MACDOUGALL SETTLEMENT, NB – A new brewery focused on wild and sour ales will be opening soon in MacDougall Settlement, a small New Brunswick community located a half-hour north of Moncton.
Valonray Farmhouse Brewery has been founded by Philippe Fontaine, an engineer and former Canadian Armed Forces member, who has built the brewery from scratch on a farm that his been owned by his family for seven generations.
In an interview with Atlantic Canada Beer Blog, Fontaine explains that he drew influence from American breweries such as Jolly Pumpkin, The Bruery, and New Belgium, and will be producing beers that are exclusively open-fermented and bottle-refermented.
The initial Valonray line-up will feature five beers – a Tripel, a Single, a Blonde ale, Pale ale, and a Saison – all fermented using various strains of Saccharomyces. Fontaine describes them to ACBB as follows:
The Tripel and Single have a similar recipe, but the results are quite different because of higher amount of simple sugars in the Tripel. The Blonde is actually closer to a Belgian Golden Strong, but with lower alcohol. The Pale ale was designed to be slightly more malt-forward to highlight our use of craft malts. The Saison is definitely our flagship, and various iterations of this recipe will be released in the future.
Over the next year, the brewery will shift to all-Brettanomyces brewing, and will release new versions of the initial beers, as well as “a Saison brewed with wild Ontario yeast and Brett, a Witbier, [and] a Norwegian Kveik style ale.” Sour beer production is also in the works, with “an Oud Bruin style ale, a Flanders Red style and a Lambic style (including Kriek and Framboise)” all planned for release in coming years.
Aside from the brewhouse and retail store, Valonray will also include a hops field that Fontaine hopes will produce all of the hops needed by the brewery within five years, and a cherry orchard to grow fruit for select beers. Other ingredients are being sourced from as close to the brewery as possible, included locally grown and produced malt from Horton Ridge Malt and Grain
The first beers from Valonray Farmhouse Brewery will be available in 750 ml bottles at the brewery and select ANBL locations by early April, pending final approvals. For more details, see the full ACBB article, and the Valonray website and Facebook page.