2 Halfs Stone, Brass Monkey, Mango Eclipse & Secret Garden

Various Styles As Indicated
5.8% & 6.0% & 3.9% & 7.8%

Given there's a German brewer with decades of experience at the helm, it makes sense that 2 Halfs Brewing Distilling built their reputation on fine interpretations of European classics. They're still at it, with spring 2023 seeing them drop a bunch of such beers: a new version of their Bohemian lager Oldrich, drinking bigger than its 4.4 percent ABV; Andrich, a gorgeous-looking amber lager blending toffee with raisin-y, ripe stewed fruitiness and a touch of earthy bitterness; their 2023 Marzen, which is like a pretzel in a glass; and Baguette Blanche, a creamy, citrusy snowball of a witbier.

But Kirk likes to turn his hand to newer styles too, and a quartet of more contemporary styles have landed in quick succession since those old world offerings launched. Stone is a hazy pale featuring US and NZ hops that delivers punchy mango, a little banana, and a creaminess reminiscent of Sabro hops on the palate. The creaminess – presumably aided by the almost IPA-esque ABV – is contrasted by a cutting bitter, citrusy finish.

With labels that recall icicles, Brass Monkey hints at the India pale lager's close links to cold IPAs. A couple of classic American "C" hops contribute young pineapple, pine, and a deep, gripping bitterness alongside light caramel sweetness in a golden beer in which rice is employed to keep things lean.

Switching hops out and purée in to bring the fruitiness is Mango Eclipse, a Berliner weisse in which even Blind Freddy would call out the mango, given it’s that sweet and fleshy. A thick, off-white head and purée-enhanced full body give it a larger presence than the ABV suggests, while the finish is both sweet and a little dusty.

Finishing with the heftiest of the four and we have Secret Garden, a double IPA that could pass as a smoothie sour appearance wise, so dense is the murky liquid. In character, it's less secret garden than fruit salad through a blender: look out for mango, passionfruit and more swirling through its thick, dessert like viscosity.

James Smith

Published November 16, 2023

2 Halfs Brewing Distilling

2 Stokes Avenue
NSW 2015

(02) 8068 0915
Open Hours

Mon to Wed: takeaway only 11am to 5pm
Thursday: 1pm to 9pm
Fri & Sat: 1pm to 10pm
Sunday: midday to 6pm

Canberra Fest 2024 B
Frigid Cloud 2 B

More from 2 Halfs Brewing Distilling

2 Halfs Oldrich, Keller Hell, Weisenbier & Festbier
European Lager Variants
4.8% & 5.1% & 5.9% & 6.1%
2 Halfs Hazy Daze & Uncle Dunkel
Hazy IPA & Dunkel
6.0% & 4.6%
2 Halfs Keller Pils, SIPA & Sim-Citt
German Pils, Sour IPA & West Coast IPA
5.6% & 6.6% & 6.4%
2 Halfs Alexandria Ale
American Pale
2 Halfs Keller Dortmunder
2 Halfs Schwartz Schwarzbier
2 Halfs De Kirk
Belgian Pale Ale
2 Halfs Baguette Blanche
Belgian Witbier
2 Halfs Hazel
English Mild
2 Halfs Burnt Amber
Amber Lager
2 Halfs G.E.E. Hazy
Hazy Pale Ale
2 Halfs C-Four American IPA
American IPA
2 Halfs Deep Space
Foreign Extra Stout