Big Rock Brewery
The beers from the Calgary-based Big Rock Brewery are crafted according to the
Reinheitsgebott, a "purity law" established in Bavaria in 1516. This law decreed that beer could
be made of four ingredients only: malted barley, hops, yeast, and water. Typically, in beers made according
to this law, no preservatives are used.
Alberta grows some of the best malting barley in the world, and thanks to its
low-protein, high-carbohydrate content is excellent for brewing beer. Ironically, despite the
high-carbohydrate nature of the barley, one newcomer to the Big Rock fold is a light lager called
Jack Rabbit, which was embraced by followers of the low-carbohydrate diet movement in 2004.
While some varieties have fallen by the wayside or are produced only seasonallyBitter,
Porter, Kold, and Classical Ale among themon the current roster are eight beers, a mixed case of lagers
and ales. Included are two whose history has been linked to the inception and growth of Big Rock: Traditional
Ale (the first beer brewed) and McNallys (the beer that brought international attention to the Calgary
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