Issue #1716 – Posted on: 18-Dec-2023

BREWERY “HOPP”ENINGS! Bushwakker head brewer, Michael Gaetz, reports that our seasonally available BLACKBERRY MEAD, “MISSILE”TOW CHRISTMAS ALE, PONCE DE LEON BLACKBERRY-RASPBERRY FRUIT BEER, and GRANNY’S BITTER are currently available. There are also batches of PREMIUM PALE ALE and FLEK’S CZECH DARK LAGER currently working their way through the brewery.


The most popular item on our merchandise webpage is a Bushwakker gift card. Makes the perfect stocking stuffer for the Bushwakker fan on your list. Available in $25, $50, $100 and $200 denominations. Visit our website at and get one mailed free of charge to your special someone today!


Hats off to Bushwakker floor manager, Rayna Hart, for assembling this year’s Bushwakker Christmas Mix Six-Packs! This year’s selection is one of the most exotic to date and includes a bottle of 2023 Blackberry Mead as well as a bottle of 2022 Blackberry Mead, a “Missile” tow Christmas Ale, Baron Bock and three more seasonal brews befitting the season. Limited quantities available!


This Weekend’s Special Dining Feature for December 15th & 16th & 17th is STEAK BORDELAISE for $28.95. Our Saturday CLASSIC STEAK & A PINT SPECIAL as well as our Monday and Wednesday WINGS & A PINT SPECIAL and Tuesday PIZZA & A PINT SPECIAL are also great value deals.

Our SASK CRAFT GUEST TAP is currently pouring the RASPBERRY CHOCOLATE CAKE STOUT from Regina’s Malty National Brewing. This will be followed by the TWO-HEADED MONSTER lager from 9 Mile Legacy Brewing. And then the TWO SUNS HAZY DOUBLE IPA from Paddock Wood Brewing.

DECEMBER PREMIUM WINE FEATURES: This month’s red wine feature is the PETER LEHMANN “THE BAROSSAN” SHIRAZ from Australia. The white wine feature is the WHITE SHEEP SAUVIGNON BLANC from New Zealand. Both are $9.95 for a glass and $24.95 for a half litre.


Whole Bushwakker Kentucky Bourbon Pecan Pies are back once again for Christmas. Supplies are limited so order early to avoid disappointment. $53.50 each (tax included). Contact Kelly at to pre-order yours today. Take your holiday spread to the next level!


Early Christmas gift! We are now serving our most popular fruit beer of all time! Our PONCE DE LEON is our blackberry and black raspberry ale. A fruity festive season awaits you! Available on tap, in our offsale and for growler fills too!


Well, almost all Sundays except for Christmas Eve. With Mead Season upon us, we will be open Sunday, December 17 from noon to 9:00. Come enjoy a few goblets or mead and pick up a Bushwakker gift card stocking stuffer or two!


We had no idea 18 years ago that so many of you would be so excited about a whole lotta’ nothin’! So much so that we are offering two seatings to our biggest non-event of the entire year. Full menu will be available as well as Chef Mike’s famous Prime Rib & Jumbo Yorkshire Pudding Dinners! Call 306-359-7276 to reserve your table today!


The 5th Annual Bushwakker Holiday Market is now in the books. Thanks to the many vendors and customers who took part in this Christmas tradition!

Dec. 17: OPEN SUNDAY FROM NOON TO NINE. Your last Sunday to enjoy a few goblets of mead and pick up a Bushwakker gift card for that Bushwakker lover on your list before Christmas!


Dec. 18: Monday Night Jazz & Blues – Special Christmas Edition. A RON LOOS BLUESY LI’L XMAS. Talented guitar-plucker takes another swing at your holiday favourites. 7:30 PM – 9:00 PM.


Dec. 20: Wednesday Folk Night – Special Christmas Edition. MELISSA MANNETT & BRAD PAPP ACOUSTIC XMAS. Talented duo delivers a creative holiday music mix. 7:30 PM – 9:00 PM.




We are open Monday – Thursday from 11:00 AM – 10:00 PM. The kitchen closes at 9:00 PM and last call is at 9:15 PM. Fridays and Saturdays we are open from 11:00 AM until midnight. The kitchen is open until 11:00 PM and last call is at 11:15 PM. Sundays in December we will be open from Noon – 9:00 PM. Christmas Eve Sunday we are closed and Nothing For New Year’s Sunday we are open from 3:00 PM – 11:00 PM.

Reservations are accepted and encouraged. We accept a limited number of reservations as late as 6:00 PM every day except Fridays. Fridays we accept reservations as late as 3:00 PM. Call us at 306-359-7276 to secure your table. Our two banquet rooms are also available for private party rentals. Call Kelly at 306-359-7276 to book either our main floor Arizona Room or basement Clubroom.

What Makes a Christmas Beer?

By: Owen Ogletree

Winter seasonals and Christmas beers began as adored traditions in England, Belgium and Germany where brewers created warming ales and lagers that were more robust in color, aroma, flavor and alcohol. These are not beers to quench a thirst but to sustain a soul through the dead of winter

With a chill outside and a roaring fire and festive atmosphere indoors, family and friends gather around a winter holiday table, anxiously anticipating digging in to hearty, savory entrées and decadent desserts highlighted with winter spices. As the host enters the room, the pop of a cork produces a startle. Contrary to the expectations of many guests, rather than sparkling wine, the host begins to pour a dark, rich, spiced Belgian Christmas ale into everyone’s wine glass. Although many seem skeptical of the selection, all doubts fade as each guest sips the luxurious ale alongside succulent roast duck and sweet potatoes. The pairing achieves a perfect marriage of flavors.

Wines can be expensive, acidic, high in alcohol and overpowering to many winter seasonal dishes. Eggnog is filling and fatty, and cocktails and mixed drinks are often too intoxicating to enjoy throughout an extended evening of socializing and feasting. Seasonal winter beers make perfect accompaniments for festive winter celebrations, and the craft beer craze has definitely spilled over to modern holiday tables.

With roots in the ancient European pagan celebrations around the winter solstice, winter beers later saw production in abbeys and monasteries throughout Europe. Monks often brewed the celebratory ales to honor the birth of Christ and provide fortification during the fasting periods associated with Lent.

Although not typical in the UK or Germany, Belgian and American craft brewers enjoy concocting modern winter brews that showcase a variety of fruits, sugars and spices that can suggest mulled wine or Christmas sweets. The Beer Judge Certification Program’s style guidelines describe winter seasonal beers as “stronger, darker, spiced beers that often have a rich body and warming finish suggesting a good accompaniment for the cold winter season.”

Christmas beer flavors and aromatics encompass an extensive range. Some may simply be darker, maltier, hoppier or stronger versions of a classic style, while several other examples may include notes of Christmas cookies, ginger, desserts, chocolate, spruce, juniper berries, citrus, dried fruits, cinnamon, nutmeg, allspice and spicy alcohol. A rich, malty profile usually provides a balance for spices and holiday-inspired ingredients, and special additions of fermentable sugars could include molasses, maple syrup, brown sugar, honey or candy sugar. Toffee, biscuity, toasty, nutty or mild chocolate notes can provide a deep, malty, sweet character.

With their big, malty bodies, wine-like alcohol levels and ester and spice complexity, many Christmas beers make exceptional candidates for aging in cool cellars for a few years. While spice notes tend to fade, alcohol warmth smoothes out and becomes softer with age. Heavy, sharp, dark malts shift toward hints of plum, raisin, prune, fig, sherry and vintage port. It’s a terrific idea to buy at least two bottles of a high-gravity Christmas ale – one to drink during the current holiday season and the other to put aside for a time. Vertical tastings of several years of the same brand make for an amusing holiday party idea.

Since America seems caught up in craft beer mania, Christmas gatherings that offer tastings of a variety of winter ales have become remarkably trendy. Try pairing each ale with a different style of cheese or meal course. Pour two brands of similar winter ales in glasses labeled “A” and “B” and have guests discuss tasting notes, differences and preferences. Want to make a beer lover truly ecstatic for the holidays? Head to a highly-ranked bottle shop and ask the clerks for recommendations on winter beers as gifts.

A winter beer’s sweet malt, full body, creamy carbonation and complex profile makes for a superb accompaniment with almost any winter holiday dish. Caramely, malty ales complement the caramelized flavors of roasted meats, fried foods and oven-roasted vegetables. Sweet, dark, spiced beers even work well with creamy desserts and non-spiced cakes, cookies and pies. Drinking a spiced Christmas ale with a spiced dessert can muddle complex flavors and often lead to a “polar express train wreck” on the palate.

Experiment with winter beers and holiday foods, discover favorite pairings, keep notes on hand for next year and enjoy great beer and friends during this wondrous time of year.

TIME OUTHoliday Greetings From Pilots to Passengers

I was on a crowded flight to Texas. A woman boarded with a very upset 3 year old who was crying and carrying on. You could tell she was already at her wits end. A flight attendant walked over and asked the baby’s name, which turned out to be Elias. A few moments later, a voice came out from the cockpit on the PA system.

“Elias? This is Santa.”

The little boy sat up, focused on the disembodied voice.

“Elias, I want you to be a good boy so I can bring you something really good at Christmas, so no crying or fussing, ok?”

The little boy was wide-eyed as he nodded. He was quiet the whole flight.


‘Tis the season for high gravity brews! Our “Missile”tow Christmas Ale (8%) and Blackberry Mead (10.5%) are now available. Enjoy while quantities last and in moderation!