I remember coming to this barn building when VIFF had their gala. When I entered Craft, their transformation of the space was incredible.
I went with Paul, who loves his beer. We had the two beer flights and food!
“What the Locals Drink” + Maple Bacon Chicken Wings
The maple bacon wings were delicious! They had bacon bits on them, with a hint of maple syrup on greasy exterior of the wings. We thought this would be the perfect pair to the Canadian flight of beer.
Granville Island English Pale Ale is familiar to us. You can’t go wrong with this medium bodied, smooth ale. The hint of caramel always warms me up – is it caramel? It’s either that or something lightly sweet, like vanilla and butter. The taste is fleeting on the palate.
Okanagan Spring Pale Ale was clean, bright and fleeting in its flavour. It did not leave an after taste in my mouth. It still had a bite of hops, though its body a bit watery in comparison to the other beer. That being said, one can still taste the malt and slight bitterness. The hops were very faint.
Bridge Brewing North Shore Pale was a beer I could probably drink a lot of to get drunk. It’s smooth, creamy and light bodied in its flavours. There isn’t much hoppiness to it, it is a very light sort of pale ale. I am a big fan of white beer and weiss beer, so Okanagan and the rest were good choices for me.
Howe Sound Garibaldi Honey Pale Ale was my favorite. The barley, honey and malt were light, and the drink was a crisp and sweet treat following the previous beer. The nice thing about this beer its aroma has a slight warm, sweet smell – sort of like toffee.
Phillips Blue Buck was my second favorite. It is floral and delicate, and short with its aftertaste so its hardly bitter. It is almost more sweet and light, which is probably why I like it. I assume there is caramel and pineapple in there, making it nice and lovely for my fruit-cake tongue.
Driftwood Pale Ale was not my favorite, because it’s a bit too hopsy for a pale ale in my opinion. For me at least. It was too hoppy and the citrus flavour was overwhelming. The problem with this beer is the citrus and maltiness is a bit too dull to pair with the hops. If you enjoy hoppiness, perhaps this beer is for you.
“Around the World” and Fast Food Sushi… no wait, Poutine?
They ran out of fast food sushi! They are cheeseburgers and fries wrapped in bacon. I imagined Cheeseburger Spiders from Cloudy with a Chance of Meatballs 2. They gave us beef poutine (which wasnt too heavy! delicious) for free because we had waited and alas no cheezburgers.
Lagunitas IPA is very hoppy, slightly sweet. It’s like the Driftwood but the hoppiness is more subdued. The creaminess of this ale bites the bitterness that Driftwood suffered. It was floral and spicy at the same time too, which made this much easier to drink than the previous beer.
Hopworks Organic IPA was surprising. The citrus masking the hops came up stronger than Lagunitas and was caramelly sweet, but also had a woody bitterness to it. There must be other fruit than grapefruit/orange – perhaps mango or something else that is zesty…
Deschutes Inversion IPA was very, very hopsy but the malts sweetened it up. It was smooth and full bodied. It had a rustic style to it as I remember having some of this type in Germany. Piney and refreshing, versus relying on the citrus like the others did, it also mixed some caramel in it as well!
The Sierra Nevada Torpedo Extra and Gigantic IPA were both way too bitter for me to drink by itself. When our food arrived, the salt was able to mask the bitter after taste for me.
Green Flash West Coast IPA had a high IBU (95). I was worried it’d be too much for me considering the last two, but the hops were balanced with a subtly sweet, bready undertone and a smooth finish. This was really the best out of the set. I had to swirl it in my mouth one time like wine to figure out what was going on. It had a spicy tang to it, it was not bitter (the slight bitter might be grapefruit) in its after taste and prickled my tongue with a subtle bit of carbonation. The breadiness of this beer probably controls the bits of bitter that does reach your mouth, but does not linger.
I want to come back more often and be a beer connoisseur. I love Tap and Barrel as well, so I’ll be intermixing the two. I’d give it 4.5/5, a minus .5 because the service can be slow because it is so busy in here!