Petri Raito

Beer-y good solution

Petri Raito and Ryan Arnaud have set up shop in Rossland and are laying the groundwork for Rossland Brewing Company.

When Petri Raito and Ryan Arnaud began sneaking sips of Raito’s father’s strong tasting, high alcohol, homemade beer back in Winnipeg as kids they likely had no idea where that brush with beer would take them.

Years later the two childhood friends reconnected in Rossland and took that initial curiousity with the suds and poured it into a brewing business last year in Trail.

This month the two have taken their fledgling business uptown and have settled in on Columbia Avenue in Rossland, and the new terrain suits the former flatlanders fittingly.

Raito said the move was necessary to the Golden City for the next phase of the life of the business, and its transformation from a U-brew format into a microbrewery as of Jan. 1, 2014.

“With location, tourism and the events that happen here it’s just a good place to be,” said Raito, while brewmaster Arnaud kept the hops hopping in the back.

Having a location in Rossland would be great for selling pints and “growler” fills—1.89 litre jugs—and the creation of a tasting room at the front of the store.

The room itself won’t be functional until January, said Raito, when the new liquor licence kicks into effect, and will feature plenty of places to hang out, try some hand crafted beer, and check out a game on the big screen on the wall.

“But we don’t want to be a brew pub, or a bar, it’s just going to be a really cozy, fascinating, interesting tasting room,” he said.

And offering any one of the eight types of beer the company produces at present, including India pale ale, stout, pale ale, wheat beer, a “seasonal” beer and possibly a gluten free beer.

The brew on premise craft beer brewery still produces beer for customers on order, with approximately 50 regular sized bottles of beer (341 millilitres) being ready for consumption in about one month for $80.

That will continue on a special order basis once it becomes a microbrewery, depending on the beer that is being made at the time, said Raito.

The one thing that won’t change is the attention to quality, hand crafted beer. Raito said Trail Brewing makes microbrewery quality beer inspired by the rich surroundings of the West Kootenay.

And in 2014 that richness will likely be exported, said Raito. The company is expected to take the Rossland Brewing Company name across the country and beyond Canadian borders as potential clients already await production of the first bottles in January.

Trail Brewing is open Tuesday to Friday, 10 a.m. to 6 p.m., and on Saturday from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m.

Wort is beer?

Trail Brewing makes the wort (beer before it becomes beer) in the store.

People come in and add the yeast and then return to bottle their craft beer into a keg or any type of bottle.

The company uses the mighty Columbia River filtered water, the healthiest yeast, no preservatives, no additives, fresh malted grain and hops, all while taking extra care in the brewing process.

People can purchase 12, 650 ml. cold bottles of beer for $40.


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