Remember that blustery road trip we braved over the holiday break? We drove through blizzards trekking through BC's interior to get to Nelson, maybe one of the most character-filled and charming BC towns we ever did see. You may recall we visited all of the breweries who would let us in, including the aforementioned Nelson Brewing Co.
Nestled in the heart of downtown on the legendary Baker Street, you'll find Backroads Brewing. It looked like a darned cool place to chill at from outside, so we were not surprised to enter into a packed tasting room on a Monday afternoon. As we do, we snuggled up at the bar, where Steve welcomed us.
Like a short menu in a bistro, I have come one to believe that breweries with short tap menus make great beer. So imagine my sheer delight to look up and find only a handful of brews on tap. Oh baby, oh baby!
From a bumpin atmosphere (even on a Monday afternoon), to tasty brews and friendly service, we were smitten from the moment we met Backroads!
Brent Malysh, owner and visionary, took some time to chat with us about the Backroads story. What got him (and us) the most excited? Their brewmaster, Mike Kelly, is a part owner! And it doesn't stop there: he's brought with him a legendary resume including time at Whistler Brewing, Howe Sound and Nelson Brewing just up the street. Brent got pumped talking to us about Mike's knowledge and application of microbiology - and honestly, it just made us want to come back and learn more!
Ok, onto the beer! Y'all know my affinity for IPAs anytime of year, and for strong brews in the wintertime...this place was designed for me! It was super hard for us to pick our favorites, but we'll give it a go!
Rob's Pick: He had 3 he just couldn't imagine living without. The Saison (6% ABV and 19IBU) was super fresh, a bit peppery and had some earthy tones as you would expect from a Farmhouse Ale. He also loved the Newboots Super IPA (more on that soon) and the Cabin Fever Winter Ale. Cabin Fever (8%ABV 15 IBU) is just like it sounds: all the taste of winter in a cup! Toffee and chocolate malts create a backdrop for the more festive flavors of orange and cinnamon.
Jody's Pick: remember I'm a sucker for IPAs? Well, I fell in love with the Newboots Super IPA. Clocking in at a rich 8.1% ABV (75IBU), well, let's just say I was a chatty cathy after a pint! It's a HOP party!
Bar Pick: Steve said he was a Saison fan...he spoke with enthusiasm about the balance of citrus and pepper.
Overall, we're dreaming of our next visit to Nelson. I promise to take better tasting notes next time: I can barely read my scribbles, but my memory is clear...Backroad makes GREAT beer!