Posts Tagged ‘Craft beers not at the LCBO’

Beers made in a church

Posted by David

Monday, February 6th, 2017
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Founded ten years before the micro- and nano- and craft-brewer surge across Ontario, Campbellford’s Church-Key Brewing has always been known for high quality beers. They’ve also developed a reputation for their strong commitment to local sourcing, with many of their ingredients grown within sight of their retired church brewery. We’re very excited to help our Savvy Hip Hops suds-cribers get to know the people behind the products. Read all about it in this month’s Beer Backstory Magazine.

We’re sure you’ll enjoy these delicious, hand-crafted beers. They’ve been chosen just for you to enjoy during the holiday mayhem & while you are relaxing during the holidays too!

Whether you receive the Quick Picks or Taste Case, you will find a variety of bottles of these beers…

Cyser Apple Mead
Braggot Honey Malt
West Coast Pale Ale
Northumberland Ale
Holy Smoke Scotch Ale

Need more beer?

If you would like additional bottles of any beer featured in Savvy Hip Hops, just call our Savvy Brew Crew & we’ll do our best to arrange a special shipment for you.  Put us on speed dial – Savvy Hip Hops Hotline: 613-SAVVYCO (728-8926) or cheers@savvycompany.ca

Cheers!
Debbie & the Savvy Brew Crew

 

Holy Beer!
Church-Key Brewing
By David Loan, Sommelier & member of the Savvy Brew Crew

Built in 1878, the Campbellford Methodist Church doesn’t look like a typical brewery. But the decommissioned house of worship was purchased by Brewmaster John Graham in 1999 to begin his own small brewery. It has grown to include The Stinking Rose Pub and Grindhouse Café and to be an important part of the rural landscape.

How did a little brewery in an out-of-the-way small town succeed? Read on!

A step back in time…

John grew up in a small town north of Toronto. By the time he was an adult, though, the fields had been paved over, the farms replaced with shopping malls. “Thirty years of “progress”, John said. “I think it’s a bit short-sighted. I have four kids of my own and I wanted to bring them up in the same rural atmosphere I did. Campbellford is much closer to my upbringing. It’s a 20 or 30 year step back in time.”

Location, location, location

Campbellford, located 30 minutes north of the 401, turned out to be a perfect location for John & his family.  “We’re literally half-way between Toronto and Ottawa,” John said. “They’re the two biggest beer markets in Ontario. We have more than two million residents within an hour’s drive.”

Perhaps just as important, John is able to source many of the ingredients for his beer right in his own community. “We have honey, barley, hops that are grown within sight of the brewery,” John said. “I call it hyper-local, and it’s part of our environmental goals of keeping the supply chain short and part of the economic goals of buying from people who buy from us. It’s a closed loop.”

Crowd-pleasers

John said that serving his beer to a local audience keeps him grounded. “No 90 IBU (International Bitterness Units) monsters that breweries in more populated breweries produce,” he said. “Being in a small town, we have to be a bit more of a crowd-pleaser for our local audience.”

Church-Key has a mission statement, which they call “The Guiding Light”. It embraces the sustainable principles of the brewery. “There’s a consumer awareness that has happened all over the world,” John said. “Not just beer, we’re more aware of what kind of cheese, what kind of bread we’re eating. We want to have a closer connection to what we’re consuming.”

We know you’ll enjoy these crowd-pleasing beers made by John & the folks at the brewery!

 


 

• Savvy Hip Hops Tasting Notes •

David shares his notes about each beer, along with picks on what to serve… and some fun recipes too!

West Coast Ale

In the big family of beers known as India Pale Ales (IPA), East Coast American IPAs have more malt sweetness and less hop bitterness, whereas West Coast ales embrace the hops and often use a lighter malt.

Tasting Notes: A lovely amber colour, this has a refreshing bitterness which matches nicely with its orange and almond flavours. The medium acidity help make it a very well-rounded, easy to drink beer.

Suggested Food Pairing: The hops and acidity will work very nicely with a cheesy pizza or plate of nachos.

 

Cyser: Apple Mead

Cyser is made from honey and apples fermented together. Sometimes described as a wine, other times as a cider, it’s a beautiful hybrid of the two.

Tasting Notes: This Cyser is unfiltered, so it has a lightly cloudy appearance. Gentle and refreshing, there are flavours of green apples, lime cordial, ginger, and yeast. It’s only slightly sweet.  With 8.3% alcohol, you might expect a boozy bounce; in fact, the alcohol is well integrated and this goes down easily. Maybe too easily!

Suggested Food Pairing: We would love this with an apple, pecan, and blue cheese salad. The delicate sweetness of the Cyser and the pungent blue cheese will play very well together. See recipe, below.

 

Northumerland Ale

Brewmaster John Graham says this beer – the first product made by Church-Key Brewing – is based on a recipe typical of the beer served in Northumberland County taverns in the 1940s and ‘50s.

Tasting Notes: The beer pours a golden colour with a light foam. Citrusy hops and a crisp finish make this a great everyday beer.

Suggested Food Pairing: This will be a lovely pairing with a white fish dish, such as Jamie Oliver’s Baked White Fish recipe, below.

 

Braggot Honey Malt

Another mead-style beverage, Braggot is a spiced honey wine.

Tasting Notes: The honey is apparent from the moment you pop the cap, but it’s very subtle when you taste the mead. The mineral and citrusy notes balance the sweet honey very well, and there are hints of clover and vanilla.

Suggested Food Pairing: If you’re looking for a drink to go with your sweet and savoury Chicken and Waffles, here it is!  See the recipe below.

 

Holy Smoke: Peat-smoked Scotch ale

For those who love campfires, Hot Rods, and Islay whisky, this is the perfect beer. Ten per cent of the malt has been roasted over a peat fire, giving it a smoky complexity and finish.

Tasting Notes: Almost opaque and with a nice foam, the campfire notes are apparent from the first pour. There are also some flavours dark chocolate, vanilla, and molasses. The smoky finish is very long-lasting. 6.2% ABV.

Suggested Food Pairing: We picture this as a Sunday afternoon après-ski with a hot and spicy bowl of black bean chili (see recipe, below). The perfect way to end the weekend.

Recipes to enjoy with the featured Savvy Hip Hops 

 

With Cyser Apple Mead…

Apple, Pecan, and Blue Cheese Salad with Dried Cherries
Recipe and Photo: Food.com

Ingredients

12 ounces salad greens (spring mix)
2 whole apples, cored, sliced very thin
12 cup pecan halves
14 cup dried cherries
6 ounces blue cheese, cut into chunks
1 Tablespoon heaping Dijon mustard
1 Tablespoon maple syrup (to taste)
1 teaspoon apple cider vinegar (to taste)
14 cup olive oil
Salt and pepper, to taste

Method                                                                                                     

Add greens, apple slices, pecan halves, dried cherries, and blue cheese chunks into a large salad bowl.
In a small jar, mix Dijon, maple syrup, vinegar, olive oil, and salt and pepper. Put the lid on the jar and shake well to mix.
Pour a little salad dressing over the top of the salad and toss to combine. Taste salad and add more salad dressing to taste.

 

With Braggot Honey Malt…

Chicken and Waffles
Recipe and photo: FoodNetwork.com

Ingredients

Vegetable oil, for shallow frying
1/4 cup hot sauce
1 large egg, lightly beaten
8 chicken tenders (about 1 pound)
3/4 cup instant flour
1 teaspoon poultry seasoning
Kosher salt and freshly ground pepper
3 tablespoons unsalted butter
2 scallions, sliced, plus more for garnish
1 1/2 cups low-sodium chicken broth
4 buttermilk or Belgian-style frozen waffles
Maple syrup, for serving

Method

Heat about 1 inch of oil in a large cast-iron or heavy-bottomed skillet over high heat. Whisk the hot sauce and egg in a medium bowl; toss the chicken in the mixture to coat.

Combine the flour, poultry seasoning, and salt and pepper to taste in a medium bowl. Set aside 3 tablespoons seasoned flour in a separate bowl; dredge the chicken in the remaining seasoned flour until coated, shaking off any excess.

Place the chicken in the hot oil and fry until golden and cooked through, 2 to 3 minutes per side, turning once. Transfer to a rack to cool slightly; discard the oil.

Melt the butter in the same skillet and whisk in the reserved seasoned flour until smooth. Whisk in the scallions, then slowly pour in the broth. Bring to a simmer, whisking until the gravy is smooth.

Meanwhile, toast the waffles.

Place a waffle on each plate and drizzle with maple syrup. Top with chicken and gravy and garnish with scallions.

 

With Northumberland Ale…

Baked White Fish
Recipe and photo: JamieOliver.com

Ingredients

3 cloves of garlic
1 bunch of fresh basil
Olive oil
1 fresh red chilli
2x 400 g tins of quality plum tomatoes
Red wine vinegar
4 pieces of white fish fillets (150 g each) – such as cod, whiting, pollock, skin off, pin-boned, from sustainable sources, ask your fishmonger
1 handful of black olives, (stone in)
1 tablespoon capers

Method

To make the sauce, peel and finely slice the garlic cloves. Pick the basil leaves and finely slice the stalks.

Heat a good couple of lugs of oil in a large pan over medium heat; add the garlic and basil stalks. Pierce the chilli once with a knife so it doesn’t explode when frying, then add to the pan. Fry gently until the garlic is soft but not coloured, stirring occasionally.

Add the tomatoes and season lightly with sea salt and black pepper, then simmer gently over a low heat for 30 minutes, or until thickened and slightly reduced.

When the time’s up, remove the chilli, and break up the tomatoes with the back of a spoon. Taste and adjust the seasoning, if needed, then add a tiny swig of red wine vinegar to give it a little twang.

Preheat the oven to 220°C/425°F.

Pour the tomato sauce into a 20cm x 30cm roasting tray. Season the fish fillets on both sides with a little salt and pepper, then place on top of the sauce.

Squash the olives, using the base of a jar or something heavy, and remove the stones. Sprinkle into the tray, along with the capers and most of the basil leaves over the fish.

Cook in the oven for around 15 minutes or until the fish is cooked through – check by cutting into the thickest part of one or two of the fillets; they should be pearly white and not transparent.

 

With Holy Smoke Peat-smoked Scotch Ale…

Smoky Black Bean Chili
Recipe and Photo: Gimmesomeoven.com

Ingredients

1 Tbsp. olive oil
1 medium white onion, diced
3 garlic cloves, chopped
1 bottle beer (or chicken/vegetable broth)
3 (15 oz. each) can black beans, drained and rinsed
2 (15 oz.) cans diced tomatoes and green chiles
2 chipotle peppers in adobo, chopped
2 tsp. ground cumin
2 tsp. chili powder
1 tsp. dried oregano
1/2 tsp. salt

optional toppings: chopped fresh cilantro, diced avocado, shredded cheese, sour cream, salsa

 

Method

Heat oil in a large saucepan or stockpot over medium-high heat until shimmering.  Add onion and sauté for 5 minutes until translucent, stirring occasionally. Add garlic and continue sautéeing for 2 minutes until fragrant.

Add the beer (or broth), black beans, diced tomatoes and green chiles, chipotle in adobo, cumin, chili powder, oregano, and salt. Stir to combine.

Bring the soup to a boil, then reduce heat to medium-low and simmer for at least 10 minutes. Season with additional salt and pepper if needed. Serve warm, garnished with optional toppings.

 Enjoy your Savvy Hip Hops!

All photos of the brewery & products (unless noted) were provided by Church-Key.
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Beers definitely worth the drive!

Posted by Katy

Wednesday, June 1st, 2016
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About an hour’s drive west from Ottawa is the village of Calabogie – an often overlooked area surrounding a lake that not many realize is filled with adventure! Whether you want to challenge your downhill skiing skills at the highest vertical drop in Ontario at Calabogie Peaks Ski Resorthike the old rails on the K&P Trail or watch the area’s best racers challenge each other at the Calabogie Motorsports Park – there’s something for everyone that will make it worth the drive.

And now, thanks to three friends and an ‘imported’ brewer, Calabogie’s visitors – and residents too – now have a brewery to pair along with their adventure.

Open your Savvy Hip Hops & you will find cans of…

…in your Quick Picks a 16-pack containing:hiphops_large-292x300

Whistling Paddy: Wheat Ale
K&P 1883 Ale English Mild
Front Porch: Kölsch-Style Ale
Sorachi Ace Pale Ale
Bogie: West Coast American IPA

 …in your Taste Case 2-4 containing even more cans:

Whistling Paddy: Wheat Ale
K&P 1883 Ale English Mild
Front Porch: Kölsch-Style Ale
Sorachi Ace Pale Ale
Bogie: West Coast American IPA

Need more beer? 

If you would like additional bottles of any beer featured in Savvy Hip Hops, just call our Savvy Brew Crew & we’ll do our best to arrange a special shipment for you. Put us on speed dial – Savvy Hip Hops Hotline: 613-SAVVYCO (728-8926) or cheers@savvycompany.ca

Cheers!

Debbie & the Savvy Brew Crew

Introducing…
Calabogie Brewing Company

by Katy Watts, Cicerone & member of the Savvy Brew Crew

My first recollection of Calabogie Brewing Company was at the 2015 Ottawa Craft Beer Festival. Their booth was situated close to the entrance and they were sporting their famous taps that light up, which is why I thought they were garnering a lot of attention from the crowd. I mean, a brewery from Calabogie. How good could they be, right? Well, I was mistaken. While their taps were eye catching, but it was their beers that were the highlight!

Calabogie Brewery

Doing Things Right

Calabogie Brewing Company was born out of Mike Wagner’s (in photo with black shirt) long time love of beer. “I’ve had this love affair with beer for about 35 years and I’ve been travelling around the world drinking beer,” shares Mike. After being involved in several businesses and even having a stint as Muskoka Cottage Breweries sales representative in the Ottawa Region he decided to retire and use his years of knowledge to open a brewery.

Together with friends Ken McCafferty and Greg Gilson, they started planning the brewery and there was no question that it wouldn’t be located in Calabogie. “Calabogie is a really nice community with a great community spirit and while it’s not that far out of the city,” says Mike. He goes on to explain that if he were in the city there would be more financial concerns which would impact what he wants to create. In his words, “I want to brew a culture of doing things right.”

Meet Jamie Maxwell

Mike’s love and knowledge of beer isn’t the own driving factor for success. They also have a brewmaster with quite the brewing pedigree after stints at Union Station Brewery in Rhode Island and Harpoon Brewery in Windsor, Vermont. How Jamie Maxwell came to be Calabogie’s brewmaster is an unusual story….

“When I started building the brewery I got a call from our (now) brewer’s Mother asking me if we were going to be looking for a head brewer. I said we would be and she said, well my son’s a brewer and he lives in Vermont. So I call him and went up to visit him Waterbury, Vermont, had some beers at the Prohibition Pig pub and we hit it off. We see the brewing industry and beer in a very similar light,” explains Mike.

Not Just Hops

Using Jamie’s speciaized knowledge, Calabogie Brewing Co has not only produced some solid hop-tastic brews as you will discover in your Savvy Hip Hops, but have also started barrel aging and created a sour program. Some of these releases are so ambitious and exciting that they’ve created a Founder’s Club where members can join and be guaranteed their bottle of seasonally produced beer.

With their one year anniversary quickly approaching, Mike promises that they are just getting started. His inspiration comes from his personal beer research and current American beer trends.

I can’t wait to see what Jamie and the Calabogie Brewing Company team has in store for us in year two.

Here’s to Mike, Jamie & the crew at Calabogie Brewing Company!

Savvy Hip Hops Tasting Notes 

Katy shares her notes about each beer, along with her picks on what to serve… and some fun recipes too!

Front Porch: Kölsch-Style Ale

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).

Tasting Notes: 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.

Suggested Food Pairing: Serve alongside a salad filled with peppery greens, mushrooms, avocado and a sharp vinaigrette. Or, pair with a hearty brunch offering filled with omelets, eggs benedict and bagels topped with cream cheese and smoked salmon.

Bogie: West Coast American IPA

This India Pale Ale isn’t just any IPA, with that ‘West Coast American’ title the drinker can expect this 5.5% ABV, 60 IBU ale to not hold back any punches when it comes to hops or flavour. Using a simpler grain bill and a cast of American hops, this beer is unabashedly American.

Tasting Notes: Watch out! This is a beer for hopheads. This golden coloured brew has a wonderful white cap and aromas of pine, resin, orange and a slight grain base. The flavour is big on tropical fruit with some grassy, maybe even peppery, bitterness at the end.

Suggested Food Pairing: This hop bomb craves salt and deep fried – yes, I’m giving you permission to order the biggest plate of poutine you can find. Or, grab a bag of fresh curds and simply enjoy the cheese.

Whistling Paddy: Wheat AleCalabogie Bogie beers

This modern interpretation of a 400-year old Belgian beer style uses a malt bill with 2-Row malted barley and wheat malt as a base for a flavour punch of three different hop varieties and additions of orange and coriander.

Tasting Notes: Pours a nice orange with bright aromas of orange, coriander and light notes of grain and wheat. The flavour has a sweet malt taste with strong wheat, orange notes that are accented by light coriander and very little bitterness. This is very refreshing!

Suggested Food Pairing: Mussels and wheat beer are a classic pairing and I encourage you to try steaming mussels in beer (check the recipe below). Wheat Ale’s also work well with other shell fish like lobster, clams or shellfish – especially if they are dipped in butter!

Sorachi Ace Pale Ale

The Sorachi Ace hop was developed for Sapporo Breweries in the late 1970s, but was not commercially available in the US until 2006. This high alpha acid hop is prized for its intense lemon flavour and aroma. Sorachi Ace also has notes of coriander, tea and dill which work wonderfully in spicy saisons and wheat beers, but it’s the big lemon flavour that works so well in pale ales.

Tasting Notes: Lemon, lemon, lemon! This pale ale is a great example of what Sorachi Ace is and how different varieties of hops can smell and taste completely different from each other. This fresh flavoured ale is crisp, somewhat lip-smacking with lemon and rind flavours with a good caramel malt base complimenting the bitterness.

Suggested Food Pairing: This beer is screaming to be paired with lemon chicken! Either make it yourself (with the recipe below) or go to your favourite Chinese takeaway.

Calabogie buildingK&P Ale 1883 English Mild

Known for its low alcohol content and low bitterness, English Mild’s are the standard British session beer. In contrast to Calabogie’s hoppier offerings, look for a malt complexity, lower carbonation and enjoyable body.

Tasting Notes: The aroma has a good amount of malt complexity with notes of bread, nuts, roast and some earthy hops. There’s a good amount of grain in the flavour with more of that nuttiness, roast and hints of dark fruit. The bitterness is restrained with some earthy/herbal hops offering support.

Suggested Food Pairing: Thanks to a Maillard reaction (beer speak: a chemical process that transforms enzymes and carbohydrates through heat to a highly aromatic compound that adds flavour) that happens when an English Mild is brewed it is very versatile to pairings. Drink on its own or serve alongside roast beef, stew, lamb or even the Rosemary Potato Galette recipe below.

 

Recipes to enjoy with the featured Savvy Hip Hops•

 

With Whistling Paddy

Beer Steamed Mussels

Recipe and Photo: New York Times

Ingredients

Calabogie beer steamed mussels

2 lbs mussels in shell
1 Tbsp olive oil
4 sprigs thyme
3 garlic cloves minced
2 large shallots, chopped
Kosher salt
Freshly ground black pepper
¾ cup Whistling Paddy
1-3 Tbsp butter, to taste
1 Tbsp chopped fresh tarragon
1 tsp Dijon mustard
Crusty bread to serve

 Method

Rinse mussels under cold running water. If you see hair clumps around the shell (beards), use a sharp knife or your fingers to pull them off, then scrub shells well.

In a soup pot with a tight-fitting cover, heat olive oil, then add thyme, garlic, shallots and a pinch of salt and pepper. Sauté until shallots and garlic are softened (3 minutes).

Pour in Whistling Paddy and bring to a simmer. Add mussels and cover pot. Let mussels steam, stirring once or twice, until they open (5-10 minutes). Use a slotted spoon to transfer mussels to bowls – discard any that have not opened

Add butter, herbs and mustard to pan juices and bring to a boil. Whisk until butter melts, taste and correct seasonings (add more butter if liquid tastes bitter).

Pour over mussels and serve with bread for sopping up juices.

 

With Sorachi Ace Pale Ale

Lemon Chicken Calabogie lemon chicken

Recipe and Photo: RasaMalaysia

Ingredients

10 oz (300g) skinless, boneless chicken breast, cut into small piece
s¼ cup corn starch plus
¼ cup all-purpose flour, sifted and combined well
Oil, for deep-frying
½ tsp white seasame seeds

Marinade:

½ Tbsp soy sauce
½ Tbsp Sorachi Ace Pale Ale or if you drank it all, sub in Front Porch
1 Tbsp corn starch

Sauce:

2 Tbsp lemon juice
1 Tbsp Sorachi Ace Pale Ale
1 heaping Tbsp sugar (or more, to taste)
5 Tbsp water
1tsp cornstarch
Pinch of salt

Method                                                                                                    

Marinate the chicken with the Marinade, for 30 minutes.

Mix all the ingredients for the Sauce. Set aside. Coat the marinated chicken with the corn starch and all-purpose flour mixture.

Heat up a wok with about two inches of oil. As soon as the oil is fully heated, deep-fry the chicken until golden brown. Transfer the chicken out to a dish lined with paper towels to sop up the excess oil.

Add all the ingredients in the Sauce into a small sauce pan and bring it to a quick boil. Transfer the fried chicken into the sauce, stir to coat well with the lemon sauce.

Dish out & sprinkle with the white sesame seeds & serve immediately.

 

 With K&P Ale 1883 English Mild

Rosemary Potato Galette

Recipe and Photo: The BeeronessCalabogie rosemary potato galette

Ingredients

¼ cup olive oil
1 tsp chopped fresh rosemary
1 tsp chopped fresh sage
1 tsp salt
½ tsp pepper
½ tsp garlic powder
4lbs russet potatoes, sliced into ¼ inch slices
1/3 cup K&P Ale 1883 English Mild

 Method

Preheat oven to 400 °F.

In a small bowl stir together olive oil, rosemary, sage, salt, pepper and garlic powder. Microwave on high for 45 seconds, allow ingredients to steep for 5 minutes.

Place a layer of potatoes in an overlapping circle in the bottom of a 9-inch spring form pan. Brush potato circles with olive oil mixture. Add a second layer of potatoes, brushing with oil, repeat until all potatoes are used.

There should be 3 or 4 layers of potatoes, each layer brushed with the herbed olive oil. Once all potatoes have been used   pour 1/3 cup K&P Ale 1883 English Mild gently over top

Cover spring from pan with aluminum foil, bake at 400 °F for 25 minutes.

Remove foil and continue to bake for an additional 30 minutes or until potatoes are fork tender. Remove from oven and preheat broiler. Place potatoes under the broiler for 3 minutes or until the top is slightly crisp and golden brown. Press down firmly on the top of the galette with a spoon or fork.

Allow to cool. Remove the sides of the spring form pan and cut galette into wedges to serve.

Enjoy your Savvy Hip Hops!

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