This weekend, Port Rexton Brewing attended the Fredericton Craft Beer Festival; a festival that brings together and celebrates East Coast breweries and cideries. This year the festival included some healthy competition, in the form of the Down East Brewing Awards.
The awards were judged by “certified judges, brewers, and industry professionals,” who saw fit to give Port Rexton Brewing a bronze medal in the America IPA category, for their Horse Chops IPA — the same beer that won “Best Local Craft Beer” in The Overcast’s People’s Choice Awards this year.
If you’re among those who liked the Horse Chops IPA prototype, you’ll be happy to hear it’s even better nowadays: the recipe was tweaked in February “to bring you even more floral and fruity hop aroma goodness by doubling our dry-hop addition. We’re also working to create a smoother and silkier mouthfeel by increasing the protein-rich grains.”
As for the festival experience, “it was amazing,” they beamed. “It’s a favourite of many of the breweries in Atlantic Canada. It showcases pretty much all of the craft breweries in New Brunswick, to which there are now almost 40 I believe, and it also features a number of great Nova Scotia and PEI craft breweries as well. A microbrewery from Bangor, Maine also attended.”
Nearly 2,000 beer lovers attended. Port Rexton was the only local brewery representing Newfoundland, which is surprising given that breweries are not asked to pay to be there. It’s completely free, which Port Rexton Brewing appreciated, as it ensures “a more affordable opportunity for even the smallest nanobreweries around the province. This is a win-win as it gives these nanobreweries exposure, while giving event participants an awesome selection of local craft beer.”
“They host a party for the breweries the evening before as well. I can certainly see why it’s everyone’s favourite! We’ll definitely be back there next year!”
If you’ve yet to try Port Rexton’s beer, they’re selling it outside of their brewery at the following locations: Adelaide Oyster House (2 taps, soon to be 3 taps), the Fifth Ticket (2 taps), Mallard Cottage (2 taps), the Merchant Tavern, and EVOO in the Courtyard. For the duration of the ski season, it’s also available at Ski White Hills (2 taps).
Next Up: Bottling Their “Shed Series”
This winter, Port Rexton experimented with bottling some of their beers for sale. In addition to their flagship beers, they brew some temporarily available beers, including their “Ten-Eighty” series in the winter. The Ten-Eighty series will always feature a winter-cozy, high-alcohol concoction. This year’s was a 8.2% Belgian Tripel style of beer, with a mild spice characters and hints of banana esters.
They produced roughly 700 bottles, and took pre-orders — the bottles were all gone within 3 days. So they’re planning to do it again, but with a summer series, much the opposite of their Ten-Eighty series.
“We’re going to call it our ‘Shed Series,’ and each year it’ll be a limited release for the summer, consisting of a lower alcohol/sessionable beer (think shed drinking)!” This year’s style hasn’t been announced yet, but they’ll post this on social media later in the Spring.
As for bottling their flagship beers, and selling them at the shop, it’s in their immediate plans. They might even start looking into the option of selling through the NLC in the fall.