Years ago, Derrick and Donna Smith began brewing a quartet of ales together, the steaming vats of barley filling their small facility with steam. They quickly gained the attention of beer drinkers and critics and expanded into a 10,000-square-foot space. There, they invite you to check out new craft brews such as Classic Nut Brown Ale, Bold Belgian Pale Ale, and Seasonal Citrus Wit. Rotating seasonal suds fill the recognizable frog-emblazoned bottles with beers whose flavors vary with the season. Derrick and Donna offer clients a peek inside their operation with tours and tastings.
After helping to kick-start British Columbia's craft-brewery movement back in 1989, Whistler Brewing Company upholds its pioneering approach by crafting new and unique brews that brim with the tastes of B.C. The creations possess flavours for every palate, ranging from the 100-per-cent-organic B.C. honey of the Bear Paw Honey Lager to the chocolate and roasted-coffee notes of the award-winning Black Tusk Ale. The beverages can be savoured at home by the keg or bottle, or from the bar in the brewery’s tap house, which pairs its seasonal ales and current drafts with a menu of hop-complementing fare. The brewsmiths also open their doors twice daily to offer a glimpse of the facility's inner workings during brewery tours, which take patrons through the maze of copper brew kettles and bubbling witch cauldrons to illustrate the fermenting and flavouring process before giving guests their own suds to sample.
In addition to the sense of perseverance and accomplishment that comes with finishing a 5K, the organizers of the Bacon Chase have added another incentive: bacon. During their two races?the 5K Piggy Pilgrimage, which is a traditional 5K, and the 0.05K Blitz to Bacon, which is a 164-foot sprint?runners can munch on unlimited bacon bits before feasting on unlimited amounts of bacon at the finish line. Runners 21 and older can wash down the savory strips of bacon with a bloody mary, and all runners get a Bacon Chase T-shirt and a signature bacon-scented bib. The festival opens at 8 a.m. and features many bacon-themed activities, plus music.
The festive day serves a greater purpose, too. Attendees will be able to register to become a St. Jude Hero, raise money for St. Jude Children?s Research Hospital, or both.
What's proper etiquette for the queen's sommelier? West Coast Wine Education's John Gerum confronted this question head on when he served Queen Elizabeth II. Apparently he made the right choice, as he went on to pour wine for prime ministers, presidents, provincial premiers, and cultural icons during his 20-year career. Gerum's achievement distills three generations of fine-dining experience that was passed down from his father, a chef, and his grandfather, a maitre d'. Wine education was always his passion, so when starting out, he sought personal instruction from the master sommelier Andrew Lalibert? and demonstrated a palate refined enough to earn him membership and certification from the International Sommelier Guild. Gerum often merges his know-how with other wine educators to cultivate a roster of classes and hone their delivery. These experts join in delineating scotch terroir and describing the bouquet of a student's favourite pinot-stained shirt with an easy professionalism that has enthralled groups of up to 300 people. They share their expertise with casual drinkers and professionals during two-hour workshops, in consultation for store openings and events, and through appearances on Global TV.
Haely and Juhan Lindau had seemingly unrelated degrees in commerce and molecular biology. But they soon realized how complementary their backgrounds actually were to a career in winemaking and beer brewing. Armed with business and libation-crafting knowledge, the duo flung open the doors of Broadway Brewing and Winemaking in 1992, becoming the first on-premises winemaking shop in Vancouver. At the DIY winery, the owners and their knowledgeable staff guide students of all interests and skill levels through the process of making their own libations, assisting them in selecting the right supplies for home-brewing endeavours before giving them advice on what to do if beer starts drinking itself.
At Purple Castle Brewing's 4,300-square foot brew house, aspiring vintners create their own delicious red and white wines during brewing, bottling, labeling, and corking sessions. Amid rustic wooden barrels and shiny metal vats, seasoned wine experts teach visitors how to ferment, bottle, mature, and kennel-train a batch of fine wine. Patrons crush flavor-filled grapes such as an off-dry German gewtraminer or a rich Australian shiraz, crafting their own labels to slap on their handmade potables. Each 23-litre batch fills up to 30 750 mL bottles and lasts for up to two years, supplying amateur winesmiths with a good start to a collection or plenty of thoughtful gift ideas for any occasion.