BY: Karon Liu
/* *//* */A swirl of thick, briny, and molasses-like vapours emit from the small vats inside the Amsterdam Brewery as Julius Chapple of Rodney’s Oyster House plops a few more oysters into the boiling stout. “The brine flushes out the character of the dry Irish stout and goes great with oysters,” says brewer Iain McOustra. ”I always wanted to brew an oyster stout, so why not try it this year?” McOustra also notes that, historically, oyster meat, shells, and brine were once added during the traditional beer-making process to amp up the calcium content.
Of course, this oyster stout isn’t so much of a health drink but rather one of the highlights of the upcoming annual Ontario Oyster Festival held in the alleyway beside the King West restaurant on July 15. The Apocalypse Oyster Stout will be available there (they’re making four, 30-litre kegs of it) but there are no plans to bring it to retail yet. “We’ll try it and see what people think first,” says Rodney’s front-of-house manager Bronwen Clark. The oysters in this beer are from Nine Mile Creek in PEI, straight from Rodney’s own oyster farm.