BC Beer Baron #288 – Parallel 49 Schadenfreude Pumpkin Oktoberfest

Each month, as part of this 366-day BC craft beer extravaganza that I will be sharing with you throughout 2016, I will highlight a specific style or theme of beers for a whole week of articles. The season of pumpkin-spiced everything is upon us… and things are no different in the craft beer world. Let’s see what BC has to offer for fans of the flavour.

Blending two of the most popular styles of beer at this time of year (pumpkin-flavoured and Oktoberfest), this popular Parallel 49 Brewing release is sure to find an audience with a wide variety of drinkers.

The Schadenfreude Pumpkin Oktoberfest is light and refreshing, with clear tastes of pumpkin and spice. The brew starts off as an Oktoberfest Lager, before pumpkin is added the mash process of brewing and pumpkin pie spices join during the kittling portion.

parallel-49-schadenfreude-pumpkin-oktoberfest

The 5% ABV, 27 IBUs beer (first released in 2012) is available in bottled six-packs at BC Liquor Stores. Parallel 49 is no stranger to the pumpkin-spiced beer, as they also have the Lost Souls Chocolate Pumpkin Porter in their menagerie.

Schadenfreude, for those who don’t know, is the concept of taking pleasure from another person’s pain and misery. Did you know the 1991 The Simpsons episode ‘When Flanders Failed’ is credited for bringing the term back into popularity?

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BC Beer Baron #192 – Storm Margherita Pizza IPA

Each month, as part of this 366-day BC craft beer extravaganza that I will be sharing with you throughout 2016, I will highlight a specific style or theme of beers for a whole week of articles. With so many brewery options out there, a game of one-upmanship sometimes occurs and from that, the world is treated to some very unique experimental releases.

It would be criminal to have an entire week devoted to experimental beers and not give one of those feature slots to Storm Brewing. Whenever the Sip Alliance congregates at Storm’s East Vancouver location, we’re always in for treats our minds never imagined would be served to us in beer form.

The Margherita Pizza IPA is one of those brews that only Storm could envision and put together, combining most dudes dream meal – pizza and beer – all in one package. I have to say that the scents and flavours of oregano, tomato sauce and even cheese are evident in the brew and I actually enjoyed the experience. Apparently, I’m not alone, as most reviews on the Untappd beer app are positive.

Storm Brewing Board

The beer was made to help celebrate Vancouver’s Italian Day last month. I’ve joked with friends, who I forced to try the beverage, that it wouldn’t surprise me if the team at Storm simply tossed a couple pizzas in their brewing vats and let nature do the rest. Cousin Sip likened the 7% ABV IPA to a canister of pizza-flavoured Pringles.

Storm regularly cycles through their ‘Brainstorms’ and the board is kept updated at their website and also on their social media feeds. I am a steady follower of what they’re up to and often find myself salivating at something new to come into their tasting room.

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BC Beer Baron #182 – Main Street/Powell Street Scottish Golden Ale

While perusing new releases at the BC Liquor Store recently, this craft beer collaboration from Main Street Brewing and Powell Street Brewing instantly caught my eye.

The Scottish Golden Ale is light at only 4% ABV and 20 IBUs, but packs a punch with its taste. Although I picked the brew out for a friend who loves Scotch Ales, I probably enjoyed the drink more given its peaty smoky flavour finish. The colour of this beer is incredibly bright, or as the makers put it: “As blonde as the East Van Sun in Spring!”

Main Street & Powell Street Scottish Golden Ale

Dubbed ‘The Streets’ collaboration, thanks to the two breweries monikers, the beer is available in bomber-sized bottles. Each brewery made their own batch of the recipe, before combining the two later. I’m not sure if it was the glassware we were using or some other factor, but the beer poured with a lot of head, although it evaporated quickly.

It seems every visit to the liquor store nowadays – even if only a few days apart – provides at least a couple new treats for consideration. It’s truly a wonderful time to be a craft beer connoisseur in this province and I can’t see the good times ending anytime soon.

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BC Beer Baron #170 – Off the Rail Raybuck Red Ale

As previously mentioned, on a recent visit to the Olympic Village Craft Beer Market, I ordered their six-beer flight featuring local brews. Another tasty treat among that sextet was this release from Off the Rail Brewing.

The Raybuck Red Ale was created as an homage to some of the favourite Irish Ales of the Off the Rail crew. Caramel notes highlight the brew, which is constructed using both Cascades and Willamette hops, for a medium level of bitterness (40 IBUs).

Off the Rail Raybuck Red Ale

The 5.4% ABV beverage is available in bomber-sized bottles, as well as in packs of four pint-sized cans. This was the first packaged release from the brewery and it was a good one to kick things off (the rail) with.

This trip to Craft Beer Market was highlighted by my six-pack order, which I also encouraged our visiting American friend to try. As this was his introduction to BC’s craft beer scene, he was rightfully blown away and our ensuing mini-brewery tour may have been more than he could handle!

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BC Beer Baron #169 – Powell Street Ode to Citra Pale Ale

On a recent visit to Craft Beer Market in the Olympic Village, I ordered their six-beer flight featuring local brews. Among those tasters was this beauty from Powell Street Brewing.

The Ode to Citra Pale Ale has long been a highlight for the Sip Advisor of any of our visits to Powell Street’s tasting room. As the name suggests, the beer is a tribute to Citra hops, which are known for their tropical fruit scents and flavours, including mango, passionfruit and citrus.

Powell Street Ode to Citra Pale Ale

This West Coast-style pale ale is full of flavour, while coming in at a medium level of hoppiness (35 IBUs). The beer has an ABV of 5.5% and is available in bomber-sized bottles at BC Liquor Stores and other fine purveyors of booze.

With summer right around the corner, Mrs. Sip and I have big plans for taking a number of visiting friends through the Yeast Van area on Sip Advisor-guided bike and brewery tours. I’m licking my chops at the mere thought of these adventures!

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BC Beer Baron #164 – Parallel 49/Strange Fellows People Are Strange Hoppy Saison

For the second consecutive year, Parallel 49 Brewing has joined forces with 12 different BC craft breweries to release a package of unique beers, dubbed Brews Brothers Volume 2. The Sip Advisor figured spending the first chunk of June reviewing these releases would be a great idea. So, let’s get on with things.

We wrap up our Brews Brothers odyssey with this collaboration featuring Strange Fellows Brewing. These two East Vancouver neighbours are among the most popular spots in the city for craft beer lovers and their coming together is something I was eager to try.

Parallel 49 & Strange Fellows People Are Strange Hoppy Saison

The People Are Strange Hoppy Saison didn’t disappoint and was a bit of an exclamation point of this amazing pack of beers. I’ve already declared that this will be the summer of saisons for the Sip Advisor (having previously enjoyed the summer of IPAs in 2014 and the summer of stouts in 2015) and I’m glad this 6.5% ABV beverage was part of that. One note: the taste kind of reminded me of those coloured marshmallow eggs you get around Easter.

Each beer is named after a classic rock song and People Are Strange by The Doors was a perfect selection given Strange Fellows is the partner brewery involved. While not the band’s greatest hit, this track is a great example of The Doors psychedelic rock style, which made them standout in the industry.

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BC Beer Baron #160 – Parallel 49/Hearthstone Sympathy for the Devil Black IPA

For the second consecutive year, Parallel 49 Brewing has joined forces with 12 different BC craft breweries to release a package of unique beers, dubbed Brews Brothers Volume 2. The Sip Advisor figured spending the first chunk of June reviewing these releases would be a great idea. So, let’s get on with things.

Once again, we get an East-North connection, as North Vancouver’s Hearthstone Brewing joins the collaboration fray. I should take this opportunity to point out that Hearthstone’s long-awaited taproom is due to open sometime this month and will feature pizzas from a wood fired oven.

Parallel 49 & Hearthstone Sympathy for the Devil Black IPA

The Sympathy for the Devil Black IPA was a spectacular beer… one that I would even bestow a rare 5-out-of-5 on the Sip-O-Meter! The beverage tastes strong – although comes in at a not overbearing (they call it restrained) 6.5% ABV – and is cut just right by its citrus notes. If you only try one beer from the pack, this might be it.

Each beer is named after a classic rock song and once again we go to the Rolling Stones for this brew, with their Sympathy for the Devil tune. Like I said previously, I find the work of the Stones to be hit and miss. In this case, I enjoy the lyrics of the track, but not the music that accompanies it. That may sound a little weird, but whateves.

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