B.C. Beer Blog

The who, what, where, when, why, and how of B.C. craft beer

Posts Tagged ‘brewery

Molson Scoops Prized Sartori Hops

with 19 comments

Sartori Cedar Ranch hop harvest.

Cresting the hill, a vista unfolds much changed since I last visited five years ago. Once an open field and a vision in the mind of Christian Sartori, the land is now covered by trellises draped with verdant boas sporting clusters of aromatic hops, hops that gave rise to Driftwood’s legendary Sartori Harvest IPA.

When I first paid a visit to Chris Sartori’s secluded Columbia Valley ranch, I was joined by two brewers and a brewery owner. The hop crisis had hit and I was hoping that by introducing Chris to our craft brewers, they would establish a long-term relationship that would both reduce the financial risk of his venture and help create for them a more reliable hop supply. Read the rest of this entry »

Help Wanted: Brewery Worker

with one comment

Hell’s Gate Brewing (Mark Anthony) is looking for a brewery worker:

City: Delta
State/Province: British Columbia
Position Title: Brewery Worker

Join BC’s newest brewery with a full-time job opportunity to learn the brewing business from top to bottom.

You will work a regular 9-5 shift, Monday to Friday, with occasional need for overtime. Your role will consist of:

– Assisting Brewmaster & Cellar Supervisor with projects
– Clean-up & equipment maintenance
– Operation of equipment, fillers, palletizers
– Providing direction to part-time staff
– running bottle washing equipment
– general labour
– clean-up

Mark Anthony is “a BC success story,” with brands like Mike’s Hard Lemonade, Hell’s Gate, Mission Hill Family Estate, California Cooler, Rockstar Vodka, and many others.

The starting rate for the role is $15.45 per hour, with full benefits and three weeks vacation. See the job posting to apply.

Lower Mainland Brewery Seeks Operations Supervisor

leave a comment »

Position Summary

The Operations Supervisor duties are to supervise the daily operations of blending/brewing and production of finished Wine and Beer kits to company specifications.

Key Responsibilities

• Organize/Coordinate and lead the daily operations and function to produce required product in accordance to production schedule and within the terms of the collective agreement
• Maintain proper liaisons with other departments (Maintenance, QA, Warehouse, R&D, Planning, Purchasing, Retail Store), to ensure efficient site operation and delivery of finished goods within company specifications
• Maintain/Improve yields from production
• Maintain/Improve production efficiencies
• Ensure accurate inventory control onsite raw materials used in blending
• Assign work schedules to employees
• Overtime may be required to meet deadlines
• Prioritize according to demands and deadlines
• Qualify Suppliers for sundries needed in the operation
• Purchase of department sundries and Supplies
• Equipment operational standards
• Department Safety
• Temporary staffing requirements for day to day and harvest season
• Employee coaching in a union environment
• Establish written policies and procedures for key positions in production
• Assess and identify saving opportunities on waste in the department
• Maintain daily time and attendance records and address issues with Payroll
• Recommendations on capital expenditures
• Manpower allocation and requirements
• Make recommendations on improvement of work flow and ergonomics
• Participate in employee recruitment and discipline
• Provide a safe environment to all employees in the facility.  Chairperson for plant safety committee
• Improvement for logistics and site storage

Required Knowledge, Skills and Abilities

• Strong operations background, preferably in a manufacturing food and beverage industry
• Minimum of 5 years experience in a supervisory capacity in a union environment
• Highly motivated individual committed to excellence and quality
• Understanding of production equipment operation
• Mechanical aptitude


Post secondary education (Operations Management or similar) or equivalent practical experience is required.

Interested parties should contact:
Barry Wilson, Specialized Recruiter
Apex HR Services
6620 Kitimat Road, Unit 1
Mississauga, ON
L5N 2B8
Tel: (905) 812-0800 ext.221

Written by BCbrews

February 2, 2009 at 10:18 pm

Driftwood in Production

with 2 comments

Driftwood Brewery brewmaster, Jason Meyer, talks about his plans for brewing various styles of beer for a constantly-changing offering (Photo © 2008 Rick Green).

Driftwood Brewery brewmaster, Jason Meyer, talks about his plans for brewing various styles of beer for a constantly-changing offering (Photo © 2008 Rick Green).

Jason Meyer is in the middle of making Driftwood Brewery’s first commercial batch of beer. Their flagship Driftwood Ale and Farmhand Ale saison have finished fermenting. We’re getting closer to experiencing a welcome addition to B.C.’s craft-brewing scene. Driftwood expect to launch these in Victoria this month.

According to Meyer, their 5% Driftwood Ale is a “perfect marriage of Northwest and German hops balanced with cotton candy malt notes and a hint of fruit courtesy of our own special yeast.”

Farmhand Ale is a traditional Belgian-style farmhouse ale named for the beer that seasonal farm workers consumed when bringing in the harvest. At 5.5% ABV, this ale was made with sour mash and added spice.

While Driftwood’s primary market will be Vancouver Island, brewery President, Kevin Hearsum, intimated that their beer will also be available at The Alibi Room in Vancouver. We may also be lucky to see some 650ml bottles with the SRP of $4.75 in select stores.

To track Driftwood’s progress, you can find photos and video on the brewery’s Facebook page. I also have photos on Flickr from my visit there on September 5.

New Brewery Ferments in Victoria

leave a comment »

Third-hand brewing system originally from Flying Monkey Brewery in Olathe, Kansas.

Third-hand brewing system originally from Flying Monkey Brewery in Olathe, Kansas.

Just when you thought Victoria had enough breweries, another one is about to float in on the capital’s wave of craft brewing success. Driftwood Brewery is a new venture of Kevin Hearsum and Jason Meyer, formerly of Lighthouse Brewing. Meyer, Driftwood’s brewmaster, is a BJCP certified beer judge, past President of the Edmonton Homebrewers’ Guild, and Alley Kat’s first employee.

Driftwood will be a production micro-brewery producing draught largely for bars and restaurants in the Victoria area, along with 650ml bottles in select private liquor stores. Some seasonal releases will only be available in bottles. (I think we can persuade Driftwood to send some of their beer over the pond to Vancouver, knowing Nigel Springthorpe at the Alibi Room will want to stop by on his regular trips to the Island.)

What makes Driftwood different? According to Meyer, “We plan on providing an eclectic mix of high quality brews with a continuously changing selection and a decidedly Belgian slant. Expect to see everything from styles familiar to Northwest beer lovers (we love our “C” hops as much as anyone) to wild and brettanomyces-fermented, wood-aged, sour mash, and other adventures in flavour.”

Driftwood brewmaster, Jason Meyer, stands in front of his vented mash tun.

Driftwood brewmaster, Jason Meyer, stands in front of his vented mash tun.

This is welcome news for B.C. We won’t have to import Belgian-style beer from Quebec, the U.S., or Europe to get our fix. There is a building interest in Belgians with many brewpubs and micro-breweries releasing fruit beers, dubbels, tripels, and Wits, Granville Island being just the latest with their limited release Belgian Wit now available. James Walton, brewmaster of Vancouver’s Storm Brewing, has been the most experimental with his phenomenal fruit lambics that were ahead of their time for sufficient acceptance by the local market — unfortunate because he is no longer making them. Spinnaker’s Rob Monk released a saison at the beginning of this year that tasted more like an abbey ale due to the predominant presence of bubble gum in the flavour profile. Nevertheless, I hope he continues to work on this versatile style.

Driftwood is currently under construction; they just received their brewing equipment this week. If you are interested in following their progress, you can track it through their Facebook page. And while Hearsum and Meyer have already made dozens of experimental brews in their pilot brewery, they don’t expect to be in production until the fall. Their goal is to produce 2,000 hectolitres in the first year and 5,000-7,000 hectolitres within five years.

Although they intend on exhibiting at the GCBF, Meyer doesn’t think they will have any beer to offer. Nevertheless, I”m sure they’ll be happy if you stopped by for a chat.

Driftwood Brewery
450 Hillside Avenue, Unit 102
Victoria, BC  V8T 1Y7
Tel: (250) 381-BREW (2739)
Fax: (250) 384-2333

Phillips Makes Vancouver Inroads

leave a comment »

Victoria’s Phillips Brewing has been expanding thanks to its aggressive ambition to release a seasonal beer every month. That goal had been momentarily set back in May as they moved from Esquimalt into a new brewery in Victoria. Now getting settled in, we should see Phillips get back on track with this week’s release of their new WheatKing Hefeweizen.

Phillips has been steadily making inroads into the Vancouver market. Eight of their products have BCLDB listings, which means they are available throughout the province. (Given the LDB’s logistics, I recommend you check the freshness date before purchasing if buying from a government liquor store as they do not refrigerate.) In Vancouver, the fullest range is available (and refrigerated) at:

Brewery Creek Cold Beer & Wine
3045 Main Street, Vancouver
Tel: (604) 872-3373
Hours: 11:00am – 11:00pm daily

Firefly Fine Wine and Ales
2857 Cambie Street, Vancouver
Tel: (604) 875-3325
Hours: 10:00am – 11:00pm daily

Draft taps have also been popping up in more locations. Here’s the current disposition:

Blue Buck
· Morrissey Irish

· Moonraker Pub
· The Railway Club

Longboat Double Chocolate Porter 
· Listel Hotel
· Nu Restaurant

Phoenix Lager
· The Irish Heather
· The Whip

Raspberry Wheat 
· Narrow Artist Lounge
· The Wolf & Hound
· Waazubee Cafe and Bar

Surly Blonde Belgian Triple
· Alibi Room
· Backstage Lounge
· Feenies Restaurant

If you are interested in carrying Phillips products in your bar, pub, or restaurant, call Kurtis Lysholm at (778) 866-0360.