#13 – Nelson Brewing Company: Organic, Tasty & Fun

#13 – Nelson Brewing Company: Organic, Tasty & Fun

Nelson is one of the few towns in British Columbia with a 100% certified organic brewery. Becoming completely certified organic is a long and expensive process, but one that the team at Nelson felt was completely worthwhile because they

“felt it was a natural progression from our traditional, all-natural ingredients to fully certified organic ingredients and production methods. It was also a natural fit with the progressive, natural and organic food culture in Nelson.”

True enough. The Nelson Brewing Company vision is one of adding to the health of the community at large, be it through supporting local arts and heritage organizations, hosting book launches (A great example of this is local author, Deryn Collier’s first book launch which took place in the brewery building itself.) and partnering with local businesses whenever possible.

Nelson Brewing Company in the Community

And if you talk to head brewer Mike Kelly long enough, you’ll begin to believe that “beer predates baking and agriculture; in effect, brewing predates civilization, and contributed to the formation of civilization.” No doubt, and it’s definitely true that “beer has been a part of human communities for thousands of years.”

Another example of the symbiotic relationship Nelson Brewing Company has with its community is its relationship with local farmers. Breweries churn out tons of spent grain, and that grain makes ideal feed for livestock. Farmers regularly come by the brewery to pick up the spent grain, and in fact, the tasting room at NBC boasts pictures of a few of the lucky animals :). Hops are useful as well, with many farmers and avid gardeners taking the spent hops to use as fertilizer.

Nelson Beer Goes Great with Nelson Food…

In recent years, more and more people have become aware of beer as a healthy drink to pair with all kinds of foods. As Mike says, “Anything works with beer, but many people like to pair spicy foods with hoppy beer like our Hopgood or Paddywhack IPA, or savoury foods with rich, malty beer like our Blackheart Stout or Nelson After Dark. Our newest creation, our Organic Ginger Beer, pairs particularly well with Thai food…for example, local Thai restaurant Busaba’s Pad Thai works great with our IPAs and the Ginger Beer.

Wine sometimes gets all the limelight, but lately, there have been some convincing studies pointing to the health benefits of drinking a moderate amount of beer with food. From a reduction in strokes, to a healthier heart, the antioxidants and other nutrients in beer might contribute to a longer, healthier life.

And, of course, beer and coffee are a natural pairing…

Well, in Nelson they are. Oso Negro, the local coffee roaster, and NBC teamed up last year to make Stimulator, an organic “Mochabock”, a strong dark lager infused with Oso Negro coffee and cocoa. The idea had been brewing for awhile, at least in part because Oso and NBC share space in the original Nelson Brewing Company building, and they also “share a passion for crafting honest, organic products,” according to Mike.

So raise a glass, and here’s to your health!

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