Nelson: It doesn't get more Canadian than drinking mulled (hot) beer in the middle of winter outdoors at a bar made of ice. This craft beer festival is held in the middle of winter and features hot beers which I have never had before.
That night we tried a Vanilla Stout from Ashton Crewing Company, a Winter Brewed coffee porter and a Thornbury Cider (neither are pictured). I couldn't tell that there was much vanilla flavour in the vanilla stout but it was still a decent tasting stout. The porter beer was extremely coffee-like to my tastes while still remaining a beer. The cider, while light and refreshing, felt much more appropriate for summer drinking instead of drinking in below zero temperatures.
The next day we continued with some true mulled beers. On the left is Beau's butter beer which is served hot. This beer tasted meaty and salty along with the bitterness of beer, but with a hint of sweetness. It sounds like a little gross from the description, but was actually pretty good.
On the right is Muskoka winterbeard, a double chocolate cranberry stout. It sounds really good and when I first tried it I was expecting hot chocolate since it looked so similar, served hot and smelling of chocolate. The first taste (and smell) you get is sweetness from the chocolate, but then it becomes extra bitter with the aftertaste. I didn't like it myself, but that's likely because of my unrealistic expectations.
|Because it was so unique we decided to try this Spearhead Hawaiian Style Pale Ale. They advertise that it is brewed with pinapple at the beginning of the brewing process. The result is a hoppy, slightly bitter beer with a suprisingly strong citrus taste. Interesting!|
|This is another unique beer that we felt like we had to give a try. This is from Beau's called Oiseau de Nuit a pumpkin gruit. I didn't taste any hint of pumpkin myself, but as a beer it had a mild flavour and was pleasing to the taste.|
Lastly is this Beyond the Pale Oats Hot. I personally didn't like this one very much.
Overall I didn't like the hot beers that much, but it definitely kept you warm in the frigid weather. I must say I felt very Canadian that weekend.
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