Earlier this week Jay and I spend a couple days in Edmonton visiting friends and one of the things we did (surprise!) was tour a couple of breweries. Even though I can't sample any craft beers I still appreciate the stories behind each microbrewery. The first place we stopped was Yellowhead Brewery, a place that makes a lager and that's it. Kind of weird to only have one type of beer if you ask me! Based on the German standard of brewing, Yellowhead only has 4 primary ingredients (hops, yeast, malts and water) and is somewhat of a classic.
The building the microbrewery is housed in was beautiful; full of natural light, high ceilings and exposed wooden beams. It turns out the owner's an architect and is known for this style of building. The company used to be called Maverick Brewing and when it failed the new owner bought it and focused on the quality of the beer rather than the marketing aspect. He also changed the name of the company to reflect local history. Yellowhead brewery is named after the Métis trader Yellowhead who was the first person to make his way through the Rocky Mountains and find a path between the Prairies and British Columbia.
After Yellowhead we headed over to the Alley Kat Brewing Company where we toured the building and hung out with the crew until closing. Jay traded some Flying Monkeys beer he brought from home for some of Alley Kat's Dragon Series beer that we can't get in Ontario. This trip has been a dream for Jay, so many new craft beers to bring home and try! There is absolutely no way that we'll be able to fit all the beers in the suitcases we accumulated so far (we're at 2 giant boxes of beer so far) so it looks like we're going to be buying another suitcase or two to cart it all home!!
After writing this post I realized I haven't really talked about craft beer since last summer!