If craft brewing had a cool kid, it would probably be Sawdust City Brewing Company. Located in Gravenhurst, and aptly named as an ode to the area’s rich logging history, they produce traditional ales and lagers in an array of styles with non-traditional flavour profiles. In addition to their six year-round core brands – Lone Pine West Coast IPA, Gateway Kolsch Lagered Ale, Skinny Dippin’ Oatmeal Stout, Ol’Woody Alt Lagered Ale, Golden Beach Session IPA and Little Norway Pale Lager – they brew seasonal offerings, limited batch brews, barrel-aged and experimental beers, all made with only the finest all-natural ingredients.
Their 20,000 sq. ft. facility includes a 24hL Canadian-made brewhouse, canning line and barrel-aging room, a large retail store and a Tap Room, appropriately named the Sawdust Saloon. The Saloon plays host to a number of different events throughout the year, and is also a popular watering hole for locals and visitors alike. When visiting, grab a stool at the 24-foot live edge bar milled from a 100 year old naturally felled pine tree. It’s stunning, and a great spot to enjoy a pint (or two, or three – as long as you have a designated driver of course). They have 18 taps pouring a rotating selection of cores and seasonals, so you’re always sure to find something new to sip keeping the experience fresh and exciting every time. You can also take a brewery tour when you visit and see how all the magic happens. They take place Saturdays from 1-4pm – just fill out the form here first to let them know you’re coming.
Winter Season Beers
Expecting the unexpected is something to love about Sawdust. Another thing? Their dedication to pumping out new and exciting brews (with super fun names!) year-round to keep their customers coming back for more. Each season, you can look forward to a few special creations and annual favourites, and this winter is no different.
Hygge, their annual holiday release that features a unique brew each year, is out now and available in their online store, on tap in the Saloon and at various establishments across the province as well. The 2018 version features Riesling juice from the Malivoire Wine Company added to their pale ale wort and fermented with a blend of their house ale yeast and brettanomyces. Next, oak spirals were added, making for an extremely pale ale, with aromas of light oak and white wine. This effervescent ale has a dry finish with a slight tartness, and is a great accompaniment to food or on it’s own as an aperitif.
Can’t You Find Another Way to Come Home for the Holidays is another seasonal release this winter. It’s a Belgian Style Christmas Ale brewed rich, dark and malty with a multitude of holiday spices. At a cool, can conditioned 8% ABV you can reserve this brew for the holidays spent with family and friends. Brewed in collaboration with their friends at Eastbound Brewing Company, you can also purchase this beer in a Belgian Style Gift Pack for the holidays, a six-pack which includes two Can’t You Find Another Way To Come Home For The Holidays ales, a Let’s Get B.I.S.A. Belgian Inspired Session Ale, a The Path to Mellow Is A Walk In The Woods Belgian Amber, a Don’t Forget To Stretch First Belgian Enkel and a Belgian Quadrupel with Oak & Cherries.
Sawdust hosts a pretty active social calendar, with both recurring weekly events and special events to look forward too. Pack your bingo dabber for Rotary Bingo every Wednesday night with beer on tap for just $5.50 and bingo cards for $10. Tuesdays at 8pm is Team Trivia Night, where you can bring your own team or join one when you arrive – and the winners each week even get a prize. But the pièce de résistance? The tunes! There is a seriously jammed packed live music lineup happening weekly at the Saloon, and their events calendar is constantly updated with new artists set to perform. See some of this winter’s shows listed below:
Zachary Lucky December 1
Eamon McGrath w/ Will Whitham December 8
Mighty Lopez Band December 22
Dockside December 29
Nicole Duquette January 5
Sydney Riley January 12
Wendy Whelan January 19
Amber McLean January 26
Sydney Riley February 2
Pat Maloney February 9
Dan Walsh February 16
40 Grit February 23
And while not a winter event, it’s very worth mentioning that Sawdust also runs an epic flagship event on June 29, 2019, FUNKFEST (winner of the 2018 Tourism Industry Association of Ontario Culinary Tourism Event of the Year Award) so be sure to put that bad boy on your calendar as well.
52 Pick-Up Beer Club
If variety is the spice of your life, Sawdust’s 52 Pick-Up Beer Club is for you. In 2019, Sawdust has ambitiously decided to release a new beer each week. Yes, you read that correctly. 52 releases in 52 weeks. A vision of brewmaster Sam Corbeil and his brewing team since Sawdust’s inception, this dream will become a reality in the coming weeks. The planning is well underway and includes a huge list of fan-faves, one-off brews, collaborations and fresh ideas they can’t wait to share.
Want to ensure you get your hands on one of each new release? Get a membership to the 52 Pick-Up Beer Club. Members are guaranteed every 2019 weekly release, plus exclusive bonus perks. Members can have 12 convenient monthly shipments mailed directly to their homes, or pick-up monthly at the brewery. There are a limited number of memberships available, so act quickly!
To join the club (and really, why wouldn’t you?) click here.