I continue to find it disappointing that I cannot find many craft beers from across Canada. Seems that the Importation of Intoxicating Liquors Act
restricts the movement of liquor, wine and beer between the provinces.
My local LCBO has more U.S. craft beer selection than it does beer from provinces other than Ontario. This is why I was so excited when I walked into the Brock Street LCBO to find six-packs of Propeller ESB, which are imported from Halifax Nova Scotia.
Propeller Brewery was opened in the summer of 1997. Interestingly the owner John Allen (pictured at right) did not come from a brewery background but was a film industry prop master back in the early 1990s. He was a homebrewer and his home brews were well praised. According to the website, John “began to question his day job, which involved making things that only appeared real. He finally settled on an occupation where the product had to BE real.”
It seems he has done well.
Not only is this the best selling beer the brewery has but the ESB (Extra Special Bitter) won gold medals at the Chicago World Beer Championships in 2006, 2007 and 2008.
The Propeller website even provides a beer geek section in their description of their products. I am not a beer geek, just getting to know more and more about this lovely beverage. Here is the beer geek section for the ESB:
For Beer Geeks
Hops- Willamette, Pilgrim.
Malts- Pale, Crystal and Chocolate.
Glass - Pint Glass, American Shaker, or Mug (Seidel)
Temperature: Cellar at 40-45 F; Serve at 45-50 F
So with the research done, time to crack a bottle.
The beer pours a dark, coppery colour with a enjoyable fragrance. Even more enjoyable is the taste. This beer pays homage to the bitters I enjoyed in England. The malt and hop taste are very well-balanced and finishes with a nice, not overwhelming bitterness which lasts.
I love bitters and thoroughly enjoyed this one. There will be more of these coming for a visit to my fridge.