Collective Arts Brewing located in Hamilton, Ontario first got my attention..well I actually don’t know how. But all I remember is I got some Rhyme & Reason Extra Pale Ale and it really sat well with me. Finding a good Pale Ale from Quebec was a tough task but, when I was introduced to Collective Arts from Ontario it showed me that hops in Canada wasn’t a lost cause. Of course Ma Brasseries Pale Ale has a long lasting stamp on my taste buds, and I consider it truly the best Pale Ale from Quebec but, I had no clue what else was out there in Canada. Collective Arts was my first introduction into craft beer outside of Quebec and I was highly impressed with what this beer had to offer. Its impression on me resulted in a day trip to Ottawa to obtain some shelf beers from the LCBO.
Since the inception of my blog, Collective Arts through some twitter correspondence has been aware of my thoughts on their beer. With the lack of great IPAs in Quebec, Ontario has found their competitive advantage in terms of beers. Although Quebec is the reigning champion in the beer market of Canada, Ontario is rapidly catching up. And I’ve found that one of Ontario’s specialities is IPAs. Of course not limited to IPAs, but their IPAs are what makes the great state of Ontario reach just a little bit closer to the Canadian beer torch. However, there are still beer styles that lack in Ontario thus creating a sort of collective balance between Ontario and Quebec. I know I know, I’m so funny. But hey word choice can be an art too. There I did it twice. Collective Arts Session IPA and Pale Ale are fantastic examples of what Ontario IPAs have to offer us. Along with Great Lake Brewery , who I find are the king of hops, and many many other breweries Ontario is fast taking over the map of craft beer.
Collective Arts is laying down the hammer on what year round IPAs should taste like. And they certainly are in a world of their own! And I mean that in a great way! For all the Ontarians you can find Collective Arts Beer at LCBOs and grocery stores province wide and for you Quebec folk, we can find some Collective Arts at SAQ here and there. So far I have only seen the Rhyme & Reason, but Ottawa is only two hours and 30 minutes away, and there are few smaller LCBOs on the way.
Pale Ale || ABV: 5.7% || IBU: 55
This one is an extra Pale Ale, and a great one at that. I purchased this beer at LCBO on a trip to Ottawa and I am very satisfied with what this pale ale has to offer. Any time you read extra Pale Ale it means it is somewhere in-between a Pale Ale and an IPA. It’s pretty much a Pale Ale that’s not a Pale Ale but is also not an IPA. Kinda confusing I know. Upon my first sip I had a light bulb magically appear above my head and I knew this had made my the list of my top Pale Ale’s from Canada. Since this one’s an extra Pale Ale it’s not as light as most Pale Ales tend to be, which I say in a very positive way. Because Collective Arts really does add the extra in this Pale Ale.
Session IPA || ABV: 4.4%|| IBU: 38
Although not highly rated overall or by style on Rate Beer, this is still a great example of a hoppy session IPA. Does it stand the test of time as a top session IPA? Probably not, but it still deserves a lot more recognition than it has been given. Sure to impress the everyday beer drinker, but the beer geek may be a bit more critical. My stance, ill have a sixer of this any day. The light session-able charcater mixed in with their perfect blend of hoppy notes make this beer a delight to drink down.
Written by HopCitizen. Photography by HopCitizen.