Fernie Brewing Company head brewer Jeff Demaniuk poses for a picture at FBC. Pictured in the background is a tower of cans ready to be filled with the now award-winning beer, Campout West Coast Pale. Phil McLachlan/The Free Press

Fernie beer named Canada’s best pale ale

Fernie Brewing Company’s Campout West Coast Pale finishes first at the Canadian Brewing Awards

Fernie Brewing Company (FBC) is celebrating their new title as creator of Canada’s best North American Pale Ale.

The brewery’s Campout West Coast Pale finished first at the Canadian Brewing Awards, held in Toronto on May 4.

At the competition, there were 55 style categories, which attracted thousands of beer submissions from breweries around the country.

“It’s great – obviously nice to be recognized,” said FBC head brewer Jeff Demaniuk.

He said this is a special accomplishment for the Fernie brewery, coming out on top in a very popular category, which garnered hundreds of entries.

Formerly named Base Camp, Campout launched in 2017 and is described as a “hop forward, light copper coloured Pale Ale with oats added to enhance the body and mouthfeel”.

Demaniuk said when FBC entered the awards, they didn’t know what to expect but they knew they had something special. Campout has always been a favourite among brewery staff.

Back in 2017, before the launch of Campout, Demaniuk saw that the style of beer was missing from their lineup.

Inspired, he took his favourite flavours from other pale ales he had tried and combined them to make what was thought of at the time as just a summer seasonal. It was such a hit that it stuck around.

FBC recently released a traditional german sour, First Ascent Gose, a refreshing summer beer. The kettle-soured wheat ale is described as refreshingly thirst-quenching with notes of coriander and a pinch of salt.

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