Reading: Make the Summer Last with 6 of the Chillest Beers

Make the Summer Last with 6 of the Chillest Beers

Now it’s official. August ’16 was freakin’ hot. Apparently, the hottest ever T.Dot. And I am sure like the rest of us, at some point, you grabbed a pint on your favourite local patio, cottage deck in the Muskokas, or perhaps in the park (police good humor permitting). Good thing for all of us, this may have been the best summer to enjoy local Ontario beers ever. With so many quality new breweries opening their doors, just look at the West Side of Toronto, where Halo, Henderson, and Bandit, all debuted within a month of each other. Incredibly they are all producing some tasty beers already. And those damn Beer festivals just keep getting bigger and better. And sold out, I may add. Here are some of my favourite beers I tasted, available either at the LCBO or directly at the brewery. It is a good time to be alive!

Rainhard Mass Hysteria Farmhouse Ale

I absolutely love this Farmhouse Ale by Rainhard Brewing in collaboration with the always excellent, Folly Brewpub. Farmhouse Ale, are traditionally brewed to be enjoyed at the end of a hard day harvesting in the field. But, hey a hard day on a laptop counts, right? Mass Hysteria is a real winner that I had a chance to taste at the Toronto Festival of Beer. This is a classic style of beer done with excellence. There is a chance it may no longer be available at the brewery but if not then try one of their always excellent IPA’s. Also, you must make your way to the Folly Brewpub on College St, where they are making some of the most interesting Farmhouse beers in the province.

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Royal City Hibiscus Saison

Very tart for a Saison with the bitterness of Hibiscus tea followed by a slightly spicy finish. Best enjoyed very cold in the heat of the summer, or now in this humid September. That heat is not going away anytime soon. I loved the warm amber colour of this beer from the heart of Guelph, and of course its crispiness and bubbling effervescence.  Overall, a very winning brew.

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Barley Days Summer Brunch Summer Ale 

An awesome fresh Kolsch brewed in Prince Edward County with local Apricots that more than lives up to its billing as a great beer for brunching. And who doesn’t love to brunch in the city, on a patio of course.  This was one of my favourites at Muskoka Brewery’s 20th Anniversary event! It took place at the Evergreen Brickworks, and was easily my favourite beer festival this summer. It featured unique beers from over 20 of the province’s best breweries. Kudos to Drink Inc, who organise some of Toronto’s best beer events.

Wellington Brewery ‘Against The Currant’

My favourite beer I have tasted from this classic Ontario brewery in a while. Wellington is one of the provinces’ best and it deserves much respect, yet it always great to see our elders pushing things forward. “Against the Currant’ is a kettle sour brewed with local Blackcurrants, plus Brewers’ yeast from Escarpment Laboratories. Who are developing local yeast products for the best Ontario breweries. A must purchase, for those who want to want to dip their toes in the water of sour beers.

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Black Bellows White 

This Witbier is an amazing debut from this new brewery based in Collingwood. Very balanced with some lovely hints of Edelfower. Also really dig the Modernist label design. Witbiers are nicely dry and cripsy, perfect for drinking poolside. It will make you feel in the know, while you’re friends sip on that sad Heineken or Corona. Insert sad imoji here. If you have just one, I guarantee you will be tossing back a few more soon after.

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Central City Hopping Mad Cider Radler

Ok, now for something completely different, but shockingly very tasty! From the West Coast brewery that brought us the now classic IPA, Red Racer. This has been the summer where all the lines have been blurred between beer, cider, and juice. This is a good thing! Get this one while it is still hot outside, in order to avoid disappointment.