Whistle Buoy Brewing in Market Square has been a popular addition to the downtown brewery district in Victoria. Photo by Mathieu Poirier

Mathieu Poirier: Looking back on the year in beer

New breweries, taprooms open; more on the way for Victoria, as are the Canadian Brewing Awards

As the calendar shifts into 2020 a little hindsight is fitting, so let’s take a trip down 2019’s memory lane while looking at what the new year has to offer.

New venues are something of a constant in this industry, and 2019 was no different. Whistle Buoy Brewing opened in June, bringing the number of breweries in the Capital Region up to an even 20.

Mathieu Poirier, Monday Magazine beer columnist

The BC Beer Award-winning brewery in Market Square has been embraced by the community, especially with its stunning patio space. Refuge Tap Room also opened up on Fort Street, offering a stellar B.C.-focused tap list alongside tasty cocktails, in addition to an intimate patio tucked in the back.

2020 will bring at least one more hotspot, with Herald Street Brew Works likely to open in the not too distant future in the heart of the Brewery District. This partnership between key players at The Drake Eatery on Pandora Avenue and Steel & Oak Brewing from New Westminster has the local beer community waiting with bated breath to see them open, so keep an eye out for them to open at some point this year.

***

On the events front, Victoria Beer Week returns in March for its seventh year, with tickets already available through ticketrocket.co. Returning events like All About the Wood, Pucker Up and Cask Night are being joined this year by new events like Lager than Life and Street Eats Brewery Tours, allowing attendees to go behind the scenes while enjoying a selection from some of the city’s best food trucks.

The Victoria Beer Society is still feeding off what was an amazing first year running the Great Canadian Beer Festival, so this 9 day week of amazing beer is sure to satisfy.

***

Success and praise is something that Victoria breweries had plenty of in 2019. Canadian Brewing Awards were brought home by Moon Under Water Brewpub, Phillips Brewing, Axe & Barrel Brewing and Sooke Brewing, in addition to the BC Beer Awards won by Île Sauvage Brewing, Vancouver Island Brewing, Lighthouse Brewing, Whistle Buoy Brewing and 4 Mile Brewing.

Next spring the well-deserved wins will likely continue on home soil. The Canadian Brewing Awards and Conference come to Victoria May 28-30, bringing Canada’s best brewers for an amazing celebration of all things Canadian in craft beer.

Also by Mathieu Poirier:

Options for pairing beers with holiday fare

Poured from the source

Big on Bocks: Ancient German lager/ale has many different styles, flavours



editor@mondaymag.com

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter

Craft beerFood and Drink

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

 

Refuge Tap Room on Fort Street, one of the newer watering holes in the city, offers a cozy West Coast-inspired space inside and an open-air back patio, ideal for when the sun comes out. Photo by Mathieu Poirier

Just Posted

Victoria vocalist Maria Manna reaches out to hard-hit Italy with special online song

Jazz singer to perform ‘Hymn to Freedom’ with Italian lyrics on Facebook at 2 p.m. Monday

Royal BC Museum joins home education trend for outreach programs

Free webinar options available for RBCM@Home and kids’ programs, starting March 31

Life mimics art for CCPA students who performed in play about Spanish flu pandemic

Performing arts students see parallels between story from Unity 1918 and current health crisis

Deadline extended for annual writing competition

Mail-in entry format makes Victoria Writer’s Society contest perfect for the times

The Lonely singer reaches out and gives back, with online birthday show

Michael Demers sharing a musical chat tonight at 8 p.m. on Facebook

Netflix reducing video quality in Canada to lower Internet bandwidth use

Bell Media is also planning traffic measures affecting the Crave streaming service

Will the show go on? B.C. music festivals consider options for 2020

Summer events running out of time to stay on schedule, in wake of COVID-19 uncertainties

Relief fund for Canadian performing artists gets $100,000 boost from foundation

Facebook started the fund with a first $100,000 donation last week

Henley, Tucker, Cyrus and others mourn the death of Rogers

Country music icon remembered as a crossover pioneer, a supporter of young artists

Joseph Blake: 10 amazing CDs to explore in our COVID-19 isolation

Longtime music writer shares his favourite records from his vast collection

Most Read