Your Guide to Fall Beers at the LCBO
This chilly season has some creamy, pumpkin-y, malty upsides.
It’s that time of year again. The air is getting a little colder, the leaves are falling, and we find ourselves or the people we care about buying pumpkin-flavoured everything. It’s also the time of year when the LCBO begins to release a new selection of beers for fall.
This season features a rather lengthy list of more than 30 beers, which will be slowly made available over the next couple of months. On top of the more expected styles—pumpkin beers and malty Oktoberfest lagers, for example—the LCBO will be preparing for the cold weather with a wide selection of stouts and porters. Additionally, the LCBO’s brewery highlight will boast six beers from the renowned Danish microbrewery Mikkeller.
The following are a selection of highlights from the current release, separated into styles:
Tromp Through the Pumpkin Patch—Pumpkin/Halloween/Harvest Beers
Brooklyn Brewery Post Road Pumpkin (5 per cent ABV)
Unlike many pumpkin beers, this one is very light on the pumpkin spice, allowing the roasted notes from the malts and bitterness of the hops to shine.
Samuel Adams Fat Jack Double Pumpkin (8.5 per cent ABV)
Lovely notes of toffee, nutmeg, cinnamon, and roasted pumpkin. Very warming.
Southern Tier Warlock Pumpkin Imperial Stout – (8.6 per cent ABV)
This imperial stout is rather sweet, but in the manner of a creamy pumpkin pie with chocolate drizzled on top. Rather delicious, and a good beer to share.
Buxton Jaw Gate American Pale Ale (5.6 per cent ABV)
It’s odd that this American pale ale from Derbyshire, England, is among the Halloween releases—considering it’s available from the brewery all year round. But we welcome it all the same. It’s simple done well, with some lovely citrus notes, creamy mouthfeel, and a delightfully bitter pine finish.
Muskoka Brewery Harvest Ale (7 per cent ABV)
This beer tends to get better with every release, and this year’s batch is no exception. It pours a dark, honey colour, and its wonderful balance of roasted malts and hops makes it a welcome sign of the season.
Prost! — Oktoberfest Beers
Hofbräu München Oktoberfestbier (6.3 per cent ABV)
One of the official beers of Oktoberfest in Bavaria, it’s very solid—and pours golden with light, earthy malt notes and a grassy, bitter finish.
Rickard’s Lederhosen (6.5 per cent ABV)
An interesting departure from the Rickard’s line and a new addition to its seasonal line, Rickard’s Lederhosen features roasted malt notes and a well-balanced bitterness from the chinook hops.
Beau’s Night-Märzen Oktoberfest Lager (5.5 per cent ABV)
Pours deep amber with heavy flavours of toffee followed by a mild bitterness.
The Black Blood of the Earth – Stouts and Porters
Anchor Porter (5.6 per cent ABV)
A solid beer that’s been brewed since 1972, Anchor Porter provides deep cocoa notes with a mix of vanilla and fruit—and a creamy texture with a dry finish.
Hitachino Nest Espresso Stout (7.5 per cent ABV)
A much-loved offering from this Japanese brewery, this stout is pitch black in colour and has strong flavours of cocoa and coffee.
Carlow O’Hara’s Irish Stout (4.3 per cent ABV)
Forget Guinness: this stout from Ireland is a whole other beast. Robust, with strong coffee and chocolate notes, it has a slightly sweet finish.
Mikkeller Texas Ranger Chipotle Porter (6.6 per cent ABV)
This porter will have you enjoying rich, dark, cocoa notes with a lovely chipotle burn at the back.
Mikkeller 黑/Black (17.5 per cent ABV)
With such a high alcohol content, it’s easy to be somewhat intimidated by this beer. While the alcohol burn is there, though, it balances well with the notes of cherries, raisins, and chocolate. If you have the space, this one would be worth aging for a year or two.