Barkerville Brewing 52 Foot Stout: I have often complained that BC does not make very many good quality basic Stouts compared to other places, a category somewhat lacking for some reason locally, however in recent years the tide has turned and finally we have some decent one’s in our province. This beer is brewed in Quesnel, BC (way up in the Cariboo region) coming in at an almost Imperial strength of 7% abv and made with Boreal Amber Birch Syrup which is produced locally.
Aroma and Appearance: In my new Spiegelau stout glass it poured a very dark mahogany colour with three fingers of tan foam and some small bubbles. The aroma consisted of cocoa, well toasted bread and smokey molasses.
Flavour: I got smoke and cocoa nibs up front followed by dark coffee, brown sugary syrup, toasted whole wheat bread and molasses and a dry cocoa powder bitter finish.
Overall Impression: BC stouts are on the map finally, this one is great and nicely integrates a local community made product.
Rating: I give it an excellent rating of 8/10, it has everything you want in a stout balanced perfectly.
Food Pairing: Honey BBQ chicken with some roasted veggies would work quite nicely here.
This place is attempting to pay homage to the history of the region with their “stake your claim” tag line, use of local products and branding. They also managed to make their way into stores in Vancouver pretty quickly so I imagine their production is quite reasonably sized. The farm that supplies the Birch Syrup for this beer is actually a place in Quenel called Moose Meadows Farm. Here’s a little local TV featurette on their birch syrup making process, I’ve never had birch syrup on it’s own so I’ll have to check it out if I see it in a store.