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!

Modus Operandi XPA

Tapped May 19, 2020
We like to make up new words in the beer industry, even if most of them are initials, acronyms, or portmanteaus. Someone made up the style XPA a few years ago (and we’re still not all agreed about what it means). Now, in keeping with this grand tradition, Modus describe their new core range XPA as "tropi-lo-cal", an adjective to capture tropical hop flavours, but also lower calories to help stave off beer belly. First released as a keg-only beer over the summer of 2019/2020, Modus XPA… Read more
Style
XPA
ABV
4.2%

Modus Operandi Hazy Series 03: Mango Hazy with El Dorado & Mosaic

Tapped May 19, 2020
You have to give MO points for the consistent theme of their Hazy series. Hazy 01 was a 5 percent ABV pale with Galaxy, Citra and Mosaic hops; Hazy 02 was a 6 percent ABV IPA with Mosaic, El Dorado and Galaxy hops. It’s only fitting that Modus should take another step up with Hazy 03 and make a 7 percent ABV mango IPA with El Dorado and Mosaic. As with all hazy beers, give the can a gentle roll before pouring; it works wonders to ensure that much sought-after haze makes it into your glass. Then,… Read more
Style
Hazy IPA with Mango
ABV
7.0%

Boatrocker Funky Acid Red & Feijoa & Rhubarb Wild Ale

Tapped May 19, 2020
The sour beers came in two by two... At least that seems to be Boatrocker's preferred habit these days. And given the tendency of such beers from a barrel program now seven years old to hit the mark, why the hell not? Funky Acid Red is another in the brewery's canon of Flanders red style releases and one that reaches the furthest into the depths of their barrels: the liquids here range from 12 months to six years in age so you head in expecting complexity – and that's what you get out. Pouring… Read more
Style
Flanders Red & Fruited Wild Ale
ABV
Both 6.5%

Pirate Life South Coast Pale & Strong Pale Ale

Tapped May 19, 2020
If you've been watching Pirate Life from afar over the past year or so, you might think they'd eased up on the new beers. And, while hyped nationwide can releases have been lesser sighted, one only needs to have visited one of their bars at a festival (remember them?) or called into their imposing Port Adelaide home to know that's far from the case. Each time I've spoken to co-founder Mick Cameron over the past couple of years the number of new releases planned for the coming 12 months has moved… Read more
Style
Pale Ale & Spiced Strong Pale Ale
ABV
4.4% & 6.0%

Pirate Life Lemongrass & Ginger & Kiwifruit & Cherry

Tapped May 19, 2020
Think lemongrass and ginger and a few things are liable to come to mind: some form of linctus to tackle a head cold, Thai cuisine, an aromatherapy massage, or maybe a herbal tea. If I were to place Lemongrass & Ginger, a sour from Pirate Life, it would be closer to the massage room at the hot springs than the bowl of Tom Kha at your favourite Thai restaurant. Both key ingredients sparkle from the off, with a zingy sweetness on the palate and a slow-building back palate warmth from the ginger… Read more
Style
Spiced Sour & Fruit Sour
ABV
3.8% & 4.5%

Gage Roads Loop The Lupe Cryo Hop IPA

Tapped May 19, 2020
Earlier last decade, Gage Roads were on a roll with their regular limited releases; The Convict Australian strong ale and Changing Tides barleywine were two of the more memorable. However, as their Returning To Craft strategy dominated affairs in the second half of the 2010s, somewhat ironically these craftier releases became less of a concern. So it’s with interest that a pair of on-trend Cryo hop IPAs arrive from brands under their Good Drinks banner: one from Gage Roads and the other from hop-exploring… Read more
Style
West Coast IPA
ABV
6.8%
Stockists

Available nationwide from Good Drinks stockists

Atomic Beer Project Red Alert L002

Tapped May 19, 2020
The opening of Atomic Beer Project's Redfern brewery home has been delayed somewhat by the COVID-19 pandemic but the brewers at parent brand Gage Roads' WA home are still at work. And this fruit of their labour is one of two concurrent releases making full use of Cryo hops, the other being Gage Roads' Loop The Lupe, which you can read about here. Red Alert is built around Cryo versions of classic US hops Amarillo and Centennial and is a beer sitting firmly in the red ale rather than red IPA space.… Read more
Style
Red Ale
ABV
6.4%
Stockists

Available nationwide from Good Drinks stockists

Mr Banks Idaho Feels & Innocence For Days

Tapped May 18, 2020
There's plenty to be said for finding something you love and spending time doing it over and over again, not just for personal satisfaction but because the end result is only likely to get better and more consistent. And this duo from Mr Banks could be presented as exhibits A and B. If you've been following the brewery over the past couple of years, you know the drill by now: a stream of hazy, pale golden beers laden with hefty grams per litreage of characterful hops. In the case of Idaho Feels –… Read more
Style
Oat Cream DIPA & DDH Pale
ABV
8.5% & 5.9%

Otherside Brewing Co Creative Releases: Sabbath 2020

Tapped May 18, 2020
A year ago, Otherside released Sabbath, a beer which seemed, at the time, to be a new seasonal in a developing portfolio. With next to no promo, the beer then labelled stout, wandered into fridges and waited quietly for a moment of revelation - this was not a stout. No, Sabbath ‘19 was a mid-strength version of what Scandinavian beer confectioners were doing with double digit ABVs, but instead with a four-pack purchase in mind. Word of mouth grew. A year later and the brewer-cum-pâtissier adjunct… Read more
Style
Pastry Stout
ABV
6.6%
Stockists

Available from the brewery

And Otherside stockists nationally

Dainton Brewing Jungle Juice Hazy IPA

Tapped May 18, 2020
One of the ways in which Dainton have been able to maintain their outrageous output of new releases is through variations on a theme. And I doubt they've given any theme such a thrashing as that of NEIPAs / hazy IPAs. Jungle Juice has been around before but now is being elevated to a pretty much year round release. And it only takes a sniff and a sip to understand why as here's a hazy IPA that's smack bang in the sweet spot. Pale gold and hazy, with sticky, prickly, nectar like aromas of tropical… Read more
Style
Hazy IPA
ABV
6.5%
Bitterness
65 IBU

Dainton Brewing Black Forest

Tapped May 18, 2020
Black Forest is a beer that's been released by Dainton in the past, always featuring cherries and on occasion aged on oak too. It returns ahead of winter 2020 sans oak but with plenty to get stuck into regardless. Inspired by the German gâteau of the same name, you're first met by lashings of roasty, bitter dark chocolate shot through with cherry jus, with the experience getting a little creamier as it warms. Imagine a dense, boozy, liquid version of the cake and you're on the right track. James… Read more
Style
Russian Imperial Stout
ABV
10.0%
Bitterness
65 IBU

Margaret River Brewhouse Inside Out IPA

Tapped May 18, 2020
When Margaret River Brewhouse isn’t busy pumping out their core range beer for locals and thirsty, holiday-making punters visiting the idyllic South West, they fill their spare time and tanks with limited release, one-off beers. Inside Out is one such offering: a juicy, single hop IPA inspired by the West Coast IPAs of California and loaded with a whole heap of Strata. Brewed in collaboration with Grain Cru (Cellarbrations Carlisle), Inside Out is loaded with dank, resinous hop character thanks… Read more
Style
Single Hop IPA
ABV
6.5%
Bitterness
47 IBU
Stockists

Found at good WA stockists

King River Brewing Barrel-Aged Belgian Tripel

Tapped May 15, 2020
Many brewers have a love for classic beer styles and barrel-ageing but I’m not sure I’ve ever seen one quite as happy as Nathan Munt filling barrels with a tripel. Some fortunate timing meant I made it to King River Brewing just as he was pouring his 100th brew into barrels obtained from neighbouring winery Darling Estate. Nathan had spent some time trying to get his hand on those barrels too, with John Darling finally relenting and offering them as a birthday gift. Formerly, they housed the… Read more
Style
Barrel-Aged Tripel
ABV
10.0%

Tallboy & Moose Wet Hop 2020 & Royal Frang & Ursu Major

Tapped May 15, 2020
From no can releases a year ago to a steady steam today, Tallboy & Moose have certainly embraced tinnies, with three new ones arriving this week alone. First up, I tried the Wet Hop American Pale, a collaboration with the crew at Holmes Hall, the not-yet-opened Moonee Ponds beer hall beside Fizz & Hop (and run by the same crew). The wet hop beer features Cascade hops from AC Hops, a small Ballarat hop grower, with those fresh hops providing a floral, slightly piney and soft grapefruit taste… Read more
Style
Wet Hop Pale & Red IPA with Tea & American Brown
ABV
5.2% & 6.1% & 5.2%

One Drop Brewing Peach Sour & Tropical Smoothie Sour

Tapped May 15, 2020
One Drop have a habit of releasing two beers around the same time that are in the same or similar categories, but are quite different. It’s like a game of spot the difference, where we all get to compare and contrast the two. And a fun little game it is. The Peach Sour is another of their 200 grams of fruit per litre sours, and you can tell it’s packed full of fruit even before you take your first sip; it looks like peach syrup out of the can. There’s a concentrated sweetness on the nose, more… Read more
Style
Fruit Sours
ABV
4.9% & 5.5%

King River Brewing Wet Hopped Trio 2020

Tapped May 15, 2020
Not one to do things by halves, King River’s Nathan Munt was planning on taking three different fresh hop beers to High Country Hops this year. And, while the festival couldn’t run this year, those three beers have still been brewed as a celebration of Australian hops and can be snapped up in a Harvest Mixed Pack the brewery is selling, which also contains the wonderful Fig Porter. Each amber-hued beer is 6 percent ABV and dubbed a Wet Hopped Ale, with strong ale probably the closest in terms… Read more
Style
Wet Hopped Ales
ABV
6.0%

Blasta Brewing Exploratory Oat Cream Beast

Tapped May 15, 2020
To say 2020 has been crazy is an understatement, but to say that oat cream IPAs are shaping up to be this year’s hype style du jour is not. Like the mutant lovechild of pastry stouts and NEIPAs, they're well placed for equal amounts of adoration and cynicism, much like any too cool Hollywood hook-up’s progeny before the salivating tabloid paps and real world derision. And, yet, it’s impossible to look away! Whatever your stance, there is a lot to like here, albeit you'll want a sweet tooth.… Read more
Style
DDH Oat Cream IPA
ABV
6.5%
Stockists

Available from the brewery

And in very limited quantities from select Blasta stockists

Rocky Ridge & Besk & Mane Liquor All Together IPA

Tapped May 15, 2020
Unless you’ve been living under a rock lately (or maybe in isolation?), you would have seen many a brewery toting a new, collaborative IPA with some striking similarities; that beer is the All Together IPA and it was originally put together by Other Half Brewing Co in New York. The beer and concept were launched to help support hospitality workers who had been laid off amid the coronavirus venue shutdowns. The idea is simple: an easy to follow IPA recipe to be brewed by as many breweries as possible… Read more
Style
IPA
ABV
6.2%

Rocky Ridge Darleen's Draught

Tapped May 15, 2020
The crew at Darleen’s in Busselton are all about good beer and good times. So it makes perfect sense that the South West craft beer aficionados deserve their own beer and it makes just as much sense for that beer to be adorned with the face of Darleen’s, an enthusiastic granny giving you the finger. "Stupidly. Crushable. Beer." is the tagline and an accurate description if what’s in the tin. This simple and satisfying 4.8 percent ABV lager, brewed to the standards expected of the… Read more
Style
Lager
ABV
4.8%

Beerfarm Shirazzaweiss 2020& Bubblina ft Tallboy & Moose

Tapped May 15, 2020
Shirazzaweiss, the seasonal release from Beerfarm and LS Merchants that coincides with the South West grape harvesting season, is a hotly anticipated blend of beer, wine and mateship that's been given a third release in 2020. After an outstanding sophomore version that captivated drinkers in 2019, this year’s drop had dizzying heights to live up to. Not a brewery to shy away from a challenge, Shirazzaweiss v3 was born and, somehow, is bigger and better than the last. Revisions start with an increased… Read more
Style
Grape Berliner Weisse
ABV
6.0% & 6.2%
Bitterness
9 IBU
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