THE WAKKER WEEKLY
Issue #1651 – Posted on: 19-September-2022
BREWERY “HOPP”ENINGS: Bushwakker Head brewer, Michael Gaetz, reports that our new LEMON LIME TART ALE, SUMMER WHEAT and KAI’S MUNICH HELLES are currently available on tap, in our offsale and for growler fills too. A batch of PONCE DE LEON BLACKBERRY RASPBERRY WHEAT beer as well as HARVEST OKTOBERFEST LAGER are making their way through the brewery. In addition to taking our beer home in glass bottles and 2 litre jugs direct from our brewpub, you can find a varying selection of 650 ml bottles of Bushwakker beer in a number of REGINA SLGA stores.
Thank you Regina! Of the dozen wins we received in the 2022 “Best of Food” Regina Awards, the BEST PUB win was a welcome surprise. We were certainly thrilled to receive the Best Brewpub win which acknowledged the hard work and dedication demonstrated by our brewery and kitchen team. A Best Pub win signifies The Bushwakker is a significant gathering place for many to connect to share personal and general interest stories. Our one-and-only television is seldom turned on, our all-Saskatchewan background music playlist is at a volume conducive to conversation and our atmosphere is rustic yet welcoming. Our live music programming celebrates the talents of our local musicians and we serve as a venue where family and friends can cheer on the performers on stage. Award-winning food, beer, service and classic Chicago-style warehouse atmosphere has always been our focus. We appreciate our huge legion of dedicated and enthusiastic Bushwakker fans!
This Weekend’s September 16th & 17th Special Dining Feature is an EDMONTON BURGER & A PINT for $22.95. We will also offer FRESH P.E.I. MUSSELS for $23.95. 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.
Our SASK CRAFT GUEST TAP is currently pouring the TREASURE RED IPA from Malty National Brewing. Next up is a DOUBLE IPA from Swift Current`s Black Bridge Brewery.
SEPTEMBER PREMIUM WINE FEATURES This month’s wine features are the organic EL ABUELA WINES from Spain. The red is a Tempranillo/Monastrell and the white is a Verdejo/Sauvignon Blanc. Both are $7.95 for a glass and $21.95 for a half litre.
WE ARE HIRING! The busy fall and winter season is a comin’! We need experienced lunchtime servers, full and part-time cooks and part-time bartenders. Stop by with your resume today!
Now on SaskTel maxTV Local on Demand! The Bushwakker Brewpub was recently featured on “Behind The Menu!” This 25 minute finely crafted video tells the story of how the national award-winning brewer, Bev Robertson, carved his own path—whether he was “bushwacking” on cross-country skis, or paving the way to help legalize brewpubs in Saskatchewan. His legacy of fine food, beer, and service lives on through The Bushwakker and many other Saskatchewan brewpubs alike.
To watch the video on maxTV go to Video on Demand > Subscriptions > maxTV Local > Sk Stories.
Stay tuned to our social media for the online premier later in September.
EXTENDED! The 2022 edition of the Regina HOP CIRCUIT has seen its most successful year to date! Due to all those smiles the Hop Circuit season will be extended until the end of October. You still have a chance to earn a commemorative Hop Circuit glass or even pick up another one. Grab a map and visit all six participating breweries at your leisure. Download the free Hop Circuit app to make your experience even slicker!
Sept. 16: RIDERS vs EDMONTON ELKS. The second Rider home game of the month gets off to a late start. Kickoff is at 7:30 PM. Be sure to stop by before the game and enjoy our gourmet EDMONTON BURGER & A PINT SPECIAL. Come “devour” the competition!
Sept. 19: Monday Night Jazz & Blues. SHANE REOCH. Regina’s friendliest bluesman returns for a long overdue Bushwakker performance and will share the stage with his sons, Ethan and Levi as well as Nolan Grad. 7:30 PM – 9:00 PM.
Sept. 21: Wednesday Folk Night. NATHAN DAVIS. Country folk artist makes his Bushwakker solo performance debut. 7:30 PM – 9:00 PM.
CURRENT HOURS OF OPERATION AND RESERVATIONS 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.
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.
By Sylvain Charlebois
Canadian brewers having a hard time staying afloat.
When listening to reports about people going out and enjoying the weather, one can only assume that everything is back to normal.
Not quite, especially for the beer industry in Canada. In fact, total beer sales have actually dropped 7.3 per cent compared to last year, according to a report obtained by Beer Canada.
Total beer sales are up in Newfoundland and Labrador by a whopping 20.1 per cent. But in other provinces, beer sales for both retail and service have dropped significantly.
The largest drop so far this year has been in the province of Quebec. Beer sales have dropped 13.3 per cent compared to last year. In Saskatchewan, sales have dropped by 12.6 per cent and in Alberta, by 10.7 per cent. All areas are in the red, except for the Territories. In the beer business, a simple -1 per cent is massive, so the -3.3 per cent in Ontario is considered a disaster.
These drops are in addition to a disastrous 2021 when lockdowns were the norm to combat COVID. When things started to open up earlier this year, this is not the scenario the beer industry was expecting — far from it. In volume, beer sales are 8.3 per cent below pre-pandemic levels.
Beer sales have dropped for a variety of reasons. First, our labour shortage is clearly a contributing factor. Restaurants are either closing earlier, or not opening some days during the week. Many locations are now opening only five days, as opposed to seven days as before. Many locations will close at 10 p.m. vs. 12 a.m. or 2 a.m. Again, many operators cannot get the staff.
Public events are back, but we have had fewer of them across the country. And attendance in many cases have dropped significantly from pre-COVID standards. It will take a while before people get comfortable with our new post-COVID reality. We’re not sure what is in store for us this fall, pandemic-wise, but we are expecting people to behave with extreme caution, as they should.
As for consumers, they appear to be in a different place now. Home consumption beer sales this year so far have returned to pre-pandemic levels. But sales for beer consumed at restaurants and events remain 35 per cent to 40 per cent below pre-pandemic levels. Over the last three years or so, many of us were drawn instead to wine, spirits and other products. Seltzer and ready-to-drink alternatives are also becoming more popular.
In a nutshell, Canada went from being an on-premises beer-drinking country to a more at-home wine and spirits drinking market. Many of us have tried new products and have experimented with new tastes and brands. These experiences have drawn many away from beer. Canadians are still drinking beer, but the numbers are telling us the percentage of beer drinkers has dropped significantly.
The other factor, of course, is inflation. Alcohol is obviously discretionary for consumers, and many are cutting back expenses these days to cope with skyrocketing food prices.
Beer prices have also risen by 10-15 per cent in the last 12 months, and will likely rise even more next year. In 2017, Ottawa introduced an indexation formula to raise taxes on beer, based on our consumer price index (CPI). With this year’s CPI, the deferral portion of taxes on beer could rise by up to seven per cent in April 2023, which is a record. Some provinces have expressed some sympathy by not raising their own tax portion on alcohol products, but not Ottawa. At least, not yet.
One day in the old west a three-legged dog walks into a bar and says, “I’m looking fer the man who shot muh paw!”