The Dark Side of Brasserie du Bas-Canada’s 2nd Anniversary Release

An article by Noah Forrest

This coming Saturday, Brasserie du Bas-Canada is celebrating their second anniversary with a big bottle and can release! If you can manage to drive out to Gatineau for the festivities, I’m pretty sure you won’t be disappointed – this year’s lineup is particularly impressive.

It’s actually pretty mind blowing that they’ve only been on the scene for two years now. Their ability to create brilliant contemporary IPAs makes them one of the top producers in the province, and their imperial sweet stouts are simply unmatched by anything I’ve had to date in this country.

  • Brasserie du Bas-Canada
  • Lancement de Produits – Release – 2ème Anniversaire
  • Bottle/Can Release: Saturday, November 16th 11:00AM – 11:00PM
  • Anniversary Party: Sunday, November 17th 6:00PM – 2:00AM
  • Details here

As usual, a cornucopia of hazies dominate the list of cans being sold, with several new doubles and even a new triple IPA. Alongside all the hops comes their latest Imperial Sweet Stout, which will likely rock the Quebec beer trade scene just like all the previous examples. They’ve also created a baby sister to their gigantic stouts and a barrel-aged version of their now classic “Geurre et Paix.”

Their IPAs are canned right before the release, so I wasn’t able to try them to give you my thoughts. However, I was able to get my hands on their two brand new stouts, which I’m particularly excited to try.

La Torre

La Torre is a 10% imperial sweet stout made with lactose, coffee, coconut, hazelnut, and Madagascar vanilla. Just like all the previous huge BBC stouts, the nose on this is insane. Chocolate and vanilla frosting with hints of coffee start things off. Massive aromas of fudgy chocolate cake dance alongside a battle between coconut and hazelnut for the domination of aromatics.

The palate is luscious and massive, with each sip carrying an almost pudding-like consistency. The coffee comes through more here than on the nose, providing layers of fruity and earthy beans and a bitterness that helps cut through things. That said, the coffee is nowhere near the intensity of “Guerre et Paix.” Instead, the other adjuncts run the show with huge nutty layers of coconut and hazelnut – and while the vanilla is there, it’s not overpowering in the least.

Overall this is on par with the previous three pastry-style sweet stouts that they’ve released, with this one being almost a hybrid of the previous three, borrowing the coffee from “Guerre et Paix”, the rich vanilla and coconut from “Substance”, and the big nuttiness of “Connexion”.

As always, this is a rich and insane dessert beer that manages to be over the top, but still surprisingly drinkable and smooth.

Toxicité

Toxicité is a 7% sweet stout brewed with lactose, coconut, cacao, and Madagascar vanilla. It’s basically a baby sister of “Substance” – probably Bas-Canada’s most hyped and acclaimed beer.

It pours out jet black and thick like motor oil. The nose is bonkers. Intense coconut mixed with chocolate chips, vanilla ice cream, and cake batter.

The palate matches, delivering loads of coconut and chocolate fudge. Big chocolate ice cream and coconut cake flavours dominate here. However, where this differs is in it’s drinkability. Toxicité gives you the richness you want, but without the cloying sweetness. It’s sweet up front, but the finish is pretty dry, allowing you to down this can pretty quickly despite the insane body and dessert profile.


Well there you have it, I hope I was able to tease you just enough to get you excited about this release. Brasserie du Bas-Canada are – in my opinion – the absolute leaders when in comes to pastry stouts. This style of beer can easily be unbalanced or simply a sweet cloying disaster, but BBC manages to create balanced luscious stouts that are essentially dessert in a bottle – in the best possible way.

Stay turned for a hazy post-release article…

An article by Noah Forrest

Photography by Noah Forrest