The Bar Towel Launches A Quick Beer

January 31st, 2021 Posted by Feature, Site News No Comment yet

The Bar Towel is excited to launch A Quick Beer, a new video series that profiles breweries in Ontario. In the series we’ll meet with different breweries to learn more about them, let you know about the kinds of beers they make and provide information about how to enjoy them. Your local breweries need our support during this challenging time and hopefully this series can help spotlight breweries for you to enjoy.

Our first episode is with Katie Ross of Indie Alehouse, and our second episode is with Peter Caira of People’s Pint. You can watch both of the episodes on below or on YouTube, and please subscribe to the channel to be the first to know about future episodes!

If you are a brewery and would like to be featured in A Quick Beer, please contact Cass Enright.

The Bar Towel Launches Ontario Beer Delivery Index

January 14th, 2021 Posted by Feature, Site News 3 comments

In response to the increased home beer and cider delivery options during the COVID-19 pandemic, The Bar Towel has launched the Ontario Beer Delivery Index (OBDI). The OBDI tracks over 270 breweries and cideries across Ontario and their delivery options, with links to their online stores. You can find the OBDI at

The OBDI highlights breweries with female, BIPOC and LGBTQ+ ownership, management and/or brewers. If your brewery is this, please reach out to Cass Enright and let us know.

The OBDI offers sponsored positions at the top of the index for breweries wishing to increase their exposure and help support us. Please contact Cass Enright for more information.

We wish full health to everyone in Ontario as we reduce the spread of COVID-19, and thank the breweries of Ontario for what they’re doing during this challenging time.

Thank you to illustrator Dave Murray for the OBDI illustration, and The New Beat for web design and development.

The Bar Towel Launches Cellar Diving

May 2nd, 2020 Posted by Beer Events, Feature, Site News No Comment yet

We’re going deep into classic beers saved for the right moment. That’s now. Introducing Cellar Diving, a new virtual drinking session with Ontario brewers & beer lovers.⁠

Every two weeks we’ll be gathering beer folks from the industry to chat about what’s been happening with them during the pandemic, and other various beer-y topics. We have done three so far, and the next one will be Saturday, May 16th at 8pm. You can find more details and register at the Cellar Diving site.

In each session we’ll be drinking (at least) two beers, and encourage you to do the same:

  1. Find an interesting, vintage, or unusual beer that you’ve been keeping in your cellar. We’re going to have that one first.
  2. Get a fresh, local, Ontario-made craft beer which we’ll enjoy after the cellar dive. We’ll have that second.

If you want to get yourself some delicious Ontario beer delivered to home, check out the Ontario Beer Delivery Index at

We’ll have a text Q&A during the session so you can ask questions if you’d like.

We hope to see you at the next one!

2019 Golden Tap Award Winners Announced

September 13th, 2019 Posted by Beer Events, Feature, Golden Tap Awards 2 comments

Last night alongside the Ontario Brewing Awards, the 2019 Golden Tap Awards were announced. The winners were as follows:

  • Favourite Bar in Ontario: Bar Hop
  • Favourite Brewery Taproom or Brewpub in Ontario: Bellwoods
  • Favourite Food in Ontario: Indie Alehouse
  • Favourite Brewery Retail Store in Ontario: Bellwoods
  • Favourite New Brewery in Ontario: Black Lab
  • Favourite New Bar in Ontario: Function Bar
  • Favourite New Beer in Ontario: Black Lab Snoopy’s Revenge
  • Favourite Marketing in Ontario: Collective Arts
  • Favourite Beer Personality in Ontario: Dan Grant
  • Brewmaster’s Choice: Best Beer in Ontario: Left Field Greenwood IPA
  • Favourite Beer in Ontario: Great Lakes Octopus Wants to Fight!
  • Favourite Brewery in Ontario: Great Lakes Brewery
  • Editor’s Circle Award: Greg Clow
  • Editor’s Circle Award: Ren Navarro
  • Editor’s Circle Award: Joel Manning

Congratulations to all the winners!

Voting for 2019 Golden Tap Awards Open

August 15th, 2019 Posted by Feature, Golden Tap Awards No Comment yet

Voting is now open for the 2019 Golden Tap Awards, Ontario’s most democratic beer awards event. The Golden Tap Awards are the leading awards event recognizing favourite craft beer achievements in Ontario, as decided by beer lovers themselves.

Now in their seventeenth year, the Golden Tap Awards is Ontario’s most democratic awards event, with all voting taking place online by the general public in the following categories:

  • Favourite brewery in Ontario
  • Favourite beer bar in Ontario
  • Favourite brewery taproom or brewpub in Ontario
  • Favourite beer in Ontario
  • NEW FOR 2019: Favourite beer personality in Ontario
  • NEW FOR 2019: Favourite beer marketing in Ontario
  • NEW FOR 2019: Favourite brewery retail store in Ontario
  • NEW FOR 2019: Favourite food in Ontario
  • Favourite NEW brewery in Ontario (opened since September 2018)
  • Favourite NEW beer bar in Ontario (opened since September 2018)
  • NEW FOR 2019: Favourite NEW beer in Ontario (released since September 2018)
  • Brewmaster’s Choice (best beer in Ontario, as decided by brewers)

Voting is free and open to the public until September 4th, 2019.  There are no nominees – you are free to vote for whomever you wish in the categories, as long as they represent craft beer.  All breweries, brewpubs, bars, restaurants, beers, people and entities that exist in Ontario qualify for nomination.

Voting closes on September 4th, 2019 and winners will announced on Thursday, September 12th alongside the Ontario Brewing Awards in Toronto.

The Winning Beers of Brad Clifford

May 15th, 2019 Posted by Bar Towel Radio, Feature No Comment yet

Brad Clifford (with Bruce Phillips), winning numerous medals at the 2012 Canadian Amateur Brewers Association awards.

In our latest episode of Bar Towel Radio, we have a chat with long-time beer friend Brad Clifford, founder of Clifford Brewing. Clifford was recently awarded Canadian Brewery of the Year at the Canadian Brewing Awards, and is very well known for their lauded Clifford Porter. Brad and I chat about how he started in homebrewing and his stops along the way at Duggan’s, Get Well and more, leading up to his launch of Clifford Brewing’s bricks and mortar brewery in East Hamilton.

Give a listen to this episode of Bar Towel Radio below or on iTunesGoogle Play, Spotify, or Stitcher:


A Deep Dive into London’s Beer Scene

April 28th, 2019 Posted by Bar Towel Radio, Feature No Comment yet

A few months ago I visited London, Ontario and was fortunate to have a round-table chat with Dave Reed of Forked River Brewing Company, Gavin Anderson of Anderson Craft Ales and award-winning beer writer Ben Johnson about the local beer and brewing scene. Recorded at Forked River, we discussed their backgrounds in beer, how the London beer scene has developed over the past few years, and some of the interesting places and beers in the city.

Give a listen to this episode of Bar Towel Radio below or on iTunesGoogle Play, Spotify, or Stitcher:

A Visit to Blyth’s Impressive Cowbell Brewing

November 10th, 2018 Posted by Bar Towel Radio, Feature No Comment yet

I had heard amongst the beer community that the Cowbell Brewery in Blyth, Ontario (a small village in Huron County) had to be seen to believed. And when I visited for the first time at the end of the summer, I realized that the early architectural illustrations and photos I had seen definitely did not do it justice.

Cowbell is a very impressive facility, a sparkling brewery and restaurant that emerges up from the Ontario countryside as a beacon for beer in this small community. During my visit I was fortunate to chat with Stephen Rich, the Brewmaster and Director of Brewing Operations at Cowbell. In this episode of Bar Towel Radio we chat about Stephen’s start in beer and how he got involved in Cowbell, the beer program and some of the unique methods and equipment that Cowbell employs at the brewery, and what’s in store for Cowbell now and in the future. You can hear the pride that Stephen has for Cowbell and what the Sparling family is doing in Blyth, so give it a listen and get yourself up there for a visit soon.

Give a listen to this episode of Bar Towel Radio below or on iTunesGoogle Play or Stitcher:

2018 Golden Tap Awards Announced

September 14th, 2018 Posted by Feature, Golden Tap Awards No Comment yet

Last night alongside the Ontario Brewing Awards, the 2018 Golden Tap Awards were announced. Now in it its 16th year, the Golden Tap Awards are Ontario’s most democratic beer awards event and recognize the best in beer, as decided by the beer lovers of the province. The winners were:

Best brewery: Beau’s All Natural
Best bar for draught beer selection: Bar Hop
Best bar for bottled and/or canned beer selection: Birreria Volo
Best brewpub or tied house: Bellwoods Brewery
Best regularly-produced craft beer: Beau’s Lug Tread
Best seasonal, limited release or specialty craft beer: Great Lakes Karma Citra
Best craft cidery: Revel Cider Co.
Best Beer Design and Branding: Collective Arts
Most Innovative Brewery: Bellwoods Brewery
Best Newcomer (Bar): Bar Lupulus
Best Newcomer (Brewery): Little Beasts Brewing Co.
Best Event: Cask Days
Best Staff: Beau’s All Natural
Best Beer Writer: Robert Arsenault a.k.a. Drunk Polkaroo
Brewmaster’s Choice: Tooth and Nail Vim and Vigor
Editor’s Circle Award: Liquid Art Festival
Editor’s Circle Award: Huether Hotel/Lion Brewery
Editor’s Circle Award: Kingston Brewing Company
Editor’s Circle Award: Evergreen Craft Ales
Editor’s Circle Award: People’s Pint Brewing Company