Boxer Ice, Minhas Craft Brewery, Wisconsin, US (Alcohol 5.5%) The Beer Store $2.75 for a 710ml can

Picture this : It’s one of those odd occasions where I find myself in a branch of The Beer Store. I’m pottering around looking for their least offensive offering when I spy a poster on the wall promoting Boxer beer. Now I have never heard of the stuff before, so do a quick search on my phone to find out a few more details.

The Beer Store’s Triassic period website lazily informs me that “Boxer Ice is a Canadian-style lager made with 2-row Canadian malt and domestic hops. Boxer Ice is lagered for 4 weeks prior to canning. This full bodied crisp beer starts with a gentle maltiness and clean finish.” So far, so good I wrongly suppose.

I decide to go for six tall cans at $2.75 a pop. I’m really thirsty after all that Autumnal yard work, and I could really use a few cold ones. It seems very well-priced. I mean, how bad can this beer really be? 

As it turns out, the answer is really bad. Extremely bad.

Now, I’m not just being a snob about what The Beer Store class as beer from the “Value” category. What I do take issue with is thirsty people paying good money for what amounts to something like a non-beer drinkers approximation of a lager post-mix syrup run through a SodaStream.

Boxer Ice tastes like a beer designed by an accountant.

An accountant who had his/her tastebuds removed at birth.

An accountant who likes the glass to fill with the aroma of a decidedly stale beer fart.  

An accountant who enjoys the texture of pop-like bubbles, the product of an ever-so-clumsy carbonation by the infamous méthode pompe bicyclette. 

An accountant who doesn’t realise that a “persistent finish” isn’t always a good thing. Especially when said finish is akin to sucking on a handful of dirty coins. 

Now, I have nothing against accountants, as some of my best friends’ (Mums) are accountants. I just don’t think that they should be designing beers.

I took the remaining five cans back to to the store the next day, telling the spunky young man that I simply couldn’t bring myself to drink the stuff as it was really bloody awful. He chuckled and replied “Yeah… I’ve heard a lot of folks saying that recently”.

Doing my research afterwards I came to discover that the co-founder and owner of the “Craft” brewery responsible for this utter-muck-in-a-tin was none other that Manjit Minhas, a “Dragon” on seasons 10 and 11 of CBC’s increasingly tedious reality show Dragons’ Den. Apart from the wonderfully innovative and ebullient Vikram Vij, has anything good ever come out of that program tastewise? Kevin O’Leary’s wine? Give me a break.

If you in anyway appreciate the taste of beer you’d be better to avoid this one. Also… a life lesson learned : Never go to The Beer Store when thirsty… actually, never go to The Beer Store period.

Zero apples out of a possible five.

Jamie Drummond

Edinburgh-born/Toronto-based Sommelier, consultant, writer, judge, and educator Jamie Drummond is the Director of Programs/Editor of Good Food Revolution… And that was rank.