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.


Tuesday, February 16, 2010

Garrison Black IPA: Garrison Brewing Co.

Over the 2 ½ years that I’ve been doing this(blogging) I’ve probably mentioned Halifax’s Garrison Brewing Company twenty or so times in various blog posts. From new beers to beer reviews and homebrew contests, I’ve given Garrison a lot of press.

I deemed their Black Lager my favourite new Canadian beer of 2008, covered the importation of their IPA into Ontario, posted reviews of their Winter Warmer, Grand Baltic Porter, Imperial Pale Ale (now IPA), and interviewed Daniel Girard, Garrison’s Brewmaster. I guess I have a soft spot for them, something I probably gained while living in Halifax. Or is it due to the fact that they brew damn good beer and they have fun doing it?

When word came out a few weeks back that Girard would be releasing a new unfiltered Black IPA members of BeerAdvocate were thrilled. Owner Brian Titus saw the postings on BeerAdvocate and commented that his business partner had been down in San Diego and noticed that Black IPA’s are the current new rage. They got the idea to do their own and now the finished product sits in my glass for sampling; but not for long.

The unfiltered Black IPA is a hybrid mix of Garrison’s Martello Stout and their Imperial IPA (and then dry-hopped) and pours pitch black with some slight red hues appearing against a lit backdrop. A thick creamy mocha head rises with each pour until it forms a snug cap atop the black liquid. The smell of fresh green hops is the first thing I pick up when I raise the glass up to my nose followed by hints of roasted coffee beans. (6.2%abv)

Dark coffee and bakers chocolate hit the palate first but get pushed aside by a wave of hops that offer a citrus and pine punch that tingles the tonque. Those coffee and chocolate notes come back again in the finish, along with a touch of smoke, and do play quite nicely with the hops to create a balanced dry finish. The Martello Stout and the Imperial IPA go well together and it seems Girard has nailed this new seasonal. A very well done beer in my books!

If they keep producing beers like this, and giving me the chance to sample them, they'll be up to 50 blog post mentions in no time.

Where can you get a bottle? You’ll have to head to Halifax and visit the retail store, or get involved with a trade with someone who can get their hands on some. The brewery only released a very small quantity, but I wouldn’t be surprised if this beer, or a variation of it, makes another appearance in the future.

Garrison Brewing Company
1149 Marginal Road
Halifax, NS


Lee said...

Woo-hoo! Here's hoping this gets to be a regular seasonal with further distribution across the Maritimes.

Anonymous said...

Thanks Troy for the posting


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