Craft beer is undoubtedly an experience. Ontario and Canadian brewers create a high quality product that brings a mix of beer joy you don't get with major production beers: flavour, taste, experimentation, and above all a community of fellow beer lovers. Breweries like Fairweather Brewing, Manitoulin Island Brewery, Left Field Brewery, and Half Hours on Earth focus on creating beer that expands our taste buds, opens doors to unique experiences with friends, and leaves you wanting more.
With many craft breweries creating unique brews, it is hard to keep your thumb on what's new and all the while manage to try the amazing seasonal and special-run beers that are being created. We discovered an amazing beer subscription experience company, The Craft Reserve, that curates and delivers these special beers monthly while also educating you on the beers in a box of absolute awesomeness. Accompanying each beer is a tasting card that allows you to experience the beer as the master brewer intended. Naturally, as a unique experience in our own right, we decided to sit down with the founder of The Craft Reserve, Farris Nasr, to find out more (See below)
When did your love of craft beer begin?
My passion for craft beer started when I first moved to Toronto and had access to explore bars that were offering more than your basic beer. I love getting recommendations from people and enjoy the experience of not only trying something I may not have chosen for myself but hearing the stories that go along with craft beers and the connections that people form to them. It really opened my eyes and while I'm still no beer geek and haven't experimented with home brewing myself, I realized that there's probably many people like me who don't have the know-how or time to keep up with whats new in an industry that is constantly changing but who love trying new things and appreciate the artistry that comes with the creation of craft beer.
Can you trace back to the moment where creating a new beer experience came into your head? I'd found myself wishing that there was an easy way to stay in the loop on what was happening in the craft beer industry. Whether it was limited releases or a new brewery opening, part of the joy and experience in craft beer is getting to make the discovery. In speaking with a friend about his wine subscription I realized that would be the perfect solution for craft beer fanatics to have a unique experience without having to put in the leg work and travel time themselves.
Looking at the modern day craft beer drinker, and the options they have, what kind of challenge do you think that poses brewers? How do you help?
I'd say that the modern day craft beer drinker is driven by a thirst to try new styles and creations, which to me is a positive thing. While getting your brand noticed in a fast growing industry could be considered a challenge, I think it's also an opportunity for talented brewers. The desire to create something unique is what drives those who are passionate about their craft to push boundaries, which benefits all of us who enjoy craft beer. The way The Craft Reserve assists is by highlighting breweries and telling the stories behind their unique craft beer creations. Our members get the chance to taste a variety of new and limited release craft beers from breweries across Ontario, and through our monthly Craft Reserve boxes they find new favourites and spread the word.
What is your current favourite beer?
Omnipolo's Bianca Mango Lasse which we included in April's box - it's next level!
What kind of criteria do your curators use to determine the beers that make the experience?
Each month differs depending on if we are curating, or if we are working on a collaboration. When we partner with someone outside of The Craft Reserve the box is a selection of beers that are their personal favourites. If the box is an internal curation the reason varies - it can be themed to showcase a certain variety of beer or area of breweries, but often our focus is on including new limited releases, or brews that are new to us that we love.
Have you seen any other innovative services or brands bringing beer to the people in a unique way?
I've met so many people in the industry who are doing awesome things and all the innovation happening is inspiring. For example we recently connected with Craft Beer Passport. Their app allows users to redeem stamps for a 12oz craft beer at $2 + TIP from breweries and bars across Ontario. I love how this motivates people to experience both breweries and craft beers they may not have otherwise, and therefore helps support the local craft beer community.
Craft beer in Ontario is a tight-knit community with high quality beers, don't miss the unique way in which Farris brings #BeerToThePeople. Try The Craft Reserve's exclusive craft beer subscription box.