Well, September is here. The kids are back in school, the skies are getting a little more grey and (at least here, anyways) the wind is getting nice and chilly. I love Fall. But…most people I know don’t. Many of my friends are tragically lamenting the end of Summer and looking back on what made it great. So I think it’s only fair that I do a bit of looking back on my own in regards to beer in the summer.
So for me, Summer was an excellent chance to explore the wonderful beers that my own province of Ontario offers. Specifically the more hoppy beers that I so love. While I’m looking forward to the coming cold days where we all huddle in to a nice, comfortable little pub, there is something to be said about sitting on a patio with friends and sipping something that matches the weather perfectly.
I primarily drank crisp and hoppy pale ales, but others kinds were good highlights. The season kicked off, for instance, at the launch of Beau’ FestivALE, a brew that started with a hoppy bite and gradually got sweet and malty on the way down the throat. But damn, those pale ales…there were the monsters like the Black Oak 10 Bitter Years Imperial/Double IPA, and damn…was that ever a treat. And sitting around at the Burger Bar with an Augusta Ale with it’s slight aroma of honey was delightful.
But the winner of this summer for me was Spearhead’s debut Hawaiian Style Pale Ale.
In the short few months that this beer has been around, it has already won several awards and the style, a heavily hopped up West Coast Pale Ale brewed with Pineapple juice to add a slight sweetness, made this the perfect summer drink. I really can’t recall the many times I’ve popped by The Old Nick on one of the brutally hot days we had up here or after a really good workout at the gym (my boxing gym is thankfully a 20 minute walk away from this wonderful Toronto pub), ordered one or two pints of this drink and just cooled the hell down.
What impressed me most, though, was that the folks at Spearhead chose not to start off with a fairly safe debut beer, like a cream ale or pilsner. They went right for the crazy (well…crazy for Ontario folks, anyways) and what’s more, they came out at a time when Ontario, and especially Toronto, was just starting to wake up to the world of craft beer. They really were in the right place at the right time, and I’m happy for it.
Here’s a video of the beer pouring. Why? BECAUSE IT’S BEAUTIFUL.
So that’s my end of Summer post. Hope you all had a good one. And now AUTUMN IS HERE! And you know what that means, right? PUMPKIN ALES!
See you soon.