The Bowen Island pub occupies a lovely little spot of British Columbia. The island is quite out of the way, which is part of its charm, but still accessible enough from Vancouver to easily constitute a day trip. There’s water, mountains nearby, thick forest with woodpeckers, ducks – and in Snug Cove, the main town on the island, there’s beer.
The Cove Lager is an interesting brew. Apparently produced to a recipe designed by the publican, the actual beer is brewed off site at Sleeman’s then imported back to the island. It doesn’t really make a lot of sense intuitively, but it does economically – and that’s what the bartender said. It’s brewed at one of the nation’s biggest breweries, way off on the mainland where the malt is, but to an original recipe the island can call its own.
This light lager beer is blonde gold and clear. It has little head and zero aroma; faint bready malt and light, flat lavender notes. It’s almost a flavourless, maltless beer, but does taste clean and dry. You know the words: inoffensive, like sex in a canoe. A very plain beer for its origin story and ultimately a disappointment. Would be OK on a hot day. Slightly more flavour than Bud Light.
I drank this beer on draught at the Bowen Island Pub, British Columbia.