New Beers

Barely a day goes by without another seasonal or one-off special flying out of an Australian brewery (if not ten). Here and in our weekly newsletter, we'll bring you news and, if we've sampled them, our take on as many of them as possible. Happy hunting!

Pikes Beer Co Choc Vanilla Stout

Tapped Today
When the colder months come calling, there are many who reach for a stout as if by Pavlovian response [which in these pastry stout days could have a very different meaning too – Editor], And it's no different in the Clare Valley. This Pikes winter release comes in the form of a 7.8 percent ABV chocolate vanilla foreign extra stout featuring additions of vanilla and roasted cocoa nibs post ferment. The beer does everything it says it should on the label: the chocolate and vanilla absolutely reign… Read more
Style
Choc Vanilla Stout
ABV
7.8%

Two Birds Brewing Kalsarikännit Hazy Pale & Vanilla & Cocao Stout

Tapped Today
Kalsarikännit (try here for the pronounciation) is a Finnish word that really needs to be popularised in English. The word effectively translates to “pantsdrunk” and refers to life’s great pleasure of drinking at home in your underwear with no intention of going anywhere. Now seems like the perfect time to push for its move into common usage too, considering so many new words and phrases have risen out of lockdown. Two Birds have looked to capture the blissful feeling of underwear drinking… Read more
Style
Hazy Pale Ale & Stout
ABV
5.3% & 5.8%
Stockists

For the full list of stockists, head here.

Hargreaves Hill R.I.S 2019

Tapped July 3rd, 2020
Hargreaves Hill's Russian Imperial Stout is a bit of a perennial favourite of this publication, a beer that comes out in the depths of winter and ticks all the boxes such as complex, big and boozy yet made without the assistance of barrels – aside from one very special release last year. It's a beer that's given lots of time to mature, though, with each brew spending months conditioning before release. R.I.S 2019 follows that same path but this year it’s been given one noticeable change: it’s… Read more
Style
Russian Imperial Stout
ABV
11.2%

Holgate Brewhouse Empress 2020

Tapped July 1st, 2020
In the current era, nothing seems too crazy when it comes to the beers you can find in your local bottleshop fridge. Thus, in the current era of pastry stouts – imperial or otherwise – an imperial mocha porter weighing in at 10 percent ABV and brewed with coffee, Belgian candi syrup, cocoa and vanilla might qualify as a pretty normal winter release. Which, in its own way, reminds you just how forward-thinking the Holgate Brewhouse crew was when they first released Empress way back in 2011. The… Read more
Style
Imperial Mocha Porter
ABV
10.0%
Bitterness
50 IBU

Bridge Road Brewers B2 Bomber Mach 10.0

Tapped July 1st, 2020
It might not have been Bridge Road's first anniversary brew but the B2 Bomber sure struck a chord, not just with drinkers but with brewery founder Ben Kraus and his team too. From the off it was a beer that stood out from the crowd – look back over the past decade and you won't find too many other imperial Belgian black IPAs in anyone else's back catalogue. And why might you want to look at a decade? This – Bridge Road's 15th birthday – is the tenth release of the beer. It's one that's always… Read more
Style
Imperial Belgian Black IPA
ABV
10.0%

3 Ravens Methode Ravens 2019 & Heathcote Yellow Muscat 2020

Tapped July 1st, 2020
It's as if 3 Ravens have go their own microcosm of the wider beer world going on at their Thornbury home. There's the CAW range, including the trophy-winning New World IPA that warrants more attention from lovers of hoppy beers, the Juicy series, the Shake series, the Wild Ravens series, the Nat Rav series and then the beers that don't even fit into any of the above. With the Wild Ravens, of which Methode Ravens is an annual release, there's no way of skipping over things quickly. A blend of three… Read more
Style
Barrel-Aged Blended Beers
ABV
4.8% & 7.5%
Bitterness
5 IBU & 15 IBU
Stockists

Methode Ravens features in a live tasting on July 3

Pikes Beer Co Split Batch IPAs: Centennial & Mosaic

Tapped July 1st, 2020
When working out their winter limited release schedule, the team at Pikes Beer Co was divided, so they created a new "Split Batch"’ series. They brewed the same IPA base beer, using Super Pride for bittering plus Mosaic and Centennial in the whirlpool. It was then split into two separate fermenters, dry-hopped with different varieties and fermented using different yeast strains. One features Centennial and an American yeast, the second Mosaic and an English style strain. The Mosaic version… Read more
Style
IPAs
ABV
6.0% & 6.8%

Temple Brewing Cakepricot

Tapped June 29th, 2020
In 1832, the Austrian Empire's Chancellor, Prince Metternich, had a particularly important dinner party to organise and some guests he needed to impress. He did what you can do when you've got an empire's finances and an army of workers under your control and tasked his kitchen staff with coming up with a new cake. But, with the head chef unwell, that task fell on a 16-year-old apprentice named Franz Sacher who set off to pound chocolate, eggs and apricot together in a manner that impressed not… Read more
Style
Imperial Dessert Stout
ABV
9.2%

Bad Shepherd Double Juicy Hazy IPA

Tapped June 29th, 2020
Put the words "double", "juicy" or "hazy" together with IPA and you'll instantly get plenty of beer fans' attention. Pop all three together and, well, you've got the latest in Bad Shepherd's IPA Series. Not only have they gone with Double Juicy Hazy but they've also popped it inside a rather appealing can decorated with multi-coloured hops and raised golden letters. But does what's inside live up to the promise? It certainly looks the goods, pouring a hazy copper with… Read more
Style
Double Hazy IPA
ABV
8.0%
Bitterness
45 IBU

Blasta Brewing Unbridled Unicorn Double IPA

Tapped June 29th, 2020
Unbridled Unicorn picks up from Blasta’s 2020 release List.Loud.React, a massive yet nimble double West Coast IPA brewed with Stone Brewing for a Metallica tour that never transpired. This time around it drips with the hype hop of 2020, Strata. The liquid blessing – that’s the collective term for unicorns, you’re welcome – is also flush with Citra, making this a very modern expression of such a beer, and something which hints at the decline in ubiquity of the American hop industry's classic… Read more
Style
Double IPA
ABV
8.8%

Woolshed Brewery Bloody Eyed Mary

Tapped June 28th, 2020
Lethargic and dreary. Bloodshot eyes and a pounding headache... It all seemed like a good idea the night before but now the thought of completing those all-important Sunday jobs makes it even harder to roll out of bed. However, never fear, Woolshed Brewery are here to help with their Bloody Eyed Mary cocktail sour that was originally destined for GABS 202. It's real kickstarter, one recommended as the first beer of the day in order to null any lingering bad feelings: a kettle sour brewed with Australian… Read more
Style
Bloody Mary Sour
ABV
6.0%

Woolshed Brewery Bunyip Imperial Stout 2020

Tapped June 28th, 2020
It’s that time of year again, when the ghostly Bunyip arises from the depths of the Murray to take the shape of an imperial stout brewed to provide warmth in winter. For the 2020 release, around canning time the Woolshed crew found themselves in an interesting predicament. They were saving two kegs of the 2019 Bunyip to pour alongside the 2020 as a comparison; however, due to COVID-19, they didn’t see the sense in keeping kegs. Therefore, they decided to blend the 2019 Bunyip into the new version,… Read more
Style
Imperial Stout
ABV
8.3%

Woolshed Brewery Firehouse Coffee Stout 2020

Tapped June 28th, 2020
The Firehouse Coffee Stout is a beer made every year by two very unique Riverland companies: the region's only craft brewery and only coffee roaster. The foreign extra style base stout is infused with a good whack of Arrosto Coffee's cold drip extract, produced with beans roasted onsite. For the first time in 2020, the beer has been canned rather than bottled and, according to head brewer Jackson Beavis: “the cans really keep in the fresh coffee flavour and aroma.” The Firehouse Coffee Stout… Read more
Style
Coffee Stout
ABV
5.6%

Willie The Boatman Cappuccino Nitro Stout

Tapped June 26th, 2020
We love experimentation and novelty in the craft beer game. It’s in our DNA. But even amongst all the craziness, it's good to be reminded brewers aren’t only interested in releasing a beer once then forgetting about it. Brewers get great satisfaction from returning to a recipe, making a change, and brewing a beer they enjoy even more. In winter 2019, Willie the Boatman brought out their Cappuccino Stout, a milk stout with coffee and chocolate. It was a delicious beer, and well received by punters.… Read more
Style
Nitro Coffee Stout
ABV
5.8%

Moon Dog Ember's IPA

Tapped June 26th, 2020
Moon Dog's Doggo IPA series has been hitting its four-legged stride in recent times, with Tiger's and Leon's both tasting good on my first post-COVID shutdown visit to Moon Dog World. It's a series that's up to a half dozen beers celebrating the team's canine buddies too, with Ember honoured in the only way a dog with such a name can be: a red IPA. It's one that pours with a chestnut hue and a froth with a tan sheen, and in which the combo of specialty malts takes the hops into berry territory, as… Read more
Style
Red IPA
ABV
7.0%

3 Ravens Crême Brulée Shake, Nitro Salted Caramel Brown Ale & Odin's Brew

Tapped June 25th, 2020
The beer world continues to surprise. Take 3 Ravens' Salted Caramel Shake, for example. Now, I've got a sweet tooth and am a sucker for salted caramel, especially in ice cream form. When they kicked off their Shake series of milkshake IPAs with a salted caramel version back in August 2018, we acknowledged it achieved its goals and presented like a low ABV barleywine. Whether you'd want more than a can at a time, however... Well, eleven sold out batches later, it would seem there's appetite aplenty,… Read more
Style
Milkshake IPA, Nitro Brown Ale & Milkshake Stout
ABV
6.0% & 4.5% & 7.0%
Stockists

Crême Brulée is one of the beers featuring in 3 Ravens' July Live Tasting

Black Hops Moondancer Hazy IPA

Tapped June 25th, 2020
It's amazing how memories can be triggered so quickly. I pulled a can of Moondancer from the fridge and was immediately transported back two decades and a continent away to a hilltop outside Pai in Northern Thailand. I was there to watch a meteor storm and had been chatting to a fellow traveller – a bearded sort who had a guitar for accompaniment; among the tracks on the CD he'd recorded was a cover of Van Morrison's Moondance. That's all rather pleasant, but the part of the night it brought rushing… Read more
Style
Hazy IPA
ABV
7.0%

Feral Brewing Dirty Biggie

Tapped June 25th, 2020
In what may be an Australian first, an East Coast style IPA has been given American oak treatment. But, if you know the history of the brewery behind the beer, it makes sense. Biggie Juice has become the hazy modern equivalent of the then boundary-pushing Hop Hog, which many moons ago became the basis for B.F.H. (Barrel Fermented Hop Hog). And, much like the manner in which the oak altered Hop Hog, the impact with Biggie isn't just another dimension to the beer – the oak changes it considerably,… Read more
Style
Oaked East Coast IPA
ABV
6.0%
Stockists

Available in limited release from Feral stockists nationwide

Grifter Brewing Co Sunshine XPA

Tapped June 25th, 2020
The Grifter crew have loved XPAs for a while now - they brewed their first (Southern Lord) back in 2014 when they were still gypsy brewers. Fast forward five years and Sunshine XPA came into existence as a keg-only beer at the end of 2019. Unlike Southern Lord, which by 2016 was a beefy 6 percent ABV, Sunshine XPA was a quaffable number, still looking for fruity hops for flavour, but lighter on to allow for extended sessions. After selling out and re-brewing this limited release a few times over… Read more
Style
XPA
ABV
4.0%

Grifter Brewing Co Horse's Head

Tapped June 25th, 2020
May I begin by apologising to Grifter’s designer. A friend said to me the picture on the can looks like a stylised wolf-horse-llama, and now that's all I can see. Horse's Head - or Wolf-Horse-Llama’s Head, if you too are susceptible to the power of suggestion - is a Grifter seasonal that’s finally made it into cans for our takeaway pleasure. The brewery releases this as a winter seasonal but, if you ask me, it tastes like autumn. It pours a dark amber with a beige tinge to the head, but the… Read more
Style
Red Ale
ABV
5.5%
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