Special to Postmedia News•
Sarnia-Lambton might not pop as a craft beer destination in the way that, for example, the Niagara Region does. But with a 10th brewery opening within weeks, the Imperial City and its neighbouring municipalities can’t be ignored as a brewcation creation.
And then there were 10.
Sarnia-Lambton might not pop as a craft beer destination in the way that, for example, the Niagara Region does. But with a 10th brewery opening within weeks, the Imperial City and its neighbouring municipalities can’t be ignored as a brewcation creation. There’s an unofficial ale trail waiting for you from Corunna on the St. Clair River to Grand Bend on Lake Huron.
Newest, and slated to open before patio season ends, is Point Brewing in Point Edward. It’s a brotherhood of brothers-in-law Claudio Palleschi, David Kruger and Scott Dunn opening in a former Beer Store at 705 Lite St.
“It’s an awesome benefit joining the cluster of amazing breweries, cideries and wineries coming out of Lambton County,” Kruger said. “They’ve all been welcoming and helping us along the way to get established and to combine to make this area a destination to experience.”
Palleschi, a noted homebrewer who’s been making beer in his garage and basement for years, is the head brewer and has been busy creating six beers with local hooks for Point’s opening.
On tap by the glass, in growlers if supplied by customers, and in 355-millilitre cans will be:
- Lite Street, a crushable American-style lager using barley and rice and named for the brewery’s location.
- Orange Creamsicle, an ode to the summer treat. It’s an orange and vanilla cream ale with each batch made with the zest of 600 oranges purchased next door at Sarnia Produce. Sarnia Produce then squeezes the oranges for fresh juice sold at its store.
- Huron Hazy NEIPA, a tropical IPA brewed with Citra, El Dorado and Mosaic hops boasting the full flavour and aroma that fans of New England-style IPAs love.
- 519 Brewcoast is a West Coast take on the IPA style made with ingredients grown and sourced within the 519 area code. This includes hops from both BackRoads of Parkhill and Tavistock Hops, grains from Against the Grain Malting of Petrolia and yeast from Escarpment Labs of Guelph.
- Midnight Amber is an original homebrew recipe and the beer that inspired the partners to launch Point. This is a malty American amber ale.
- Session IPA takes a kitchen sink of hops approach. This light, four per cent alcohol, piney IPA uses four hop varieties most are familiar with (Cascade, Magnum, Triple Perle, Centennial) and two you might not be (Summit and Northdown).
“We think Point Edward will embrace all of our styles,” Kruger said. “At first, our Lite Street lager might be the go-to. Our neighbourhood likes a solid light beer anyone can drink, but are adventurous and loyal to local. So we think the Orange Creamsicle and 519 Brewcoast will become favourites.”
Other breweries in Sarnia-Lambton are Big Family, Imperial City, Refined Fool and River Run in Sarnia, Black Gold in Petrolia, Stonepicker in Plympton-Wyoming, Brewster’s Mill in Grand Bend, Two Water in Corunna and Widder Station in Thedford.
The breweries, particularly the cluster in Sarnia and Point Edward, are a boon for tourism. The Southwest Ontario Tourism Corp. says inquiries about breweries and wineries by potential visitors are second only to those about beaches and outdoor activities.
“Point Edward is the advantage,” Kruger said. “Right at the end of the 402 highway you find the Bluewater Bridge, parks along the St. Clair River, sandy beaches and beautiful Lake Huron sunsets. But most importantly you find the town. Point Edward is filled with a strongly loyal and welcoming community . . . We want Point Edward to be as proud of us as we are of it.”
Cheers to that.
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