BC Beer Baron #179 – Tofino Dark Lager

Sadly, I finally worked my way through the set of four bombers Ma and Pa Sip picked up for me from Tofino Brewing, while they were visiting Vancouver Island earlier this year. And what a set those two non-beer drinkers selected for yours truly.

The Dark Lager is unfiltered and all natural. At 4.5% ABV, it is lighter than one would expect, but the roasted malts provide a strong flavour to the beverage. As the folks at Tofino put it, the results in a “delicate balance of dark and light.”

Tofino Dark Lager

This winter seasonal is available in bomber-sized bottles, as well as on tap at the brewery for growler fills and other servings. Tofino also has a more traditional lager, as part of their lineup.

Having now tried a fair bit of Tofino Brewing’s releases, I would still love to get my hands on their Hunt & Gather Kettle Sour, Cosmic Wave Double IPA, and Spruce Tree Ale, to name a few. I have been greatly impressed with the brewery, thanks to my bomber set experience.

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BC Beer Baron #131 – Tofino Hoppin’ Cretin IPA

The Sip Advisor loves getting gifts from Mrs. Sip and Ma and Pa Sip, whenever they return from travelling… especially, when they’re of the booze variety. Therefore, when Ma and Pa Sip recently gifted me with a four-pack of Tofino Brewing bombers from their trip to Vancouver Island, I was thrilled.

Among that mixed pack was the Hoppin’ Cretin IPA, which was a very good India Pale Ale with very pleasing stats of a 7.5% ABV and 60 IBUs. This is the type of IPA that drinkers should try before they completely give up on this variety of beverage. They may come away pleasantly surprised.

Tofino Hoppin' Cretin IPA

I’m not entirely sure what’s behind the name of this beer, but one description I found for the brew states: “There’s no stoppin’ the cretins from hoppin’”. A cretin, of course is an idiot, so I guess the ol’ Sip Advisor would fall under that category!

I would love to visit Tofino Brewing at some point (as well as other Vancouver Island spots) and just have to find the time to get over there. One day, a bridge will unite the mainland and island, all in the name of fine beer!

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BC Beer Baron #73 – Tofino Kelp Stout

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. Since March features St. Patrick’s Day and many of us largely associate the celebration with Guinness beer, the Sip Advisor thought it would be a prime month to highlight some of B.C.’s best stout beers.

Having just gone through Chocolate Week last month, as part of this 366-day BC craft beer project, I vowed that my Stout Week would stray from any chocolate-based versions of the feature beer and instead focus on unique ingredients to the mix. The fine folks at Tofino Brewing helped greatly with that decision.

For some perverse reason, I’ve been looking forward to trying the Kelp Stout, ever since I heard of it. Kelp? In a beer? You’re damn right! Even the Tofino brewers are having fun with this odd addition, writing: “If there’s one sentiment that’s constantly repeated among craft beer drinkers it is, ‘This beer is good but it needs more seaweed!’ If we’ve heard it once, we’ve heard it a thousand times. Well folks, message received.”

Tofino Kelp Stout

The beer is quite complex, with a roasted malty smokiness, which I absolutely loved. All natural and unfiltered, the beverage is brewed with locally harvested kelp. The 6% ABV brew is available year round and can be located in BC Liquor Stores. I would assume this stout pairs well with sushi, but I didn’t test that hypothesis.

A special thanks goes out to Ma and Pa Sip who picked up a set of beers for me when they were on the island, visiting Ucluelet and Tofino last month. They visited the brewery, which they said was a lot of fun, despite the fact that neither of them are beer drinkers. They did it all for little ol’ me!

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