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Wellington County Brewing

Guelph, Ontario

Opened: 1985
Capacity: 
Date Visited:

The early brewing influences in 19th century Canada borrowed much from English, Scottish and Irish settlers and their traditional ales. Ale brewing pretty much disappeared in the 20th century, except in Quebec, until Canada followed the American trend with a microbrew revolution.

Wellington was one of the early players in this revival, located in Guelph (40 miles from Toronto) in 1985. The brewery was established with a view to making classical ale styles, benefiting from Guelph’s artesian wells and hard water (which works better for ale brewing).

Real ale is a British tradition, and Wellington claims to be the first North American brewer in modern times to use this technique.

Beers Reviewed

(click on beer name for full review)
Wellington Iron Duke Type: Brown/Strong Ale ABV: 6.5%
Ruby-reddish brown color, something close to well-polished mahogany, and certainly looks English on first impressions. There’s a nice adequate tan foam formation and a fairly light bubble activity. The aroma tells you right away that this is going to be a fruity, malty ale. It’s deep and instantly noticeable with signs of raisin and plums as well as a definite alcohol presence. The palate is slightly fizzy at first, but not too heavy and smoothing out a little in the middle. Right away I got the fruity malt in the flavor. The fruitiness lingers right into the aftertaste and picks up some nutty, woody, toasty notes along the way, followed by a satisfying dry bitter finish. The aftertaste is persistent; you’ll certainly know you’ve been drinking it with an alcohol presence that warms both the palate and the soul.
Ratings: Appearance: 3/5 Aroma: 8/10 Palate: 4/5 Taste: 8/10 Overall: 16/20 Score: 3.9

Last Updated: 07/24/2001

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