The Wayward Son from Radical Road Brewing in Toronto, Ontario is light amber in colour with tinges of old gold and a loose, but creamy white head that tends to leave thick swathes of lace and settles as a thin but frothy collar. This Belgian strong pale ale is matured in Ontario sourced pinot noir wine barrels and has a pungent smell. Sour, rotting apple and grape tones converge with candi sugar-sweetened malts converge to create an air of apple crisp or rhubarb pie. Hints of yeast and pine contribute to an overall outdoorsy character.
The taste of The Wayward Son brings to mind a union of fresh, crusty white bread, red wine and a honey-soaked bran muffin. The ale has a yeasty and creamy mouthfeel with mild viscosity and carbonation. Mildly sour crab apple and grape notes create a dry finish while a juicy hint of the pinot noir barrels lingers in the back of the throat.
Audrey Hopburn from Great Lakes Brewery in Etobicoke, Ontario is hazy orange in colour with pencil yellow highlights and a tight, but creamy white head that leaves spots of lace and is retained as a healthy cap that climbs the glass. This Belgian IPA has strong tropical aromas of mango, tangerine and lemon zest backed with notes of wild grains, yeast, black soil, musty wood and cigar.
Audrey Hopburn has a dry, peppery taste that brings with it flavours of clove, fennel and citrus fruit rind, while balance is found through a caramel malt tone that is just sweet enough. This ale is very creamy in the mouth, medium-bodied and carries a fairly mild amount of carbonation. The finish is dry on the palate, with a juicy grapefruit flavour on the tongue that transitions into a pithy and yeasty aftertaste.
Conductor’s Craft Ale from Junction Craft Brewing in Toronto, Ontario is a light amber colour with golden streaks. Its moderate off-white head leaves cascading lace that is met by a small collar that appears to climb your glass. This English and American-influenced pale ale with a German twist has thick toffee, berry and raisin aromas with warm floral and lemon juice accents.
The taste of Conductor’s Craft Ale is anchored by a distinct chocolate flavour, a strong, prune-like fruit tone and a very grainy base. A hint of light red berries and a nectarous floral note lead to an earthy finish with moderate bitterness and a light, lemony citrus flavour that lingers in the aftertaste. This ale has a full body and low carbonation that lead to a mouthfeel that is equal parts creamy, grainy and oily.
Heller High Water from Kichesippi Beer Company in Ottawa, Ontario is a golden straw colour with a spongy white head that leaves small spots and streaks of lace before resting as a thin collar and film. This seasonal helles lager has a mild smell with aromas of fresh and lightly toasted grains, yeast and red berry juice.
The taste of Heller High Water is light and crisp. Airy yet earthy malt, yeast and grassy flavours are accented by an almost metallic, mineral-like bitterness. The lager has a fairly thin body and moderate carbonation. It is creamy and a bit grainy with a mild oiliness and the finish is pretty clean with a touch of grain and yeast flavour in the aftertaste.
This American IPA from Cameron’s Brewing Company in Oakville, Ontario pours a hazy, rusty amber colour with a frothy tan head that leaves large streaks of lace and settles as a medium-sized collar and cap. Cameron’s Rye Pale Ale (RPA) has a Thick and grainy rye smell with a sharp, lemony citrus tone and accents of toffee, rain soaked flowers, berries, pepper and alcohol.
There is plenty of rye character to be found in the earthy and grainy taste of Cameron’s RPA. Grapefruit juice and lemon rind flavours contribute to a moderate bitterness that is countered by just enough sweetness from a hearty malt bill. Mild hints of yeast, biscuit and chocolate are also found. This ale is medium-bodied with low carbonation and a thin oiliness. The finish has a bitter bite to it with a strong, warming alcohol note and lingering rye flavour in the aftertaste.