Tag Archives: Beer News

Make Beer and Wine in Store

One of the most difficult parts of brewing beer and wine, even from a kit, is having the time, space and the materials to do so.  Well, those people are in luck!

The Manitoba Government has announced that the Liquor and Gaming authority will now be able to authorize businesses to allow brewing on site!  What does this mean?  It means that places like Brewers Direct, Grape and Grain, and Wine Sense, will be able to provide space for home brewers to mix, ferment, and bottle their kit of choice on site.

According to the Backgrounder “In-store brewing facilities provide customers with the ingredients, instructional advice, and equipment to produce wine and beer for off-site personal consumption in private locations. Customers purchase ingredients on-site, mix their wine or beer, and leave it on the premises for fermentation. After a period of time, customers return to bottle their wine or beer and remove the product from the site.

Anyone who has ever made wine or beer, especially beer from scratch, at home knows that there is more to it than mixing, fermenting and bottling.  There are steps that must be followed along the way.

It is still unclear whether the site will be responsible for racking the beer from primary to secondary fermenter, whether their will be the ability to create a beer wort from scratch on site, or if this will essentially be a full service enterprise where it really will be an “add the yeast and bottle” type process.

At present the government has indicated in their backgrounder that a number of exisiting businesses that sell kits have indicated their interest to provide this service.  They have also recognized the new business potential of such an endeavour.  The government has begun looking at best practices from other jurisdicitions and developing regulations and guidelines to be put in place.

The final regulations are expected to be in place by Spring of 2015 according to Minister Chomiak, at which point business will be able to apply for special authorization to allow on-site brewing.  The Minister did say that the business would need to also meet “federal and municipal regulations” and that it will be based on “training and inspection“.

What is certain is that this initiative opens the doors to a variety of business models where, perhaps, some enterprising home brewer might open a place where you can, with advice and materials, create your very own beer from scratch and learn the ins and outs of full scale home brewing.

-Beer Winnipeg

A new year, a new blog – What to expect

Welcome to Beer Winnipeg.  I wasn’t sure that I would want to run my blog talking about different styles of beers and reviewing them.  Having had the Craft Beer advent calendar gave me the opportunity and then the confidence to do so.  So, welcome, to Beer Winnipeg.

The goal of this site will be to discuss a variety of things.  First and foremost I will post reviews about beers.  The reviews will contain the following information.

  • Beer name, location, and style of beer.
  • Description of the style, origins and information about the brewery.
  • Rating of the beer based on the following:
    • Appearance (Body, Colour, Head, Retention) (%5)
    • Smell (20%)
    • Taste (45%)
    • Mouth feel (Light, Medium, Heavy, Smooth, Coarse) (10%)
    • Overall (20%)
    • Do I like it (Yes or No) and why.

I like to be detailed and provide information about the brewery as well as the style of beer.  For me, knowing about the brewery allows for me to understand the concept of the beer a bit better and helps me appreciate it a bit more.

The rating scale is not my own, I have taken the scoring system from the site Beer Advocate as I felt it provide the most opportunity to rate beer effectively based on various notes.  I added into the rating the last section of do I like it.  This is completely subjective but I will tell you why I like it or not and hopefully these details will help you decide if it is a beer that you would like.

Secondly, I hope to talk about the state of beer here in Winnipeg and Manitoba.  We are far behind the rest of Canada when it comes to craft beer and the ability for craft breweries to shine.  I will talk about the breweries we have as well as any news that is beer related here in Manitoba.  For example, the Craft Beer action committee created by the Minister of Liquor and Gaming.  I will report on what news comes from this.

Thirdly, I hope to do some profiles on breweries.  Hopefully I can visit them, but I will profile some strong Canadian breweries as well as up and comers in the craft beer world.

Finally, I’ll likely be talking about anything that is craft beer related especially if it happens to be here in Winnipeg!

Beer is one of those beverages that is so simple yet incredibly complex.  The ability to shift ingredients and great a completely unique flavour is amazing to me.  My hope is that by following this blog you will gain an understanding about the many different styles of beer and an appreciation for their complexities.  If you already like beer I hope you would find my reviews useful.

Thanks for following along.

-Beer Winnipeg.

Manitoba Craft Breweries Stratgey

Well, it seems like there are some things happening here in Manitoba in respect to Craft Beer.

For a long time we have been pretty behind when it comes to craft beer and breweries.  We currently have three breweries in Manitoba.  When you compare that to a small province like New Brunswick which is home to 7 that I can think of off the top of my head (likely more) it’s not really that great.

So, to have the government announce a “Craft Breweries Strategy” is a very promising step that when combined with the Growler system and the work being done on the Liquor laws here may result in some actual change and growth.

According to the press release the Tourism,Culture, Heritage, Sport and Consumer Protection Minister Ron Lemieux announced the first step as the creation of an advisory committee which will be made of of the following people:

MANITOBA CRAFT BREWERIES STRATEGY INDUSTRY ADVISORY COMMITTEE

  • Robert Holmberg, vice-president, liquor operations, Manitoba Liquor and Lotteries, and chair, Craft Brewery Industry Advisory Committee
  • Jim Baker, president and CEO, Manitoba Hotel Association
  • Noel Bernier, president and CEO, FB Hospitality
  • Bill Gould, president, WETT Sales and Distribution Inc.
  • Orest Horechko, general manager, Fort Garry Brewing Co.
  • Scott Jocelyn, executive director, Manitoba Restaurant and Foodservices Association
  • Dwayne Marling, vice-president, Manitoba–Saskatchewan, Restaurants Canada
  • David Rudge, brewmaster and president, Half Pints Brewing Company
  • Darren R. Wanless, president, Wanless Geo-Point Solutions Inc.
  • Lawrence Warwaruk, owner, Farmery Estate Brewery
  • Kerry Wolfe, senior executive director, strategic gaming and liquor development, Manitoba Liquor and Lotteries

Quite a number of people there who, I hope, will bring some good insight to the table.

At the very least this is a start.  We are in a sorry state for craft brewing here in Manitoba in comparison to the rest of Canada and I am hoping that we will begin to see some change in the quality and quantity of craft brewers we have.

I want to finish by saying the breweries we do have are excellent.  I’m always excited by their creativity and their willingness to put out special beers and try new things.  I hope that Fort Garry, Half Pints and Farmery will continue to do this and will help grow, not stifle, the craft beer competition in this province.

-Beer Winnipeg