I have been told that I’m basically a closet Canadian. I watch hockey, I have a slightly unhealthy obsession with Tim Hortons, I know the correct usage of the word ‘eh,’ and I say sorry a lot. About all I can’t do is speak in both English and French.
Canada has also given us quite a lot of wonderful things. Coffee Crisp bars, Rush, Steven Stamkos, the afore-mentioned Tim Hortons, and new to me, Beau’s All Natural Brewing Company.
Beau’s All Natural is nestled in the rolling hills of Vanleek Hill, Ontario, which is just a touch closer to Montreal than it is to Ottawa. It was started by the father and son team of Tim and Steve Beauchesne, finally coming to fruition with their first pint of Lug Tread on July 1st, 2006. The brewery is still family-run to this day.
Their brewery is centered on an environmentally friendly standpoint, with recycled packaging & printed materials (in English and French, of course), and a fully organic lineup of beers.
They have the standard tap room, tours (once again, English and French), and the Greener Futures Project, a bottle club that receives several limited-edition barrel-aged bottles every year. and they can even ship to you!
…if you live in Ontario.
Plus they have that store that has theBeau’s hockey jerseys. This is why I need to go back to Canada.
But I write a blog about beers in Florida. Why would I mention beers from our neighbor to the north? Well, it turns out Beau’s is one of two Canadian breweries that has been invited to Saturday’s Hunahpu Day beer festival by Cigar City Brewing.
They’re bringing a few of their award winning beers for Floridians to try, including the signature Lug Tread. I managed to get my hands on a few of their beers as a sneak preview of what they would be bringing.
One of the beers I received, and one that will be available at Hunahpu’s Day, is The Beer That Shall Not Be Named (Belgian Strong Ale, 9.9% ABV), otherwise known as VoldeMalt, because Potter. Of course.
Listen to the recipe on this sucker: It starts with a whole list of organic ingredients, including Pale Ale, Pilsner, Carahell, and Acidulated malts, plus generous additions of Perle, Strisselspalt and Spalter Select hops. Once again, all organic.
Once complete, the beer was aged in Pinot Grigio and Sauvignon Blanc barrels for 10 months, along with some organic cherries. It’s incredibly limited, and is in fact only available to members of Beau’s Greener Futures Project.
And it’s good enough to make you want to move to Ontario.
On its own, the Belgian Strong is very good. It’s got a strong malty backbone with a big ABV that is always kept balanced, and doesn’t weigh the beer down with an overly alcoholic burn.
It’s the aging that really helps this beer to shine. Pretty much every beer that’s wine barrel aged uses a red wine barrel (Merlot, Cab, Shiraz, etc.).
Beaus’ decided to go with two white varietals, including my favorite Sauvignon Blanc. The result is a bright, poppy fruitiness with light and juicy notes of grape. Paired with the slight tartness and meatiness from the further addition of organic cherries, the result is a tart and lightly sweet enhancement to an already great beer.
It’s almost heartbreaking that I won’t be able to readily find them down here. If you’re going to Hunahpu, find them and tell them hi for me, please. Maybe, if I write a very nicely worded letter, they can send some more.
But would I have to write it in English and French?
Drink Florida Craft (Boire Floride Artisanat),