THE WAKKER WEEKLY
Issue #1662 – Posted on: 05-December-2022
BREWERY “HOPP”ENINGS: Bushwakker Head brewer, Michael Gaetz, reports that our brand new seasonally available PICKARD’S OATMEAL CREAM STOUT, THREE DOWN PILSNER and CARA CARA ORANGE BLONDE are currently available on tap, in our offsale and for growler fills too. There are batches of BLACKBERRY MEAD, “MISSILE”TOW ALE and ARCTIC DARK LAGER working 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.
This Weekend’s Special Dining Feature is Chef Mike’s famous low and slow oven-roasted PRIME RIB served with jumbo Yorkshire Pudding. 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 Paddock Wood DARK WOODS PORTER. This will be followed by the ECLIPSE SINGLE HOP PALE ALE from Regina’s Malty National Brewing.
DECEMBER PREMIUM WINE FEATURES: This month’s red wine feature is the CIGAR BOX OLD VINE PINOT NOIR from Chile. The white wine feature is the QUAIL’S GATE CHASSELAS PINOT GRIS – PINOT BLANC from British Columbia. Both are $8.95 for a glass and $23.95 for a half litre.
MEAD DAY! Lots of folks took advantage of our Blackberry Mead Pre-Order option on our website. We are hearing many people want to continue the tradition of coming down a bit early and waiting in line to pick up their mead and take direct part in our official kick off to the holiday season. We spend all year making our famous mead. Each 800 litre batch is made with 400 pounds of Lumsden Valley honey and 84 pounds of blackberries. Our dry sparkling honey wine comes in at 10.5% ABV. The alcohol is very well hidden so enjoy in moderation. It will be on tap and in our offsale at 11:00 AM sharp! Blackberry Mead Cheesecake will also be available! Come catch the “buzz!”
Mead Day Mayhem! Our annual Blackberry Mead Release is Saturday, December 3rd. It is the Bushwakker official kick off to the holiday season and definitely our biggest day of the year! Sasktel Max created a little story about The Bushwakker last summer including our famous Blackberry Mead. Check out this fun little video highlighting the “buzz” surrounding our famous honey wine! https://www.facebook.com/TheBushwakker/videos/898824797779328
Our PICKARD’S OATMEAL CREAM STOUT made its long-awaited return last week after a three-year hiatus. Initial customer feedback indicates this is one of the finest batches in recent memory. A touch of oatmeal added to the recipe creates a silky palate. Rich, roasty and very full-bodied. “Pickard” is the maiden name of Bushwakker General Manager emeritus, Elaine Robertson. Ironically, she isn’t a fan of this brew and prefers our Summer Wheat instead.
Much thanks again to everyone who attended last week’s sold out Single Malt Scotch Tasting event! It was wonderful to experience the whiskies, special Sottish meal and Scottish entertainment after a three year hiatus. Can’t wait to do it again next year! All whiskies are still available at the bar if you missed this year’s event or would like to enjoy some more of your favourites. The score averages for this year’s six spirits are below. Scores are out of 50 points.
1. Kilchomal Sanaig – 39.39
2. Glen Scotia Victoriana – 37.40
3. Old Pulteney 15 Year – 37.17
4. Hepburn’s Choice Caol Ila 9 Year – 36.72
5. Ilse of Raasay – 32.2
6. Lindores Aqua Vitae – 28.85
WE ARE HIRING! The busy fall and winter season is here! We need full and part-time cooks, bartenders and a part time sound tech. Stop by with your resume today!
Dec. 2: FIRST FIRKIN FIRDAY. Enjoy the pomp and circumstance of this longstanding Bushwakker monthly tradition! A piper from The Regina Police Services Pipes & Drums leads a 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 special firkin offering will be a KRAKEN BLACK ROAST COFFEE RUM – INFUSED “MISSILE”TOW BARLEYWINE CHRISTMAS ALE! The suds-soaking spectacular takes place at 5:30 PM.
Dec. 3: MEAD DAY! The Saskatchewan phenomenon continues! Bottles go on sale at 11:00 AM sharp. Will also be on tap. Come experience our famous Lumsden Valley Honey and Blackberry elixir! Blackberry Mead Cheesecake will be available too! 11:00 AM.
Nov. 21- Dec. 3: AGRIBITION SALOON SERIES. Buckle up for this second annual event involving The Bushwakker, Victoria’s Tavern, Knotted Thistle Pub, Circa 27, Regina Rail Yard Saloon and Cathedral Social Hall. Have your Saloon Series pass downloaded and check-in at any or ALL of our locations for a chance to be entered to win Kane Brown tickets, a Saloon Series belt buckle, CWA swag, and MORE! Download now at https://tourismregina.com/explore/saloon-series/ The Bushwakker will feature beer and cocktail specials celebrating our provinces craft breweries and distilleries!
Nov. 27: OPEN SUNDAYS AT NOON. The second in a series of five consecutive Sunday openings over the 2022 holiday season!
Dec. 5: Monday Night Jazz & Blues. THE MINISTRY OF GROOVE. Up-tempo jazz funk act delivers their hit single, “Blackberry Mead!” 7:30 PM – 9:00 PM.
Dec. 7: MONTHLY ALES CLUB MEETING. If you are interested in delving into the world of homebrewing or are just looking to brush up on your brewing skills then the ALES Club is for you! The December meeting topic will be Mead! Come to the Bushwakker basement clubroom at 7:00 PM and discover what the ALES Club can offer you. New members are always welcome!
Dec. 7: Wednesday Folk Night – special Christmas edition. THE REGINA MALE VOICE CHOIR. A longstanding Bushwakker holiday tradition! Don’t miss this one-hour performance filled with holiday favourites and ending with the procession of a massive swine head throughout the pub during the Boar’s Heard Carol. 7:30 PM – 8:30 PM.
Dec. 10: “MISSILE”TOW CHRISTMAS ALE RELEASE. Back after a two-year hiatus. Our big, rich and malty English Barleywine will be back on tap and in 650ml bomber bottles too. At 8.0%, this is one Christmas brew you’ll want to savour in moderation! Bottles go on sale at 11:00 AM sharp!
Dec.11: BUSHWAKKER STAFF HOLIDAY MARKET. Current and former Bushwakker staff present their wares in this annual holiday craft sale. Bushwakker will be open from noon to 9:00 PM and the sale runs from noon until 5:00 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.
NEW WEEKEND HOURS! 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.
We will be open every Sunday from noon to 9:00 PM until Christmas Day. Yes, we will be closed on Christmas Day.
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.
The Beerification of Mead
By: Clayton Schuster
For decades, people around the United States had paltry options available for mead. Even when it could be found, those options were largely limited to expensive sickly-sweet honey wines that slicked around the palate like an oil spill or homebrews that pinballed between underwhelming and rocket fuel.
Mead culture, if it existed at all, was diffuse. Pre-Internet, folks had a hard time connecting to share their successes and build that sense of camaraderie and friendly rivalry that fuels innovation.
“Every great beer brewer had a great beer, got training in beer brewing, and then began brewing great beer,” says Ricky Klein, head brewer at Groennfell Meadery and Havoc Mead in Saint Albans, Vermont. Groennfell and Havoc are sister companies, with more traditional flavors housed by the former and Klein’s experimental fare usually under the latter. “Every great meadmaker heard a story about mead and thought, ‘I want to make that stuff.’”
Klein and meadmakers like him are evolving mead away from the cloying honey-wine iterations of recent memory toward a product that resembles craft beer. As such, the smaller-scale, higher-qualities meaderies that have cropped up in recent years are producers of what can be called craft mead.
There is no consensus of what craft mead can or cannot be. “A lot of what we think of as common knowledge about mead and meadmaking hasn’t been rigorously tested yet,” says Klein.
Still, the meads available at Groennfell and other producers suggest a kind of evolving sense that craft mead could have some shared values with craft beer. These include an alcohol-by-volume at around 7%, pronounced effervescence, and a bold brewing philosophy open to trying out beer-like styles and off-beat flavor combinations.
For Klein, especially, craft mead is also about cost. Mead of the last few decades was sold alongside wines at a premium price (the industry can easily see products marked up by 700%). Klein bucks at that idea and believes craft mead can best thrive at a much more affordable price point.
At B. Nektar Meadery in Ferndale, Michigan, craft mead is defined in far broader terms. Miranda Johnson, B. Nektar’s Director of Marketing & Digital Strategies, says their point of view is that there is no daylight between craft mead and the honey wines of yore.
“Meadmaking is a craft and we are proud to help lead the way in introducing it to the public,” Johnson says.
For Adam Wehr, the meadmaker at Wehrloom Meadery in Robbinsville, North Carolina, exploring yeasts are key to moving forward.
As most homebrewers know, the Lalvin suite and especially the champagne strain EC-1118 have been the bedrock of meadmaking. Wehr, however, evangelizes for a broader rethinking of how yeast can impact and even fundamentally change what comes out of fermenters.
The Mead-Drinking Roman
After a good orgy that involved many concubines and plenty of mead, a Roman citizen hops on his carriage speeding like a madman trying to get home. A centurion noticed him and pooled him over.
”Sir, are you drunk while driving? ”
“That’s absurd, how dare you accuse me! ”
“Alright sir I’ll let you go if you tell me right now how many are these.” The centurion raised two fingers.
“Alright you may go.”