As confirmed in Canadian Beer News this morning, Innis & Gunn, the Scottish-based independent brewer, and Brunswick Bierworks of East York, Toronto announced that Brunswick will brew core I&G draught brands for the local market.
The parties state this will enable the draft, all currently imported, to be shipped to local accounts faster and fresher. I&G’s famous barrel-aging will be followed for brands that receive such treatment including I&G’s marquee, The Original.
Brands covered by the arrangement include Gunpowder IPA and Lager. The deal is expected to further brewing collaborations between I&G and Brunswick; there were a couple in the past for the Canadian market, but more should follow.
As someone who regularly tries I&G products and has studied their innovations with barrel aging, I welcome the announcement.
Today a beer can find a new home and taste like it does at the originating brewery. It’s not like 30 years ago when international, or indeed any, contract brewing was a more chancy proposition.
In 2019, technical ability and global logistics are such that given the will and investment, a beer can (almost always) be recreated in a distant location with great fidelity. I&G and Brunswick have pledged their utmost to ensure this result. Given the sophistication of the Brunswick Bierworks, which I have toured, I don’t doubt this will happen.
Certainly the closer a bar is to source of supply, the better off the consumer. One reason: it’s less likely the beer will be pasteurized, tightly filtered, or processed in a way that extends shelf life but may diminish flavour.
We enjoy the core I&G products and look forward to trying them in their “Toronto” iteration.