Looking to expand your beer horizons but not sure where to start? The Donnelly Group's beer passport offers some guidance
There's a lot going on during Vancouver Craft Beer Week, which runs until June 5, but if you're looking for a relatively effortless way to get in the spirit just ask for a beer passport the next time you're in a Donnelly Group bar. This particular passport doesn't list countries, however, but rather—you guessed it—different types of beer. It's a list that's designed to encourage drinkers to get out of their respective comfort zones (yes, we're talking to you, perpetual pilsner drinkers). "We are massive fans of Vancouver Craft Beer Week," says Damon Holowchak, director of marketing at Donnelly Group, the company behind popular Vancouver bars and restaurants such as The Lamplighter, The Blackbird, and Royal Dinette. "We find that if it is done well, a promotion like this will convey our love for great beer, our passion for the beer community, and our penchant for partnering with new and interesting brands." The brand being showcased this year is New Belgium Brewing based out of Colorado. As the third largest craft brewery in the U.S., it has beer varieties aplenty on offer—enough, evidently, to fill a passport-sized booklet. Thousands of these booklets will also be distributed at the Vancouver Craft Beer Week festival running this weekend at the PNE. "The passport concept is very simple," Holowchak says. Essentially, you bring your passport to any Donnelly Group bar, order something from the booklet, and then receive a stamp for doing so. What's in it for you? For starters, many of the beers in the passport are limited editions, which makes it an opportunity for curious beer drinkers who've run out of variations of Four Winds and Red Truck to try something they likely haven't had before—and may not have again. But there's also the chance for saison-sipping travellers to go somewhere they haven't before, as well. Any time before the passport promotion ends on June 15, you can drop off your stamped booklet for a chance to win a trip to Ft. Collins, Colorado, home of New Belgium Brewing. Like the beer itself, it's a little taste of America we're betting you haven't enjoyed yet.
What's on tap?
The New Oxford: Hoppy Blonde Cinema: 1554 Black Lager The Three Brits: Transatlantic Kriek (passport feature beer), Snapshot Sour Wheat (Growler feature beer) The Blackbird: Hop Kitchen Botanical Imperial IPA Granville Room: La Folie Brown The Lamplighter: Abbey Belgian Dubbel Clough Club: Lips of Faith Hoften Dormaal Collaboration The Bimini: Blue Paddle Pilsener The Butcher & Bullock: Sunshine Wheat Library Square: Heavy Melon Watermelon Lime