TORONTO, ON – In what is believed to be the first brewing project of its kind in Canada, five Ontario brewers – Iain McOustra of Amsterdam Brewing, Jason Fisher and Jeff Boeders of Indie Alehouse, Sam Corbeil of Sawdust City Brewing, and Mike Lackey of Great Lakes Brewery – have collaborated on a beer made with the ingredients and process used to brew traditional lambics in Belgium.
In mid-October, the group gathered at Indie Alehouse in Toronto to start the brew with Ontario wheat and aged hops. After a five hour boil, the wort was transferred to kegs and driven to the Good Earth vineyard in Beamsville, where it was poured into shallow open vessels known as coolships and left exposed for almost 18 hours to allow local wild yeast to inoculate the liquid.
It was then brought back to Toronto and poured into barrels from Featherstone Winery, and it’s now sitting in cold storage at Great Lakes Brewery, where it will remain for several years. Similar brews will be made in each of the next few years, after which the different vintages will be blended together to create the world’s first Niambic – a lambic-style beer made with wild yeast from the Niagara region.