmons, Quebec cheese makers are well organized and funded, share knowledge, are well informed by international research and display superior craftsmanship.

Tasting – REALLY tasting – your cheese

Simmons is passionate about cheese and even has a cow named after her. She led a two-hour Quebec cheese tasting and advised on proper tasting technique. The cheeses on our plates ranged from light to robust. We were given three choices for pairing — Keint-He Winery’s 2010 Pinot Squared, Stanners Vineyards 2010 Lincoln Lakeshore Chardonnay or Beau’s Beaver River beer. “At the end of the tasting you should not just taste cheese on the back of your palate, otherwise your wine is not bold enough to stand up to that cheese. If all you taste is wine or beer, there’s not enough going on with that cheese — it’s not big enough,” she said.

Premium Goat Milk Cheddar, Back Forty Artisan Cheese Co. and Black River Cheese CompanySimmons encouraged us to get physical with our cheese, to rip each piece in two and examine the formation of the curds inside. We noted whether the cheese broke evenly or if there was a jagged edge. We considered whether the cheese was made from a mould or hand crafted with care. We examined the outside, inside, colour and texture and noticed if the cheeses were creamy, hard, glistening or runny.

Then we savoured the fabulous cheeses of popular producers such as Fromagerie Médard, Fromagerie du Presbytère, Fromagerie Nouvelle France and Fromagerie du Pied-de-Vent.

Fromagerie Médard: Saguenay–Lac-Saint-Jean Region

Normand Côté is the fifth generation owner of Domaine de la Rivière, a farm in Saint-Gédéon, Québec, two hours north of Montreal. The dairy, Fromagerie Médard, named after Médard Côté, the son of the original landowner, uses milk from the farm’s Brown Swiss cows. Fromagerie staff member Diane Paget explained that the taste of the cheese varies depending on what the cows ate: “Was it just pasture or was it augmented because of a sparse year?”

Belle mère cheese Fromagerie MédardOn hand at the Festival were two Fromagerie Médard cheeses. The first one, Belle-Mère (in photo at left), an orange-brown washed rind semi-firm cheese was made from pasteurized milk and aged for three months. Washed rind cheeses are bathed in liquid, usually salted water, wine, brandy, local spirits, or herbs making them susceptible to bacteria that break down the curd from the outside, resulting in a more pungent flavour. The Belle-Mère with big buttery notes and aromas of lilac and lavender won a 2012 Selection Caseus award in the semi-firm, cow’s milk cheese category. Also made with pasteurized cow’s milk, 14 arpents, aged 30 days, was creamy and full of flavour, with the slight taste of hazelnut.

Fromagerie du Presbytère: centre-du-Québec Region

The Morin family has operated the Louis d’Or farm in Warwick, Quebec for four generations. In 1980, the farm went organic. Holstein and Jersey cows chow down on dry hay, clover, timothy grass, bluegrass and other organic grains and are not injected with antibiotics or hormones. “This dairy really pushes the envelope with raw cheese and more layers of complexity. They are more true to traditional cheese making,” says Simmons. A renovated church rectory built in 1936 houses the dairy. Friday nights are a celebration of cheese and community. Visitors converge on the rectory lawn with bottles of wine and beer to enjoy fresh cheese, music and bread.

bleu elizabethFromagerie du Presbytère took three awards at the 2013 Canadian Cheese Grand Prix, Best Blue and Best Organic for Bleu d’Élizabeth (photo at left) and Best Swiss-type Cheese for Louis d’Or, aged for 18 months. I sampled four Fromagerie du Presbytère cheeses.

The Brie Paysan, a pasteurized cow’s milk cheese had a bloomy rind and soft paste that melted in my mouth. Bloomy rind cheeses are covered with Penicillium candidum forming a white casing causing the cheese to ripen from the outside and become soft and runny on the inside. The vegetal, grassy and fungal notes offered an amazing expression of terroir.

Laliberté is a triple cream cheese, made with whole organic milk and aged for 45 days. The bloomy rind surrounds a soft paste with mushroom flavour and a creamy mouthfeel.

Louis d'Or cheeseLouis D’Or, made from raw organic cow’s milk is crafted in 40-kilogram wheels and develops complex flavours after nine months of ripening. This washed rind, firm pressed, cooked paste cheese has nutty and fruity aromas.

Bleu d’Élizabeth is a semi-soft fruit-flavoured cheese made from non-pasteurized milk, displaying blue and greenish veins resulting from the presence of Penicillium roqueforti.

Fromagerie Nouvelle France: Eastern Townships

A young brother and sister team, Marie-Chantal and Jean-Paul Houde, started a sheep farm and a cheese-making operation, the Fromagerie Nouvelle France in 2010. Jean-Paul tends to a herd of over 200 East Friesian sheep on the 250-acre farm in the village of Racine. Marie-Chantal makes cheese.

Fromagerie Nouvelle France’s signature cheese, Zacharie Cloutier, is a raw sheep’s milk cheese, named for an ancestor who came to Canada from France in 1634. This ancestor is also said to be a distant relative of Céline Dion. In its first appearance at the 2011 Selection Caseus awards, Zacherie Cloutier won gold for the best cheese in Quebec in all categories. This orange washed rind, firm pressed cheese, aged for six months, exudes aromas of butter and caramel.

Le pionnier cheeseLe Pionnier, a cheese-making partnership between Fromagerie Presbytère and Fromagerie Nouvelle France is a 40-kilogram wheel made of raw sheep’s and cow’s milk coming from the cheese maker’s herds. The cheese is a “great marriage of cow’s milk cheese according to Morin’s tradition, and sheep’s milk cheese, according to Houde’s tradition,” offers Simmons. Le Pionnier is a firm cheese with a bit of washed rind, a dense cheese texture and some earthiness, and is very robust. Aged for 10 to 12 months, Le Pionnier displays complex aromas of butter, brown sugar and macadamia nuts with a delicate floral note. As Simmons says, “This cheese says ‘look at me’ and is very indicative of their personalities. They are very outspoken cheese makers.”

Fromagerie du Pied-de-Vent: Iles de la Madeleine

In 1998, Jérémie Arseneau brought over a herd of Canadienne cows, a small black heritage breed, from Saint-Simon-de-Rimouski and l’île Verte to Îles-de-la-Madeleine. He launched the Fromagerie du Pied-de-Vent and began cheese production on islands traditionally known for a strong fishing industry.

Pied du Vent cheesePied-du-Vent (photo at left) is a whole milk, soft surface-ripened cheese with a bloomy natural rind and a dominant flavour of hazelnuts. Surface-ripened cheeses have mould on the rind, ripening the surface first and then the inside.

Tomme Des Desmoiselles is a raw milk thermalized cheese in a gouda-like style with a washed rind. The cheese is full and robust with a fruit aroma. You get a bit of salt in the cheese because the cows graze on hay and grasses around the edge of the island and right on the border of the St. Lawrence River. Two beautiful small hills on the Havre Aubert landscape inspired the fromagerie in the creation of this cheese.

Plan your route of Quebec cheeses from east to west

To sample some stellar cheeses, take a tour on La Route des Fromages du Quebec linking producers across the province. Enjoy the ride through Quebec’s scenic countryside. Many barns are open, allowing direct access to goats, sheep, cows or calves.

Ontario cheese tasting trails

In Ontario, check out Oxford County’s new cheese trail to see a life-sized statue of record-setting milk producer Springbank Snow Countess, or be a cheese maker for a day. Or head for the Taste Trail in Prince Edward County for a quick calcium fix. You’ll develop a whole new appreciation for fromage.

 

This article was written by Merle Rosenstein, a freelance travel, food and beverage writer.
Click here to see this article as it appeared in
Quench Magazine.

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