Beer for All!

Also available in Monday Magazine, originally posted on May 27th, 2021.

As a beverage and an industry, one of the great things about beer is the effort from so many people to make it something for everyone. In a time where things can be so divisive, there are a lot of people in the beer industry doing their part to make sure that everyone can enjoy a good, locally produced beer, and feel included in doing so.

Lighthouse Brewing has been a major supporter of Victoria Pride for many years and will be releasing a specially-themed beer shortly, brewed with input from employees who identify with the LGBTQIAS2+ community an eye out for that soon. In the meantime, you can try the newest addition to their lineup, their Desert Island Peach Gose, a bright, tart, fruity, vegan-friendly beer with a touch of salt, that also happens to be the first Gose they’ve ever released.

Another way breweries have been reaching out has been by producing beers that more people can enjoy. For those who suffer from gluten intolerances, Swans Brewery has released a new treat, their Stardust Fruit Ale, guava fruited ale with sorghum extract and dextrose, in cans no less, and as of the time of this writing where restrictions are still in place and the pub is closed, is on tap across the street at The Drake Eatery. Gluten-reduced and gluten-free beers have come a long way from their early days, so if it’s been a while since you tried one, I highly suggest coming back for another attempt.

Adding to the options are non-beer beverages coming from breweries as well. Adding to the selection of hard seltzers with a locally produced version, Vancouver Island Brewing has released their Island Life hard sparkling water, in three varieties, Lemon & Ginger with Elderflower, Raspberry & Honey with Thyme, and Peach & Blood Orange with Mint. It may not be beer, but they’re going to be a popular choice this summer.

Speaking of restrictions, it appears that the circuit breaker restrictions are slowly going to be eased, giving us all a great opportunity to enjoy taprooms, tasting rooms, restaurants, and patios responsibly and in a safe manner. These businesses have had a rough 15 months so far, so summer enjoyment can’t come soon enough. Just like the local breweries, this industry is ready to welcome everyone back, as we get closer to everything going back to normal.

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