Back in Calgary

I’ve been loose with my posting this past little while. It doesn’t help when you’re at home and you have no router or wireless network to use, but instead have to wait until the family office is free and you can take the ADSL modem cable… Soon I may have that wireless network… or I’ll have to resort to posting from my new Motorola Razr (with full high speed EV-DO internet access)!

If I hadn’t mentioned it before, or you hadn’t gleaned it from the comments, I am back in my hometown of Calgary where I will be living with my family for the next four months in between semesters at school. I have picked up a job, and you can email me as to where I will be working. I will be remaining in the coffee industry but due to a request I will be refraining from posting about work here. That’s perfectly fine, as I will try to take my blog in a more technical direction.

A couple of days ago I spent a good amount of time with my friend Shaun pulling shots and discussing coffee. It was a good chat, distanced from the politics of Vancouver. Shaun homeroasts, and does a fine job at it. His first pull off of his Expobar Brewtus II was excellent – a complex nutty espresso. After the espresso session I was offered a bottle of my favorite beer, the St Bernardus Abt 12, a Belgian quadrupel. I gladly accepted and we enjoyed the mountain view in the sun.

Speaking of beer, I was worried I may not be able to enjoy myself as much in Alberta as I have in BC with regards to microbrew and artisanal European beers. I guess I had been out of the province for a bit. Stopping in at Willow Park Liquor, Calgary’s largest quality selection of alcoholic beverages, resulted in an eyeopener. There’s a lot of great new stuff being introduced to the Calgary market. Unibroue is well represented, with not only the 750 mL cage-and-corked bottles of nearly every one of their beers (Raftman, Quelque Chose and Édition 2005 included!) but with 6 packs of Fin du Monde and others. St. Bernardus was there too, but only in the Tripel. Deus, Bière du Champagne is in stock along with the great Trappist ales of Rochefort and Orval. Wild Rose, a small Calgary brewery is offering their beers in six packs. Tree (Hophead IPA is one of my favorites) is also around as are the offerings of the Yukon Brewing Company. But, one of the best new offerings available are Rogue Ales from Newport, Oregon. Rogue has a reputation of being one of the finest American microbreweries, and their 650 mL bottles from a few select ales are available at Willow Park. I’ve had two, the Juniper Pale Ale and the Hazelnut Brown Nectar, and they have been excellent. I have their Shakespeare Stout, one of their finest offerings according to the folks at, waiting for me. The summer won’t be so lonely then. But, it could be better. When will Alberta get to taste the wonders of the Phillips IPA (or the double IPA!)?


1 Response to “Back in Calgary”

  1. 1 Jonathan Howse May 7, 2006 at 4:03 pm

    Peter, you’re definately making me miss Canada’s drinking age. 2 weeks. Then Canadian beer for me, and hopefully some pinot noir red wine. But sadly, no coffee. Please help me if you have any idea as to how I can feed my coffee addiction in rural Newfoundland.

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On tap

49th Parallel El Salvador La Montaña
Excellent coffee for everyday drinking. Well expressed acidity and classic El Salvador profile.

Bulleit Bourbon
By far the best bourbon available in BC for the price. $35 for a bottle gets you the highest rye content bourbon on the market. Lots of spice and typical bourbon corn sweetness. Excellent on its own, but also makes a mean Old Fashioned. Better than Knob Creek in my books and pretty close to Woodford Reserve.

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