By Mark Tichenor and Bruce Lish
One nice thing about living in
Canadians, however, gets overshadowed by its gargantuan neighbor to the south, and it has become something of a point of pride to nurture and develop all things Canadian in a quest for national and cultural identity. Bookstores in
Whereas Americans have no problem making fun of our fizzy domestic lagers, Canadians tend to latch onto their brew with a fierce sense of civic pride. For the most part, Canadian mass-market lager is identical to ours, but it’s regarded as an expression of national culture by our friends north of the border.
And even though the Canadian beer industry has been gutted by takeovers, buyouts, and mergers, even though most Canadian beer has less character than Terrell Owens, even though there are some real duds (I’m talking to you, Alexander Keith’s “I.P.A.”), there are still some beers up there which really warrant a drive up to the duty-free shop.
Beers like Steam Whistle Pilsner. Brewed right at the base of
What Steam Whistle does have is the best pilsner in
The other great Canadian brewery is
No, seriously, it means “The End of the World,” and that’s precisely what you’ll wish for if you drink this Belgian style strong ale to excess. A sweet, citrus aroma, rich tawny gold color, and peppery sweet flavor make it a sensual beer. The warm, alcoholic finish offers plenty of warning about what you’re getting into.
Le Fin du Monde is a fantastic pairing beer, a perfect complement to meat, sausage, and strongly flavored fish dishes. It would also go nicely with fruit-based desserts. However, at 9% alcohol by volume it’s most frequently, however, it gets paired with Ibuprofen, inappropriate comments, and the barroom floor.
These are just a couple prominent examples of what’s going on in
Isn’t that what international cooperation is all aboot?
In other beers:
The Old Toad has just held a Beer and Dessert Pairing. Toad employee (and certified English girl) Katie Streets put together a five-course dessert flight, each cunningly paired with an appropriate, sometimes surprising beer. Among the highlights: Crème Brulee mated to Glenmorangie-infused Sam Smith Oatmeal Stout and Fresh Mint Chocolate chip Ice cream paired up with Brooklyn Chocolate Stout.
The desserts were made from scratch, the presentation excellent. It really highlighted the notion that beer is so much more than a buzz generator. Congrats to Katie and her fellow Toadies for going out on the limb,
Now if only they’d do a German beer and sausage pairing, but it’s doubtful that there’s much room for Old Jerry in this most English of pubs.
Bruce is a certified beer judge and former commercial brewer. Mark owns a laptop and likes beer. For more on beer, check out the beercraft blog, updated regularly, at http://beercraft.blogspot.com. Send your questions, suggestions, or comments to firstname.lastname@example.org.