WA Beer News #20

There is a lot of stuff happening in WA’s craft beer scene that it’s genuinely hard to keep up with all the new beer releases and WA really is kicking ass when it comes to craft beer and so I thought I’d try and make a regular feature out of all the new beery goodness our state has to offer.

The girl+beer Facebook page has a list of upcoming beer events that you might find worth subscribing to!

news …

Of course the big news, and I would be very surprised if you had not heard, is the 100% acquisition of Feral Brewing by Coca-Cola Amatil that was announced on Thursday. There are a number of great articles on this news so I won’t re-hash it in great detail here. Some drinkers are concerned about the quality of the beers but not me, I’m looking forward to seeing what new brews and innovations come out of Feral, just like they have been doing since 2002. I guess what I’m saying is that, let time determine this, not early assumptions.

Huge congratulations to Brendan and Gab Varis, founders of Feral Brewing, and the whole team – past and present – who’ve contributed game-changing beers and worked ridiculously hard over the last 15 years to be true leaders in the industry.

Read the full details at Crafty Pint, Australian Brews News, The West Australian, The Sip  and you can listen to an interview with Australian Brews News and Brendan Varis here.

new beers …

Eagle Bay Citrus IPA

  • 5.1 percent ABV
  • IPA
  • Limited Release
  • 330ml bottles and on tap

This beer is brewed with grapefruit, lemon and orange zest from fruit on their own farm. They’ve made this beer before but it’s been a while and it’s great to see it back! It’s exactly what you’d expect from something called “citrus IPA” with plenty of balanced citrus flavour, moderate bitterness and a dry lime-pith finish.

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Eagle Bay Brewing Heir of the Dog

  • 5.9 percent ABV
  • Collaboration brew with The Balmoral
  • Limited release
  • Available on tap only

The Balmoral crew went down south to hang out with Eagle Bay Brewing and made Heir of the Dog, a hoppy lager. Tasting notes describe tropical fruit character with a crisp and clean finish and caramel malts and moderate bitterness support. You can try it at The Balmoral’s launch event on Sunday where dogs are welcome with prizes for best dressed and you can also chat all things beer with Gerome and Nick from Eagle Bay Brewing whilst you’re there.

 

Bootleg Brewery The Cobbler

  • 4.2 percent ABV
  • American Brown Ale
  • Collaboration brew with award-winning home brewer Dave Baker

Bootleg Brewery hosted a home-brewing competition for the South-West Craft Beer Bogans and after tasting a “variety of high-quality beers” they found their winner in Dave Baker’s American Brown Ale.

Ryan Nilsson-Linne, Bootleg’s head brewer, describes the beer as “super balanced” and “with an earthy character blended with traditional Citra and Cascade hops for a spicy citrus mix.”

There’s a tasting with both Ryan and Dave on the lawn at Bootleg Brewery today from 12noon and on Thursday night it will be part of the Bootleg tap takeover at Busselton’s The Firestation where they will also have their new European style 5.0 percent lager pouring.

Black Brewing Kiwiake

  • 9.6 percent ABV
  • Kettle soured strong ale
  • Limited Release
  • Only 9 kegs available

Black Brewing brewed only nine kegs of this very special beer. Kiwiake is a kettle soured strong ale fermented with Sake yeast with secondary fermentation on 70kgs of kiwi fruit.

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Image from Black Brewing’s Facebook page

Cheeky Monkey Brewing Double IPA – Round Two

  • 8.2 percent ABV
  • 500ml cans and on tap
  • Limited release

This is an encore performance from Cheeky Monkey who first released this beer last month. They’ve made a couple of tweaks to the original recipe, still using Citra, Mandarina Bavaria and Lemon Drop hops but they’ve amped it up and used way more than last time. Expect orange, tangerine, mango and grapefruit character and, from a slight recipe tweak, a drier finish than the first batch offered.

Blasta Brewing Blastaweizen

  • 5.3 percent ABV
  • Weissbier aka German Hefeweizen
  • On tap only

Blasta Brewing, fresh off their planning approval to build their Burswood brewery, released their Blastaweizen yesterday. In the true tradition of the style, Steve Russell has used more than 50% wheat in this beer and describes the beer as having flavours of “banana, stone fruit, nutmeg and clove” along with a “refreshing carbonation and great mouthfeel”. Blastaweizen has been brewed with two yeast strains, from White Labs and German brewery Weihenstephan, for a more complex yeast character (think spices and fruits!) and sounds like an excellent tribute to the classic Munich style!

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WA Beer News #17

This post is PACKED with new beers out now and coming soon!

There is a lot of stuff happening in WA’s craft beer scene that it’s genuinely hard to keep up with all the new beer releases and WA really is kicking ass when it comes to craft beer and so I thought I’d try and make a regular feature out of all the new beery goodness our state has to offer.

The girl+beer Facebook page has a list of upcoming beer events that you might find worth subscribing to!


new beers out now …

Northbridge Brewing – Get Schwarty

  • ABV: 4.7 percent
  • Style: Schwarzbier

Get Schwarty is the latest seasonal from Northbridge Brewing Co, released a couple of weeks ago, it is an India Black Lager, so style-wise you can expect something that is hoppy, black in appearance but with a light lager type mouthfeel. A beer to challenge that you think about dark beers, they’re not all Guinness!

Indian Ocean – Black Lager

  • 5.0% ABV
  • Style: Schwarzbier

Available only on tap, the Indian Ocean Black Lager is described as an American version so, similar to Get Schwarty, you can expect some wonderful fresh hop character balanced into what is a traditional German dark lager beer style. Brewers note say both American and Australian hops have been used and it has “rocky road-ish vibes”. There’s also been a conscious effort by the brewers to ensure the beer has no burnt chocolate or toast character.

Image from Indian Ocean Brewing Instagram

Homestead – Brown IPA

  • 5.3% ABV
  • Style: Brown IPA

Black Brewing Bao Bao Milk Stout – Variants

Black Brewing have taken their Bao Bao Milk Stout and made four versions of the beer – coffee, coconut, rum and port barrel aged and imperial*. You may recall these were released in kegs a couple of months ago but now they’ve made a very limited amount available in 330ml bottles. Hit up your nearest craft beer loving retailer to see if they still have some!

*Imperial is basically fancy beer terminology for ‘double’ so expect a BIG beer, stronger in flavour and alcohol.

Nowhereman Brewing – On The DL + Oxford Street Common

It seems that our local brewers are having a love affair with Schwarzbier, the German dark lager, and here’s another dark lager, this time by Nowhereman and it’s called On the DL. Not only is this a really tasty beer but it’s also historic, the first beer brewed on their own brew kit.

The Oxford Street Common is a steam ale style beer that Paul says is an easy, go-to beer that drinkers can come back to time and time again for something refreshing, something clean and something delicious!

new beers coming soon …

Nowhereman Brewing x Pound Coffee – By The Pound

Nowhereman brewer Paul Wyman has teamed up with Justin from Pound Coffee to make a coffee brown ale. Paul brewed the brown ale and then mixed it with over 100 litres of Pound coffee. There’ll be a launch party on Sunday 17 September which will also include a cupping hosted by Justin and Paul will also be on hand to take drinkers through the beer and the process in making it. Tickets are less than $12 and can be purchased here.

Cheeky Monkey Brewing – Double IPA

Cheeky Monkey have brewed up a Double IPA as their limited spring release and will be available from Friday. It’s 8.2 percent ABV and has been brewed using Citra, Mandarina Bavaria and Lemon Drop hops.

Image from Cheeky Monkey Brewing

Bright Tank Brewing x artisan brewing – Urban Farmer Saison

Sometimes it’s hard to describe how generous and supportive the beer industry is because, at least in my experience, it goes beyond any other industry I’ve ever worked in. Collaborations like this are a great example.

Bright Tank Brewing are not open yet, they are aiming to have their East Perth brewpub open in February or March next year but the crew at Boston Brewing in Denmark opened their doors to Bright Tank so they could brew this beer alongside Artisan Brewing.

To brew the Urban Farm Saison, Bright Tank co-founder and brewer Matthew Moore couldn’t have picked a better brewery to collaborate with, Artisan Brewing specialise in Belgian beer styles and do them ridiculously well.

The Urban Farmer Saison will be launched on Thursday 21 September at Petition where founders Matt and Gemma will be behind the bar from 5 – 7pm doing a brewers shout.


What is a Saison?

Saison, meaning “season”, originates from Wallonia in the south of Belgium and is a refreshing beer that’s typically fruity, spicy and with a very dry finish.


news …

Growler System at Cape Cellars, Busselton

It’s always good news when another bottle shop gets taps, giving their customers an opportunity to take home fresh tap beer and, often, beers that are limited release only available in kegs.

Cape Cellars in Busselton are the latest store to make tap beer available in-store, stay tuned to their Facebook page for the announcement very soon!


Remember – Rinse Growlers Straight Away!

So, you’ve finished that delicious beer you got in a growler or squealer? As soon as you empty it, rinse it with hot water straight away to stop mould or other nasty things growing inside. Personally, I rinse mine three times just to be sure, you’d hate for the next beers you put in there to get infected and undrinkable!


Whitfords Brewing Co

From the Beerland team that operates Northbridge Brewing Co comes a new location in Perth’s northern suburbs – Whitfords Brewing Co, located at the Whitfords City Shopping Centre.

The brewery will be headed up by master brewer Ken Arrowsmith and will be opening their doors on the 21st September.

WA Beer Week: Dude Food Feast

Eating sticky chicken wings with my hands at the beautiful venue like The Trustee Bar & Bistro is kinda like wearing a gorgeous evening dress and a pair of thongs. It’s kinda wrong but there’s no denying that it’s really, really good.

Eating sticky chicken wings with my hands at a beautiful venue like The Trustee Bar & Bistro is kinda like wearing a gorgeous evening dress and a pair of thongs. It’s kinda wrong but there’s no denying that it’s really, really good.

On Tuesday night I was lucky enough to be invited to the ‘Dude Food Feast’ presented by The Trustee and Mane Liquor as part of WA Beer Week. Imagine the tastiest dude food you’ve ever stuck into your face paired with fresh WA beer and set in one of the city’s most beautiful venues and you have a good idea of what my Tuesday night was like.

Roxy and Josh

The beers were selected and presented by Roxy and Josh from Mane Liquor and the food was created by The Trustee Executive Chef Michelle Forbes who, to quote my good friend Jess Shaver, is “so f**king kick ass it’s not even funny”.

Jess was right, Michelle and her food was nothing short of kick ass.

Canapes

Pork Slider + Colonial Small Ale

The pork had been marinated for 15 hours and its richness was a great match to the bold hops in the Small Ale and the bread was a little on the sweet side highlighting the subtle caramel malt in the beer.

First Entree

Crispy Squid + Cheeky Monkey New Zealand Pilsner

“It’s real tasty”

How Alex, head brewer Cheeky Monkey, described his beer to Josh, Mane Liquor

The squid was thick crumbed and served with chilli aioli and dill mayonnaise, it was also a serving so big that I fear there are no more squid in the oceans. The beer, brewed by Alex and Ross at Cheeky Monkey, uses three New Zealand hop varieties – Dr Rudi, Motueka and Wakatu and the resulting beer was a gorgeous mix of soft tropical fruits and citrus notes. The beer cut through the thick crumb on the squid and the hops were drawn out by the chilli aioli. My favourite part of this dish was the dill mayonnaise cutting through the fresh hops and adding another layer of flavour. Paired with the food, the beer started to take on a kind of sweet glazed ham flavour which may not sound amazing but it really was.

photo 4

Second Entree

Sticky Chicken Wings + Bootleg/Mane Liquor Ryezilla

Sticky Chicken Wings & Ryezilla
Sticky Chicken Wings & Ryezilla

The serving of chicken wings made the plate of squid look tiny. Biting into my first wing my palate got a big whack of coriander. Also made with honey, soy, chilli and lemongrass, the wings were deliciously sticky and fabulous fun to eat. Ryezilla, the collaboration beer between Mane Liquor and Bootleg Brewery, is still boasting heaps of juicy pineapple and mango Enigma hop character though it has rounded out nicely. The wings coaxed out the spice in the beer whilst the sweetness from the glaze on the wings and the caramel malt in the beer worked nicely together.

Sticky Chicken Wings
Sticky Chicken Wings

Main

Beef Short Ribs Slow Braised with Sticky BBQ Sauce, Espresso Aubergine Puree + Eagle Bay Cacao Stout

At this stage of the event I was very full, not just regular full but Christmas-dinner-I-went-back-for-thirds kind of full. Then the ribs landed and they were impossible to resist. The meat was rich and stupidly soft, barely holding on to the bone. The sauce had a subtle sweetness and the espresso aubergine puree provided a nice contrast to the richness of the meat, it also lifted the coffee notes from the Cacao Stout.

Pouring Cacao Stout

The Eagle Bay Cacao Stout is their annual winter release and I was a little sad to realise it would probably be a year until this beer was in my hands again. Made from cacao bean husks, the by-product of the chocolate making process, from Margaret River chocolate maker Bahen & Co, the beer is ultra smooth, chocolatey, roasty and with hints of berry fruit.

Beef Short Ribs
Beef Short Ribs

Dessert

Salted Caramel Beer Ice Cream + Feral Brewing Razorback Barley Wine

“I’m glad it’s not cheese”

Me reflecting on the final course with words I never thought I would say

When I had the first bite of this dessert it was clear that despite being ready to either burst or fall asleep I was going to eat every part of this amazing dish. The dessert was served with a caramel sauce made with Feral Hop Hog creating a pairing of sweet with sweet when paired with the beer. The roasty flavours of the beer cut through the vanilla wafers and delicate ice cream, this pairing was a great example of when beer and food come together to be amazing and you wouldn’t want to have one without the other.

Salted Caramel Beer Ice Cream
Salted Caramel Beer Ice Cream

Thank you Mane Liquor and The Trustee for inviting me to this fantastic event!

Pourhouse + WA Beer Week

WA Beer Week offered an abundance of events to attend through Perth and the South West which, in turn, meant an abundance of excuses to head down to the nearest bar. The Lawn, upstairs at The Pourhouse in Dunsborough, offered up a $20 burger and beer during the week and the beer taps were taken over by only WA beers.

WA Beer Week, 9th-17th November, offered an abundance of events to attend througout Perth and the South West which, in turn, meant an abundance of excuses to head to the nearest bar.

The Lawn, upstairs at The Pourhouse in Dunsborough, offered up a $20 burger and beer during the week and the beer taps were taken over by only WA beers. Plus, just to show off, they also featured limited release beers including Duckstein Maibock, Colonial Kottbusser, Cheeky Monkey Belgo IPA and the Eagle Bay / Pourhouse collaboration the Romp Ferme Saison.

Myself and my boyfriend / partner-in-beer-crime arrived on Monday afternoon. The sun was shining and we had our pick of seats, it was exactly what we wanted.

I kicked off the afternoon with a Colonial Kottbusser; beautifully straw clear in appearance, the taste was something like a dirty, angry mandarin – take from that what you will.

Sunshine and a pint of Colonial IPA and middy of Kottbusser at The Pourhouse

Next up I had the Duckstein Maibock which I thoroughly enjoyed and totally neglected to jot down any notes. That’ll teach me to a) neglect to write notes and b) attempt to write the post some 7 days later. All I can say on the Duckstein Maibock is that it’s delightful and I look forward to getting another taste during the Margaret River Gourmet Escape this coming weekend.

With two beers down it was time to order some food and after consultation with the staff we both decided on The Lawn Wagu Burger – bacon, vintage cheddar and onion rings … oh YEAH! Other seriously tempting options included the Big Blue and the Pulled Pork.

I chose the Eagle Bay / Pourhouse collaboration brew – the Romp Ferme Saison – to go with the burger, for no real discernible reason other than I’ve generally found Saisons to be great food beers. The Romp Ferme Saison, which I am lead to believe roughly translates into “the farmhouse romp”, has got a lot going on – earthy, honey aromas and flavours of maple syrup, pepper and funky stone fruit, perhaps almost a cooked fruit taste.

The Lawn Wagu Burger is as good as it looks, generous on the ingredients (i.e. not one of those moments when the menu reads “bacon” and it’s the fattiest, smallest sliver you’ve ever seen) and genuinely tasty. The accompaniment of Sweet Potato Straw, though very simple, made for a different and tasty side.

The afternoon finished after two games of Monopoly (each of us with a win under our belt) and a final beer – Cheeky Monkey Belgo IPA. It poured a stunning burnt orange with big aromas of fresh grapefruit like any good American Pale Ale. The bitterness was assertive and piney with some orange on the back and definitively worth going back for seconds.

It was another great trip to The Pourhouse and now with summer almost upon us we have The Lawn to enjoy seven days a week from 5pm plus you can get this great $20 deal every Wednesday.

The Lawn
Upstairs at The Pourhouse