We had a pretty good April. The first Aleyards Spring BBQ on April 22nd was a huge success, inspiring us to do more. And last week, Rainhard Brewing took home three more awards from the Ontario Brewing Awards! All repeat winners:
Gold – Sweetback’s Milk Stout (Gold Medal, 2016 OBAs)
Silver – Lazy Bones IPA (Gold, 2016 CBAs)
Silver – Hop Cone Syndrome Double IPA (Silver, 2016 CBAs)
(Currently in the fridge and on tap we’ve got lots of Sweetback’s and a little bit more Hop Cone Syndrome, but we’re fresh out of Lazy Bones.)
But that’s no reason to rest on our laurels. We’re hard at work preparing for our second anniversary party – yes, Rainhard Brewing Co. will be turning 2 years old on May 27th. It’s been a long and very rewarding two years, with dozens of beers, eight awards (and counting… the Canadian Brewing Awards are being held May 20th), our first LCBO listing, the launch of our barrel program (expect a lot more from that this year) and a lot of man-hours turning this former refinery into a home away from home for our many now and future regulars.
So come celebrate as we enter year 3 of Rainhard Brewing on May 27th. Joining us once again will be Fool Hearts, playing between 12 and 6, and the very, very tasty Gourmet Guyz food truck. We’re also prepping some very special beer releases for this event… to be announced. More details released closer to!
It’s been a long time coming, but Kapow! West Coast IPA is now on the shelf at select LCBO stores! Starting small but planning to add more stores to the list. You can get it right now at the following stores:
Aleyards Spring BBQ at Rainhard Brewing
Saturday April 22nd, Noon – 5pm – Free Admission
Well. It doesn’t always feel like it, but spring has officially sprung. What better time to officially christen the “Aleyards” with a BBQ? We’ve licensed our parking lot and invited our neighbours Shacklands and Junction Brewery to join us for what amounts to a miniature outdoor beer festival. We’ll be pouring a couple rare items on cask and Shacklands and Junction will be bringing some of their own favourites.
But that’s not all! The Michael Herring Boogaloo Band, a Rainhard regular, will be playing some sweet jazz tunes. We’ll also be joined by our crowd-pleasing food partners: Young Animal will be serving his addicting Trinidadian Doubles and the Junction’s Cut the Cheese will be bringing back his famous Armed ‘N Citra Pulled Pork sandwiches for one day only!
More details to come!
The winter lull is officially over and the events are piling up. So let’s get right to it.
Evergreen Brickworks – 11AM-5PM, Monday, February 20th
Family Day is the unofficial launch of our events season, with the first Brewer’s Backyard of the year at Evergreen Brickworks, where we’ll be pouring some beers alongside the folks from Great Lakes, Halo, Henderson and Junction from 11AM to 5PM. Free attendance.
BEER & OLIVES
Rainhard Brewing – 5-9PM, Thursday, February 23rd
For the first Rainhard event of the year, we’re teaming up with Three Sisters Kitchen to pair our newest beers with their artisanal olives and tapanades. A special preview release of our Sour Brown Ale Aged in Oak with Raspberries and Cherries will be available on tap only. Tickets includes one 12oz beer or two 5oz samples, olives, tapanade and chips, and live music by John Showman and Friends.
LOVE CHIX MAKE IT RAIN
Love Chix – 6PM-close, Saturday, February 25th
We’ve teamed up with the Junction’s Love Chix to bring you a beer dinner. 3 of our regular brews and one surprise one-off will be paired with an inspired a la carte menu. Tickets get you free samples and all you can eat!
CLOSED FOR A PRIVATE FUNCTION
Saturday, February 26th
TRASHED & WASTED
Wychwood Barns – 6-10PM, Wednesday, March 1st
A charity event in support of Second Harvest, Trashed & Wasted is a food and design event featuring all repurposed trash and food waste. For this great event, we’ve brewed a beer using leftover bread from Blackbird Bakery and we’re working with Paradigm Architecture to create a unique bar out of found and repurposed items for the event.
See you there!
Well, last week was pretty quiet. I guess I shouldn’t be surprised, we share our building with a gym and I bet they’re pretty busy this time of year.
We’re consciously keeping things pretty low key here for the month of January – no special events, nothing too exciting coming out – to give you guys a little post-holiday break. But that doesn’t mean we’re slacking off… Lots of new beer brewing, barrel aging, and in planning, including the often-requested return of Neon Wasteland Belgian Pale Ale, which will be available next Thursday for the first time since June.
Neon Wasteland, a Belgian Pale at 5% and 40 IBU, is brewed with a classic Belgian yeast and Belgian Candi Sugar, giving it a distinct phenolic aroma and a slight burnt sugar flavour. Hopped with Hallertau Blanc and Nelson Sauvin.
We’ve also got a few big announcements planned for February, but we’re keeping our cards close to our chest for the time being so keep an ear to the ground. In the meantime or new neighbours Shacklands Brewing are open and rolling, with their grand opening party coming up later this month. They’re focusing on Belgian-style beers, so if you’re a fan of the style, check it out!
I personally have to wait until February to visit, since I’m on my third-annual Dry January. Professional obligation requires me to taste some things here and there, but other than that I’m alcohol-free for the month. Sometimes you’ve just got to show beer who’s boss. But I tell you, that first beer of February is probably the best tasting beer I’ll have all year.
Speaking of, 2017 is shaping up to be a pretty exciting year. Our schedules for both the Revolution Series and the Barrel Series are coming together and making me thirsty, and Junction Brewery’s impending opening will bring us to three Symes Rd. breweries. Feels good to be a trendsetter. You can expect a bunch of collabs and activities in the Aleyards this summer!
My last post, published 6 weeks ago, was laughably titled “The Last Nice Weekend”. Instead we’ve had some pretty damn temperate weather since then – but finally, finally, we’ve got snow.
Just in time for Hearts Collide Bourbon Barrel-Aged Imperial Stout to be back in the fridge! We sold 207 bottles on Saturday and we’ve only got about 200 more left – so if you need something to weigh down those stockings, better stop by soon.
Saturday was our last big party for a while as we need to focus on brewing for the rest of the year to keep up with all the holiday beer orders. We just brewed a double batch of Kapow! this week, we’ve got Lazy Bones, our Gold Medal-winning IPA coming back next week, and Revolution #3, a sour brown with raspberries, is aging in bourbon barrels as we speak.
In other news, I’ve finally met a long-time goal of mine: getting craft ale into small cans in Toronto. 12oz cans are the perfect serving vessel for craft beer, keeping the product fresher than bottles, easier to transport and in a serving size that gives you full control over how much you drink, perfect for drinking a whole case of Daywalker Session or a small glass of Imperial Stout.
On Friday we did a test run with the guys at Sessions Craft Canning of our flagship pale ale Armed ‘N Citra in 355mL cans. The new label designs are finished and on order and another run of cans is on the horizon. Any day now, cans of Armed ‘N Citra will be available in the bottle shop at the brewery – I’ll let you know when!
I guarantee this is going to be the first of many, from Rainhard and from others!