Since restrictions and laws around beer production relaxed in 2013, the craft beer industry has exploded in Alberta. Fast forward to 2020, we now have over 120 craft breweries in the province and take up 10% of the beer market share. And it’s not just about quantity - Alberta breweries have taken home Canadian Beer Awards and international awards alike! Not to mention that the craft beer industry is also one of the most collaborative, community-building industries in Alberta.
In honour of Alberta Beer Week 2020, where celebrations are looking a little different due to the global pandemic, we’re featuring some of our favourite Alberta breweries whose product we carry in store.
Our favourite beers: New England-style Pale Ale, Florida Weisse sour series
Blindman Brewing was one of the first in the province to establish following the relaxed production restrictions and has been a pioneer in crafting tasty brews ever since. They’re all about supporting the places where we live and the people who live there, and are committed to making local beers from local ingredients. Plus, with foeders in their brewery, they’re able to make some funky aged and conditioned beers!
Apex Predator Brewing
Our favourite beers: White Raven IPA, Rushing Waters Bohemian Pilsner
Born in the headwaters of Bench Creek in Yellowhead County, Alberta, Apex Predator Brewing was built by family and friends smack dab in the middle of Alberta’s backyard. In addition to their delicious core lineup, they’re always reinventing with experimental, limited brews and series. Plus visiting their taproom in the backwoods outside of Edson is an adventurous experience itself!
Sea Change Brewing
Our favourite beers: Prairie Fairy Fruit Beer, The Wolf IPA
Founded by a group of local musicians, Sea Change Brewing is an artist-friendly and run business. With a taproom in Edmonton and also in Beaumont, they specialize in easy-drinking, approachable beers for everyone, and are passionate about tasty brews, music and community.
Alley Kat Brewing Company
Our favourite beers: Aprikat Fruit Beer, Pumpkin Pie Spiced Ale, Dragon Double IPA series
Edmonton’s oldest craft beer company, Alley Kat has always been a strong leader in the Alberta craft beer landscape! They’ve always been locally owned, with a team passionate about about making delicious (and award-winning) beer.
Bent Stick Brewing Company
Our favourite beers: Swap the Hops Pale Ale, Electric Boogaloo IPA
Started by four friends (and former brewers at Alley Kat) who are passionate about craft beer, Bent Stick is an Edmonton nanobrewery with a selection of core beers plus a rotational lineup of whatever they feel like brewing. Since they only brew 400 L of beer at a time, they’re able to be super creative and brew up some tasty and unique, bottle-conditioned beers.
Medicine Hat Brewing Company
Medicine Hat, AB
Our favourite beers: Burnside Blood Orange Ale, Gentlemen’s Stout
Over a century ago, the Medicine Hat Brewing Company served old-fashioned lagers, ales and stouts to the local community. Now, the new Medicine Hat Brewing Company lives up to those origins by producing some of southern Alberta’s tastiest brews. With a specialty in producing timeless craft ale, they’ve got a beer for all palates, from their expansive core lineup to seasonal beers from the Brewmaster Series.
Dandy Brewing Company
Our favourite beers: Baron von Tassel Cherry Sour, Dandy in the Underworld Oyster Stout
The Dandy Brewing Company has always been a forward-thinking brewery in our province, popularizing sour styles of beer and using local artists to design their labels. Started by four friends, Dandy will always be Calgary’s original little brewery, small at heart even as they expanded their tap room to include a full restaurant experience in 2018.
So start the Alberta Beer Week celebrations at home and pick up some tasty Alberta brews in honour of the craftsmanship in this fine province!