Thursday, 1 November 2012

A Year and A Day

So it`s the day after Halloween and I`m sure many of you got all dressed up for festivities. Well that`s awesome, good for you for getting into the spirit!  And there were probably a few of you even dressed up as Witches, be it in the traditional "Black-Pointy-Hatted-Witch-on-a-Broomstick" or the more modern and thereby more slutty "Short-Skirted-Low-Topped-Fishnet-Stocking-Sexy-Witch". Either way you went,  you probably didn't go through the traditional "Year And A Day" training and studying that all hopeful young Witches must go through in the Wiccan faith before their initiation in the "Craft".  In fact, if I were a bettin' man, I'd put all my money on that none of y'all Sexy Witches put in the effort?

Well don't take it too hard all you Sexy Witches, a year and a day is a long time and y'all probably got better things to worry about, like what slutty costume you gonna wear to the this years company Christmas Party.  But back to the point and this over drawn, confusing and extremely tenuous segue...we here at the Sawdust City brewing company know just how long a year and a day can be, cause it's been exactly that long since we got our Manufacturer's License from the AGCO.

That's right folks, yesterday was the 1 year Anniversary of us being able to legally manufacture beer in the province of Ontario! So yesterday over at the Black Oak brewery in Etobicoke, we marked the date by brewing up a big ol'batch of our Lone Pine IPA. So look out for more Lone Pine IPA at your favourite beer bar real soon.

But back to the segue...the Wiccans may feel a year and a day is long enough to begin initiation into their craft, but after a year and a half in craft brewing, we feel that we've just started learning. (See how I finally tied that all together there, Halloween, Witches, Wiccans and hind sight, the pay off may not have been worth it).  It's been a great first year and we feel blessed for all the support we've received so far, but we also look to the future and realize how much we still have to learn and how much more we still have to grow.  Luckily we work in beer, so we know that as hard as it may be, we'll always have enough beer to get us through!

And speaking of enough beer, we've got two new fermenters! We're just as happy as all heck to hav'em, here take a look at a few pics.  Here is a shot of them getting dropped off

And then here they are, all erect and proud

Aren't they just so handsome?

Well, as good as they look they can be a handful and it takes a little while to get them ready.  We had to plumb them, wire them, passivate them (acid wash) and then make sure that everything is in working order before we can put our beer into them.  So we just have to be patient for a few more days and then...more beer!

In the meantime, we've been busy putting out some beer for some really fun festivals.  The 8th annual Cask Days festival was last weekend and Sawdust City was there with two casks (one of our own and a collaboration with House Ales) pouring along side a ton of other fantastic breweries from across Canada.  It was a fun day and we were just glad to be a part of it.  They may have heard it all ready, but the Morana's did a stellar job with this years festival and it boggles the mind to think about what they are going to do next year to top this years event.  It seems each year it just gets better and better...and the beer too.  Wow, the quality of beer at this years Cask Days was crazy.  So many great casks. Here's a shot of everyone enjoying said casks -

How great is it to see so many people drinking craft beer?  But this is a Sawdust City blog, so here are a few shots of our casks, first up, "I Went on a Date With Brett and Showed Him My Nuts".  This was a Belgian Brown Ale aged on brettanomyces with dates and chestnuts.  Looks like they couldn't get the whole name on the cask.

And here's our collaboration with Eric at House Ales, G8 Summit.  We used 8 different grains (barley, wheat, rye, oats, millet, red quinoa, rice, spelt) and hopped it with only Summit hops.

There were over 100 casks and many of them were top notch...believe me, I uh, tried a lot of them.  Let's just say that the ride home was a little...blurry.  But again, congrats to the Morana's and the rest of the team for a great event and congrats to the brewers for bringing their A games.  Fun times.

Outside of Cask Days, we also did a one-off for the Black & Orange Halloween Party at BarHop in Toronto.  I brewed this one with my good pal Noddy, we've collaborated before most recently this summer on, "Joyce De Witte" and we kept with the pop culture theme by brewing a Smoked Pumpkin Chai Roggenbier called "The XTC Version was Better".  This of course was in reference to the song "Peter Pumpkinhead" which was later covered by Canada's own, The Crash Test Dummies.  After a short listening session, we both felt that the XTC version was better...hence the name!  The beer itself was a smokey and spicy with a nice light body.  It worked well.

So what's up next for Sawdust City? Well, like I've said a few times now, we've got our two fermenters now so hopefully that will keep us busy for the next few moths filling them up with freshly made beer.  The first two beers going into the tanks are going to be Skinny Dipping Stout and Gateway Kolsch.  We haven't brewed the stout for quite sometime so I'm pretty stoked to brew it again.  After that it looks like Long, Dark Voyage to Uranus, our Uranal Stout is going to be coming back!  For those of you that forgot about it, here's the label -

If everything goes according to Hoyle, we'll get this brewed by the end of November for a release in early 2013.

Anyhoo, that's about it for now.  Until next time, keep the beer in your mug and the sawdust beneath your feet.