Stack Brewing: Belgian Quad

Instead of doing another year of the ‘beer of the month’ mail order beer selections Andrew and I decided we would take turns in 2017 buying random beers to explore together.  This idea has been helped greatly by our move and being closer to an LCBO with better craft beer selections, a nearby grocery store which has a surprisingly awesome beer section, and the fact that you can now order online via the LCBO.

Andrew recently picked up a handful of beers for us to try.  This batch of beers included “4×4 Belgian Quad” by Stack Brewing.  Stack Brewing is a Sudbury based brewing company, with its name relating to the well known mining stack landmark that towers over the city.  This beer is also essentially named after an ATV (quad is another name for ATVS, something I had no idea of until moving to Northern Ontario).

At 10.5% this is definitely a strong beer. It poured a hazy dark auburn brown colour with minimal head that quickly dissipated.  The smell was faintly sweet with a bit of a malt note.  Considering the alcohol content I was surprised by the smoothness of this particular beer.  There was a lingering fruit and spice note that hung on with this beer.  It was definitely a bit darker than my usual preference but it wasn’t bad tasting and I was surprised by how much I liked it.

Beer of the Month: Syndicate Brewing

The other two beer selections in the recent beer of the month shipment were from Syndicate Brewing in Niagara Falls, Ontario. Both beers were simply named and their labels were very plain — I like to think that more effort went into the brewing than into the marketing of these beers. In a nice turn of fate Andrew and I were able to enjoy a couple of beers on the porch.  It was finally warm enough to sit outside in the evening…and there weren’t any bugs yet.  It doesn’t get much better than that.

The first of the two beers was simply titled “ESB” after the Extra Strong Bitter style of beer.  It poured  a dark copper colour, with a finger of bright white head, and lots of carbonation.  As anticipated it had a slightly bitter smell and a bit of a bitter kick in its taste.  After a couple of sips the bitterness settled and the beer was surprisingly smooth drinking.  I enjoyed it.

The second beer from Syndicate Brewing was the dark beacon porter.  Andrew really enjoyed this selection. It poured a dark brown almost black colour and was full bodied with subtle coffee notes.  I wasn’t a huge fan, but that probably had more to do with not typically liking porters in general and nothing against this specific brew.