Beau’s Announces Dates, Headliners for 2014 Oktoberfest


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10549625_1506890239522986_1373963397_nOTTAWA – (July 10, 2014) Tickets will go on sale Thursday August 7 for the 6th Annual Vankleek Hill Oktoberfest, presented by local craft brewery Beau’s All Natural. The two-day festival and signature fundraising event will take place Friday October 3 and Saturday October 4, at the fairgrounds in Vankleek Hill, Ontario.

A baker’s dozen of different Beau’s beers will be served up cold and tasty this year, with many German styles represented, and a mix of brand-new recipes and returning favourites. For those craving a sneak preview, four of these beers will be sold starting in early September at the LCBO, in a special Beau’s Oktoberfest 4-pack. The 4-pack will also sell through home delivery in Ottawa via BYBO (www.bybo.ca), and the brewery retail store.

Canadian music is, as always, a big part of VKH Oktoberfest. National indie rock icon and Juno Award winner Joel Plaskett with The Emergency headline Friday’s performers, which also include The Rural Alberta Advantage and Groenland. Saturday’s show is headed up by Newmarket, Ontario’s indie rockers Tokyo Police Club, and also features electro hip-hop performers Radio Radio. Canada’s polka king Walter Ostanek is back again this year for daytime entertainment, as are traditional German dance group The Schuhplatters. A bigger, better stage for this year’s Oktoberfest promises better sightlines and more room up front for fans.

The Cask Area is expanded this year, featuring a tremendous array of naturally carbonated beers from a wide variety of local and Ontario craft breweries. “School of Bock” also returns with tutored tastings and food-pairing sessions for the eternally beer-curious. Foodies will be presented with even more Bavarian and seasonally inspired creations to choose from this year: Beau’s has lined up 25 local restaurants for each day from across Ontario.

The festival’s fun activities and challenges return for 2014, including the stein-hold struggle, sausage-eating contest, and keg tossing for height and distance, as well as the popular spouse-carrying race. Spectators for these events will now have access to licensed, covered grandstand seating to enjoy these events in a bigger arena. The non-licensed kids’ area “Kinderfest” is back as well for the youngest festival-goers, as is the Games Midway, Skateboarding Demo area in conjunction with Antique Skate Shop, and homebrewing demonstrations. Beau’s brewery remains open for tours and tastings from 10-6 daily, with a shuttle bus running to and from the grounds.

The VKH Oktoberfest will raise money to support the Eastern Ontario Chapter of the Kidney Foundation of Canada, and local grassroots charity Ottawa Riverkeeper, as well as the Vankleek Hill Agricultural Society, Just Food, Hidden Harvest, Unshaven Mavens, and a number of smaller charities. Last year’s festival raised more than $75,000, for a five-year fundraising total of $242,000 for this event.

A total of 15,000 tickets will be released for sale beginning August 7. Last year’s attendance was 12,000. Adult admission is $22 taxes in, and includes an Oktoberfest hat, a pretzel and your first beer or other beverage. Two-day passes are $33 for $11 of savings, and kids passes (18 and under) are $5. As in previous years round-trip bus transportation will be available from Ottawa, Cornwall and Montreal, at a cost of $15. To gain free admission, Beau’s welcomes “Volun-beers” to help out during, before or after the festival. Those interested can apply at http://www.beaus.ca/volunteer.

More information about Beau’s Oktoberfest, including sign-up for activities (individuals and the Team Challenge), a full list of beers and bands, and details on how to get involved with fundraising will be posted in early August at www.beaus.ca. Beau’s gratefully acknowledges the support of Oktoberfest sponsors The Printing House, Theoret Martel Proudfoot Insurance Brokers Ltd., and Desjardins.


Announcing the first-ever Marché des Brasseurs event


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17rUoRrlMarché des Brasseurs will take place at the beautiful Hendrick Farm in Old Chelsea, Quebec on Saturday, July 26th, 2014.

The Marché des Brasseurs is the first Quebec edition of the Brewery Market, which has hosted events in Toronto and Ottawa since 2011. The Brewery Market’s mission is to showcase local craft beer and food in unique settings, in an inclusive and family-friendly environment. This event will be no different.
The Marché will be held at the Hendrick Farm, a gorgeous heritage property in Old Chelsea which has already gained a reputation as a destination that supports conservation, sustainability and the environment. The Farm, which is part of a community redevelopment project in Chelsea, features a historic barn that visitors will be able to explore and enjoy during the Marché.

For the inaugural Marché, they’re thrilled to be welcoming some of Quebec’s finest craft breweries, including Trou du Diable from Shawinigan, Brasserie Dunham from Dunham, Microbrasserie Le Castor from Rigaud, Brasseurs du Temps from Gatineau and Benelux from Montreal. They’re grateful that these quality brewers are participating in the first (of hopefully many) Marchés in Quebec.

The Marché des Brasseurs will be free admission and you will be able to buy beer and food at the event. It will run from 12pm – 6pm on Saturday, July 26th. The event will be all-ages and family friendly. Proceeds from the Marche des Brasseurs will support the great work of Sentinelle Outaouais. Hendrick Farm has ample free parking but they do not suggest that you drink and drive. In partnership with Brew Donkey, they will be running a shuttle bus to the Marché des Brasseurs from Ottawa (leaving from Fairmont & Wellington). You can reserve your spot on the bus here. And with that, mark down Saturday, July 26th in your calendar for a wonderful day of Quebec craft beer and food at our first Marché des Brasseurs!


Food at Mondial de la Bière


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 The Montreal beer festival not only has beer, but delicious food as well. IGA will have three cooking workshops presented every day as well. Chef André-Paul Moreau will present these workshops: IGA Cooking with beerHe will use IGA products to create perfect matches with various beers. The fifteen demonstrations will put a spotlight on local products, cheese, quality meats and seafood. Chefs Matthieu Saunier of l’Osco!, Cédric Désilets of La Coupole, Frank Chesseron and Maxime Boivin of l’Assommoir Notre-Dame, Carl Poulin from Vices & Versa, Olivier Tali of Cheval de jade as well as chef Roland Del Monte of Renoir, will dazzle your tastebuds! François Chartier will also be part of the crew with a presentation called Le goût du froid. Philippe Wouters, on top of being “beer presenter” of the IGA cooking demonstrations, will put together a mussels and shrimp recipe and host the tasting workshops “beer and cheeses” as well as “beer and fudges “.

 As well as the presentations, there are 15 food kiosks on the floor this year. You will be able to indulge on some of the following:
  • European sandwiches.
  • Panini style sandwitches with deer smoked meat.
  • Wild boar hamburgers.
  • Deer finger food.
  • Brochettes.
  • Large sausages on a stick.
  • Latin America pastries (Churros).
  • Fries and poutines.
  • Ceviche
  • Tuna Causa with Peruvian sauce.
  • Beef sandwiches with guacamole.
  • Small meatballs with mild spicy suace.
  • Yellow rice with chicken and vegetables.
  • Gourmet pop corn, sweet and salty.
  • Cheeses grilled on a stick
  • “Sucre à la crème”, 50 flavors of fudge and nougat.
  • Sausages smoked on maple wood.
  • Skippy burger.
  • Kangaroo sausages.
  • Seal’s loins.
  • Bison and wild boar on a stick.
  • Sticky rice with red beans.
  • Chicken drumsticks in sauce.
  • Pulled pork.
  • Pastries: cheese twists, buns, cookies, twisted sausages.

21st Mondial de la Bière – 2014


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mondialbiere_13-23It’s that time again in Montreal to expand your beer palate. Mondial de la Bière is Montreal’s premier tasting festival. With 514 beers to taste and 107 breweries present the festival is a good opportunity to taste and learn about beer. There will be over 40 Quebec microbreweries to experience as well. It is worthwhile chance to find some great beers that are brewed right in our backyard or discover new brewpubs to visit during the summer. This year, Mondial de la Bière has also grown to include 269 new breweries that have never presented at the festival before.

Mondial de la Bière takes place for five days between June 11th to 15th and is open from 11am-10pm (Wednesday to Saturday) and 11am-8pm (Sunday). It is held at Palais des Congrès (201 Viger Street West) both insider and outside on the terrace (Esplanade on De la Gauchetière between Chenneville and Côté). Admission is free and tasting coupons are $1.00 each (approximately 2-6 coupons for a 3-4 ounce beer tasting). You can purchase a souvenir glass or bring your own glass (12 ounce or less glass).

Come back tomorrow for more information on the festival, including some of the new breweries and food kiosks. Also you can follow us on twitter , tumblr, instagram and untappd.


St-Ambroise Has A Great New Lager For Oktoberfest


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You are going to want to make your way out to the St-Ambroise terrace this weekend for Oktoberfest. McAuslan’s first annual event celebrating the end of summer with live music, traditional German food and their first ever lager. The festivities start today at 6:00pm and continue until Saturday at midnight. Rain or shine, the St-Ambroise terrace will be the place to party outside this weekend.

Thursday, 6:00pm – 10:00pm
Friday, 6:00pm – Midnight
Saturday, 4:00pm – Midnight

Exclusively this weekend, St-Ambroise will be pouring their very first Oktoberfest Lager in litre steins for $9. This will be the only time this year that you will have the opportunity to try it. I had a chance to taste it earlier this week and it is not to be missed.

This will be the first lager that McAuslan has produced under their brand and it’s exclusive to the event. There are no plans to bottle it and once the weekend is over it will get cellared over the winter. The brewers at McAuslan have made every attempt to brew an authentic German Märzen lager. Märzen is a traditional Bavarian lager which is normally brewed around March. A dark brown, full bodied and bitter style that would be cellared and lagered during the summer. The remaining bottles served at the Oktoberfest. The style lends itself to higher alcohol content and a a lot of hops used to preserve the beer.

IMG_2057_medMcAuslan Oktoberfest Lager
SRM: 8.7
IBU: 18-20.5
Malts: Pale, Munich-2 and Chocolate
Hops: Noble Hallertauer, Saaz
Alc/vol: Around 6%

I had one of the first pulls off the keg on Tuesday and this beer pours a beautifully clear, light amber. With about a 2 finger rocky white cap. There is a bit of carbonation flowing off the bottom of the stein and the lacing is great. As the head slowly dissipates a centimeter or two remains.

While it was a bit difficult to get the full aroma on the terrace, what I could make out were lots of bready malts.

This is a smooth beer, a very clean mouthfeel and reserved carbonation. Which allows the sweet bready malts to shine in the middle. The hops begin to show at the end, with a mellow hop bite. Spicy, slightly peppery and very earthy dry finish.

Overall, this is a beer that is going to knock a lot of people onto their asses. It’s a very easy drinking beer with a pretty high alcohol content, around 6%. The brewers did a good job recreating the style and it was a treat to get to drink this fresh, behind the brewery, on a beautiful October day.

Oktoberfest

The St-Ambroise terrace is located at 5080 Rue Saint-Ambroise, Montreal, QC. The event is free and Litre steins of the Oktoberfest Lager are priced at $9. As well, there will be a meal provided for $10 which consists of knackwurst sausage, traditional German potato salad and Sauerkraut. Fresh hot pretzels will also be available with beer mustard from Bretzel & Compagnie. There will be two live bands over the weekend, The Wanderers and the Happy Bavarians.

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Ein prosit!


St-Ambroise Oktoberfest


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shot_09302013_25035_pmOktoberfest is coming to Montreal. This weekend St-Ambroise is celebrating their first Oktoberfest event on the St-Ambroise terrace. There will be music and traditional Bavarian food to be had. Most exciting of all, they will be serving their first ever lager in 1L steins.

Free entrance over three days this week. Rain or shine under a big tent.

Thursday, October 3rd from 6pm – 10pm
Friday, October 4th from 6pm – 12am
Saturday, October 5th from 4pm – 12am

The Wanderers and the Happy Bavarians will be performing.

I should be there on Friday celebrating before Beau’s Oktoberfest.


Cask Days Tickets Go On Sale Today


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shot_08122013_23425_pmCask Days is a Toronto craft beer festival that hosts over 200 different cask conditioned beers and over 100 Canadian microbreweries. It is a beer geeks dream! This year they will also have 36 beers from the United Kingdom giving everyone a chance to enjoy some authentic real ale. Tickets are now on sale starting at $25 at caskdays.com.

The Festival – Evergreen Brickworks October 19th – October 20th, 2013
As a major contributor to the Ontario craft beer community, the family behind Toronto mainstay barVolo, have taken Cask Days and elevated the beer drinking experience, spearheading one of the largest festivals of its kind. Cask Days 2013 will host over 4000 people over 2 days. From beer introduction & education to promoting a community-focused beer drinking lifestyle, Cask Days offers premium one-of-a-kind brews alongside a standout line-up of beer-focused workshops, art, music, food pairings and one-on-ones with brewers on site.

The Brews
Cask-conditioned ale (aka “real ale”) is served by spout directly from the cask. Once tapped, a cask only has a few days to be consumed at its peak – you’ve got to drink it; We call these days Cask Days. This beer is unfiltered, unpasteurized & naturally carbonated via secondary fermentation in the cask. Cask Days encourages brewers to showcase their finest brews, in most cases “one off’s” that are exclusively made for the festival. The best brewery collaborations, ciders, gluten-free beers & seasonal specialties like pumpkin and harvest ales will be also be up for tasting.

The Art
This year’s gallery spotlights on some outstanding artists who create the beer label artwork that is printed by both local and international breweries. Celebrating the designs that inspire, enlighten and are dedicated to brilliant beers. Artists will also be creating live productions to commemorate the 2013 festival.

The Eats
Raising the standard of beer festival food, the eats are as epic as the beer. Cask Days gathers some of Toronto’s most admired chefs & top restaurants. Expect real food that compliments real ale.

The Live Beats
The vibe of Cask Days is what sets it apart from the rest. The Cask Days music program – unfiltered, raw and live.

Final Four
Earlier this year 32, India Pale Ales were served blind and competed in a single elimination bracket tournament. The final four IPAs: House Ales Westside, Flying Monkeys Pink Dime, Hopfenstark Post Colonial, and Left Field Resin Bag will face off head to head, the champion determined by a national audience.

Brewers Breakfast
An opportunity to have a one-on-one with every brewery represented, guests open day 2 of the festival by tapping a keg and noshing over a guest chef catered breakfast before heading off to have more cask.

Session One: Saturday, October 19th (12pm-5pm)
Session Two: Saturday, October 19th (7pm-12am)
Session Three: Sunday, October 20th (12pm-5pm)
Save The Cask: Sunday, October 20th (5pm-10pm)

Check out their website: Website or follow on Twitter and Facebook.


Beau’s 5th Oktoberfest Now On Sale


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poster-b-finalEarly bird tickets for Beau’s all Natural Brewing’s signature fundraising event go on sale today and the first 1000 ticket holders will receive a complimentary compilation CD featuring music by this year’s musical lineup. Beau’s 5th Oktoberfest, a Bavarian-themed festival, will take place on October 4th and 5th at the Agricultural Fairgrounds in Vankleek Hill, Ontario.

Oktoberfest festivities kick off Friday, October 4th (4 pm to 11 pm) and resume Saturday, October 5th (11 am to 9 pm). Traditional live Bavarian music, dancing, and performances by Canada’s Polka King and three-time Grammy Award winner Walter Ostanek will be featured each day alongside musical acts:

• FRIDAY: Kathleen Edwards, The Sadies, Young Rival, The Balconies
• SATURDAY: Sloan, Rich Aucoin, The Mahones

A total of nine beers will be featured, including Lug Tread, Night Marzen, Kissmeyer Nordic Pale Ale, The Tom Green Beer, and a surprise Beau’s brewer creation. The final four selections are past Oktoberfest favourites and will also appear in a commemorative 4-pack to be released in the LCBO prior to the festival. These are Oktobock, Smokin’ Banana Peels, Mr. Hyde, and Two Weeks’ Notice. The 4-packs will be available beginning in early September. As well, Cask Days returns with a large variety of cask-conditioned ales from Ontario and Quebec.

Activities return with Oktoberfest fan favourites such as the stein-hold struggle, spouse-carrying race, sausage-eating contest, malt-sack races, and the beer keg toss. For the first time festival goers will be able to participate in the Beau’s Oktoberfest Team Challenge where groups of six will compete together against opposing teams in keg toss competitions, malt sack races, and a tractor pull. Those looking to sharpen their beer knowledge are encouraged to participate in educational seminars known as “The School of Bock” for guided talks from beer experts, including renowned brewer Anders Kissmeyer from Denmark. Kinderfest, a non-licenced area will include new interactive games, activities, and entertainment for children of all ages.

Beau’s has raised more than $167,000 for charities in total over the past four years, and is projecting to add another $75,000 for its fifth anniversary. This year’s benefitting organizations include the Canadian Canoe Foundation (www.canadiancanoefoundation.ca), Kiva (www.kiva.org), and the Vankleek Hill Agricultural Society. New this year is the Beau’s Oktoberfest Ride: a 94 km ride from Ottawa to Oktoberfest to raise money for the United Way. The Just Food interactive midway returns, as does Rethink Breast Cancer’s beer-filled dunk tank.

On the food front, more than 20 restaurants will interpret Bavarian fare including:

• Union 613’s Bavarian Fried Chicken with Spicy Mustard
• Hintonburg Public House’s Braised Pig Cheek with Blaukraut and Potato Pancake
• Whalesbone Catering’s Oysters with Bavarian Twist
• Olivea’s Corn Beef Brisket with Garlic & Chili Sauerkraut

Oktoberfest tickets go on sale today online at www.beaus.ca, through the Ottawa-based home delivery service BYBO (www.bybo.ca), and at the brewery retail store in Vankleek Hill. Tickets include admission, parking, an alpine hat, pretzel, and first beverage (beer, coffee, pop or water). Single-day adult passes are $22, or a two-day pass can be purchased for $38. Youth admission (18 or younger) is $5. Ottawa, Cornwall and Montreal residents are invited and encouraged to travel to Oktoberfest via shuttle bus. Round trip bus fare can be added on to any ticket for an additional $15. Festival organizers suggest purchasing tickets early as past years have sold out in advance.

Beau’s also encourages attendees to “Volunbeer.” An integral part of the festival, Volunbeers will receive a complimentary 2-day pass to Oktoberfest, Volunbeer hat, and free transportation from Ottawa, Cornwall, or Montreal in exchange for one half-day shift helping out at the festival. Those interested can learn more at www.beaus.ca/volunteer.


Brouhaha Tuesday Tastings


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Every Tuesday at 3:00pm, Brouhaha brewpub selects three beers from their cellar for tasting. Brouhaha will present 2oz samples from the three beers of the week with a presentation from the waiter. The event is meant to taste and discuss the samples and to get some information from them. The price will vary depending on the product that is offered. The price is usually around $10.

This week they will have three beers from Norweigian craft brewery Nøgne ø.

  • #500 – Imperial IPA – 10% ABV
  • #100 – Barley Wine – 10% ABV
  • Imperial Stout aged in cognac bottles – 9% ABV

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If you have a chance to visit and taste these beers, I would love to hear about it. Leave your comments on our Facebook page.

Broue Pub Brouhaha is located at 5860, avenue De Lorimier, H2G 2N9.

Follow our Facebook page for weekly announcements and discussions on these tastings.


Mondial de la Bière and Website Relaunch


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LOGOMondialbiere_2013highThe 20th anniversary of the Montreal Beer Fest is just around the corner. This year between May 29th and June 2nd the Beer Festival moves to Palais des Congrès and the exterior terrace (l’Esplanade). One of my favourite times to experience new beers and invite friends to expand their beer palate.

This year, more than 550 products will be available for tasting with more than 120 breweries exhibiting. There will be 229 new beers to try that have never exhibited at the beer festival.

The festival will be open starting Wednesday to Saturday from 11:00am to 10:00pm and the last day will be on Sunday from 11:00am to 8:00pm. Palais des Congrès is located at 1001, Place Jean-Paul-Riopelle and the terrace is located on De la Gauchetière Street between Chenneville and Côté. Admission is free and tasting coupons are $1 each (beer tastings range from 2-6 coupons normally, average around 3). You can bring your own glass for tasting (12 ounces or less) and plastic cups will also be available. Normally, the 4 ounce souvenir tasting glass is $10 but there is no mention of it on the website this year.

There is more to talk about in the coming week before the launch. Including participating restaurants and activities during the beer fest. I will do a daily trickle of information as we approach.

Lastly, during the festival I will be relaunching the website. I’ve had a lot of time to think about where to find the time and what to do with the website. I plan to do less regular updates with more in depth content. Starting on Wednesday, May 29th, I will begin to update on a regular schedule with beer tastings and reviews, craft beer information and occasional beer news.