Today I have a large bottle of the second ever Muskoka Harvest Ale, Vintage 2010. I missed last year's vintage because it was never bottled and only served on tap. This year is different, making the Muskoka's first bottled seasonal beer. For this thing I had to go to the central LCBO store on Summerhill in Toronto and paid $7.95 for the bottle.
Well, first thing I like about this is the swing top. I am a sucker for swing tops and the popping noise they make when you open the bottle. I know that the noise does not come from the swing top, but rather from the gases trapped inside. Second is the smooth, large bottle with the sleek black, wrap-around label.
The beer is deep amber in color with attractive red hues. It pours with a medium, bubbly, tan head, which recedes quickly. I am not a huge Muskoka fan, but this is something different. The aroma is much richer than any of their other beers with sweet malty notes, subtle dried fruits and a touch of hops. The one thing I should not are the metallic hints. Not a huge fan of them, but at least they are not in your face. The taste is not too rich, but not too bland for a beer with 6.4% ABV. Lightly toasted malt, roasted nuts and hints of sweet dried fruits comprise the taste, while the finish is dry, hoppy and warm. All in all, this is a pretty decent beer, which is now definitely my favorite Muskoka brew. Get a bottle while you can or else you would have to wait until harvest time 2011 when the beer might change a little.
Cost - $7.95 for a 750 mL swing top bottle
Taste - 8.1/10
Overall - 8.1/10...a very nice seasonal beer that shows what the Muskoka Brewery is capable of