Preface this with:  I LOVE Belgian beers.

I was lucky enough to tour around Belgium in 2000 and what more can you say about a country that serves waffles and beer in the afternoon??

This beer was a lovely ruby colour with a great head.  Lots of notes of caramel and musky notes.  Sweet start with a bite of sour.  Very drinkable at such a high ABV!

Bornem Dubbel 7% ABV, 330ml

Bornem Dubbel

This a great event and I encourage everyone to go who has an interest in brewing or how beer is made!

Across North America, the first Saturday of November is recognized as “Teach a Friend to Homebrew Day”, and the Southern Ontario Brewers recognize the date by hosting a Learn2Brew event. In cooperation with Amsterdam Brewing, the Southern Ontario Brewers invite you to spend a day learning about homebrewing on Saturday 3. November 2012 at 45 Esandar Drive, in Toronto. This group of homebrewers will be demonstrating a range of homebrewing techniques and equipment from single-vessel systems through larger 3-vessel breweries. The group consists of novice homebrewers through professional brewers.

“Homebrewers are proud of our craft, and usually take any opportunity we can get to show it off.” explained Jason Stranak, one of the event organizers. “We hope to attract members of the public with an interest in craft beer, homebrewing or anyone who enjoys tasting and learning about hand-crafted full-flavoured beer. We are inviting the public to come out to view the beer brewing demonstrations and learn about the hobby and ask questions about the brewing process”.”

Amateur brewers will be setting up their mash tuns, kettles and assorted gear and attendees can expect that there will be at least 10 brewing stations on site brewing a variety of ales and lagers during the demonstration using malted barley, hops, yeast and water.

Jamie Mistry, brewmaster at the Amsterdam Brewery has been generous in hosting this annual event for the fourth year running. The Amsterdam Brewery will also be open for the event, with public tours of the new Leaside brewery location, and Amsterdam beers will be available to sample.

Date: Saturday, 3.November 2012
Time: 10:00 am – 6:00 pm
Location: Amsterdam Brewery, 45 Esander Drive, Toronto

For further information, media may contact:
Jason Stranak, Southern Ontario Brewers
jason.stranak@gmail.com
http://learn2brew.areyouansob.com/

The Southern Ontario Brewers are a group of amateur homebrewers from the GTA (and beyond) who love to share their passion for homebrewing. SOB is an informal association of amateur brewers who share brewing knowedge and stage the occasional gathering to brew together and perhaps share our beers. – The SOB mandate is to be inclusive, not elitist. We hope to have a little fun, and perhaps break some of the rules along the way.

Toronto Beer Week 2012 is almost here and I am happy to be part of Barrel Bragging Rights at The Monks Table.  I won’t go and explain what Barrel Bragging Rights is all about because Mike Warner and Josh Rubin have already done it for me here and here!

Barrel Bragging Rights

Can you smell those hops?

This year I was lucky enough to work with Erica Graholm from Steamwhistle on our beer.  Unlike my some of my peers I am not going to give away any secrets as to what our beer is, you will have to just show up and try it!  Erica has a write-up on the Steamwhistle page here about the inspiration for the beer though.

Shout out to Iain McOustra for allowing us to use the pilot system at Amsterdam Brewery!

You can always check out the events page on TorontoBeerWeek.com for more information.

A “Big” beer from Garrison Brewing.  Ol’ Fog Burner Barley Wine comes in at 10.4% ABV in a 500ml bottle.  This beer had a lovely tawny red colour with a complex nose.  Notes of dark fruit and caramel.  The flavour is exceptional.  Smooth, thick and caramel-ish (not really a word) with notes of spice.  Now I just need to get my hands on their barrel aged version!

Ol' Fog Burner

Christmas ale?  What!  Follow the link and find out.

Next up was a CJM Brown Royale by Amsterdam Brewery here in Toronto.  7.2% ABV in a 500ml bottle.

I loved this beer.  It was almost black with a great mocha head.  There was lots of roast and nutty sweet cocoa on the nose.  A really malty brew with hits of molasses, espresso, roast, and nuts.  Delicious!

Brown Royale

This beer was a lovely deep reddish colour with a great head.  The aroma was full of raisin and banana.  I am a big fan of the Dubbel and this one did not disappoint.  Lots of dark fruit notes and maybe a hint of chocolate.  Yum!

Westmalle Dubbel

Another old one from my notes.  Great Lakes Brewery Black Donnely, Black IPA 6.5% On cask at barVolo.  Sorry no photo as I was too busy enjoying this beer.

The beer had a deep brown head with a melon and citrus nose.  The flavour had lots of roast but also nice hits of melon and grapefruit.  There was a lovely and lingering pine aftertaste.  What a great beer!

I honestly don’t remember much about this one as it was so long ago except that it was a maple beer….Maple Wheat?  Anyone care to enlighten me?  Great Lakes Brewery

Berni 5-0

Beautiful deep red colour with a great head and tons of lacing.  There is a lovely plummy and spicy nose.  Tons going on in the flavour.  Some syrupy sweetness and a biting bitter intermingle with the spice.  Another winner from Dieu du Ciel!

Solstice d'hiver

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