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!

The Thorny Goat

Tapped March 11th, 2011
You could have some fun with this one. Grab a mate, pour them a glass and offer it up without warning. Practically black, shot through with blood red tints if held to the light, and with a hint of tan in its head, they'll be certain they're about to tuck into a porter or lighter bodied stout. At this point, we should point out that this will work better if said mate has no sense of smell or a bad cold at the time, as otherwise the pretense will collapse well before the drink enters their mouth thanks… Read more
Style
Black IPA
ABV
6.8%
Stockists

Mountain Goat

Slowbeer

Purvis Beer Richmond

Corner Hotel, Richmond

McCoppins, Fitzroy and Abbotsford

Church St Cellars

Vaucluse Hotel

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2 Brothers Chief

Tapped March 7th, 2011
This 2 Brothers seasonal release has previously only been available in draught form - and, being based on the Oktoberfest beer style, usually timed to hit taps around October. Given the Oktoberfest beers were spawned from the German Mí¤rzen style - a strong lager brewed in March to last through the summer when hotter temperatures could affect brewing conditions back in the Middle Ages - it makes perfect sense to release some in March too. So here comes The Chief in bottled form (plus a few kegs).… Read more
Style
Oktoberfest / Märzen
ABV
6.0%
Stockists

2 Brothers

Slowbeer

Purvis Beer

Blackhearts & Sparrows

[Valley Cellar Door](/beer/bottleshop/valley-cellar-do

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Bright Pinky Framboise

Tapped March 6th, 2011
They've been feeling fruity up in the Victorian mountains, it seems, with Bright deciding to mark the end of the summer with a Raspberry Lambic. Brewed using 60kg of locally grown raspberries from Bright Berry Farms, the brewers tell us it pours an "eye-catching red/pink colour" and has a "distinct berry aroma" that "leads into a tart upfront flavour which is instantly recognisable as raspberry". It's the first time they've made the beer in three years but still get… Read more

Mornington Peninsula Saison

Tapped February 23rd, 2011
The latest specialty release from Mornington Peninsula will be hoping to catch the last of the summer as it's their take on the Saison style brewed in Belgium for the benefit of thirsty harvest workers. We've yet to get Crafty's smackers around it, but if the quality of its predecessor, the wonderfully full-flavoured IPA is anything to go by, we won't be wasting any time in doing so. According to brewer AG, the beer "pours a hazy orange colour with an off white head" with "tart and… Read more
Style
Saison
ABV
6%
Stockists

Mornington Peninsula Brewery

The Local Taphouse St Kilda

Local Taphouse Darlinghurst

Josie Bones

The Terminus

[Biero](/beer/ba

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Murray's Imperious

Tapped February 12th, 2011
A massive beer to launch a massive new range from Murray's, the Imperious is to Belgian beers what the Wild Thing is to stouts. This experimental Imperial Belgian Blond is the highest ABV beer Murray's has brewed to date. It contains a blend of British and German malts, fresh New Zealand-grown hops, and a classic Belgian yeast strain. This gives it a classic Belgian yeast profile ' strong esters and light phenolics - along with a tropical hop character (sweet mouthfilling apricot/stonefruit-like… Read more
Style
Imperial Belgian Blond
ABV
11%

Stone & Wood Red Relief

Tapped February 12th, 2011
Originally under construction for The Local Taphouse's Great Australian Beer SpecTAPular - and intended as a prototype for a potential third permanent member of the brewery's lineup - this beer became a fundraising tool when the floods hit Queensland early in 2011. Given it's a red beer and it was hoping to raise around $20,000 for the Flood Relief appeal, the name came easy. As for the beer, it's a darker beast than anything (except perhaps their occasional Stone Beer release) to come out of the… Read more
Style
Red Ale
ABV
4.7%

Bridge Road Chevalier Dunkelweizen

Tapped February 11th, 2011
With so much attention lavished on the other two members of the Chevalier range - the Saison and Biere de Garde - the Dunkel's been shunned a little: it's like the Beechworth Cinderella that's picked on and kept out of sight by her ugly sisters (although we're not suggesting there's anything ugly about either of those beers - quite the opposite). But just as Cinderella had her little glass slipper, so the Dunkelweizen has a little trick up its sleeve, in the form of a brand new recipe from brewer… Read more
Style
Dunkelweizen
ABV
5.2%

Little Creatures East Kent Goldings

Tapped February 11th, 2011
hey seem to like bucking the trend at Little Creatures. First their Pale (or Live as it was then) introduced the Aussie beer drinking world to US style hoppy pales. And now, while everyone else is using their limited releases to create something wild and crazy, they're firing out rather more traditional beers under their Single Batch banner, such as the Oatmeal Stout and now this, the East Kent Goldings Ale. It's a single hop affair, using the classic English hop that features in some of their other… Read more
Style
English Bitter
ABV
4.5%
Bitterness
30 IBU
Stockists

Little Creatures Dining Hall

Little Creatures, Freo

Purvis Beer Richmond

Purvis Beer

[Carwyn Cellars](/beer/bottleshop/carwyn

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Murray's Punk Monk

Tapped February 11th, 2011
Punk by name, yet refined by nature, this seasonal from Murray's might sport a ravishing pink label but inside it's all rather elegant. For those who've gorged on some of the brewery's big, bold expressions of intent in recent months, it's a chance to give your palate a different sort of work out, one in which it is caressed by what brewer Shawn Sherlock claims is a hybrid of a few Belgian styles, influenced by Saisons and Belgian Blond Ales with a nod to Belgian Trippels. The classic estery and… Read more
Style
Belgian hybrid
ABV
7.5%

2 Brothers The Guvnor

Tapped February 10th, 2011
ON TAP TWO NIGHTS ONLY!!! We like it when the brothers go big. First there was the Voodoo Porter, weighing in around 7% and so good it won a medal at last year's Australian International Beer Awards. Then came the funk: James Brown, the big Belgian armed with 1000kg of candi sugar that won an army of fans and was described by Biero's beer man as "bananas coated in Nutella - awesome!". And now they're back with their biggest beer yet: The Guvnor. An English barley wine packing a whopping… Read more
Style
English Barley Wine
ABV
10.3%

Mountain Goat The Craig

Tapped February 4th, 2011
So, there's a brewer at Mountain Goat called Craig. Craig was tasked to create a beer. He chose to brew a US-style Pale Ale, using Willamette hops to stand out from the herd. When the time came to tap the beer, it needed a name. "What shall we call it?" said the Goats. "How about The Craig?" came the reply. "No. We're not calling it The Craig," said Craig. "Tough. It's The Craig," came the reply. And so The Craig was tapped on the day the brewery flooded. It's… Read more
Style
US Pale Ale
ABV
4.4%
Stockists

Mountain Goat

Hargreaves Hill AD

Tapped February 3rd, 2011
In keeping with the brewery's philosophy of creating traditional beers comes the return of the Hargreaves Hill Abbey Dubbel, their take on the Trappist style of strong brown ale with its origins in Belgium. Theirs is a faithful recreation, weighing in around 7.5%, that uses a special strain of Westmalle yeast from Belgium. Hargreaves founder Simon Walkenhorst will tell you of "notes of raisin and sarsparilla gracing the palate, which is quite dry and lightly bitter giving a pleasant perception… Read more
Style
Abbey Dubbel
ABV
7.5%

Red Hill Belgian Blonde

Tapped January 26th, 2011
Of all Red Hill's seasonals, this one seems to fly under the radar a little. Yet it holds its own as part of their Belgian trilogy alongside the Temptation and Christmas Ale. Full-bodied and creamy in the mouth, it offers up a mix of caramel malt characteristics, some spicy notes, a slightly sour tang and hoppy bitterness. They've only brewed one batch this year so you'll have to head to the brewery to taste on tap or pick up in bottles.… Read more
Style
Belgian Blonde
ABV
6.5%
Stockists

Red Hill

Grand Ridge's Mirboo Specials

Tapped January 20th, 2011
A fresh release of Grand Ridge's two limited release beers, the Mirboo Madness and Mirboo Midnight, have just hit shelves around Melbourne. The former - a highly hopped strong Red Ale awash with big hop aromas, sweet caramel, toffee and nut flavours and plenty of bitterness - has been aging in bottles since the initial draft only release and, according to Grand Ridge founder Eric Walters (who told Crafty upon its initial release it was the beer he'd been waiting years to make), "is tasting bloody… Read more
Style
Strong Red Ale & Oak-Aged Dark Ale
ABV
6% & 6.9%
Stockists

Grand Ridge

Slowbeer

Cloudwine Cellars

Nillumbik Cellars, Diamond Creek

Blackhearts & Sparrows

Bedelis Liquor, Croydon

Malt and Vine, Newport

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Hargreaves Hill Yarra Valley Pilsner

Tapped January 14th, 2011
The release of Mountain Goat's summery Skipping Girl on Wednesday doesn't appear to have stopped the rain so perhaps the release of a second seasonal this week from Victorian brewers will do the trick. This time it's the latest batch of Hargreaves Hill's Yarra Valley Pilsner, brewed with Summer Saaz, a variant of the famous Czech hop variety and lightly dry hopped. It's on tap in Melbourne from today and will be on the lineup of Aussie hoppy beers at Tuesday's Ale Stars session at The Local Taphouse… Read more
Style
Czech Pilsner

Mountain Goat Skipping Girl

Tapped January 12th, 2011
Despite the continuing rainfall, the Goat team is manfully pursuing its mission to bring summer into our lives with another one-off summery release. We'd heard they were concocting an American Wheat but, when this was raised with head Goat Dave at the brewery his reaction suggested that, once more, it's more of a mixed bag rather than anything too definable. What it is, then, is a light yellow coloured hazy number that throws up plenty of lovely light tropical fruits from the inclusion of mucho Kiwi… Read more
Style
Summer Ale
ABV
4.7%
Bitterness
30IBU

Mornington Peninsula Sorachi Kolsch

Tapped January 10th, 2011
One of the first beers commercially brewed in Australia to feature the Sorachi Ace hop developed by Japanese brewery Sapporo, this is also the latest special from the fledgling Mornington Peninsula Brewery. This Kolsch style beer is described by brewer AG as "a clean, crisp, delicately balanced beer" it has a compact snow white head and displays "subtle aromas of grass and lemon". It's got a light, smooth mouthfeel and has a lemongrass tang on the palate from the Sorachi Ace.… Read more

Murray's Anniversary Ale 5

Tapped January 7th, 2011
Usual practice at Crafty Manor when it comes to the Anniversary Ales from Murray's is to buy a couple and hold onto them for a later date to allow them to age, only to get scared of ever opening them as once they're gone, they're gone. Thankfully, a special occasion recently saw bottles of 3, 4 and 5 opened one after the other. Crafty felt the love particularly for 3, general consensus elsewhere favoured 4, while 5 - with the addition of darker chocolate malts and roasted barley to the old recipe… Read more
Style
Wheat and Barleywine
ABV
10%

Bridge Road Saison de Printemps

Tapped December 21st, 2010
For their second variation on the Saison theme, the Bridge Road brew team has added elderflower and blueberries to their highly rated beer to create a one-off "Spring Saison", having twice experimented with quince. Once again, both additional ingredients are sourced locally - the elderflower at the brewery itself - and once again it's a markedly different beer to its parent. It's cloudier in appearance and has something of a blood orange tinge compared to the original's light straw colour,… Read more
Style
Fruit-infused Saison
ABV
6.0%

Mountain Goat's The Hoeff

Tapped December 15th, 2010
Bloody hell! Not sure what they're feeding the brewers in Richmond these days but, when it comes to limited release beers, it's a case of blink and you'll miss it. Latest to be tapped at the Goat brewery is The Hoeff, a southern Bavarian wheat beer (hefeweizen) that comes with a little nod to everyone's favourite lifeguard. Altered from last year's version thanks to the use of a yeast brought in specially from Germany, it's cloudy enough for a supporting role in The Fog and something of a tease too:… Read more
Style
Hefeweizen
ABV
5.0%
Bitterness
18 IBUs
Stockists

Mountain Goat

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