– Mathieu Poirier
If you read last month’s column and were confused by all the references to Victoria Beer Week happening in March, you had every right to be. In that time vortex between hitting send and the information reaching you, some changes occurred. And this should come as no surprise if you’ve paid attention for the last two years.
The returning nine-day event is postponed until April 1-9, which is unfortunate for those waiting patiently, but it has given the organizers some flexibility for the week. Alongside the festival-style events, there is also a chance to learn about this beloved beverage in a fun, casual setting as Beer School returns with events you’ll recognize from the past with some new and exciting additions to the curriculum.
The popular Homebrewer’s Workshop returns on April 2 and will provide a great opportunity to learn about making small-batch beer from brewers who started by doing it themselves. Also, the Greg Evans Memorial Walk is taking place on April 9 and this is a chance to learn more about the unique history of beer in Victoria, all while enjoying a stroll through the downtown core.
There is definitely a focus on what goes into your beer this year as classes include Hop-lessly Devoted, a discussion on hops happening April 7 and taught by Shanleigh Thomson of Yakima Chief Hops. And to put it all together is an Intro to Brewing Ingredients class on April 5, led by Advanced Cicerone® and owner at Île Sauvage Brewing, Stephane Turcotte. There is also a virtual class April 7 on Beer and Cheese Pairing hosted by Bonnie Todd of Off The Eaten Track food tours and Dave Paul of Loveshack Libations, where you can learn just how much better cheese is at pairing with beer than a certain other beverage.
Finally, if you enjoy reading these columns, you might enjoy learning some more from me in person, as I teach a blind-tasting class, comparing well-known beers with lesser-known options, so you can decide for yourself which one you prefer. Blind Justice: David vs. Goliath will take place on April 3 at Vessel Liquor’s newly renovated classroom, so join me and enjoy a bit of education on a Sunday afternoon.
It has been over two long years since we had a chance to do this, so come out and enjoy one or more safe, fun, and sometimes educational celebrations of the stellar beer produced in our region.