As a lifelong North of the Fraser dweller myself (even proudly womanning the taps and turntable at Steel & Oak), I can’t express how thrilled I am about this announcement: New Westminster, Burnaby, Coquitlam and Port Coquitlam FINALLY have their own Ale Trail!
United by the mighty Fraser, those navigating these charming communities on the North of the Fraser Ale Trail will be able to visit 11 breweries in a curated itinerary.
New Westminster, B.C.’s original capital, has a long brewing history, spanning from 1860 until 2005 when the Labatt Brewery in Sapperton closed. Dormant while the popularity of craft beer rapidly grew in our province, brewing returned in a big way in 2014 when Steel & Oak Brewing opened its doors. The legacy of Sapperton’s bygone days continued in earnest when Another Beer Co. opened in 2019.
Following the Ale Trail to Burnaby, we have three very distinct breweries of varying heritage: Dageraad Brewing, Steamworks Burnaby Brewery & Taphouse and Studio Brewing. Exclusively brewing Belgian styles, Dageraad is an undisputed fan favourite, winning Brewery of the Year at the Canadian Brewing Awards in 2018. With its flagship brewery situated in Gastown for the last 25 years, Steamworks opened the large production facility with a welcoming tasting room in 2013. The new kid on the block, opening in a pandemic, Studio’s small batches earned it 2021 Growlie Gold for Best New Brewery!
So far, Mariner Brewing is Coquitlam’s only brewery. Named for NASA’s Mariner space program (and the adjacent street!), it is steps away from Coquitlam City Centre and Coquitlam Central stations. Mariner boasts an array of exploration themed beer, two covered dog-friendly patios, and a full food menu.
While very young, Port Coquitlam’s beer scene is one to be admired. Five breweries have opened there since 2018, including three in the burgeoning Fremont Village — Boardwalk Brewing, Northpaw Brewing and Tinhouse Brewing — along with Patina Brewing in downtown Port Coquitlam and Taylight Brewing in the Mary Hill area. As a bonus: all are encircled by the 25-km Traboulay PoCo Trail!
For more on the North of the Fraser Ale Trail and to explore our province further through beer, check out the BC Ale Trail here.