Hop On Your Face from Beyond The Pale Brewing Company in Ottawa, Ontario is a rusty mahogany colour with a small, but frothy light cream-toned head that gets retained as a tight collar and leaves traces of spotty lace. This American IPA has a robust smell with aromas of dark toasted grain, toffee offset by sharp notes of lemon, pine and grapefruit, a hint of coffee and faint rye and wood tones common to the brewery’s other ales.
The taste of Hop On Your Face is a rich blend of berry, tropical fruit and citrus flavours supported by a very sturdy, roasted and grainy, toffee-sweetened malt base. This ale is full-bodied with minimal carbonation and plenty of yeasty and bitter life on the tongue, as well as slickness that carries on through the finish. Grape, berry and lemon oil can all be perceived in the aftertaste.
This American pale lager from Lake of Bays Brewing Company in Baysville, Ontario pours a deep golden colour with a sizable and frothy white head that leaves small streaks of lace and settles as a thin collar and cap. Rock Cut Baysville Lager smells of honey-sweetened and toasted barley, with a perfumy, floral aroma and notes of fresh grasses and minerals.
The taste of Rock Cut Baysville Lager is somewhat faint, but fairly sweet with red berry and light, grainy malt flavours coming forward and mild, grassy bitterness providing balance. There is a familiar mineral tone in the crisp finish that is joined by a sweet and flowery flavour in the aftertaste. This lager is on the thin side, but also has a mild and pleasant creaminess to it and a small prickle on the tongue.
This American blonde ale from Big Rig Brewery in Ottawa, Ontario is a clear and bright golden colour. Its sizable, frothy white head has good retention and settles as a thin collar and cap while leaving small spots of lace behind. Big Rig Gold carries aromas of toasted wheat, minerals, earth, grasses and honey, with mild notes of white grape and perfume.
Big Rig Gold has a fairly mild taste that is somewhat sweet at first, with an earthy and dry body that has a freshly milled grain flavour and a hint of green apple. The ale has a medium body, an ample amount of fine carbonation and some yeasty life on the tongue. There is a very minor, but dirty astringency found in the finish, though the aftertaste is mainly crisp with subtle grain and yeast flavours.
This American pale ale from Lake of Bays Brewing Company in Baysville, Ontario is hazy and pencil yellow colour, with a fairly small, but creamy off-white head that leaves a stringy collar and some lace when settled. The smell of Crosswind Pale Ale is built on a chocolaty roasted malt base and accented by aromas of toasted oats and rice, butterscotch, grapefruit and limestone.
Crosswind Pale Ale is led by earthy, roasted grains in its taste and is countered by a punchy grapefruit flavour that brings with it a moderate bitterness. I also get hints of chocolate, light nuts and a tart note in the finish that reminds me of lemon seed. A medium body and carbonation, as well as a fairly resinous and earthy mouthfeel give way to a sharp, mineral-like aftertaste.
Birra Moretti from Heineken Italia S.p.A. in Milan, Italy pours a clear, light golden colour with a soapy white head that burns off quickly, leaving a small film and collar behind as well as some spotty lacing. This European pale lager smells of corn, sweet barley malt and grassy hops with a very mild floral accent.
The taste is quite light, but has a definite malty sweetness, with a decent dryness to the finish that balances things out a bit. The lager is medium-bodied, moderately carbonated and a bit syrupy on the tongue. It’s refreshing and clean tasting for a moment, but dirty grain and corn tones take over the finish and aftertaste.