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Thursday, April 23, 2009

A Mill Street Variety Pack

There is some good news coming from Toronto's Mill Street Brewery today. The two time Canadian Brewery of the Year is getting ready for the launch of a new member of their bottling family, as they’ve recently received a green light from the LCBO to distribute a new six-pack.

The Mill Street Seasonal Sampler is anticipated to hit LCBO shelves late in May, and will feature their regular five year round products: Organic Lager, Tankhouse Ale, Coffee Porter, Stock Ale, and Belgian Wit. Joining them will be the newly bottled 2008 Canadian Brewing Award (CBA) Gold Medal winning Pilsner.

Mill Street has been working on this for quite some time now, but wanted to release the new mixed sixer in time for the summer months. I spoke with Mill Street’s Vice President of Sales, David Mitchell, about the news.

"The idea spawned from research that showed consumers really have an affinity for the variety of beers we make. The feedback was that many people who like Organic also like Belgian Wit and so on. We took the cue from other Craft Brewers in Western Canada, and the United States, who were bringing mixed six packs to market,” stated an excited Mitchell.

As mentioned, the Pilsner beat out a number of other great beers of the same style at the 2008 CBA’s to take home the gold and will be a nice addition to the other popular Mill Street products.

The Pilsner pours lovely bright deep gold with a rocky thin head and produces a sweet nose that co-mingles with some toasted grain and light floral notes. The taste is clean and satisfying, sweetness on the tongue up front, with some sharp spice in the finish from the Czech hops (which Brew Master, Joel Manning, has confessed to increasing). It's a nice clean, dry finish and a good example of a Czech style pils. ***This Pilsner is a new recipe. You can sample the last of the test batch down at the brewpub, which is where I tasted this the other day.**

Mill Street will also be following up this Seasonal Sampler with a Fall version that should roll out to LCBO stores in September, and it will include a different “Specialty” product.

“We have always taken pride in our "Specialty" beers that we have available on draught at our Brew Pub and in various licensees, and we wanted to deliver more variety to consumers at the LCBO level," he later added.

We have all witnessed the popularity of the Ontario Craft Brewers mixed “Discovery Packs,” so it should come as no surprise if these fly off the shelves. It will be a great way to introduce the traditional macro-lager drinkers to something new and interesting, without breaking the bank for separate six packs.

The seasonal beers that Mill Street have been producing lately have been stand-outs in the Toronto area (for those lucky enough to find some), with their Tripel, Milk Stout, dry hopped Scotch Ale, and more; which have been garnering a lot of attention. It is great to see an Ontario brewery playing with new beers on such a regular basis, and taking the first step with this endeavour should pay dividends for them.

No word yet on what the retail price will be.


Lager Bore said...

What a great way to introduce some of the more "specialty" members of their lineup. The pilsner's a good one for summer, can't wait to see what fall brings!

4 Dog Brewery said...

Thanks LCBO for letting Mill Street sell beer. That is very nice of you. Hope it wasn't too much of a bother.

Rob said...

Good to see it finally come to fruition. This should be a good little marketing tool for Mill Street, and craft beer in general. Hopefully if its successful other local breweries will follow suit.

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