Oak Bay Bistro Brewmaster’s Dinner: Hoyne Brewing Co.

left: Hoyne Pilsner Carbonnade of Beef Shoulder. right: local Brewmaster Sean Hoyne. Photo by Deanna Ladret

Another weekend gone by, another food and drink event I wish I could relive. This time, it was the much-anticipated Hoyne Brewmaster’s Dinner at The Oak Bay Bistro. Surrounded by fellow beer lovers, serenaded by a fiddle quintet, immersed in a mid-winter feast; I can’t think of a better way to spend a rainy January night.


We were celebrating the recent launch of Hoyne Brewing Co., local Brewmaster Sean Hoyne’s independent endeavour after over two decades of success at the helm of Canoe Brewpub and Swans Hotel, collectively. The Rock Bay-based brewery teamed up with The Oak Bay Bistro and Executive Chef John Waller (previously from The Wickaninnish Inn in Tofino) to create a beer-themed dinner that spoke to the characteristics of Hoyne’s four new brews. Chef Waller’s vision was “big taste, no gimmicks”, lovingly executed.


Guests were greeted by the affable Brewmaster, who handed out glasses of the Down Easy Pale Ale. Meanwhile, his daughter Emma Hoyne and her troupe from Daniel Lapp’s BC Fiddle Orchestra played lively Cape Breton tunes and charmed the crowd.


A warm basket of thickly sliced Irish Beer Bread, made from Hoyne Devil’s Dream IPA, was served first, alongside a sweet and creamy Rutabaga Beer Purée. The following course was a signature Oak Bay Bistro Groaning Board, customized for the event with chicken liver Paté En Croûte with housemade Beer Mustard, Chicken Liver Parfait topped with little cubes of beer jelly and halved grapes, and Beer Cured Albacore with pickled carrots and Apple IPA Relish.


Hoyne then introduced his Devil’s Dream IPA, name inspired by daughter Emma and her fiddling friends. As soon as the beer was pouring, the quintet burst into a rousing round of Devil’s Dream and the room erupted in cheers, claps, and raucous stomps. The beer was, of course, devilishly fantastic (writer is a rabid fan of Northwest IPAs and this did not disappoint).


Next up was a Hoyne Pilsner Carbonnade of Beef Shoulder, simply yet stunningly presented on a Sweet Potato, Spinach & Cippolini Hash with Minted Earl Grey Beer Jelly, surrounded by a delicate pool of braising jus. Hoyner Pilsner was the accompaniment. This pilsner is Sean Hoyne’s tribute to the traditional Czech brew, a variety which he explained has often defaulted to big-brand breweries over the past few decades and lost much of its original charm. Consider all charms restored with this malty, light, and flavourful brew, the perfect companion to the dark richness of the braised beef.


Having taken seconds (make that thirds…okay, fourths) of the Devil’s Dream IPA, I only had a small sip of Hoyne Brewing Co.’s latest release: The Big Bock. This deep-hued, “bohemian dark lager” with its subtle maltiness paired wonderfully with Chef Waller’s Chocolate Bock Bread Pudding with Beer Custard.


After all guests were sufficiently satiated, OBB Manager Angela Pollock Gill thanked everyone for coming and introduced Chef Waller and his crew, to a hearty applause. The fiddlers began to pack up, Sean Hoyne topped up a few more glasses from the keg, and gradually we left the warmth of the bistro and returned to the drizzly streets of Oak Bay Village. A memorable evening indeed.


NOTE: Watch for our profile on Hoyne Brewing Company in the March/April EAT.


Hoyne Brewing Co.

101-2740 Bridge Street, Victoria

(250) 590-5758




Oak Bay Bistro

2250 Oak Bay Avenue, Victoria

(250) 598-1441





Written By:

We get many people writing guest articles for us, as well as past contributors. This is the Guest ...

Comments are closed.