Big Things Brewing in B.C.

In large cities, you’ll often hear the phrase “something’s always brewing,” but that saying could rightfully be applied to British Columbia these days. With dozens of craft breweries in Vancouver and Victoria plus one or more in nearly every small town, B.C. has become a destination for craft beer lovers.

If you plan to try some of our local flavours, read on: We’ve highlighted several of the newest breweries to open their doors in the Sea to Sky Corridor. Each has its own signature atmosphere in the taphouse and offers unique and ever-changing beer selections. One thing they have in common is a love for quality beer and a dedication to creating interesting and delicious brews.

Coast Mountain Brewing

Like many folks who grow up in Whistler, Kevin Winter and his wife wanted to raise their children in the community they loved. To keep that dream alive, Winter tapped his entrepreneurial side and opened Coast Mountain Brewing in September 2016. Winter and his team of brewers seek to celebrate Whistler’s adventurous, outdoorsy spirit in their unique recipes.

“What the mountain and the outdoor lifestyle provide us here, we want to bring that into our glass. That outdoor inspiration is hopefully translated into the beers that we produce here,” Winter says.
While sours and hoppy beers will always be brewing, Coast Mountain offers a wide range of styles. Their current lineup includes: Day Dreamer N.E. IPA, The Surveyor IPA, Forecast West Coast Pale Ale, Field Guide Ale, Treeline Lager, plus a constant rotation of experimental brews.

This summer, they’re bringing back their Juice Box Wit, a 5 per cent ABV (alcohol by volume) wit beer that’s soured with lactobacillus culture and features fresh orange peel and coriander. Locally baked pretzel buns and other snacks are available in the taphouse.  

Coast Mountain Brewing’s beer is available at B.C. Liquor stores, private liquor stores in Whistler and Squamish and restaurants and pubs in Whistler.

#2-1212 Alpha Lake Road, Whistler. | 604-962-3230

A-Frame Brewing Co.

Beer is often associated with good times, and in that spirit A-Frame Brewing Co.’s owners Jeff Oldenborger and Caylin Glazier have created a brewery with joyfully nostalgic roots. The brewery itself is named after an A-framed cabin that created fond memories for Jeff, Caylin and their family, and the beers are all named after lakes across B.C. that have found places in the hearts of A-Frame’s employees.  

With Brewmaster Andrew Sawyer manning the machinery, A-Frame Brewing Co. officially poured its first pints in December 2016.

“Our vision and focus is clean, clear-tasting and sessionable beers — let the beer be beer — but make it with the passion that can only come in small-craft batches,” says Glazier.
A-Frame’s core beers are their Okanagan Lake Cream Ale, Magic Lake Porter, Shuswap Lake IPA, and Sproat Lake Pale Ale. This summer a Belgian-style White Lake Wit will join the brewery’s regular rotation of seasonal beers.

Food trucks are regularly scheduled to stop by the brewery, and locally made snacks are available in the taphouse. A-Frame beer is available in private liquor stores and select restaurants and pubs in Squamish, Whistler and Vancouver.

#1-38927 Queen’s Way, Squamish. | 604-892-0777

Backcountry Brewing

Backcountry Brewing was formed by a group of friends who all wanted to make beer, but in different locations across B.C. On April 1, 2017, they opened for business in Brewmaster John Folinsbee’s chosen locale of Squamish, with a 6,000-square-foot brewery, tasting room and kitchen.  

Following the “backcountry” theme, the taphouse is built like a 1970s-era ski hut with wooden beams, lanterns, and trail maps on the tabletops. Food is a big part of the experience here, so be sure to try Head Chef Artie McGee’s hand-tossed thin-crust pizzas, pastas, seasonal salads and snacks, which are all crafted from scratch in-house. And ask your server for the best beer pairing.

Backcountry’s Ridgerunner Pilsner, Widowmaker IPA and Trailbreaker Pale Ale are always available, but there’s a lengthy list of rotating beers on tap, too. This year, Backcountry Brewing created a collaboration beer for Vancouver Craft Beer Week. Teaming up with Coast Mountain Brewing and North Vancouver’s Beere Brewing, the trio crafted a double pilsner.  

“Brewed to be exceptionally clean and soft, this beer should be the ideal platform to showcase some really cool hop varietals. Vic Secret, Enigma, Citra and Mosaic are being used to create a powerful melange of fruit and dankness,” says co-founder Ben Reeder.  

Backcountry Brewing’s beer is available at select B.C. Liquor stores, private liquor stores, restaurants and pubs in Squamish, Whistler and the Lower Mainland.   

#405-1201 Commercial Way, Squamish | 604-567-BREW(2739)

Pemberton Brewing Co.

In March 2018, Geoff Macdonald and Jeff Lawrence opened Pemberton Brewing Co. to a thirsty town that was itching for a craft brewery. Pemberton Brewing’s tasting room is a casual place that features reclaimed wood to reflect the area’s logging history. The building follows an open-concept layout, so guests can enjoy the intimacy of sitting within a functioning brewery.

Geoff and Jeff will always have some IPAs on tap, but plan to experiment with many styles. Their current lineup includes the Long Road IPA, Plowhand Pale Ale, Blackwater Stout, Birkenhead Blonde, Cream Puff Northeast Pale Ale and Laid Back Northeast IPA.

“The blonde is a big one for us for summertime. It’s a very approachable, refreshing, low-IBU (International Bitterness Unit), low-hop kind of beer you can take with you on a sunny day,” Macdonald says.

This summer they’re also planning to develop their juicy and refreshing New England-style beers, plus brew up a fruity sour and a saison.

Pemberton Brewing Co. beer is available at the taphouse and rotates through select restaurants and pubs in Pemberton and Whistler. Snacks will soon be available on-site, plus the owners are hoping to bring in food trucks to provide full meals.  

#5-6 -1936 Stonecutter Place, Pemberton. | 604-894-BEER(2337)

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