The team at Holgate Brewhouse releases plenty of beers year round that require careful nurturing and nudge at the boundaries of what beer can be. But there's nothing in their roster quite like the Beelzebub's Jewels. First released in 2010, when it was based on their Double Trouble - given a boost inside some Curly Flats pinot noir barrels - it's since been enhanced, starting from a brand new recipe in 2011, with refinements and lengthier periods in barrels ever since. The changes were obviously a wise idea as it picked up a gold medal at the 2012 Australian International Beer Awards. And now it's back, with the 2013 version launched this week. Changes this year include its transfer from 750ml champagne bottles to 500ml antique green sparkling wine bottles to make it more affordable and also an appearance on a handful of taps across the land.
According to Holgate founder Paul Holgate, this year's spent five months ageing in the Pinot barrels, "has gained considerable oak character" and is "tasting a treat". He says there is also a little of last year's gold medal winner around - or available direct from the brewery - if anyone wants to grab two devils by the balls and undertake a little side by side action.