THE WAKKER WEEKLY
Issue #1631 – Posted on: 02-May-2022
BREWERY “HOPP”ENINGS: Bushwakker Head brewer, Michael Gaetz, reports our new seasonally available fruit beer, JUST PEACHY BLONDE ALE is now available on tap, in our offsale and for growler fills too. A batch of KAI’S MUNICH HELLES is also making its way through the brewery. In addition to taking our beer home in glass bottles and 2 litre jugs direct from our pub, you can find a varying selection of 650 ml bottles of Bushwakker beer in a number of REGINA SLGA stores.
Despite the recent snowy weather, nothing says, “springtime” like our refreshing JUST PEACHY BLONDE ALE!
Our SASK CRAFT GUEST TAP is currently pouring the HALF DARK AMBER CZECH LAGER from Swift Current’s Black Bridge Brewery. Next up is the POMEGRANATE PALE ALE from the High Key Brewery in Saskatoon. This brewery has recently announced their expansion plans which are the focus of this week’s article found below.
This Weekend’s April 29th & 30th Special Dining Feature is an 8 OZ SIRLOIN STEAK w/ GUINNESS SAUCE for $24.95. Our Saturday CLASSIC STEAK & A PINT SPECIAL will also be available. Our Monday and Wednesday WINGS & A PINT SPECIAL and Tuesday PIZZA & A PINT SPECIAL are also great value deals.
MAY PREMIUM WINE FEATURES This month’s featured wines are certified organic from the VILLA TERESA WINERY in Italy. The red is a MERLOT and the white is a PINOT GRIGIO. Both are $8.95 for a glass and $23.95 for a half litre. Both wines are very dry.
EXTENDED! SUPPORT FOR UKRAINE FUNDRAISER. Due to wonderful support, we will continue this fundraiser for another month! Total money raised from food sales, art sales, donated musician fees and general cash donations, over $2500 has been raised for the Ukrainian Canadian Congress of Saskatchewan. Let’s keep the momentum going!
One of our longstanding Bushwakker Signature dishes is our Saskatchewan Hot Plate. We often hear our customers refer to this dish as being the Ukrainian Plate. It features perogies, house-made beer bread, house-made cabbage rolls, fresh sauerkraut and koubassa from the Ukrainian Co-op. We will offer a Hot Plate & a Pint fundraising feature where $10 from each combo will be donated to the Ukrainian Canadian Congress of Saskatchewan to assist the Ukrainian people both here at home and in the mother country. Local artist, Kathy Hancock, has also donated postcards of her Ukrainian Sunflower (the national flower of Ukraine) which will be included with each meal purchase. Posters are also available and proceeds will be donated to the Ukrainian Congress.
LAST CHANCE TO VOTE! The 2022 “Best of Food Regina” nominees have now been selected. Thank you for nominating your Bushwakker in 18 categories this year including BEST: Brewpub, Restaurant, Pub, Beer Selection, Scotch Selection, Happy Hour, No-Cover Music, Local Burgers, Nachos, Local Fries, Veggie Burger, Lunch Restaurant, Gourmet Pizza, Wings, Salads, Soup, Downtown Pub and Best Venue For a Post-Pandemic Party! Be sure to turn those nominations into wins by voting in the easy and fun multiple-choice ballot. Just head over to prairiedogmag.com or hit the button below. Voting is open only until May 2, so don’t delay. Best of Food 2022 | Prairie Dog (prairiedogmag.com)
Earlier this month a number of local musicians came together to present a SUPPORT FOR UKRAINE SPRING SINGER/SONGWRITER SHOWCASE. Veteran songwriter, Neil Child led the evening and was joined by Nathan Davis, Keely Coleman, Yianni Pantelopoulos, Steve Abbott, Cori Knelson, John Fortowsky, Trent Leggott and Albert Strangeman. All musician fees and money donated to the band Tip Tub was donated to the Ukrainian Canadian Congress of Saskatchewan.
May 2: Monday Night Jazz & Blues. SCHOOL OF ROCK HOUSE BAND. A group of up-and-coming young local musicians will deliver blues, blues rock and southern rock . Come hear Regina’s future blues rockers. 7:30 PM – 9:00 PM.
May 4: ALES CLUB MONTHLY MEETING. If you are interested in learning more about the art of homebrewing then come sit in on a meeting with some of the most passionate homebrewers in the city. This month’s presentation topics focus on sour beer styles, judging beer and off-flavour sensory training. All skill levels are welcome from the novice to the veteran home brewer. Meetings are held on the first Wednesday of the month in the Bushwakker basement clubroom. 7:00 PM.
May 4: Wednesday Folk Night. LUKE HENDRICKSON. From Rochester, MN. Midwest Country Music Organization four-time nominee for “Songwriter of the Year” and “Album of the Year.” 7:30 PM – 9:00 PM.
May 5: Bushwakker Mexican Lime Radler Release. This citrusy refreshing quencher made its debut last summer and was a smash hit. We’ll be busy bottling up a bunch getting ready for its 2022 release on Cinco de Mayo, Thursday, May 5th. See you at our offsale cooler at 11:00 AM sharp!
May 5-7: CINCO DE MAYO EVENT. Our talented kitchen team will once again present a variety of delicious Mexican-style cuisine. And yes, our pastry chef will increase her production of CINNAMON CHURROS with MEXICAN CHOCOLATE DIPPING SAUCE!
May 6: FIRST FIRKIN FRIDAY. Enjoy the pomp and circumstance of this longstanding Bushwakker monthly tradition! A piper from The Regina Police Services Pipes & Drums leads a small keg (the firkin) of special ale throughout the pub in a procession. A guest volunteer tapper is selected to wield the handmade wooden maul affectionately named, The Mighty Firkin Wakker, and attempts to tap the keg in one mighty blow! This month’s firkin offering will be in the spirit of our Cinco de Mayo event. The suds-soaking spectacular takes place at 5:30 PM.
BUSHWAKKER “NEW NORMAL” NOTES
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 11:00 PM. The kitchen is open until 10:00 PM and last call is at 10:15 PM.
The government of Saskatchewan announced that the mandatory indoor masking health restriction will be lifted on March 1st. Bushwakker staff will continue to wear masks for the time being.
Proof of Vaccination is no longer required for restaurant dining. However, we have received many customer comments stating they will be reluctant to visit us because of the recent health restriction changes. To put our vaccinated customers who may have immunodeficiency concerns, family health concerns or simply are not comfortable with the latest easing of health restrictions somewhat at ease, we will make our Arizona Room available to them. Customers choosing to sit in this room will be required to provide Proof of Vaccination and ID. Both vaccinated and unvaccinated customers are most certainly welcome at Bushwakker and are invited to sit in the main pub area. Thank you to our legion of Bushwakker fans for your continued enthusiastic support!
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. We are now also able to accommodate larger groups. Our two banquet rooms are also available for private parties. Call Kelly at 306-359-7276 to book either our main floor Arizona Room or basement Clubroom.
Please continue to practice safe health measures. Remain connected to one another and to us! In addition to this weekly newsletter, we are very active on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram. Check-in with us often as we navigate these continually evolving times together. Try to support local businesses whenever possible. Be vigilant in your resolve to protect yourselves which in turn will protect others.
High Key, which hopes to open downtown in September, is one of many Saskatchewan breweries feeding growing thirst for local beer.
Zak Vescera Saskatoon Star Phoenix
Madeline Conn, the founder and owner of High Key Brewing Co., stands with head brewer Daniel Rommens at their new Saskatoon craft beer brewery downtown location at 102 23rd street. PHOTO BY MICHELLE BERG /Saskatoon StarPhoenix
High Key Brewing will open a new location in the former Redline-Harley Davidson Building. Founder Madeline Conn said it’s a dream come true.
“The Harley Davidson building was always one of those buildings I drive past and thought would be a great new location for a brewery,” Conn said. “I never thought in a million years it would become available.”
High Key is one of many Saskatchewan companies feeding a growing thirst for local beer. Brewers who started out making lagers in basements and kitchens are expanding to bigger spaces, ramping up production and opening taprooms.
The latest estimates from the Saskatchewan Liquor and Gaming Authority say Saskatchewan-made craft beer sales account for about 4.2 per cent of provincial beer sales, a 21 per cent jump from the year prior.
“The industry has been on a roll for quite a few years, said Mark Heise, president of the Saskatchewan Craft Brewers Association and founder of Rebellion Brewing Co. in Regina.
“It still is quite small and quite in its infancy. But it certainly feels like we’re having a coming-up lately.”
Conn opened High Key in 2018 on Quebec Avenue in north Saskatoon. She left a job in Calgary to open a brewery, believing the time was ripe for more of them in her home city.
“It was a little bit daunting,” she said.
“It was exciting, in the same breath. It was exciting to see my vision come to life and see people really enjoying your product.”
At the start, she and head brewer Daniel Rommens produced about 4,000 litres a month, drawing inspiration from local ingredients, like a Saskatchewan cherry sour and beers made with local barley. They now make about double that volume, Conn said.
Their new location, set to open in the fall, will give them a retail face in downtown Saskatoon that will also serve locally-inspired food. New equipment will allow them to more easily export to markets in other provinces.
They’re not the only shop expanding.
In November 2020, 9Mile Legacy Brewing in Riversdale opened a new facility to sell its beers in cans. In 2019, Prairie Sun Brewery opened a new location on Broadway Avenue. Beers from all of them can be found at major liquor retailers and local restaurants.
“It boils down to consumer demand. People have a taste for fresh, well-made local beer,” 9Mile Legacy co-founder Shawn Moen said.
Recently regulatory changes allow craft brewers to sell more directly to local bars and restaurants, expanding their profiles. Moen said the business is capital and space-intensive, noting recent expansions don’t mean business is rosy.
“This is still a very precarious time for our industry,” he said, noting many bars that buy the company’s beer are still reeling from the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic.
Nick Allard and friend Brady Plett began brewing at home with hopes of selling the product to a niche market of friends. That went on to become Not Bad Brewing, a Saskatoon company making beers out of a collaborative working space in Riversdale.
Long-time friends Brady Plett and Nick Allard opened Not Bad Brewing in Riversdale. PHOTO BY MICHELLE BERG /Saskatoon StarPhoenix
“We have the luxury to play around a little bit and see if this is something we want to dive deeper into and grow in the coming years,” Allard said, adding that Moen helped support him and his business partner getting started.
“We’re helping each other get good at making beer,” Moen said. He calls it “coopetition.”
Smaller producers are more worried about competition with big brewers than each other.
“The thing that will actually sink our industry isn’t that someone comes out with the latest and greatest beer and nobody can compete with that. It’s if somebody comes out with a stinker and consumers get turned off, because they paid a price for a beer and it’s no good.”
TIME OUT– Clever Words for your Use & Abuse
ARBITRAITOR – A cook that leaves Arby’s to work at McDonald’s.
BERNADETTE – The act of torching a mortgage.
BURGLARIZE – What a crook sees through.
AVOIDABLE – What a bullfighter tries to do.
COUNTERFEITER – Workers who put together kitchen cabinets.
LEFT BANK – What the bank robbers did when their bag was full of money.
HEROES – What a man in a boat does.
Spring is actually more a state of mind. Patience!