Tuesday, October 19, 2010

The Barley Days of Autumn

Cottage on the Bay of Quinte - Manly MacDonald 
Image Credit: Gallery Gevik

No trip to Prince Edward County is complete without a few tasty treat stops...

After antique hunting in and around Belleville, our crew headed over to the Barley Days Brewery between Bloomfield and Picton to pick up some beer.

Photo Credit: Filia Artis

Baby was a most skillful taster and was made "Official Brew Mascot" for the day.

Photo Credit: Filia Artis

The beers are made in small batches and custom brewed by their Brewmeister, Alex. (He was there, but moving around so quickly, we didn't get a chance to snap his picture!) The summer beer that we tried and enjoyed this year was the Loyalist Lager and the new one that I brought home was called the County IPA.

An interesting thing about the brewery is that some of the beer labels feature artwork by Canadian Artist Manly MacDonald 1889-1971 (shown above and at top of post). MacDonald was a contemporary of the Group of Seven. Anyone who is familiar with those painters will recognize the loose resemblance of the MacDonald's impressionistic style with their work. What is unique is that he painted such pastoral and soft landscapes in contrast to several of the Group of Seven artists whose works show the more rugged landscapes of northern Ontario. You can see some of MacDonald's artwork on the beer labels below:

The amazing thing about MacDonald's art is that he really captured beautifully what the county actually looks like! When one gazes out the window of the brewery, the agricultural scene with the rolling grain fields and the lake just beyond are just like in the paintings! 

A short biography about MacDonald can be found here.

Barley Days Brewery
13730 Loyalist Parkway ( Highway 33 )
Picton, Ontario

DIY Rating: 10

Well, are you surprised I would rate this so highly?? 
It's beer, and good beer at that, and all you have to do is show up and enjoy a few samples!

I could DIY that daily for sure!

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