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East Coast Beer and Breweries: A Historic Maritime Tradition


Garrison Brewing Company in Halifax (Photo: Nicole Bratt)

Canada’s east coasters love their beer and it shows. The Martimes region is famous for its historic breweries and has been producing the delicious amber drink since the early 19th century. It has given the rest of Canada notable brands Alexander Keith’s and Moosehead. Jason Foster, a CBC beer columnist, insists that Atlantic Canada has developed a unique beer personality that is essentially British in balance and fruitiness, to reflect local history and culture.

Taste this regional flavour with Anchor Ales microbrews (Miramichi, New Brunswick), Quidi Vidi Brewing beers (St. John’s, Newfoundland), Sea Level Brewing (Port Williams, Nova Scotia), Rockbottom Brewpub (Halifax, Nova Scotia), Gahan House (Charlottetown, Prince Edward Island) and so many other craft breweries and microbreweries dotting the local maps. Among the bigger producers, Propeller Brewing (Halifax), Garrison (Halifax), Pumphouse (Moncton, New Brunswick) and Picaroons (Fredericton, New Brunswick) products are worth checking out and bringing home as souvenirs. Bigger restaurants and liquor stores in the breweries’ home provinces will carry these brands.

In Halifax, be sure to squeeze in a theatrical tour of Alexander Keith’s, founded in 1820, where actors in period costumes will show you beer history. While you are at it, head to the city’s watering holes, such as historical Beer Market, the Henry House or The Alehouse.

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