The Beer Series: Part 4 of 5
In the summer of 2008 Driftwood Brewery burst onto the British Columbian craft beer scene in a huge way. Known for pushing the envelope in terms of unique styles and ingredients, Driftwood is considered by many to be one of the finest breweries in all of Canada.
The company was started by Jason Meyer and Kevin Hearsum. Both former brewers at Lighthouse Brewing Company, they tired of brewing the same constant rotation of beers and struck out on their own to create a brand-new brewery. Soon after the launch another former coworker, Gary Lindsay, joined the team to provide his marketing and sales expertise. The rest is history! As the team continued to grow so too did their line-up of beers. The fulltime roster of beers now includes Driftwood Pale Ale, Farmhand Ale - a unique, peppery saison that is fabulous for both drinking and cooking, White Bark Ale, Crooked Coast Altbier, Blackstone Porter, and the legendary Fat Tug IPA - Canadian Beer of the Year in 2011. Driftwood also produces annual seasonal releases like Sartori Harvest IPA, Singularity Russian Imperial Stout, barley wines, and a variety of sour beers - all of which spend approximately one year aging in barrels to achieve the proper amount of sour funk before they're released to the public, as well as one-of releases.
Not wanting to be confined to a limited range of beers or particular styles of beer, Driftwood set out to "brew the beer [they] love." Inspired by many Belgian beer styles and techniques, this combined with their utilization of a wide variety of unique yeast strains has allowed them to produce and extract more flavours in their beers than what are commonly found in other North American breweries. Rest assured though, nothing Driftwood ever produces contains anything in the way of artificial flavours.
The creation of this broad flavour palate challenges both the brewers and the consumers and helps keep the processes of production and consumption equally interesting. The extremely diverse range of Driftwood's sour and seasonal releases is testament to this desire to keep things interesting.
Plans and Aspirations
The constant desire to keep things interesting permeates the future plans of Driftwood. Aiming to release more beers throughout the year - approximately one release per every three to four months - these seasonal releases will include barrel-aged beers, one-of beers like last year's Gose-Uh, and of course, as they are considered to be "the next wave," plenty of sour beers. Regardless of their releases, Driftwood will no doubt remain at the forefront of Canadian microbreweries for the foreseeable future.