A quiet drink at home. This is part of how I will spend Canada Day. A drink goes well with writing and some music spinning in the background.
I’ve become a devotee of the local craft brewing industry here in Nova Scotia. There is some amazing product on the market. Much of the craft beer produced in Nova Scotia is significantly better quality than what is produced from Canada’s big 2 breweries (Molson-Coors and Labbatts). There are a few exceptions. Some of the craft beer tastes like cough syrup, or in the instance of a small number of hoppy IPA’s, an overtly spicy glass of fresh water and too much pepper.
Canada’s oldest independent brewery also turns 150 this year. I have kept some loyalty to Moosehead Breweries out of Saint John New Brunswick. They maintain a consistency to their product line that in my view is unmatched.
There is the occasional time that I will buy something produced at the Oland Brewery in Halifax. Ironically, this is a brewery that was founded by the same family that founded Moosehead. The Oland brewery has been producing products for Labbatt and it’s parent company out of the Halifax location since 1971. Many of the people working in that plant are customers of the legendary Demones Barber Shop, located across the street from it. One of the engineers told me that when you buy beers that are made from their production line, you really are buying local.
Nova Scotia’s wine industry is enjoying further growth thanks to consistently good product and the dedication of the people behind it. Annapolis Highland Vineyards remains the personal favourite. When it comes to wine, I’m a red drinker who has come to appreciate white wines. In the last year or so I’ve started to learn more about the dessert wines.
The production of other beverages is on the rise in Nova Scotia. Seeing spirit companies turn up at markets is really inspiring. In the last 5 years, I’ve partaken in drink that I never thought would be enjoyable. I never drank much vodka or gin because I just didn’t care for it. A few times per year, I could drink Canadian Club and water. It’s a basic old classic, still enjoy.able.
The Nova Scotia Spirit Company is a producer of great product based just outside my hometown of New Glasgow. They produce gin and vodka that in my view, ranks with the best of the best in the world. When I tried their product for the first time at Halifax Seaport Market, I was in disbelief at how great gin and vodka could be was. Over the many years, I’ve partaken in many different kinds of gin and vodka which were either just okay or a waste of time. NS Spirit is really on to something with what they are creating.
There are many more local beverage producers in Nova Scotia, and indeed Canada that help to showcase some of the finest products anywhere in the world. Something grand to pour into a glass, and raise a toast.