Originally Posted by Kai
The one province without this damaging monopoly, Quebec, makes some of the best beer in North America.[/I]
Wrong. The SAQ is horrible: http://www.canada.com/montrealgazett...c-283584c4d2c1
They have a total of about 80 beers that they carry, but you're lucky to find more than 20 of them in the same store. Luckily, I've found a couple sweet corner stores that carry huge selection of imports and local micros.
More and more people are coming to like good beer. The only problem is the price. Example, $70 for a 24-pack of imported beer seems steep for a lot of people, even though the cheapest local beer can be sold is $22.34 (for normal) and something like $20.59 (for the light stuff) (plus the bottle deposit). I just hope more and more people will start homebrewing and stop buying the normal Bud and Molson, they might feel a drop in sales and decide to pressure the government into lowering the taxes on alcohol. I heard recently from a report that 80% of the price of hard liquor is taxes. Probably about 30-40% of the price of beer is taxes.
Oh and since I feel in a rant-y mood. You know what's stupid about beer in Quebec/French: the names.
Here is the names of styles that exist in French:
Blonde (you guessed it, Blond)
That's all the styles that exist in French. They go on the color! Add to that that most of the time there is no distinction between ales and lagers...
Now that might seem fine, but here are a few examples where it sucks:
-Blonde: You can compare a Pilsner, which is light and crisp, to a light colored IPA, which is intensely bitter, and they're called the same thing in French. Someone might stumble on an IPA and decide to try it simply because the name is "Blonde". When they try it and realize how bitter it is, they are likely to never try a Blonde again if they don't like the bitterness.
-Noire: This style basically anything in the Stout style, which is fine, but then you add Schwarzbier, which is completely different. Heck, Unibroue's Trois Pistoles is in this category, but tastes NOTHING like a Stout.
-Brune: This style includes stuff like English Brown Ales, but it can also include things like Bocks. An english ale and a german sweet lager. Same name...
-Rousse: You could include stuff like a red ESB, which is bitter, to something like an Irish Red ale...
-Doré: You basically include in this style pale ales, like Boddington's, and a lighter colored Bitter. Heck, Pilsner Urquell would probably be in this style considering it is a darkish pilsner.
End of rant...