Signal Brewing Co. Open at Last!

Richard Courneyea  has been a prominent Belleville, Ontario business man for years. It used to be a treat to stop in his Richard Davis men’s wear store on Front Street  just to see him dressed as if he’d walked out of GQ magazine.  But for the last few years he has been dreaming about getting out of the clothing business and reopening the old Corbyville Distillery site.  The long term goal was a craft distillery but he would start with a craft brewery.

Richard Courneyea

Delighted owner Richard Courneyea

Two years of road construction on Front Street in downtown Belleville was the incentive he needed to shift gears and follow his dream. Today, I saw Belleville’s formerly best dressed man in cargo shorts, a beer shirt and far more gray hairs than when I saw him last, but he was glowing with happiness. His craft brewery opened July 23 and a week later his patio has been full of customers drinking in the beer, the ambiance and the view with equal relish. Continue reading

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Quinte Craft Beer by the Bay

Crowd scene CraftMark Rashotte, realtor, owner of the Empire Theatre, and entrepreneur extraordinaire who has made Belleville a centre for avant garde movies and highly sought after musical acts was  a little out of his comfort zone when he organized an outdoor craft beer festival March 12. Continue reading

Winemaker vs Brewmaster Dinner – Who won?

The Halifax Club’s Winemaker vs Brewmaster Dinner featured in my last column was a major success. Lovers of wine or craft beer might like to know what winemaker Simon Rafuse of Blomidon Estates and brewmaster Bobby Zacharias of Propeller Brewing Company selected as their competing pairings for this five course extravaganza.

As an aperitif to start the evening off, the contestants chose light and lively to stimulate the palate. Simon Rafuse offered Blomidon’s Tidal Bay 2012, the new Nova Scotia Appellation wine which is a blend of select white wines which are juried before being allowed to bear the Tidal Bay name. Bobby Zacharias matched it with Propeller’s Honey Wheat Ale – always a favourite with the ladies.

For each course of the meal, the winemaker and the brewmaster explained their choice of a suitable beverage pairing. Guests were invited to vote for the what they considered the better choice with either a wine cork or a beer bottle cap. Continue reading