Follow beer writer, Troy Burtch, as he explores the wonderful world of craft beer and the pubs that serve it. Great Canadian Beer is a place to come to catch up on beer news, read tasting notes, check out event listings, and for pub previews and reviews.


Wednesday, November 14, 2007

Garrison Imperial Pale Ale - Unfiltered

For years, people in Halifax, or Nova Scotia for that matter, all thought that Alexander Keith's was a true India Pale Ale. Keith's was so successful in their home province that Labatt introduced it out to the rest of the country making it the number one domestic speciality beer in Canada and it is all based on marketing.

Well, over the last ten years, two micro-breweries popped up in Halifax creating some magnificent beers in many different styles. First came Propeller in 1995 with their flagship Extra Special Bitter. They would later go on to produce a great IPA weighing in at 6.5% and dry hopping it to create a wonderful aroma. Garrison Brewing Company joined the scene shortly after when owner Brian Titus decided two small breweries could operate in Halifax working against the Labatt giant. They both have succeeded wonderfully.

Garrison has just recently brought in new brew-master Greg Nash, who has brewed in the States with some reputable breweries and also brewed for Pumphouse Brewery in New Brunswick. Originally from Nova Scotia, Nash wanted to return one day and a position with Garrison proved to be his chance. He has since taken the original recipes of their Irish Red, Tall Ship Amber, Nut Brown and tweaked them to create cleaner taste profiles and deeper aroma's.

Well, Garrison has out done themselves with one of Nash's latest creations. This summer they introduced Garrison Imperial Pale Ale - Unfiltered, a very hoppy cloudy beer that is going to no doubt capture many awards. Brewed using Magnum hops for the bitterness and dosed with a ton of Cascade hops for the finish, the alcohol comes in at a staggering 6.9% and the IBU's are up around 70. The taste is wonderful, hops give off a grapefruit and caramel mouth and the aroma is fantastic. The Imperial Pale Ale is truly a hop head's beer and Garrison's best brew to date.

This beer has been getting rave reviews on Beer Advocate and Rate Beer. Just a beautiful beer. Would be great paired with a spicy pasta dish or tangy Mexican food. Next time in Halifax, pop into the new brewery on the Halifax waterfront and have some samples from one of their serving bars or have a chat with Nash, who will no doubt be wearing his rubber boots in the brewery area.


Greg Nash said...

Thanks for the kind words Troy! The Imperial Pale Ale has been well received around the Halifax metro area. I plan to integrate a load of Amarillo hops into it as soon as we receive stock, step it up a notch with even more complexity and tangerine-like citrus character. Something to slap your tastebuds up-side the head when paired up with that pepper steak or favorite Thai dish.

Next up look for a strong, dark lager new release coming in December to keep you warm during the cold winter months.

To anyone ever down this way drop by and say hello, have a sample or three.

PS: I hope you're right about those awards Troy!

Anonymous said...

Great article for a fantastic beer. I try to pick up a growler or two every weekend. Greg Nash has definitely done well with this one, and I can't wait to drink what comes lies ahead! No pun intended. :P

Anonymous said...

Simply fantastic!!! For those that haven't tried this yet, you must. Get some in ONTARIO!!!

grub said...

troy hooked me up with a couple of these. great stuff. here's my review over on BA. thanks again troy! hope you enjoy those homebrews.

(ps: your links to BA+RB seem to be missing a colon and thus don't work)

Troy Burtch said...

Thanks Grub....I have since fixed the issue.


Anonymous said...

I tried a bottle over the holidays--amazing! I've been waiting for this brew for years. I brought back a case to Quebec and have been ungenerous in sharing it...

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