Experience craft beer on the move

West Coast Brewery Tours makes pub crawls fun - and safe

Elton Walker of West Coast Brewery Tours in Axe & Barrell’s brand-new brewery. Axe & Barrell Brewpub opened last month in Langford, the first and only of its kind on the West Shore.

The craft beer market is flourishing in Victoria and that means there are more breweries to see than ever in the capital city. And there’s no better way to explore the local production and small batch breweries than with an experienced guide and a designated driver.

“It’s really the way to go if you want to get a good feel for the local brewing industry, because if you want to check out multiple breweries in a day, it can be hard to get to and from, especially if you’re enjoying the sample room,” says West Coast Brewery Tours owner, Elton Walker.

Walker attributes the explosive popularity of craft brewing in B.C. to people like Vancouver’s Joe Wiebe, author of Craft Beer Revoloution: The Insiders Guide to BC Breweries and Mike Garrison, a Vancouver blogger who tastes and reviews craft beer of all kinds.

“These are the guys who have really inspired and worked to put a positive spin on the local craft-brewing industry,” says Walker.

The company, which Walker opened in the spring of 2014, offers public and private tours. Three-hour public tours run Wednesday, Friday, Saturday (April to October) and Saturday, Sunday (November to March). Tours start at noon and leave from the Victoria Clipper terminal on Belleville Street.

Public tours include transportation to three breweries aboard the West Coast Brewery Tour brew bus, samples at the breweries visited, a fully guided tour of the brewery production areas and the brewery history, and an informative introduction to the brewing process.

“We try to get a mix of large and small scale breweries on these tours so our guests can get feel for both,” explains Walker, adding that West Coast Brewery Tour works with 12 of Victoria’s most popular production and boutique breweries on a rotating basis.

If beer isn’t your only libation of choice, a four-hour public tour featuring a craft brewery, a craft cidery and a craft spirits distillery on the Saanich Peninsula is also available on Thursdays (from April to October) at noon.

For a more personal experience, private tours are offered by request from 4 to 7 p.m. with discounts available for groups of 10 or more.

“It’s the perfect way to celebrate a stag or stagette, or for occasions like office parties or birthdays,” says Walker.

Walker adds he sees a wide range of people enjoying the tours and that he’s looking forward to offering cruise ship specials for the first time this summer.

“I always try to keep it growing and changing to keep it fresh,” he adds.

More tour information and online booking is available at westcoastbrewerytours.ca.

 

 

Just Posted

Oak Bay’s new music fest returns next weekend

All festival concerts take place on June 2 and 3 at St. Mary’s Anglican Church

Cyclists win Bike to Work Week’s Commuter Challenge kickoff

16 teams of cars vs. bikes raced to see who could reach downtown destination fastest

Victoria Cool Aid Society invites you to their Homecoming

Event celebrates 50 years of social services across Greater Victoria with fundraiser to keep programs running

Fort Street bike lanes making their debut with roll-out event Sunday

Completion marks the second east-west connector dedicated to downtown cyclists

City shifts gears on Cook Street bike lanes, Vancouver St. recommended instead

Cook said to be too expensive, to inconvenient to install dedicated lanes

Film Review: On Chesil Beach

Saoirse Ronan continues to shine in adaptation Ian McEwan novel about young newlyweds on their wedding day

Burlesque performers don’t let theatre fire stop their show

Cheesecake Burlesque Revue raising money for PEERS with Saturday night performance of Hot Pink

Free mixed media camp offered to youth

Camp hosted on Denman Island

Reading between the lines: the many roles of the Victoria Literacy Connection

Saturday fundraiser to help volunteer-run organization teach people to read, write and more

Film Review: On Chesil Beach

Saoirse Ronan continues to shine in adaptation Ian McEwan novel about young newlyweds on their wedding day

Mulroney children to act as bridesmaids-page boys at royal wedding

Ben and Jessica Mulroney’s children will be in Saturday’s royal wedding of Prince Harry and Meghan Markle.

St. Luke’s brings whodunnit to the stage

Laura plays at St. Luke’s Hall from May 16 to 27

VIDEO: Let the good times roll in first Laketown Shakedown

With Current Swell and Jon and Roy as headliners, there’s lots to enjoy at this first in a series

Most Read