Ana and Blythe’s Beer Blog

BLYTHE:  It’s a cold blustery day at Black Creek – the leaves have mostly fallen off the trees, and there is a definite nip in the air. Which is why Ana and I are sitting in front of a fire with our mugs of…tea? Yes, tea – that is what Ladies drink – right Ana?

 ANA:  Right Blythe – although it is tempting to drink all of our beer…but

      ANA takes a sip of ‘tea’

 we have to save some for the visitors!

 BLYTHE:  Yes! Gentle Readers, we beer maidens’ abstain from indulging our love of beer for the greater good.

 ANA:  I have something important to say – but first – we should have beer capes Blythe.

BLYTHE:  Yes – and sashes and badges too!       

ANA:  Wow Blythe, we’re really serious about beer! Now back to my important question, what was your favourite part of the season?

 BLYTHE:  Let me think – Oh! I know! The first time our brew masters’ made pumpkin ale. The smells of cinnamon, cloves, nutmeg, coriander and freshly baked pumpkin wafted through the Half Way House….

ANA:   That’s punkalicious!

 BLYTHE: Yes Ana – but do you remember how it tasted?

ANA:   Mmmmm… was like alcoholic pumpkin pie. I remember a lot of snappy hop flavour and fruit to it too.

BLYTHE:  Agreed. Ed, Lou, Ken and Brent did a great job brewing the pumpkin ale all October.

ANA:  I can’t wait to taste what the guys come up with for Christmas – it’s bound to be a seasonal treat.

BLYTHE:  Like Cranbeery?

ANA:  Blythe…

BLYTHE:  Or Fir Tree Ale? Mistletoe Guinness? Reindeer Stout?

ANA:  Blythe…

BLYTHE: Silent Night Porter? Turtle Dove Brown Ale? Candy Cane Pale Ale?

ANA:  Blythe!


ANA: You’re being ridiculous. You can make beer out of a lot of things – but those are just outlandish.

BLYTHE:  I suppose so…But Ana, what was your favourite part of the season?

ANA:  Well I particularly enjoyed receiving the new Character Cards we give out to our tours. The cards added a whole new dimension to our groups! Some people were shocked to learn that Bloor Street in Toronto was named after a brewer. So many streets are!

BLYTHE:  Yeah – and some streets are named by Temperance Advocates. Jesse Ketchum named Temperance Street and then donated land to the city on the condition that a Temperance Hall be built.

ANA:   It’s amazing to think what a big impact the brewing industry has had on the city landscapes of today.

BLYTHE:  Maybe our own little brewery will some day have a street named after it! ‘Black Creek Pioneer Village Historic Brewery Street!’ Has a ring to it – several rings in fact!

ANA:   Well, all we can do is dream, Blythe.                                                                                

        Both girls take a sip of tea.

Tutored Tastings

Join us this Thursday, Nov. 12, at Black Creek Historic Brewery as renowned “beerologist” Mirella Amato gives a Tutored Tasting of classic Beer Styles.

A Tutored Tasting is a great opportunity to taste a variety of beer styles in the company of friends and a knowledgeable guide. Mirella Amato will give tips on the flavours to look for, share some history and fun facts, and of course, answer questions.

Beer comes in a multitude flavours and colours from light gold to dark brown, with a wide range of different aromas. How does the bouquet introduce you to the taste? Is it sweet, hoppy or malty? Beer is refreshing on its own, but its flavour can be enhanced when paired with certain foods. What beers go with which foods? Which are better with cheeses, and which go with dessert? Then answers can be surprising!

Mirella is a former opera singer who speaks, writes and teaches about beer. Her engaging, and highly informative tutored tasting have been a tremendous success with audiences around the GTA and beyond since 2006.

Click here to sign up.


The Black Creek Growler


Smelling Beer…

The Mash TunIt’s happened – I’ve become one of those people who smell beer.

Six months ago I never dreamed this would be a possibility, having only recently decided I could drink beer with some modicum of satisfaction. But, yes, that was me telling Black Creek Historic Brewery ‘I’d love to give tours on beer!’ About a month later I was given a massive stack of readings and sent forth to digest. The learning curves on this project have been huge, but learn I have. Not only have I learned about the technical side of the brewing process (which was initially dizzying in and of itself!), but about the people who lived and breathed beer in the 1860’s – which turned out to be everyone. At first I was convinced that I would never understand, much less be able to explain, the beer process even to my stuffed animals. The number of evenings I spent drilling myself on the terms (Malting! Milling! Mash ton! Cooling ship? Sorry, please try again!) were numerous, but now even my stuffed animals can give a 19th century beer tour!

Modern beer drinkers are daily embarking on my beer odyssey with me – and I’ve found that they too now smell beer by the end! My fellow beer adventurers are what make this enjoyable I’ve found – for what fun is it to horde information? It’s much more fun to show off (and of course share) what you’ve learned! Half the battle on a tour is your audience, and I’ve been grateful to have everyone along for the ride.

 When I agreed to embark on this beer odyssey in April it just sounded like a fun prospect, part of the adventure that is Black Creek Pioneer Village. What I understand now, and what any beer enthusiast can tell you, is that beer is a way of life. So come listen to me show off – er – I mean share!

  To Queen and Country!

  Blythe, ‘Beer Expert.’