First Draught: Clifford Porter goes from Get Well to Waterloo


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A sample bottle of Clifford Porter that will start to roll out on draft at bars and restaurants this week.

Image: David Ort

I have been following Brad Clifford’s course through the Ontario craft beer industry for a few years now. After winning several homebrew competitions, including Best in Show at the Great Canadian Homebrew Conference in 2012, he had the chance to brew a collaborative batch with Beau’s. He then joined with partners at Get Well and opened his own nano-brewery.

A recent move to Hamilton meant that he needed a new brewing home for beers like his Clifford Porter. Steve Innocente, from Waterloo’s Innocente Brewing, offered to contract some of his spare capacity to Clifford and the first Waterloo-brewed batch of it is starting to make its way across southern Ontario.

This porter is a dark chestnut brown with a pleasant ring of medium-tan foam. It meets the nose with notes of cocoa powder, medium-roast coffee and darker malts. For covering such a tight range of roasted flavours (chocolate, coffee and malt) it finds an impressive level of complexity. The mouthfeel is as smooth as porters get before they venture into stout territory.

Clifford Porter has been delivered to (and will soon be available on tap at) several Toronto restaurants and bars including C’est What, Get Well (Clifford’s former professional home), Habits Gastropub, and Indie Ale House.

When I talked to him, Clifford said he appreciates having a home for his brewing (and brewing equipment) at Innocente, but will definitely be out looking for his own space in Hamilton once the weather warms up a bit.

Clifford Brewing Co.’s Porter, various prices.

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David Ort is the web editor at PostCity.com and the author of The Canadian Craft Beer Cookbook. Check out his site, follow him on Instagram and Twitter for more great beer and food content. Have a story idea? Get in touch at davidort@postcity.com.

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