BC Beer Baron #351 – Howe Sound Father John’s Winter Ale

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. Already the best time of the year, the fact it’s Winter Ale season makes it that much better.

When Mrs. Sip constructed a craft beer advent calendar for me last year, this Howe Sound Brewing beer was placed in the prime Christmas Eve spot. I have to say it performed well then and continues to hold up well as a winter season warmer.

The Father John’s Winter Ale features a unique blend of spices mixed with vanilla, molasses, honey and Demerara sugar. The 7% ABV, 17 IBUs beverage is malty and really brings the spice game to the forefront, both in taste and aroma.

Howe Sound Father John's Winter Ale

Available in the brewery’s signature one-litre bottles (complete with swing top cap), the product is good for three glasses of beer. The product can be found at BC Liquor Stores and is named for Howe Sound’s original brewer, John Mitchell.

Also on sale from Howe Sound during the Christmas shopping season is the Carton of Coal Dark Beer Variety Pack. This set includes the Pothole Filler Imperial Stout, Wee Beastie Oak Aged Scotch Ale, and Megadestroyer Imperial Licorice Stout.

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Sip Trips #52: Amazing Advent (Part 7)

Sadly, the craft beer advent calendar Mrs. Sip put together for me has come to a triumphant end. I will greatly miss the thrill that came with revealing each day’s selection and the enjoyment of sharing the experience with Mrs. Sip and all you little sippers. Let’s wrap things up:

Day 23: Parallel 49 Toques of Hazzard

I’ve always wanted to try this beer, but have never got around to it. Parallel 49 is known for their hoppy beers (Filthy Dirty IPA, Hopnotist, Corn Hops, etc.) and so it’s no surprise this seasonal release follows that trend. This Imperial White IPA comes in at a whopping 9.2%, but it’s not overwhelming. You have to love the brew’s name and label, featuring some good ol’ Canadian boys riding a Zamboni, rather than hopping into the General Lee.

Parallel 49 Toques of Hazzard

Day 24: Howe Sound Father John’s Winter Ale

While most advent calendars provide a bigger treat on the last day, Mrs. Sip perfectly placed this one-litre juggernaut in the #24 spot. Howe Sound has a very unique bottle (re-sealable plug at the top, plus wide load, totalling three full glasses) and without even seeing the beer, just by feel, I had an inkling of what it was (perhaps a sad indictment for myself) and turned out to be right. Finishing with a true Winter Ale was also a nice touch, so thanks to Father John, Howe Sound’s original brewer.

Howe Sound Father John's Winter Ale

Final Thoughts:

I can’t thank Mrs. Sip enough for putting this advent calendar together for me. As the story goes, she almost didn’t get it done and was going to save it for next year, but I’m so very happy everything came together just in the nick of time. Always a giver, there are a couple beers from this season, deserving mention, that I’ve picked up for Mrs. Sip. These include the Dead Frog Nutty Uncle Peanut Butter Stout and Whistler Dunkel (the closest thing to drinking a Terry’s Chocolate Orange). There are many other brews on the market we’re hoping to try before they disappear from stores, including Steamworks Winter White Stout, Granville Island Cocoa Loco Porter, and Whistler Chestnut Ale.

I hope everyone out there had a wonderful Christmas, full of quality time with family, friends, and your libation of choice!