Several dozen beer lovers gathered in the side room of the new Hart & Thistle Gastropub at 7 pm last Wednesday to taste the first brews out of the old system that returning brewer Greg Nash used when it was called Shippey's…in the food court. Nash was on hand to chat with his acolytes about the rad new brews.
Rumours about Nash's departure from Moncton's Pump House were confirmed, although he did squeeze out two typical Nash brews before exiting NB: a Double Dementia IPA and a Raspberry Weizen brewed with 40 kg of real raspberries. Nash explained that he brews for Hart & Thistle part-time, but will open his own micro with a partner, utilizing equipment from Truro's ill-fated Keltic Brewing Company.
First out were samples of Black Nitro, "a black pale ale" as Nash described it in his usual wry manner. He had trouble getting specialty grains, ending up sourcing roasted barley from Kevin Keefe at the Granite Brewery. Black Nitro is basically a West Coast Pale Ale, hopped to 75 IBU's (that's bitter – Keith's is < 20) but roasted barley gives a black colour and roasted espresso-like personality. It's moderate in alcohol (5.5%), and served using the N2 gas mix, making it "extra creamy."
The second brew was the 37 hr. Simcoe SMaSH IPA, (read more about it on Nash's blog) an intensely fruity (mango, grapefruit and apricot) and insanely bitter (~140 theoretical IBU's) IPA that was a big hit. It's kind of intense beer that Nash followers have come to expect.
All the hopheads went home happy.