This week I will highlight recent Ontario beer releases of note.
From Amsterdam Brewing in Toronto there is Pantomime Golden Ale, which uses a new British hop, Harlequin. It was developed by UK hop specialists Charles Faram through its Hop Development Program.
The beer is part of the ongoing Amsterdam Small Batch Adventure Brew series.
Indeed Pantomime Golden Ale is described as a collaboration with Charles Faram, a venerable concern with roots in the 19th century.
A description from the website of Faram’s Hop Development Program is informative. It seeks to marry “new world” flavours with a character from English soils and environment.
A seminar in Toronto the other day, conducted by Ben Adams and Shayn Sawchuk of Faram’s Toronto office, added further perspective. Eg. the name “Harlequin” was inspired by the multi-coloured look of the hop bract, the main leaf structure of the plant.
Pantomime Golden Ale uses Harlequin as single hop. It is added through the boil, at whirlpool, and in dry hopping at end of fermentation, just before final gravity is reached.
The malt is Maris Otter from UK maltsters Crisp. The result showcases the peach and pineapple character of Harlequin against a velvety, English malt base.
So, classic English malt, new English hop with some non-English influence in its DNA. Result: an accomplished British Golden Ale. Never had a better one.
You can buy it at the Amsterdam Brewery shop on Esander Dr., the Brewhouse shop on Queen’s Quay downtown, and by delivery through the website. Details in above link.
(Image via Amsterdam website and Canadian Brewing News)