After our tour of the urban orchard at the Forks, we headed for a drink at The Common. The Common has a selection of 20 craft beers (& cider) & 20 wines on tap. The taps rotate seasonally. My favourite part of The Common is that the flight boards are shaped like the province of Manitoba!
Craft Beer & Cider Flight: On the Left
The flight on the left was a preset flight called “The OGs”. From top to bottom, including the description from The Common:
Half Pints St. James Pale Ale
Winnipeg, MB Kolsch
A soft, medium bodied beer, very refreshing
Fort Garry Two Rivers Lager
Winnipeg, MB Lager
A classic, crisp & refreshing Czech style
Salzburg, Austria Grapefruit Radler
Perfect blend of grapefruit & low alcohol, great sunshine beer
Pommies Apple Cider
Caledon, Ontario Cider
Slightly off-dry, made from 100% Canada-grown apples
I chose this flight because the first two local beers were on my radar to try while I was in Winnipeg. They were both easy drinking beers that tasted great after a bike ride. I’ve had a lot of Steigl Radler, and it’s still a favourite summer treat. I find Pommies way too sweet, but thought my friend would like it. Unfortunately, he found it too sweet too!
Craft Beer & Cider Flight: On the Right
The flight on the right was customized to include the rest of the ciders (even though they are made in Alberta and are often the only option we have when out at events). I also included Lake of the Woods as I’d heard their beers were great. I included Grandpa’s Sweater because I’ve really been into stout’s lately (and to be honest… the name). From top to bottom, including the description from The Common:
Big Rock Brewery Pear Cider
Calgary, AB Sweet Cider
Fresh and crisp blended with the sweetness of Okanagan’s best Bartlett pears
Big Rock Brewery Strawberry & Rhubarb Cider
Calgary, AB Dry Cider
Bright sweetness of crisp strawberry meets the crisp counterpoint of rhubarb
Lake of the Woods Firehouse Ale
Kenora, Ontario Brown Ale
English Hop varities used although the balance is malt forward
Barn Hammer Brewing Co. Grandpa’s Sweater
Winnipeg, MB Oatmeal Stout
Brewed with local oats & roasted caramelized hops
Even though the Big Rock Pear Cider is listed as Sweet Cider as compared to the Pommies as just “Cider”, I find it less sweet than the later. I do enjoy it at Folk Festival and the Fringe while sitting in the sunshine, but other times its too sweet. The Big Rock Strawberry Rhubarb was new to me and I actually liked it! I could always have it drier, but it was good and my friend enjoyed it as well. Lake of the Woods was another easy drinking beer. And finally, the Barn Hammer Grandpa’s Sweater was my absolute favourite of both flights!
Cider & Donuts Pairing?
We paired our craft beer & cider flights with donuts from Bronuts – Lemon meringue and blueberry cake with lavender glaze. This was a wise decision!
Local Cider Options, Though
I chatted with one of The Common staff members about their cider selection. He said they usually only have one cider, but increase in the summer months. I asked about any local cidermakers and he said that as far as he knew, there were none large enough to meet their level of demand but that they look forward to more local cider!
Check out The Common at the Forks Market if you’re in the area!
If you’re interested in more posts like this, check out our cider tourism blog posts.