March 20, 2012
Recently, there are so many new breweries opening in BC that it’s becoming hard to keep track of them all. During this week’s beer run to our local store , we found that Hoyne Brewery had released 4 new beers( The Big Bock, Down Easy Pale Ale, Devil’s Dream IPA, Hoyne Pilsner). Hoyne’s is located in Victoria, and their Brew Master, Sean Hoyne, has an impressive resume, including previous experience brewing for Swan’s Hotel & Brewpub and founding Canoe Brewpub. Unfortunately, but not surprisingly, our local store was already sold out of the Devil’s Dream IPA. (Note: If you want to prove that you make a good beer, a hoppy IPA is a very popular style in BC which most of the beer connoisseurs will flock to.) So, V1rgilmdm and I were left to pick from the remaining 3 beers. We decided to each pick different styles—V1rgil took The Big Bock and I took the Hoyne Pilsner. Both stood out as uncommon launch beers.
The first thing we noticed was the commercial descriptions for these brews. They are a little…poetic—and seeing as Brewmaster Sean Hoyne’s background is Literature (M.A. from UVic), this shouldn’t come as a surprise. Craft brewing is the marriage of scientific technique and artistic passion, and this is evident in Hoyne’s approach to brewing.
On the third night, I handed my sweetie a tall slender Pilsner. Perfectly poured. While holding it up and gazing either at it, or through it at me, she said softly, “you are so fine to me.” It was hard to tell if she meant to be heard. “Ambiguity, thy Name is Woman”, I nearly uttered. Whether she was speaking to me, or to the beer, it was merely semantics. The deal was sealed. I would make it my life”s work to make fine beer.
The Hoyne Pilsner comes in a 650ml bottle with an alcohol by volume content of 5.5%. And, showing they have nothing to hide, the brewery was kind enough to list the ingredients used to make this brew: Grains (CDN Superior Pilsner, Munich, Vienna, Carapils) Hops (Czech, Saaz, Hallertau, Hersbrucker, German Spalter). The pilsner poured a clear, golden-yellow colour with lots of carbonation that created a huge, thick, creamy, white head with great retention. I noticed a strong funky aroma of straw and grassy hops, with a bit of soapiness which is spot on for a Pilsner from my experience. I found the taste had a full body up front and noticed some honey sweetness with a crisp, fresh feel on the palate. The finish had a hint of lemon and a very mild bitterness. Overall I really enjoyed drinking this beer and look forward to sitting out on the patio in the sun sipping a cold one.
The Majestic Rooster, unafraid to strut his colours. Proud. His voice clear and strong (maybe a bit annoying if you were hoping to sleep in). When he boldly proclaims his dominion, his entire flock listens, or pretends not to listen. Here is to standing proud, admiring your flock, and proclaiming “cock-a-doodle-do!”
The Hoyne Big Bock, formerly Big Cock Bock (one can only assume the LDB had something to do with the name change) is a Dunkler Bock, which is a strong, full-bodied lager darkened by high-coloured malts. The Big Bock comes in a 650ml bottle with an alcohol by volume content of 6.5% alcohol. Again the brewery hides nothing and lists the ingredients used to make the beer: Grains: Carapils, Superior Pilsen, Chocolate. Hops: German Noble Varieties.
The Bock poured a medium brown, with a light head that dissipated quickly. The aroma carried some sweet malt with a bit of hop smell. My first sip was nicely carbonated and had a sweet front with a bit of hop-bitterness and grassy aftertaste. The Bock had a caramel-like finish. Overall I was expecting more flavour and more malt complexity from this beer, but it’s certainly a departure from the standard launch beers.
Other reviews worth checking out:
urbandiner.ca reviews Hoyne Pilsner
left4beer reviews Hoyne’s Devil’s Dream IPA and Hoyne Dark Matter
Leapbeer reviews Hoyne’s Down Easy Pale Ale