Mahone Bay’s Saltbox Brewing Co. is offering a new ale to mark the 100th anniversary of the launch of the iconic Bluenose schooner.

The project began last year when Andrew Tanner, a founding partner and vice-president of marketing for Saltbox, contacted the organizers of the Bluenose 100 celebrations.

“And I said, ‘What about us brewing a beer to celebrate that?'” he recalls. “They were very keen on that.”

Tanner adds in a press release: “Our brewery is known for its strong commitment to local lore and community outreach, and we can think of nothing more exciting for us than to be part of this celebration of excellence.”

Sharing its name with the anniversary event, the Bluenose 100 beer is a low-alcohol (4.7%) cream ale. Bishop’s Cellar offers these tasting notes: “Rich golden malt aromas of freshly baked bread, and subtle honey that are balanced with herbal and spicy hop character. Mouth-feel is smooth, with balanced bitterness and a clean finish with just a touch of sweetness and moderate carbonation.”

Photo: Trevor J. Adams

The beer is selling fast. Saltbox has brewed about 4,500 cans, as of the end of last month, which are available at NSLC, the brewery shop, and Bishop’s Cellar. Tanner says they’ll ramp up production if demand continues into the summer.  

Saltbox is donating a portion of the revenues to the Bluenose 100 organization, in keeping with the company’s long tradition of community support. Previously, Saltbox has made similar donations to a local junior-hockey team, dory racers, and health-care fundraisers.

Also new is a collaboration with New Brunswick’s Flying Boats Brewing Company. That Belgian saison co-brew, called Easy Breezy, supports the Bluenose Coastal Action Foundation.

And the owners aim to open their new brew pub and cidery (Lightship Point) in Lunenburg on May 1.

“We’re literally on a fast track to just finish it off,” Tanner says. “And then we’ll probably do some special events … You know, we’re sort of just seeing how it goes this summer.”

Halifax Magazine