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Brews News: Bumper crop of summer beers



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It’s high season for Canadian beer drinkers as we take to decks, docks, campsites and cabins.

It’s a heyday for craft brewers as they create distinct recipes that satisfy thirsts without being boring or just higher-priced craft copies of popular beers.

Beau’s knows. The brewery in Vankleek Hill (and Toronto since it’s now under Steam Whistle’s wing), has the beer that rewarded me well for hours of yard work over the long weekend.

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Refresher is a quaffable fruited ale that’s very likely to please all your guests, including those who don’t normally enjoy beer.

Beau’s brewed it using pilsner and wheat malts along with Saaz hops and German ale yeast. Without being sweet, Refresher delivers primarily a pineapple flavour with gentle nudges of tartness. It’s 4.5 per cent alcohol.

Widely distributed at Ontario beer retailers, Refresher is $3.85 for a 473 ml can.


Two of three neighbourhood breweries in London have closed, but there’s still Beerlab London. The only craft brewery in the downtown and located at 420 Talbot St. next to Pub Milos, Beerlab London keeps cranking out interesting IPAs. New on the beer board are Not Dead Yet and Nostalgic. Not Dead Yet features Mosaic hops with Citra as a secondary. The brewery describes flavours of blueberry jam, nectarines and Florida oranges. Nostalgic is a rewrite of a Beerlab IPA from 2013. Made with Citra and Galaxy hops, Nostalgic has flavours of peach and candied orange zest. Both Nostalgic and Not Dead Yet are 6.6 per cent alcohol and sold in cans at the brewery.

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Summer means radlers and at Railway City in St. Thomas it means the new Cosmic Citrus. It’s 2.5 per cent alcohol and delivers the flavour of yuzu, the grapefruit-meets-lemon fruit from Asia. Cosmic Citrus is sold at the St. Thomas brewery.

Railway City has a new radler with the flavour of yuzu. Cosmic Citrus is available at the brewery in St. Thomas. (RAILWAY CITY photo)

Playing, or attempting to play, sports in an adult recreational league this summer? Refined Fool in Sarnia has you covered with a curated six-pack sampler. Summer Beer League has Physical Activity (a 5 per cent alcohol pale ale), Mediocre Bowler and Friend (a 6.8 per cent IPA), Throwing Things (5 per cent kolsch) We Must Wear Spandex (5 per cent blonde), I Guess I’ll Play This Sport Now (4.7 per cent tart ale), and Riding Around in Tiny Cars With My Friends (a 4 per cent light lager).

Storm Stayed in London continues its Maverick IPA hop showcase series with Cashmere hops. Cashmere makes it smooth and easy drinking, a nice choice for warm weather. You’ll get a lemon and lime flavour from the Cashmere hops, but slow down to take in a herbaceous aroma.

The first craft brewery in Huron County started with a single beer. From that original and delightful Czech pilsner, the list at Stone House Brewing Company has grown to include three takes on lagers – dark, Bavarian and cream. The pilsner is sold at select locations of the LCBO and Beer Store. Stone House is a must-visit for backroads day-trippers in Huron County. It’s on Parr Line north of Varna.

The five-course Dare to Pair food and beer event returns to Red Barn on June 18. There are only 50 tickets (at $125 each) for the formal wear event that features commentary by head brewer Steve Goodal. Red Barn is in the countryside near Blenheim.

Wayne Newton is a freelance journalist based in London.

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