Brew day at Royal City Brewing Co.

This past Saturday I have the honor of being a guest brewer at Royal City Brewing Co. in Guelph. What? How? Why? Let’s back up a bit.

A few weeks ago my friend Claren contacted me about brewing beer as a fundraiser at an event. The event is produced by Pencil Kit Productions run by Claren and others. The event will be what I can only call an art installation. There will be art in a variety of mediums such as performance, visual and projector. I am very excited to be a part of this and to be able to serve my “art”. When I was asked if I wanted to help out I said “Hell yeah!” without hesitation.

Here is where things got interesting. In order to legal serve home brew for sale the beer must be made under licence at a brewery so that all taxes and such are paid into the greedy pockets of the government. I took to GTAbrews group to figure out how to do this. Long story short Doug -whom I had never met before- seemed like he made a personal mission to help me. Within a few days he had set me up with Royal City Brewing Co. If you have not had their beer go to the brewery! Some very creative and taste stuff. If you cannot make it to the brewery try the Hibiscus Saison or Smoked Honey from the LCBO. They are to die for.

We worked out the details over email and a brief phone conversation and we were ready to rock and roll. Saturday I showed up and was told I would be brewing with the owner and brew master himself! Cam was one of the coolest guys I have ever met. We brewed 11 Gallons of a Belgian pale ale with all American hops. Half will receive dry hop additions and the other half will be aged on spent wine chips and receive dry hop additions. As well Cam had me help move 35 hl of beer into a bright tank. I had an absolute blast hanging out with Cam for the day.

Here is a bit of information about the event (SUBJECT TO CHANGE)event

A huge thank you to the Royal City crew for accommodating me for the day. An even bigger thank you to Cam for sharing so much information and, being excited about what a home brewer is doing.

Hope to see a bunch of people December 9th and 10th!


Late September update

Looking more and more at how real I want to make this. After a club meeting with GTA brews for the first time I was left speechless with the enthusiasm people gave me over some of my beers. The bourbon “barrel” aged triple bock hit it off!

Currently I have a Milk stout with pumpkin, spices and espresso (pumpkin spiced latte), Bourbon barrel aged triple bock (about to get put in the cellar) and a smoked lightly aged (6 months) stout with licorice root in bottles. Very happy with all of these brews. In 2 days I will bottle a NE style IPA. last tasting was very very nice. hoping the dry hops have a good punch to them! Currently fermenting I have a monster Belgiam quad OG 1.145 along with my lavender beer with oak that has been aging for about 6-7 weeks now. Another 3-5 weeks and it should be ready for bottles. I also have an american imperial stout 7.3 ABV aging. Thinking of adding milk sugar and peanut butter powder to it.

With these beers I recently have started to do mead in small batches! Rooibos mead fermented with wine yeast was bottled last weekend. Age will treat it nicely. Speaking of Rooibos, I entered my rooibos amber ale into the 2016 Brewslam as BJCP 30A. First competition entry ever. Next year I plan to enter dozens of beers.

This past summer I harvested yeast off of some wild raspberries and blackberries up by North Bay. These cultures have been handed over to Escarpment Laboratories. They are going to try to incubate enough of each culture to do some experimental pitches with! The plan is to do a split batch Saison. Fingers crossed that this works out.

For October I have 2-3 brews planned. A french saison, a clean lager and perhaps a wheat. As well as a wild berry handpicked cider. The fractal distilled beer is nearing completion ~28 ABV. October should be fairly busy.