BentSpoke & Malt Shovel Brewers BXW

Malt Shovel Brewers (Lion/Kirin)

Published April 16, 2022

Malt Shovel Brewers and BentSpoke have assembled like Power Rangers once more to create a new collaborative beer. This time around, they've served up the Belgian Extra White Ale, or as the cool kids are calling it, the Bentshovel BXW. It feels so very Australian to take a beer style with roots in one of the world's great brewing nations, muck around with it, and give it a neat abbreviation too: "Yeah, monks. We know how you’ve been brewing this sort of things for hundreds of years and stuff but we made this one 'extra', so get it up ya, you robey buggers!"

So what does the "extra" mean here? It's hard to say based upon appearance alone, with a thin, foamy head sitting atop the cloudy, straw-yellow beer and emitting some pungent yeast and white wine like aromas, although at 6 percent ABV it sits above the typical witbier booze range.

My first sip actually caused me to yell out: “Oh my word.” This despite the fact BXW is surprisingly chill and refreshing. The little hints of clean coriander and orange peel are just two of the many notes in this pocket-sized symphony. There’s a mid-palate romp of esters and some really funky phenolic notes that might just transport you back to Medieval Flanders, yet it remains an accessible take on such yeast-driven beers which can sometimes overpower, or find their charms lost on those early in their craft journey.

When I joked earlier about the Aussie "yeah-nah" approach to sacred brewing principles I didn’t think it would result in a beer that I am now straight up calling a must-try for anyone starting their beer journey. Malt Shovel and BentSpoke, please keep making beer babies together.

Benedict Kennedy-Cox

Strong Witbier
Malt Shovel Brewers (Lion/Kirin)

99 Pyrmont Bridge Road
NSW 2050