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1024 576 Savannah

Issues No.14

A Note from the Chris’

Fire!

Not a great start to my trip to British Columbia to launch Legion Lager (more on that next month).

I received a call that I hope to never receive again, “there has been a fire at the brewery”. At that point we did not know the extent of the fire, the Whitewater Region volunteer fire department were on site assisting and I was getting updates from some of our staff on site.

The good news is that the fire was small, nobody was hurt and there was no major damage. The fire took place in the attic and the extent of the damage was drywall, insulation, some wooden trusses and an ethernet cable. We were however very lucky on the time of day of the incident and that it was detected by our staff. If it had happened in the middle of the night, we would not have known about it until it was too late.

The cause is not yet 100% determined however it is looking like our steam boiler that heats the brewing system, malfunctioned and caused the duct in the attic to overheat.

While our insurance company and TSSA are going through their processes, we are not able to brew but hopefully we’ll be back up and running in a couple of weeks. It is likely to cause some inventory issues and we sincerely appreciate everyone’s patience if we are out of stock of some styles of beer.

I extend a sincere thank you to our amazing team of proactive staff that identified the fire and alerted the authorities, used fire extinguishers to prevent the spread of the fire and evacuated all patrons in a calm and efficient manner. We would also like to extend our thanks to the Whitewater Region Volunteer Fire Department for their speedy arrival on scene to put the fire out.

Ultimately it could have been a lot worse and we are all very thankful that it wasn’t.

 

Cheers,

Chris Thompson


Brewery News

Bun out of the Oven

Congratulations to our head chef Sarah on the birth of her second son. We wish her and her family best wishes. We can’t wait to see the little bundle of joy.

Summer Employment Opportunities

We’re hiring! There are lots of opportunities on the horizon to be a part of the WBC team. Servers, line cooks, dishwashers, and retail associates are just a few of the positions we will be hiring for. If interested please email your resume to jobs@whitewaterbeer.ca.

Now Available in British Columbia

On February 24th, Legion Lager officially launched in Vancouver, BC. Thanks to Legion branch #83 for hosting us as we celebrated this milestone and we are happy to announce our push to spread this delicious beer across the province. If you’re in BC keep your eyes peeled for Legion Lager to become available near you.


Beer 101

Beer from the West

By Head Brewer Sean

As some of you may know, I was out in British Columbia for our launch of Legion Lager. It was a great experience! We had a terrific launch and we were happy to be well received by our neighbours out west. As I was traveling across the province I noticed that there was a vast selection of breweries that I had never tried. Some of these I had heard of, but most of them I hadn’t. This gave me the Idea to write my post this month about the beers I had tried out west. Overall, I sampled 34 different beers across the province. For more in depth reviews of the beers I sampled check out my Untappd account here.

I was able to try beers from 12 different breweries that spanned the province from Kelowna to Vancouver. Some of the stand out places were, Tree Brewing Co., Parallel 49 Brewing Co., Central City Brewers & Distillers, and Powell Brewery. I was able to visit all of these while I was out and the biggest thing I saw was how the brewing community is just like it is here. All these breweries welcomed me in with open arms and allowed me to see the facilities and really start a friendship with all of them. I love the brewing community, and this province didn’t disappoint. I’ve always loved how welcoming this industry is and how the open communication of what works and what doesn’t allow us all to improve on our products. It’s just amazing.

Powell

The stand out beer on the trip was from Powell Brewery. Their “Ode to Citra” was just amazing. Massive stone fruit notes including mango and tropical fruits. Passion fruit was on the finish as well. Light body but refreshing. I could’ve put this beer away all night. Juicy and light is the best combo. It is a must try if you are going out West.

 

Tree

Another stand out beer was “Backcountry Nut Brown” by Tree Brewing Co. Strong nutty nose with hints of molasses and nuts. Moderate nutty flavours with dark caramel and molasses. Very clean fermentation profile with a sweet finish. Another staple beer for a great brewery. Tree had much more to offer though. IPAs, Ambers, Blonde Ales and Lagers were all hits on the tasting menu. This brewery is a must visit with something for everyone when in Kelowna.

 

Parallel 49

The last brewery I want to talk about is Parallel 49. This place was just epic. They had great food and beer that everyone should try. With so many beers on tap it was hard to choose. But lucky for me it was Double IPA Fest so they had a recommended paddle I couldn’t turn down. Afterwards I got some malt forward beers to get the contrast. All were amazing. For a more in-depth review please check out my untapped profile. We were also lucky to get a great tour of their impressive facility from their head brewer Graham.

All in all, BC was amazing and there were so many beers to try and talk about. I hope that some of the people reading this are out there right now and can swing by and try some of these amazing beers.


Cooking with Beer

Cranberry Mango Crumble with Cranberry Caram-Ale

By Head Chef Ben
Best paired with Astrolable Session IPA
Ingredients
Base

1 lime, juice and zest

3 cups diced mango

1 cup fresh cranberries

2 tbsp. flour

1/2 cup brown sugar

Topping

1/2 cup brown sugar

1/2 tsp cinnamon

1/2 tsp nutmeg

4 tbsp. butter, cubed

2 tbsp. graham crumbs

1/2 cup walnuts, finely chopped

1/4 cup rolled oats

1/4 cup flour

Caram-Ale Sauce

1/2 cup fresh cranberries

1 cup sugar

1/2 cup Whistling Paddler English Style Ale

1/2 cup whipping cream

Method
Crumble

Preheat oven to 375F.

Combine all base ingredients in a large mixing bowl and spoon into 9″x9″ baking dish.

In separate large mixing bowl, combine all topping ingredients and mix until crumbly. Sprinkle mixture over base.

Cook for 45-55 minutes or until top is nicely browned.

Allow to sit for 20 minutes before serving.

Caram-Ale Sauce

Puree fresh cranberries and set aside.

In saucepan combine beer and sugar. Mix well and turn heat on medium low. Without stirring, cook mixture until it becomes honey brown in colour. Swirl pan for a more even heat distribution.

Add cream and cranberry puree to mixture and stir with non-stick whisk while simmering for 3-4 minutes or until smooth sauce is formed. Remove from heat and allow to cool.

Drizzle Caram-Ale over crumble and enjoy.


Events

St. Patrick’s Day
March 17

Join us at the Lakeside Brew Pub on St. Patrick’s Day for some Celtic music, food specials, and our very own Irish Stout. Call the Lakeside Brew Pub at 613 646 0101 to make your reservation or reserve online today.


Questions from Friends

Damien asked:

I’d getting married this Summer and would like to get some kegs for the reception. Is that possible?

We answered:

Hi Damien,

We do private keg sales all the time but our availability of sizes and styles varies depending on availability. To order/reserve your keg call 613 646 0101 and ask to talk to our retail department. We typically ask for about two weeks notice to guarantee availability but we will always try to accommodate last minute shoppers when we can.


We want to answer your questions about anything from the beer, the brewery, the boys or whatever else is on your mind. Due to the high volume of questions though, we won’t be able to post every one, but keep your eyes peeled in case yours makes it to the front page.

If your question does get picked you will become the proud owner of a swag bag full of WBC goodies. So ask away!

*Questions from Friends is for general questions in the areas listed above. For personal inquiries please use thebreweryboys@whitewaterbeer.ca

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399 249 Savannah

Issue No. 13

A Note from the Chris’

At Risk of Poking the Bear…

2017 is behind us and 2018 has started with a lot of controversy. What has surprised me about this isn’t the fact that the minimum wage increase has become a prominent topic of debate, it’s the fact that it didn’t become so prominent until the wage increase was actually implemented.

I find it so surprising because this has at least been lightly covered in mainstream media for at least 4 months prior. I actually found it disconcerting that not many people were talking about the major increase because for us, it was extremely concerning.

At any one time we employ anywhere between 70 and 100 employees (due to seasonality) and while the majority are paid above minimum wage, a significant amount were either below $14 or in close proximity to the $14 dollar mark.

I should point out that I am not against people working lower wage jobs earning more money. I am equally not against the minimum wage being raised to $14 if that is what is deemed to be the lowest livable wage. Our staff are our strongest asset and I want them to be able to work as part of our team, and be able to afford to pay rent, bills etc.

My concern however is because in one giant leap, our yearly wages/salaries rose by over a quarter of a million dollars which comes directly off our bottom line. Now, many supporters of the minimum wage increase have very bluntly stated that the wealthy and greedy business owners need to eat the cost of this increase in their profits, not pay themselves as much and make savings elsewhere. The trouble with this very general and unspecific statement is that there is a clear lack of understanding of who this is really going to effect. The large businesses with vast profits are not my concern. They will eat the cost to some extent, continue to control industry prices as well as increase them if necessary and ultimately consumers will continue to shop with them. The vast and sudden increase will really hurt the small businesses most. Businesses whose owners pay themselves only enough to live on. Businesses that already operate on small margins and struggle to get by on a month to month basis.

I’ve read many derogatory comments about small businesses and how if they can’t be run profitably with a decent livable wage then they shouldn’t be in business at all. Many of these comments are far more rude than that. The issue with that is that so many businesses and small business owners operate on small margins and there is nothing wrong with that. I completely agree that if you are going to commit to employing someone, you need to be able to pay them a livable wage. That being said, the issue that I see is that the wage increase was introduced in a very irresponsible way (too rapidly) that is harmful to the “backbone of the Canadian economy” and was possibly done in this method for an ulterior motive.

I’m sad to say that I have already seen the knock on negative affects of this increase with the closure of multiple businesses that we work with. Those that are still operating have been increasing prices to help cope with wage increase, others have been cutting hours and forcing business owners to work more.

Increasing prices can certainly help businesses cope with the increase in wages however I see one major problem with that. The wage increase has impact on so many industries that if  the general decision is to increase prices then I fear that the increased wage becomes irrelevant. Many argue that in the past, increases in wages haven’t resulted in price increases. This however directly conflicts with what I am seeing on a daily basis. I can only hope that the price increases are not in line with the wage increases.

I think the largest challenge that we faced was that employees that already earned above minimum wage wanted to keep the same gap between their wage and the new minimum wage. I found it most challenging because to some extent, their job was still worth the same dollar value, but I can understand how they could feel undervalued. We decided to go back to square one and value each job in our business and set a dollar range for that job role based on performance. Everyone starts at the bottom of that range for the job and can move up with good performance and longevity. Once you have reached the max, the only way for further increases is to get a promotion to a new job. I’m not sure if this solution is the best, but so far it is well received and it has the backing of all our managers which is very important. Ultimately, if you want to be paid more, create value in your role and make a reason to be paid more.

As I stated above, I strongly believe that the minimum wage should be set at a level that provides those income earners with enough earnings to pay bills, eat and get buy on a day to day basis (livable wage). I do however strongly believe that the increase was too much over too short a period of time and was for a hidden political agenda. I feel fortunate that I was aware of the increase well ahead of the implementation date and that I devoted the time to run a forecasts with our accountants to see how it would affect our business. I feel sorry for those that are still struggling with this change and maybe don’t have the same resources to deal with this task and I happily offer my time to assist in anyway that I can. Please feel free to reach out.

I could continue writing on this topic for a long time and I have only touched the surface of a few points that are up for debate in my first attempt at writing an opinion piece. What I have written is by no means correct, however it is absolutely my opinion at this point in time based on what I know. I would happily have continued debate in person or over email if anyone would like to talk more about this however I ask that you please keep it respectful in contrast to so many social media posts that I have seen.

Cheers

Chris Thompson


Brewery News

Valentine’s Day is on the Way

But so is Anti-Valentine’s. Come on in and feel the love…or don’t. We will be hosting two separate evenings of Valentine’s festivities for both those who don’t want to celebrate and those who do. Have a look at the events section to see the details. In addition we will be having in store and online retail specials including one we built especially for our blog readers. Order your V-Day gifts for yourself or someone special, online starting February 1st to 14th and use discount code FEELTHELOVE for 14% off your merchandise purchase.

Legion Lager in the LCBO

That’s right! Our Legion Lager is now available in select LCBO locations. If it isn’t in yours yet you can always request that it be brought in. And remember that 5% of every can purchased goes back to the Royal Canadian Legion for Veteran’s programs across the country.

Baby on the Way

For those of you that have been into the Lakeside Brew Pub in the last few months, you may have noticed a growing belly in the kitchen. And no we aren’t talking about the beer bellies. We are talking about our very own Head Chef Sarah who has now left for maternity leave and we wish her well in the coming months. While she is away,  Sous Chef Ben will be taking over as Head Chef and we hope you are as excited as we are to see what he can do.


Beer 101

Let’s Raise a Glass to These Two

By Head Brewer Sean

As we grow year by year so does our brew team. This past year was just outstanding with the love and support we got from all of you, but because of this growth I have had a hard time running this brewery on my own. Because of this, we have added some new roles to our brew team. We have added an Assistant Brewer and Head Cellarman and I’d like to take the time to give them a warm welcome and acknowledge their hard work.

Matt Haycock will be stepping into the Assistant Brewer position at WBC. Matt joined our team as a Brewhand in 2017 and has become one of our strongest brewers day after day. Matt came from the wine industry working at reputable wineries like Inniskillin and when he moved back to the Valley he had actually come in for an interview for our logistics department. I sat in on that interview and I’m thankful I did. I scooped him up for the brewery right away and as the months went by his hard-working nature and happy attitude helped him quickly learn the ropes. Now Matt is part of every batch of beer we brew here at WBC. He will be taking over our Riverside pilot brewery as well as working closely with me on all the Lakeside brewing. I can’t wait to see what he can do in the coming years and hear more of his ideas for new seasonals. You can thank Matt for the delicious Cookies and Cream Stout from our 12 Beers of Christmas this past year.

Adam Wilson will be taking over our cellar as Head Cellarman. If you don’t know what the “Cellar” is, it is the cold side of our brewery. This encompasses all the processes and packaging of the cold beer. From fermentors to packaging, Adam will be working hard with me to get the best quality packaged products for you all to drink. Adam came to the Valley and again was looking to work anywhere in our company. With 4 years of cellar experience at Beau’s All Natural Brewing Company, he comes with big shoes to fill, and he didn’t disappoint. With in days he had changed some of our tank cleaning procedures and has been instrumental in all of our packaging. With his keen eye to detail and ever growing knowledge of the brewing industry he will help us to grow the cellar into a world class production facility.

In closing, I really am happy with this growth in our team. These two will help WBC to continue to grow and raise the quality of our product even more. If you are ever at either of our locations and have a chance to chat with these 2 passionate individuals you’ll get to see a small glimpse of what makes our team great. I wish them all the best in their new roles and can’t wait to see what new ideas they can come up with. Let’s all raise a glass to these two… a glass of Whitewater beer of course.


Cooking with Beer

Class V Bison Chili

By Head Chef Ben
Best Paired with Class V
Ingredients

2 lbs Ground Bison

10 Tomatoes, cored and diced

2 large red onions, halved and sliced

2 large white onions, halved and sliced

1 red pepper, diced

1 yellow pepper, diced

2 tbsp. brown sugar

3 tbsp. kosher salt

1 tbsp. cracked black pepper

1/2 cup Chili powder

1/4 cup Cumin

2 tbsp. minced garlic

1 tbsp. dried basil

1 cup water

1 cup Class V IPA

 

Method

Cook ground Bison. Drain fat.

Add onions, peppers, and garlic. Cook until veggies have softened.

Add remaining ingredients and simmer on medium to low heat for 1 hour. Stir often to avoid sticking to the bottom of the pot.

Serve with fresh bread and dollop of sour cream.


Events

Anti-Valentine’s
February 9

One of our annual traditions is to host an Anti-Valentine’s night for those that may not be “feeling the love”. This evening will be full of some not-so-romantic food items, loud music, and definitely no red and pink hearts plastered to the wall. Call 613 646 0101 to make your reservation.

Valentine’s Day
February 14

Love is in the air over here at WBC and you can be a part of it this V-Day. Come out for a romantic evening with that special someone in your life. Join us for some lovely specials and romantic music. Call 613 646 0101 to make your reservation.


Questions From Friends

Tanya asked:

We’ve been to both your pubs before and love the atmosphere for our rehearsal dinner/wedding. Do you ever rent it out?

We answered:

Hi Tanya, we absolutely do. We hope to host many weddings and private functions in the upcoming season and if you are looking to book something we would be happy to help. All you need to do is contact our General Manager, Steve, to set up the details. Email brewpub@whitewaterbeer.ca to get in touch.


We want to answer your questions about anything from the beer, the brewery, the boys or whatever else is on your mind. Due to the high volume of questions though, we won’t be able to post every one, but keep your eyes peeled in case yours makes it to the front page.

If your question does get picked you will become the proud owner of a swag bag full of WBC goodies. So ask away!

*Questions from Friends is for general questions in the areas listed above. For personal inquiries please use thebreweryboys@whitewaterbeer.ca

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