Casks for Surrey Memorial Hospital Fundraiser: was presented by South Fraser Beer Club and hosted at Big Ridge Brewing Co this past Thursday, August 28th starting at 6pm. This event was created by Scott to show his appreciation for Surrey Memorial who earlier in the year saved his daughter’s life from a near drowning incident. Both of my children were born there and I have nothing but great things to say about the people that work at that hospital as well as the facility itself, so I was more than happy to go drink some beer for a cause, throw some money at a 50/50 draw, and I also donated a tasting prize pack of my own to help raise funds (see pictures at the bottom). Proceeds from the casks and all the raffle prizes and draws were donated to the Surrey Memorial Hospital Foundation and a lot of places were very generous in sending prizes for the raffle.
My Overall Impression: This was fun, basically a pub night with raffles, music, a good crowd and a kid free date night for myself and the wife thanks to my parents. I am more than happy to raise a a bunch of pints towards a good cause (I mean who isn’t right?), plus the food was good, the service was fast and they had casks. There were three casks of local beer all pictured below from left to right: a Coconut Wheat Ale from Big Ridge Brewing, a Super 8 Bit IPA from Fuggles & Warlock, lastly a Hop Therapy ISA from Russell Brewing Company. Each of these casks were quite good – personally I thought the Super 8 Bit was the best – however each beer belonged there and made its presence known.
Cost of Event & Value For Money: Fundraisers are really as cheap or expensive as you want them to be so in terms of raffles and such it was $20 for a wing-span of tickets, the beer was reasonable (never did see the cost, but didn’t care either) and the food was typical prices for the area. I’d say the night out cost us about $200 all in, including my donations, tips, the food and lots of drinks. Some may call that an expensive night out, but really most of it was for charity so not too shabby. We basically ate appetizers and dessert with drinks throughout.
Best in Show: For more reasons than just the awesome flavour, Fuggles & Warlock Super 8 Bit IPA wasn’t only the best beer but I believe they were the leaders in the “all proceeds of the cask” front which lead to a very quick agreement from all brewers that they proceeds would be donated. Perhaps that was always the plan, perhaps not, either way it’s a very cool story on their part. It also earned me my Artisan Badge on Untappd for 100 unique check-ins , yes I am way behind others on here as only joined a few months ago. My Untappd Handle is venturinginvancouver if you want to follow my there.
Highlights of the Event: I was impressed with the quality of prizes being offered, lots of donated gift cards, a $300 satchel,some craft beer and so on. As well, previously mentioned, I enjoyed the casks of beer quite a bit. Personally I am a huge fan of cask beer because of the more natural carbonation process which creates a wonderful carbonation texture in the beer that you just can’t replicate anywhere other than bottle re-fermentation which is a second best option. The casks were all at proper cask temperature which is great for flavour and they serve proper pints at this place too as an added bonus. They had DJ Alibaba who played a Throwback Thursday style 80’s music set. Lastly, this place has a shuttle on call to drive people home safely (within a reasonable distance) and that honestly gains a lot of respect in my mind for the restaurant. My father drove us to and from (Thanks Dad!), it felt like I was 14 again, but we did go to a bar at least!
Disappointments: Can’t think of much, I mean I didn’t win anything so I guess that counts. Usually my biggest complaints in bars is the slow service, but honestly this place is always quite reasonable. Our drinks arrived quickly, our food hot and we were checked in on regularly.
Other Pictures of the Night: