Thursday, November 12, 2009

Free Beer!

Well, not exactly, but now that I've got your attention...

There was some discussion on EJ’s blog recently about her love of coffee and about possibly giving it up. That sort of got me thinking about my own habits of enjoying good coffee and good beer.

It’s funny, when I was younger I used to indulge in larger quantities of both, but now I find that this is much less appealing than if I just have good quality coffee or beer. Sara refers to me as a bit of a coffee and beer snob:)

Seriously though, to start with, I can’t understand people who drink large quantities of Tim Horton’s coffee. To me, Tim Horton’s is worse than even McDonald’s coffee….and McD’s coffee is certainly no roaring hell!

Give me a good dark roast from Hillside, Multituli or Kicking Horse any day and I’m happy with limiting my coffee intake to one each morning. Okay, sometimes two on weekends.

The same goes for beer. You could offer me several name brand beers like Blue, Canadian or Bud light, and I would gladly turn them down in exchange for one good dark ale or stout. My friend Peter often refers to the above mentioned beers as ‘Weasle Piss’ and I tend to agree. Give me a Guinness, Smithwicks or Muskoka Dark any day.

The problem of course with liking a good quality beer however is that they do tend to be a little more expensive. Given the fact that my taste buds are more satisfied with a more flavourful beer, this all evens out though.

There has been a recent trend in the Canadian market to offer quality beer at a more competitive price. After all, the only reason that Molson’s and Labatt’s products are so expensive is to pay for their slick advertising campaigns. It certainly isn’t due to their beer being any good;)

During the summer months, I do like to enjoy a lighter beer and have discovered PC Honey Red. Yes, that’s President’s Choice. The same noname brand that makes grocery items. This is an excellent beer that I would challenge anyone to compare with a Sleeman’s Honey Brown. The best part is that it is considerably less expensive.

Another recent discovery, or re-discovery, was Upper Canada Dark. This is an excellent Dark Ale that I used to have on occasion a number of years ago. However, I just accidently found out that it is now being marketed as a discounted beer. Yippee!!! Who knew? I certainly didn’t. When did this happen? This is an extremely good dark ale brewed in Canada that compares favourably to English or Irish dark ales, but at a fraction of the price.

Okay, maybe I’ll treat myself to a second coffee this morning….and I’m also looking forward to an Upper Canada Dark this evening. Cheers!


  1. Love this post, and yes your heading brought me here. This one almost seems like I would have written it, well with a US feel (no Tim Horton's down here).
    Won't drink the Buds and Millers of the world. I can occassionally chase down a Molson Export, but definately prefer the micros. Give me a nice Oatmeal Stout, a heavily hopped IPA, or a good Pale Ale any day of the week.
    I have a beer of the week section on my blog if you are interested.

  2. I find myself more of a Coffee than Beer Guy, (give me a Large(Grande) Starbucks Mild with 2 shots after a long run and I am golden), but that does not mean I don't enjoy a good Guinness now and then. One you might want to try, that Brian introduced me to, is a Neustadt 10w30 (
    I should write a post on Rums....

  3. For a while, I tried to be a "beer snob" like you. I would go to the pub and drink pints of Newcastle or Blanche de Chambly with the lads. Didn't take.

    Now I'll drink anything that has more than 5% alcohol in it and/or 2 shots of espresso.

  4. Derrick,
    Why not combine the best of both worlds?


  5. Sank,
    Yes, just noticed your beer of the week earlier. Love it. You are certainly not missing anything with Tim's coffee though. Oatmeal Stout....yum! Haven't tried any of the micro breweries in your area. We get down to the the Adirondacks more and love sampling from there. and beer together though? That's where you've lost me;)

    Have to admit I do like Starbucks a bazillion times more than Tim's, though I still refuse to speak Starbuckeese...and get the rolling from the eyes from staff there. Neustadt sounds very interesting. Will look for it. Though I'm really on to the 'inexpensive + quality beer' kick right now.

    Ah Newcastle...used to enjoy it often after working our weekly 12 hr shift on Friday nights at a running shop in the mid-80's. Then it was early Saturday morning tempo runs.

  6. I think I recall a while ago when we went to the PG after work on Fridays that it was either a Molsons Ex or Golden that was your brew of choice. But that was when you were young and had hair down to your shoulders. When you do the KK I will introduce you to 1516.

  7. Mike,
    Yes I think the Ex years were before I discovered the joys of Guinness and The Pogues while at the Toucan. Newcastle came later, but always back to the Guinness.

    Looking forward to a 1516....I think??

  8. Amen bro...but since I found that I have celiac disease I had to switch from beer to scotch. NOT COMPLAINING. Having a nice coffee right now but I have to wait until at least 12:00 to have my first Oban!

  9. I thought us tee-totallers had taught you to drink nothing stronger than our good weak instant coffee.

  10. Moogy, no hearts goes out to you. Glad you are happy with your alternative though.

    Instant coffee?......blech! Took some to R&I last year and maybe that was my problem. Still don't know how you guys drink that stuff...though it's probably better than Tim Hortons.