FEATURE: An Interview with Chris Thompson from Whitewater Brewing Company

Whitewater Brewing Company in Forrester Falls, Ontario

The final edition of The Brewery Market will be a blow out with 8 breweries pouring beer – Ashton
Brewing Company
, Clocktower Brewpub, Kichesippi Beer Company, Mill Street Brewery,
HogsBack Brewing Company, Whitewater Brewing Company, Barley Days and Flying Monkeys Craft Brewery.

While we may be familiar with most of the breweries in attendance, Whitewater Brewing Company from Forrester Falls, Ontario will be making its Ottawa debut. To learn more about the brewery and their beers we interviewed one of the three brewers, Chris Thompson.

Ottawa Beer Events: Can you tell us about Whitewater Brewing Company?

Chris Thompson (Whitewater Brewing Company): We are three good friends that want to create great beer, for great people using the best local ingredients and contribute as much as possible to the local communities.

Whitewater Brewing Company was founded by three good friends in 2011 on the banks of The Mighty Ottawa River. The three of us have had many adventures that have taken us from the incredible rivers of Ontario & Quebec to the mountains fed creeks of British Columbia, from the deep canyons of the Colorado River, to the Great Barrier Reef of Australia. One constant that has remained strong throughout this journey is our return to the heart of the Ottawa Valley to share our great adventures with great friends.

Our epiphany came on a rafting trip: The Ottawa Valley was already home to some of the best natural ingredients involved in creating true hand-crafted beer, as well as great people deserving of a local beer to share with friends. Whitewater Brewing Company was conceived. The next three and a half years took a lot of hard work, learning and living out of vehicles to get to where we are today.

Whitewater Brewing Company believes in the pursuit of the ultimate balance between work and play. Our adventures live on through the stories we share with the good people we surround ourselves with. We recognize the important role that good beer plays in sharing these moments, so we work hard to carefully nurture a hand crafted beer using the highest quality ingredients brewed under small batch conditions. The result is a variety of beers worthy of the adventurous spirit inside us all. Whitewater Beer is brewed by friends, for friends.

How would you describe the beers that you make?  Is there a theme that ties your beers together?

The beers we make are designed to be four classic styles (Blonde, English Style Ale, IPA and Stout). We brew using traditional methods and use only the four main ingredients (Grain, Hops, Water and Yeast) in small batches. Small is great. We are the small guys in a big market but we take as much care and attention as possible. It is truly a hands on brewing process. Our beers range from light to dark in colour, some are more complex in grain profile while others are designed to showcase the fresh local hops that we use. Slightly lower carbonated that most beers, we have ultimately designed four beers that are session-able, great to be shared with friends and demonstrate classic styles.

What's a typical day like at Whitewater Brewing Company?

BUSY! We brew multiple 50L batches, three days a week, 18 hours each day and have a constant flow of locals coming in to buy a growler or three. Usually people hang around for an hour or so, join in with the brewing and ultimately get involved in making the beer that they will be drinking in a few weeks time. There are not many breweries where people can come and look inside our Mash Tun and Boil kettle, or add the next hop addition to an IPA. On our non-brew days we’re cleaning cleaning cleaning cleaning as well as planning events, doing paperwork and getting some cool hypercolour t-shirts made!

Which brews will you be bringing to the Ottawa Brewery Market?

All four!

You can follow Whitewater Brewing Company on Twitter (@WhitewaterBrew) or on Facebook (Whitewater Brewing Company).

The Ottawa Brewery Market // October Edition will be held on October 20,
2013 at Parkdale Park (12pm – 8pm).  Admission is free with food/drink
tickets being sold at the door.  It's family/pet-friendly and will go on
rain or shine – prepare yourself for the Ottawa weather.

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