In this episode, Aaron visits the Empty Keg Brew House in Merritt, BC.
Driving from Vancouver to the Okanagan often involves a rest stop in Merritt for a break to stretch your legs, maybe gas up the car, and grab a quick snack before continuing on your journey. But now, as Aaron Johnson discovered last summer, you may need to build in more time for a proper stopover because there is a brewery in Merritt.
Located in the beautiful Nicola Valley at the confluence of the Nicola and Coldwater Rivers, Merritt is a community that offers exceptional opportunities to enjoy a variety of outdoor activities: golfing, camping, hiking, mountain biking and fishing (locals say “There’s a lake a day as long as you stay.”), along with skiing and snowmobiling in the colder months.
The Empty Keg Brew House is the dream of the husband and wife team of Kelly and Kyle Hall. Kyle was an avid homebrewer who kept his friends and relations happy for years by sharing his delicious beer with them. About 10 years ago, one of them said, “Your beer is so good — if you ever open a brewery you’ll never be able to keep the kegs full.“ And that was where the brewery’s name came from.
On his visit, Aaron Johnson sat down with Kyle Hall, who began homebrewing 30 years ago. Hall says his recipe book is the thickness of an encyclopedia and he has only just scratched the surface since he opened in May 2019