There's a new tap room in town courtesy of Ingrid at Bunkhaus Hostel.
For the past couple of years, Loyalist City Brewing has been working away on Water St. making great beer for our drinking pleasure. They've made a name for themselves with beer like their ever-rotating IPA, their Pink Dwarf sour, and Three Sisters pale ale.
When the brewery started, they had a plan to add their own taproom and patio so customers could sample and buy beer to go. They're still working on that plan, but in the meantime you can now find their beer on tap next door, at Bunkhaus Hostel + Café.
The Bunkhaus Hostel opened on Water St. earlier this year. It is a modern and trendy hostel featuring a bunk room with 16 custom-made beds, as well as a handful of private rooms for short-term rent. It has been tastefully decorated with a good dose of Scandinavian influence, celebrating the heritage of owner, Ingrid.
Saint John continues to serve up gems when it comes to craft beer at unique venues. There are now 5 craft breweries making beer Uptown. And if you have one too many, you can always book a bunk and spend the night.
You may remember us featuring Loyalist City beer earlier this summer as part of our Spirit of New Brunswick series at Martello Tower. You can check out that video here
Check back often for more ways to Uncork New Brunswick this winter, and if you need a little guidance, join one of our winter walking tours Uptown.
This summer we shared a few posts about things to do on Sundays, see below for links. This has been quite a summer in Saint John. So many amazing festivals like AREA 506, Port City Beer Run, Moonlight Bazaar, Culture Week, Marathon by the Sea and the Fringe Festival.
I wanted to take a minute and share these great weekend activities again. Next time you feel like there's nothing to do, take a minute to glance through this list, I'm sure you'll find something you haven't tried yet!
16. Saint's Rest Beach
Head out to the Irving Nature Park for an afternoon of beach combing. Your best bet is to get there as the tide is receding, that way you can be the first to spot what the tide has washed up. This area is significant geologically. The island you see is the remnants of a morraine, a mountain of debris, that was dropped by a retreating glacier 10,000 years ago.
17. Moosehead Small Batch ($)
In case you didn't know, Moosehead is Canada's oldest independent brewery, and this year they launched their small batch craft brewery. Head "over west" to visit the brewery and enjoy a flight of their craft and classic brews. There's no food on site, but you can bring food with you, or have a West side adventure like Chris and I did earlier this summer.
18. Harbour Passage
Harbour Passage is a great place to spend a few hours on a sunny Sunday afternoon. This 2 mile (approx 3.5km) trail runs from the cruise terminals to the Reversing Falls. Along the way you can stop at several ecological pavilions explaining the history and biology of the Saint John Harbour. Keep an eye out for harbour seals, harbour porpoises, and cormorants. You may see even see fishermen catching gaspereau!
19. Revel in the glory
Saint John is home to several historic churches. Take the time to visit a church for a service, or just to enjoy the acoustics and the beautiful stained glass windows. If you don't want to stay for a service, spend some time walking between churches and admiring the detailed architecture.
20. Laser Tag, Mini Putt & Arcade at The Vegas ($), All-you-can eat Fish & Chips ($)
This is actually a ton of fun! Downstairs they have laser tag and mini putt, and upstairs you'll find an arcade including bowling and bumper cars. This indoor amusement centre is licensed and has a restaurant. On Sundays you can enjoy all-you-can eat Fish & Chips for $10.99.
As the seasons change, so too does our lineup of food and drink tours in Saint John. During October, we still try to match our schedule to visiting cruise ships, but come November we'll be heading into our winter routine. If you visit the TOURS page, you'll see that all your favourite Uncorked Tours continue to be offered through even the coldest months.
November 2018 - April 2019
Uncork Saint John is available on Fridays and Saturdays
Our Saint John Brew Pubs tour is offered Thursdays and Sundays
Fundy Seafood City is offered Thursday through Saturday
Beer-unch is available every Sunday at noon
This time of year there is one brew in particular that we look forward to at Uncorked Tours. The cooling of the season has many breweries turning to darker, spicier flavours in their seasonal offerings so I hope it's not a surprise that the beer I always look forward to is Big Tide Brewing's Pumpkin Ale. An annual treat, only available from Thanksgiving to Hallowe'en, the amber ale takes on a slightly orange-y hue, and the glasses, rimmed with pumpkin pie spice, offer the best complementary aroma.
Receive a special thank you gift and a beer voucher for a complimentary pint of Pumpkin Ale when your batch is ready!
Fall is one of the most beautiful times to visit. Check out Uncorked Tours' list of our favourite Fall festivals here in New Brunswick.
Location : Sussex, NB
Date: September 7-9
It’s a balloon bonanza. Hot air balloons of every shade take to the skies during the Atlantic International Balloon Fiesta. Take a balloon ride, visit the car show or the craft fair, watch the teddy bear parade, or have fun on the amusement rides during Atlantic Canada’s most colourful festival.
Pair With : Northern Comfort from Sussex Distillery
Opened in December 2017, Sussex Distillery produces spirits made from sugar and molasses including unaged rum and Northern Comfort, a spicy liquor with a maple sweetness, perfect when used for a maple mojito.
Location: Fredericton, NB
Date: September 11-16
Get funky and dance the night away. This event features both internationally renowned musicians and up-and-coming artists on the same stage. There is something for every music lover at the Harvest Jazz and Blues Festival.
Pair With : Ginger Snap from York County Cider
As the evenings start to cool down, this sweet and spicy cider will keep you feeling great.
Location: Saint Andrews, NB
Date: October 10-14
Calling all foodies. Please your palate and experience a taste of Saint Andrews during Indulge Festival. You’ll get to enjoy delicious, interactive food and wine experiences in a beautiful seaside setting.
Pair With : Blueberry Wine from McKay's Blueberries
Blueberry season hit its peak this week, with fresh berries available in all the markets. McKay's in Pennfield produces a great, off-dry blueberry wine that tastes like New Brunswick.
Date: October 27 - November 3
Expand your knowledge of wine or simply head out for an afternoon or evening of fun at this Moncton expo. A full week of wine-related events includes dinners, wine and food seminars, and the ever-popular Grand Tasting Sessions featuring hundreds of wines from around the world. Think your palate is ready?
Pair With : No pairing suggestion would be adequate, so go find a new favourite wine.
As summer winds down you may feel like all your fun Sunday afternoons are behind you. Well don't let the fun stop yet. Use our list of another 5 awesome Sunday activities to keep you inspired and enjoying all that Sunday has to offer.
1. Spend a Day Watching the Tide.
Visit Fallsview Park at low, slack and high tide. In between, test your courage by walking on the glass platform of the Reversing Falls Skywalk. More information about the tide schedule can be found HERE.
2. Make Your Own Saint John Selfie Album.
Saint John has some of the most beautiful architecture, public art, and historic sites that can be found anywhere in Canada. Take the time to go and visit some of these locations. You could either wander through the Uptown to find all of the stops yourself, or go ahead and download the Saint John Selfie Tour map from the Saint John Walking Tour app.
3. Take a Walk Through Time
Follow three historic walking routes. Download the Saint John Walking Tour app or pick up a brochure at the Visitor Information in City Hall. Along the way you will learn about the history of Uptown Saint John and the beautiful buildings and sites. Perfect for any tourist or local looking to play tourist for the day!
4. Brews Clues ($)
Breakout Saint John offers a wicked Uptown Scavenger hunt for download. One code is good for up to 6 people to play together. After your adventure visit Big Tide, Picaroons, Gahan, or the Saint John Ale House for a flight of beer and to discuss the challenges.
5. Breakout ($)
Speaking of Breakout, try one of their Escape rooms. Breakout Saint John is Saint John's only real life escape room game. Each team has 60 minutes to piece the clues together to solve for their big escape. Think you have what it takes? Plan your escape and find out more information HERE.
Here is a little follow up to our lobster boil post from earlier this summer. This has been an amazing summer so far with record heat and a record number of lobster feeds - 5 lobster boils and lobster BBQ (Thanks Steve!). Living on the East Coast has never been so sweet. Now, on to the matter at hand.
I'm regularly asked where the best place to eat a lobster is in Saint John. I can list off a whole slew of great restaurants (North Market Seafood, Billy's, Grannan's & Steamers) that will cook up a lobster for you, but, I always find that a fresh cooked lobster on the beach is the best. Maybe just because it's so much work.
Back in June we met some friends out on the beach for a lobster boil. I've been cracking into lobster for as long as I can remember (thanks Mom!) and we always use crackers, picks and sometimes even the coveted lobster scissors. Then one day, about 10 years ago in Cape Breton, I learned how to skip the tools entirely. So fret not if you forgot the utensils, this short video will show you how to get all the best meat out of your lobster!
You can book a private lobster boil on the beach with Uncorked Tours, or join us for Fundy Seafood City, an Uptown walking tour making 4 stops for delicious seafood and lots of Saint John stories.
At Uncorked Tours we love our Beer, and so do all of our friends. But what do you do when you have six different people who all like something different? Hoppy beers, balanced beers, drinkable beers, extra special bitter beers, domestic beer and craft beer are just some of the descriptors we use now. It can be hard in this big beer world we live in for a group of people to agree on what they should drink.
The solution is simple, do the Big Flight, at the Saint John Ale House. The Big Flight is exactly what it sounds like. One giant paddle with every single beer the Saint John Ale House has on tap. That's 30 beers! Everything from Moosehead to Loyalist City Pale Ale! Of course, the beer they have on tap is always changing, so chances are you'll never have the exact same flight twice.
The best part is that Thursday is flight night at the Saint John Ale House, where all flights, including the Big Flight, is discounted. So grab your best friends, or 5 of them, and head to the Ale House. Regardless of their preferences in the beer, they will be sure to have something to satisfy their palate.
Prefer a guided Uptown experience? Check out our beer tours below. Cheers!
Highlights: Lobster poutine, Fossil Hunting, Waterside Winery
Duration: 2-3 hours
Pairing: Waterside Winery - Sparkling Rhubarb
Anyone who has been on a tour with me knows that I am nuts about rocks, minerals and fossils. My tours regularly include a discussion on deep-time, the moon and the tides, and famous fossils from Saint John. Not to mention the geology of the stones used to build Uptown SJ after the 1877 fire. So imagine my surprise when I "discovered" that Cape Enrage, New Brunswick is home to a FOSSIL BEACH. This was an extra shock since I had grew up visiting Cape Enrage, and I've made several trips to Joggins, NS across the Bay of Fundy, well-known for its fossilized tree trunks and coal seams.
Over the past few years I've introduced a few people to my rockhounding hobby, my husband being one, so we decided to go on a fossil hunting trip to Cape Enrage. On our way we stopped at Waterside Winery, a fruit winery located just a few minutes from Cape Enrage. You can either stop in on your way, or if you have lunch at Cape Enrage, like we did, you can order Waterside Winery wine by the glass.
On the day we visited Cape Enrage was earning its moniker. The wind blew so strongly that the zipline and rappelling has to be closed. Down on the beach it was a bit more calm and set about on our hunt. It takes a few minutes to adjust your gaze to see across the surface of the rock and "through" time, but it didn't take long before the fossils jumped out at us.
Mostly, we found Calamites, a distant relative to the modern horsetail fern, and the fossils of small bivalves. There was plenty of indication of ancient trackways and ripples from ancient waves preserved in the stone. The most exciting find for me was a circular fossil that reminded me of an echinoid like a sea urchin.
Cape Enrage is home to one of New Brunswick's oldest light stations. The original light was built in 1830, with the current light station being constructed in 1870. You many not see many boats on the Bay today, however, a kilometer reef extending South from Cape Enrage caused many shipwrecks in the 19th centuries when this area was heavily trafficked.
The wind was so strong at the lighthouse that we could barely walk out to it. As we walked along the path, holding the rope railing, we could see the wind whipping up the waves and sediment in the Bay. It's easy to imagine how important these light stations were to mariners in the 19th century, and how scary some of their trips must have been. The Bay provided the main access to the farming communities and the developing community of The Bend (Moncton).
Next time you visit the Upper Bay of Fundy, make sure to schedule enough time for a quick fossil hunt, however, please remember to take only pictures as fossils continue to be protected and should never be removed from the beaches.
6. Sea Kayaking with River Bay Adventures ($)
Starting at 70/per person, River Bay Adventures provides a Kayaking experience way East of ordinary. Excursions run about 3 hours and include an intro to Kayaking and paddling techniques, a stop at the beach, and a snack break. Popular destinations include Partridge Island, Tucker Park, and St. Martins where you actually go into Ocean caves and along the Bay of Fundy Coast.
7. Take a day trip to Campobello Island via Deer Island ($)
Only connected to land by the Franklin D. Roosevelt Memorial Bridge at Lubec, Maine, Campobello Island is as scenic a retreat you will ever find. The Island was once the site of President and Mrs Roosevelt summer home, which today has been converted to an international park. The Island also features one of the most photographed picturesque lighthouses in the world, the East Quoddy Lighthouse. To get to the Island from Canada you first must take a ferry from mainland New Brunswick to Deer Island. Once on Deer Island, you will take another ferry to Campobello. You can find more information here.
8. Fossil Hunting in Stonehammer Geopark
Perfect for adventurer, Stonehammer Geopark is North America’s first Global Geopark. There are several different sites for you to explore, including Brundage Point River Center, Dominion Park, Fundy Trail, the Irving Nature Park and more! Take a stroll through a billion years of history and see what you can find. You can find out more information here.
9. Whale Watching at the New Brunswick Museum ($)
Want a guaranteed up close and personal encounter with a Whale? Head indoors to the New Brunswick Museum, located inside Market Square in Uptown Saint John, for this Whale watching experience. You will put on a lab and examine real whale bones, for an experience you can't get on the water. People of all ages will leave as Experts. You can find out more information here.
10. Shop til you Drop on Saint John's East Side ($)
The "East Side" of Saint John, what locals call the area between Loch Lomond Road to Rothesay Avenue and MCallister Drive to Bay Side Drive. This part of the city is a mecca for retailers and shopping. Hosting everything from the big bog retail giant Costco, our local mall's MCallister Place and East Point Shopping, Food Trucks and so much more.
At Uncorked Tours we're all about sharing the fabulous food, wine, beer & spirits being produced in the Province of New Brunswick.
It is our pleasure to share some of the awesome experiences you can have while living or visiting the province.