With the cast off and summer in Toronto heating up quickly, I have been picking up steam on my passport. Last Monday, taking advantage of the holiday to have an extra long weekend, we decided it was long past time to check out the nearby, geek-friendly Bar With No Name that we had walked past many times but never entered.
Greeted with a unique atmosphere and friendly staff, we were happy to see the beer selection was not only quite good but also incredibly affordable: Mondays at the Bar With No Name means $10 pitchers of anything on tap! And with their selection, that is a pretty impressive deal.
The Bar With No Name
We decided to kick things off right away with our $2 passport beer while we thought about our food options but it didn’t take me long to decide: Pat’s Jerk Burger was calling my name with its delicious siren song of “bacon, bacon, bacon.” From their menu:
Our home made 7oz patty stuffed with bacon, slathered in jerk sauce and topped with sautéed onions, bacon, and swiss cheese.
See that? Stuffed with bacon and more bacon on top. Plus jerk sauce. And cheese. How could I order anything else? Not that there weren’t plenty of other appealing options but really, there was no doubt in my mind that it would be good.
And I was so right: The burger itself was juicy and delicious and it was stuffed so full of bacon it almost didn’t need the extra strips on top (ha, who am I kidding?). The jerk sauce was quite good and spicier than I expected; spicy enough, in fact, that it took me quite some time and dedication to actually finish the entire, massive, bacon-y burger of bacon. I did not regret one mouth-burning second of it either. If you like some tastebud-butt-kicking spice, you should get over there and try it: I know I’ll be back before too long, especially with those $10 pitchers calling my name…
Duggan’s No. 5 Sorachi Lager
Brewery: Cool Beer Brewing Company
Style: Japanese Rice Beer
ABV: 4% IBU: N/A
The first time I tried this lager, I honestly didn’t like it very much. I can’t say for sure now whether it was s bad batch or just not to my taste at the time but I am glad I took the opportunity of a $2 beer to give it another chance. While not a beer I would actively seek out, it nonetheless had more flavour than I remembered and was quite a refreshing brew for the hot day.
Pale straw yellow in colour with a small amount of white head, this lager has a very light nose with some grainy aromas and a faint hint of citrus. With a slight bitterness upfront, No. 5 has a grainy malt presence with a touch of lemon and some grassy, floral hops. The body is about average with medium carbonation and a corn and malt aftertaste.
Brewery: Nickel Brook Brewing Co.
Style: American Pale Ale
ABV: 4.9% IBU: N/A
Named for our “naughty” southern neighbours, this American Pale Ale is a refreshing and yet relatively flavourful beer that pours a tarnished golden hue with amber tones and a small, white head. The soft aroma is dominated by orange and lime citrus notes with a hint of caramel and weedy, floral hops. The flavour is more complex with zesty citrus, pale malts, and a restrained toffee sweetness. Light to medium in body, it has nice carbonation and finishes dry with a lingering fruity hoppiness.
Duggan’s No. 9 IPA
Brewery: Cool Beer Brewing Company
Style: American IPA
ABV: 6.2% IBU: ?
Unable to resist the extremely well-priced pitchers, we went back for some more Duggan’s, this time the No. 9, a tasty and well-balanced IPA. Burnt orange in colour, it is low in carbonation and has a thin film of head that leaves only a wisp of lacing behind. The aroma is sweet and bold with notes of toffee, butterscotch, and light floral notes from the Cascade hops. The flavour is close to what you would expect of the aroma with a strong backbone of sweet malts as well as just enough bitterness and floral hops. A medium body with medium levels of carbonation complement the well-balanced flavour and this IPA goes down smooth with a some creaminess. While I tend to prefer more citrusy and floral, hoppy IPAs this type of malty IPA definitely has its appeal.