Mountain Goat + Mount Lawley

Don’t you just love Mountain Goat? I do. And don’t you just love it when you get the chance to meet a brewer?

Don’t you just love Mountain Goat? I do. And don’t you just love it when you get the chance to meet a brewer? … Brewers on tour !

Mountain Goat has been bringing us great beers since their Hightail Ale first hit Victorian shelves in 1997.

Dave from Mountain Goat will be dropping by Five Bar, Mount Lawley, to showcase some of their damn fine beer. The line up will include regulars such as Hightail Ale, Steam Ale and their new apple cider, 2 Steps. Also on the billing will be their latest Cross Breed, a collaborative brew with Mikkeller – Pepperberry Black IPA – and Rare Breed – a limited release Rye IPA. If you needed another reason to mark the event in your calendar there is something special appearing on tap.

One of the starts of the night – Cross Breed Black Pepperberry IPA

Just because they can, the boys in the Five Bar kitchen – Nelly & Mitch, will be serving up goat signature dishes to match the beers on offer.

Goat brewer + Goat beer + Goat food = I will see you there!

No tickets required for this event

Where: Five Bar | 560 Beaufort Street, Mt Lawley
When: Wednesday 13th June 2012
Time: 6.00pm

Boogoop + Cheese

Boogoop is the fourth collaboration brew from Denmark “gypsy” brewer, Mikkeller, and Chicago artisanal brewery, Three Floyds. It follows in “goop” predecessors – Hvedegoop, Oatgoop and Ruggoop – and whilst its got a funny sounding name it’s also seriously good. Grab a chunk of your favourite blue cheese to match and enjoy!

Boogoop … funny name, awesome beer

Not only is Anthony Williams the front man for BEERTasters, a Perth outfit spreading the good beer word, but he’s also a good guy and as such dropped by on my last shift at Five Bar to give me a present. I love presents and I love beer so even better when the gift is beer! It was a bottle of the Mikkeller & Three Floyds collaboration brew, Boogoop. For some time it waited to be consumed, taking a prominent place on the bookshelf and being saved for the right occasion.

Boogoop is the fourth collaboration brew from Denmark “gypsy” brewer, Mikkeller, and Chicago artisanal brewery,  Three Floyds. It follows in “goop” predecessors – Hvedegoop, Oatgoop and Ruggoop – and whilst its got a funny sounding name it’s also seriously good.

The beer is a buckwheat wine-style ale which had me grabbing for my books to find out what exactly was buckwheat. First, it’s not a grain, it’s actually part of the herb family that’s Asian in origin; and secondly because buckwheat has grain-like qualities it’s another something for brewers to play with. From what I can gather Boogoop is using a certain amount of buckwheat in the mash (not sure how much but would love to know) and producing a barley wine styled ale. I am happy for anyone who’s more knowledgable on the topic to expand on this for me. At a throat-grabbing 10.4% abv and flavours that smack you around (but cuddle you after) it certainly felt like a barley wine style to me!

The special occasion my boyfriend and I waited for to enjoy the Boogoop ended up being any old weekday night when we really, really felt like a rich beer and some cheese. Of course it was going to have to be a suitably big and rich cheese so my boyfriend picked up a wedge of Blue Cow Blue Cheese.

We popped the bottle open and a gorgeous, hazy burnt caramel colour with a big white foam head filled the wine glass. I initially got a nose full of spices with plenty of IPA characteristics like grapefruit and floral notes and just a heck of a lot of hops. Ok, I thought to myself, smells like a spicy IPA. Wonder what it tastes like? I took a gulp and it’s certainly not a subtle beer and I’m certain it’s not supposed to be. Looking at the 3Floyds website subtle really isn’t their thing. Caramelised tones with warming alcohol and perhaps a hint of tropical fruits (passionfruit?), it’s rich and a little chewy which. When paired with blue cheese it made for a wonderful contrast in two different kinds of rich, the beer being the sort of sweet that is dark and sticks to the back of your mouth and the rich bitter and creamy blue cheese. Delightful! We also had a little camembert lying around and tried this with the beer too, resulting in another great matching of creamy sweet cheese and sticky sweet beer.

Cheese + Beer can be mind-blowingly, taste bud-dancing experience. Head to the shops, find a few different types of cheese and then hit your favourite craft beer bottleshop.

Here are a few links if you wanted some more cheese + beer reading …

And here is the menu for the beer + cheese event I co-hosted with Nick Bath from Blue Cow Cheese Co at Five Bar to support the 2011 Beaufort Street Festival:
Pilsner Urquell + Boerenkaas 15 Month Matured
Samuel Adams Lager + Montgomery’s Cheddar
Endeavour Pale Ale + Isle of Mull
St Peter’s Ruby Red + Blue Cow Swiss Gruyere
Coopers Vintage + Gutshofer Ziegenkase
Weihenstephaner Korbinian + Colombo Taleggio D.O.P
Mountain Goat Surefoot Stout + Mon Sire Cendre Royale

Gypsy + The Goat Black Pepperberry IPA

As it says on the bottle “Like the goat-drawn chariot delivering Thor, Norse God of Thunder, to smite his enemies, so too does Mountain Goat and Mikkeller deliver thunderous flavour with this god-like IPA. For at dit helbred!

One is Never Enough …

I love the way Mountain Goat approach things, always with their own stamp and clearly with an immense amount of passion.

For those unfamiliar with the Mountain Goat story, Dave and Cam operate their microbrewery out of Richmond, Victoria and they named themselves after a big hairy animal that won’t fall over (as they say on their website). You gotta love that. Along with their core range of award winning beers including Hightail Ale and Steam Ale, they regularly produce limited releases in attractive 640ml bottles under the label ‘Rare Breed’ and collaboration brews called ‘Cross Breed’. The Critics’ Choice Australia’s Best Beers 2011 saw 7 entries from the Mountain Goat boys, more than half of those in the top 40.

The Black Pepperberry IPA represents another addition to the Cross Breed range with Mountain Goat teaming up with Danish Brewer, Mikkeller. Born from The Crafty Pint assisted The Gypsy & The Goat dinner held at Mountain Goat during the 20th anniversary Melbourne Food & Wine Festival this year, it was only natural that something would start brewing …

Our bottle was given to us as a gift from Jess & Scott at our dinner at The Pourhouse over the weekend (read about it here). Thanks Guys!

Pepperberries

The brew uses local Pepperberries, sometimes referred to as Mountain Pepper, that carry a luscious sweet flavour before releasing a good amount of heat, much stronger than that of peppercorns. It pours with a beautiful black appearance and a rich coat of foam on top and just begs to be devoured! The bitterness is upfront and well balanced with mildly tropical fruity flavours and chocolatey malt. Oh and the 7.3% abv is well hidden. I loved how it developed as it warmed up, the effects of the pepperberries became more evident with each gulp, bringing more spice and pepper to the back of the tongue. It was just a shame we only had one bottle, I guess I’ll have to visit the bottleshop later today. It’s a tough life!

Be sure to spend a little time on Google Translate to read the label. I always enjoy reading the Rare Breed and Cross Breed labels and this one even has a little bit on the God of Thunder, Thor, to enjoy. For at dit helbred!

As for food matching, I cooked up some Char Sui-style Beef, deliberately selecting a sweeter sauce that may compliment the hop aromas and pepperberries. The sauce was properly sticky and the thickness stood up well to the medium bodied and full flavours of the beer. It wasn’t an altogether perfect match of course but when dinner was over it was time to finish off the last two chocolate muffins. It was a delightfully different match to the dark cocoa flavours and a great way to finish a meal.

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Production Bits:

  • Local Pepperberries from the Victoria High Country
  • Dry Hopped with Galaxy, Citra and Cascade
  • 3 different Roasted Malts
Testing out the Black Pepperberry IPA
with Home Cooked Sticky Char Sui-style Beef
Read more about Mountain Goat and the Black Pepperberry IPA here: