Rhubarb – The Flavour of Patio-Friendly Beer

Also available in Monday Magazine, originally posted on April 1st, 2021.

Spring has sprung, and with it, many of the breweries shift from the dark, rich stouts and porters, to bright varieties of fruity and refreshing options for those warmer, sunnier afternoons. In addition to the shifts in beer and weather, a local brewery is also making a shift, by moving to a brand new location.

Driftwood Brewery, which has been located in its Rock Bay location since its inception in 2008, is crossing the bridge to a new home in Esquimalt. They’ve been setting up their space on Viewfield Road since October, transporting all their tanks and equipment over, and the time has come to say goodbye to their original home. As of March 27th, the tasting room on Hillside Avenue is now closed, and work begins to prepare their customer-facing space in their new location.

This does mean a slight break in being able to stop in for a growler fill or some merchandise, but their online store is still available for those in need of their wares. To offset that minor inconvenience, it looks like they’ll be releasing one of their best and most famous beers very soon. Singularity, their Bourbon Barrel-Aged Russian Imperial Stout, normally released around the end of January or early February, is more than enough to offset a little delay caused by the move. Expect to see the iconic black-on-black label on store shelves soon.

On the complete opposite end of the spectrum, Category 12 Brewing has started their shift to longer days with one of their most popular offerings, the Rhubarb Sour. Bright, tart, and showcasing rhubarb’s unique flavour with their golden sour base, this beer has a large following that gets excited at its release every year, so if you haven’t tried it already, you’ve got an opportunity to grab some before it all disappears.

They’re not the only ones taking advantage of the distinctive plant, as Lighthouse Brewing has also released a brand new treat showcasing one of the classic uses of rhubarb: Strawberry Rhubarb Pie. Bombers of their Strawberry Rhubarb Wheat Ale should be on store shelves now, and many local taprooms are likely to offer this highlight of the sweet and tart pie flavours that go so well with a sunny patio afternoon.

As spring continues forward, expect to see more fruit, more fun, and more patio-friendly beers on taps and shelves, waiting for your enjoyment.

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