Over the past few years, the craft beer scene in Toronto has exploded. Just take a walk through the beer aisles at the LCBO and you’ll see how much shelf-space is dedicated to craft beer. As more and more beer lovers actively seek out unique brews for their individual palates, the industry is responding. And responding in amazing fashion.
One of the first truly craft breweries in Toronto is Amsterdam Brewery. Since 1986, they’ve been part of the revolution we see in the beer scene today. Using only traditional brewing methods, their beers are brewed fresh daily and include 6 year-round brews and a variety of seasonal offerings. In 2013, Amsterdam Brewery opened a new brew house right on the water’s edge of Lake Ontario. Merging the food and beer experience under one roof, it’s one of the best spots in the city to sit back with some friends on a hot summer’s day.
This summer, Amsterdam Brewery has partnered up with Toronto’s premier walking tour experience company, Tour Guys, for a series of “Neighbeerhood Crawls”. Part pub-crawl, part walking-tour, it’s an immersive experience for guests that incorporates Amsterdam beers, great local bars, delicious local food, graffiti sightseeing and historical revelations. Read more “NeighBEERhood Crawl With Amsterdam Brewery, Kensington Market”
Kensington Market is a phenomenal little neighbourhood in Toronto. It’s incredibly vibrant and oozes charm everywhere you look. I recently spent an afternoon exploring the culinary side of the area with Tasty Tours Toronto, the city’s only sweets tour. We visited 6 different shops and tried samples from each. Being the very multicultural neighbourhood that Kensington Market is, it was like a trip around the world one bite at a time. In addition to trying what the shops had to offer, our tour guide (and founder of Tasty Tours Toronto), Audrey, educated us on the history of sweets and where a lot of the products come from to make them.
Tasty Tours Toronto also runs a tour in the Trinity Bellwoods Park area specifically themed around chocolate shops. I can’t wait to try that one next! In the mean time, this video of the tour through Kensington Market should whet the appetite. Warning: I take no responsibilities for any sudden urges to consume sweets after watching this video. Read more “Video: Tasty Tours Toronto, Kensington Market”
If you had asked me 2 years ago what I thought of beer, I would have told you that it lacks flavour, has a horrible after taste, and it all tastes the same. I really couldn’t understand what all the fuss was about over a product I thought was so bland. Clearly, my beer experiences had been limited to a few of the major beer brands produced for mass consumption (ie. getting drunk on the cheap). But after I discovered craft beer, my previous opinions on this brewed beverage were laughable.
Craft beer, or micro brewing, is the handcrafted production of beer on a small scale. Each brewing facility has a brew master who essentially makes the recipes and oversees production. Beers are made with all natural ingredients with no additives or preservatives. What makes craft beers stand out from the pack is the individualization of each product. Instead of creating a drink to appeal to the masses, craft beer is created for varying palettes. With ingredients such as fruit, tea, coffee, cinnamon and honey, it’s all about creativity.
Over the past 10 years, craft beer has been making its mark in bars and restaurants, and in liquor stores across Canada, and is growing every year. No where is this more apparent than in Southern Ontario with the Ontario Craft Brewers estimating there are over 50 craft breweries in the province with over 100 nation wide. Read more “Craft Beer Tour in Toronto”