Most people remember when they had their first craft or micro-brewed beer. The experience is often a small epiphany, accompanied by comments like: “What? – beer can taste like this!?”. Our conversion to the church-of-good-beer happened in Scotland, in the tiny hamlet of Glenisla. We were living in Scotland while serving our timber frame carpentry apprenticeships which would lead to us starting this, and every Thursday we’d go to the local pub for a pint with our co-workers. The beer was served at cellar temperature with a hand pump, or “beer engine”, and was almost flat. And it was AMAZING. It was malty, with fruity aromas and flavours, and it usually clocked in at a whopping 3.5 to 4 % alcohol. We had just been introduced to cask conditioned ale, also known as real ale in the UK.
Inspired by the beer, we went to visit the relatively new brewery (along with several distilleries in the area), and were blown away. Our noses we assaulted with the thick sweet aroma of malted barley steeping in hot water, and the huge shiny stainless steel tanks mesmerized us. Wouldn’t it be cool to start a brewery someday…
Well, many years went by as we came back to Canada and started our timber frame construction business, and the brewery idea fell to the back-burner. Things were going well with the construction, but then, during the 2008 worldwide recession, our business had a very difficult downturn, as clients got nervous and either cancelled or delayed their building projects.
With nothing to build for several months, we finally had time to try our luck at home-brewing. We cobbled together a few pots, and began brewing beers based on the styles we enjoyed in the UK. The results were delicious. As we began sharing our beer with friends and family, the idea of someday opening a brewery was re-kindled. Four years, and a lot of hard work later, we finally opened our doors to the public on June 23rd, 2012. Fast forward to today, and we now have a diverse group of talented people working with us to brew, sell and distribute our beer across the province of Quebec. We hope Le Castor’s beers will excite your taste buds & inspire you to begin your own craft beer journey of discovery. Cheers!