Why write about one Ballistic beer when you can deliver three? Such is the rate at which Lachy Crothers and co are firing out new releases these days, you're getting three chapters for the price of one this time around, starting with the most recent.
When Ballistic opened with a core range of six beers, it was a little surprising to see that Pale Ale wasn’t one of them. It’s an unusual move in the current beer climate for a brewery to go their entire first year without brewing a pale ale, but it certainly wasn’t a damaging move for Ballistic. After a year, though, they brewed a Pale Ale (and added it to their core range), and it may have opened the floodgates; just two months later, another pale ale has emerged, brewed specially for Brewsvegas 2018.
As summer slowly waves goodbye, Ballistic leaves us with Tropical Pale Ale, an easy drinking pale that doesn’t skimp on flavour. Delicate florals on the nose might have you wondering if you’re going to pick up much tropical flavour. Stop wondering. Stop wondering right now. Because from the first sip, those florals transform into mango and other stonefruit, citrus zest and pineapple, all carried along by a smooth, sweet malt profile. Then just when you think you’ve tasted it all, you’re hit with a resinous pine bitterness and passionfruit tang that lingers like there’s no tomorrow. Which would be okay, because you’d die doing what you love: drinking beer.
If you find yourself chatting with Ballistic’s head brewer Lachy, there’s a good chance the conversation will eventually turn to lager. Well balanced lagers hold a special place in Lachy’s heart, so whenever one pops its head up on Ballistic’s tap list, you know it’s been crafted with love.
Brewed in traditional Bavarian style, the Toasted Munich Lager gives a rich toastiness on the nose, prepping you for the malt-driven delight you’re about to experience. The taste starts off with biscuity sweetness and a little honey flavour, keeping the hops and the yeast as whispers in the background. The flavours then melt away to a soft but satisfying bitterness, and you’re reminded that this is a refreshing lager, not a palate-destroyer.
On style, but stronger and more flavoursome than many lagers, this will appease the taste buds of lager-lovers and the lager-skeptics alike. Equally appropriate to drink in chilly Munich or humid Brisbane.
The past few years have seen the introduction and rise of XPAs in the Australian beer market. But while XPA is only a young style, it’s already undergone the treatment that Australians notoriously give to everything: “Let’s mess around with it and see what happens.”
So, when Ballistic decided to brew an XPA, they chose to only use a single hop, and chose to ferment it on toasted American oak chips. In doing so, they’ve created an interesting variation on the style that won punters over immediately.
It’s a predictable beer in all the right ways: it offers exactly what you’d expect from an XPA on Citra and oak. A hoppy, zesty aroma. An upfront punch of mandarin and grapefruit, softened by subtle woodiness and vanilla. A slow finish of bitter mandarin peel.
The Oaked Citra XPA just what you expect, and just what you want. Cheers for messing around with it, Ballistic.
Published March 15, 2018 2018-03-15 00:00:00