Central City Brewery Media Preview

Craft beer? Fancy snacks? A free tour?? That’s the sort of thing that gets this blogger out of the house on a weekday! The shiny new Central City Brewers and Distillers production facility has been open for awhile but the Grand Opening is this coming Friday from 3pm-7pm. In advance of the Grand Opening I was invited to preview the brewery ahead of the crowd. I’ve been to the new space quite a few times already for growler fills and beer sampling but this was an opportunity to have the place to myself (along with the other guests) and go for a tour with Brewmaster Gary Lohin.

The Tenth Anniversary Imperial Porter. Yum!
The Tenth Anniversary Imperial Porter. Yum!

In a nutshell the new facility gives Central City the ability to produce 10 times the amount of beer it could produce at it’s original facility. It is a greener, more efficient production cycle that uses state of the art equipment which brings a modern day consistency to a time honoured craft. Thanks to Yvonne Chiang for the invite, Gary for the tour and Tim Barnes, VP of Sales and Marketing, for the great chat about the new facility and the new Seraph line of craft spirits. Central City has made a big investment in the city of Surrey and has cemented itself as a leader in the rapidly growing BC craft beer industry.

The great food we were treated to in the tasting room.
The great food we were treated to in the tasting room.

Here are a few more pictures of the event, the tasty tapas, and the great new facility in my home town of Surrey BC.

This is where they’re aging Whisky for the new Seraph line.
A sneak preview of the Seraph Gin packaging.
Believe it or not there’s still room for 6 more tanks in here!
Day or night this is a beautiful facility.
The labelling machine putting it’s mark on one of my favourite beers.
There’s a huge merchandise section selling all kinds of Red Racer gear.
One of 3 copper stills, this is the 2500 litre big daddy.
The pipework carrying various liquids to different corners of the brewery. It looks like art.
This is Seraph, the branding image for Central City’s new line of Gin, Vodka, and Whisky set to launch in the new year. It stands in the retail area to greet you as you enter.
This is the room where they’re barrel aging a few beers for future seasonals and special releases.
An up close look at part of the brewing process. This is the Imperial Porter.
A closer look at Seraph.
This is Kevin filling my growler with tasty ESB! This picture was taken a few days after they opened to the public.
I’ve even been here during the day!
Part of the new bottling line.



Downtown Surrey Photo Walk

When the sun comes out I hit the streets of Surrey with camera in hand! This time I wandered around Downtown Surrey, aka City Centre, aka Whalley and took some shots of the big changes that have happened/are going to happen to the most urban part of our city.

I walked the area around the City Centre Library, the construction sites around it slated for our new City Hall and 3 Civic Plaza. I walked over to check out Ultra, a new residential highrise that’s a block off of University Drive. I also took a bunch of pictures of the Central City Tower because I think it’s a gorgeous piece of architecture. In 4 or 5 years this neighbourhood is going to look very different, I can’t wait to see it. Check out all the pictures!

Winter Cask Festival at Central City Brewing Co

Photo credit - Central City Brewing Co

Surrey’s own Central City Brewing Co is holding a cask festival Saturday January 28th!! Confirmed breweries are listed below. Get your tickets and join me and the rest of the Beerthirst gang as we sample special offerings from some of the best craft beer breweries both locally and from south of the border!

Central City Brewing Company
Parallel 49 Brewing
R & B Brewing
Granville Island Brewing
Mission Springs Brewing
Howe Sound Brewing
Russell Brewing
Dead Frog Brewing
Big Ridge Brewpub
Whistler Brewhouse
Steamworks Brewpub
Storm Brewing
Longwood Brewpub
Vancouver Island Brewing
Canoe Brewpub
Driftwood Brewing
Lighthouse Brewing
Spinnakers Brewpub
Swans Brewpub
Salt Spring Island Brewing
Tofino Brewing
Cannery Brewing
Moon Under Water Brewpub

Port Townsend Brewing (US)
Boundary Bay Brewing (US)
North Coast Brewing (US)
2 Beers Brewing (US)
Elysian Brewing (US)
Big Al Brewing (US)

I’ll see you there!!


Charley’s Grilled Subs

What’s better than a day spent with your daughter at the mall buying coffee for your new coffee maker and stocking up on craft beer at Surrey’s best beer and wine store? Finding out that a little place my buddy Kevin has been raving about for years is as good as promised. Charley’s Grilled Subs is located in the food court of Surrey’s Central City shopping mall, home to a beautiful SFU campus and the iconic Central City Tower. Grilled subs in a Whalley food court, really Scott, that’s what you’re telling us to eat?? Yep, I am, and you should thank me in advance.

Charley’s is an unimpressive place that looks like it belongs in a food court, it blends in with the rest of the usual cast of characters but don’t be deceived, the sandwiches are great. After doing a little research I discovered Charley’s has been around for over 20 year with lots of locations throughout America and the Surrey location is the sole Canadian franchise! Prices are no more that you would pay at Subway or Quizno’s but the sandwiches are in a whole different league.

I had the Philly Cheesesteak, which isn’t a “true” Philly Cheesesteak but who cares. Loads of tender well seasoned beef, melted provolone, grilled onions, lettuce, tomato and mayo on a fresh toasted roll. Simple and awesome, with decent fries (which Hayley ate most of :-/) this is a good meal in a sea of food court mediocrity.

Hop on the Skytrain and take a trip to somewhere you thought you’d never go, and while you’re there maybe your pre-conceived opinions about the neighborhood and it’s people will fall in line with reality. Whalley, it’s coming of age.


Booze Reviews – Russell Brewing Company Brewmaster Series

Craft beer, really good craft beer, has been the sole property of the Pacific coast of the good old USA for a few years now. Enough hops to punch you in the face from the inside, Porters darker than night time at Mount St. Helens and every other bizarre infusion your could imagine have become commonplace in Washington. Oregon and Northern California. Canada has been left in the dust by a nation known for Bud Light and spray cheese.

Russel Brewing Company, located in Surrey, has posted a serious challenge to the supremacy of the Pacific North West of America with its Brewmaster Series. The only issue with these wonderfully crafted bottles and kegs filled with liquid gold is that they are limited quantity. From the Blood Alley ESB to the Black Death Porter every beer in this series is outstanding. My personal favorite is the Guuud! Ale designed specifically Kitanoya-Guu Izakaya restaurants as a palate cleanser.

Like I said these beers are limited quantity releases and are available at select private liquor stores including Central City in Surrey and Legacy Liquor Store in the athletes village. Get them before they’re gone, or contact Russell and demand they be put into full production!!!



Holland Park

Once a heavily wooded area known for its homeless population and open drug use, Holland Park has been transformed into a beautiful open space where families gather to watch movies on warm summer evenings. Featuring water gardens, pathways and a cafe run by the local Kla-how-eya Aboriginal Centre, Holland Park is another reason Surrey is where the future lives.