Welcome back to my series on Ontario beers, in honor of my old stomping grounds. Today, I pay homage to Cameron’s brewery of Oakville, Ontario. I remember these guys quite well because of their eight packs. Yes, whereas everyone else chooses to pack their bottles by the six, twelve, and two-four, these guys put out boxes numbering eight. I tell ya, it’s the perfect cube to fit in the back of your car! Weird, yet unique, and somehow esoterically pleasing! And the beer is good too! Speaking of which, onto that…
Cameron’s Auburn Ale: Cameron’s Auburn has apparently earned them the bulk of their awards and praise. Having sampled this one in the early 2000’s, I can tell you that I was relatively new to the whole Auburn ale thing. If there were a fitting comparison, I’d say it’s an Irish/Amber, with a malty profile, a tawny aftertaste and a subtle yet lingering hop finish. Over the years, this one sticks out in my memory because it is both a distinctive beer and my introduction to this particular variety. 4.5/5
Cameron’s Cream Ale: This beer, contrary to what I thought, is actually their flagship beer, the one that started their brewery and is the mainstay of their product line. Having tried the Auburn first, I naturally thought it was their first beer. Live and learn! Anyway, this beer is a somewhat different take on the cream ale, possessing a strong malty taste and a clear British hop presence, but with a clean taste that is reminiscent of lager. I have since learned that this is due to the cold fermentation they use to make this brand. The result is much like their Auburn, a beer that is subtle and quite unique. 4/5
Cameron’s Lager: An aromatic, crisp, clean lager that is nevertheless quite light and (again) subtle to the palate. Their lightest tasting beer, it is not my personal favorite, but is nevertheless consistently good and possesses layers of flavor, in spite of its light hop profile. This becomes evident the more ones get into it, a clear sign of quality and in keeping with Cameron’s ability to balance subtlety and complexity. 3.5/5
And of course, this brewery has also come out with some additional products since I left town. Naturally, I am never happy when I find this out, but when I saw what they’ve been producing, I was REALLY unhappy! Yes, it seems they’ve come out with a dark lager, a series of whiskey-barrel aged seasonals (in 750 ml bottles) and a doppelbock! Three of my favorites, all from one place that I have no access to! I tell ya, this would seriously piss me off if I weren’t on my way there soon! Beware LCBO, I will be coming soon and I will be bringing a big shopping bag. Do not be out of stock, or you shall see what I’m like when I’m sober!