I will qualify that I am not an all-knowing beer expert.
In fact, I never was much of a beer drinker before finding what my friends affectionately call “weird beer.” Stereotypically Canadian, stick-taps go out to hockey for firing my passion for a cold brew. It was while watching an Olympic gold medal hockey game in a sports bar full of beer drinkers and with Molson Canadian being the drink of choice that afternoon, I rolled with it. However, it was after my first sip of a craft made beer that I turned my back on the inferior stuff.
Enough of me, let’s talk beer. I picked a great beer for the season to kick things off with — a radler. Ok, ok, I know there is lots of radlers out there nowadays, but Beach by Strathcona Beer Company isn’t your typical one. To start with, the part beer and part juice mix clocks in at 4 per cent — stronger than the typical radler you will find in the cooler. With a bit more punch, I like to think of it as more of a craft beer drinkers radler. It pours an orange-cloudy colour and it is definitely citrus-y and very refreshing.
It’s pretty darn warm out these days and the forecast is calling for Strathcona Beach days ahead. And a beach, or a sunny patio, is exactly where you will want to drink this (at least I did while sitting on my deck in the 25 C sunshine last weekend). This beer first came out last year, and from what I understand sold out quickly every time they had it in stock. However, we are lucky that you can pick it up at select retailers — including in Penticton at Clancy’s Liquor Store (333 Martin St.).
Described as a precise blend of lemon peel, fresh mandarin juice and beer — Beach is a light, effervescent beer that is thirst quenching and east to drink with a tart, clean finish. It definitely has a juicy orange taste to it, which was my favourite part, but it also has a dry finish.
I recently discovered Strathcona Beer Company, which opened in 2016, on a trip to Vancouver. What looks like a awesome, old corner dinner is actually an even cooler place inside. On a second trip to Vancouver, just a week after discovering Strathcona, I had to drop back in. I will delve into their great IPA selection in another column.
A laid back place with an industrial feel to it, they serve handmade pizzas on the menu, and waffles with their beer butter on the Sunday brunch menu.
The brewery shares space with Superflux Beer Company, who comes in on the weekend to use the back of house brewery, which can be viewed from seats inside at the pouring station. They have a fully stocked fridge full of good to go cold Beach when I was in there, you can also fill your growler with a few of their on tap selections. If you can figure out what the mystery glass room within the seating area is for, let me know.
Thanks to Ryan Graham and the crew down at Clancy’s Liquor Store for bringing this delicious summer sipper in. Disclosure: this beer was given to me complimentary, but my opinions are unfiltered.