KAIJU! Beer

It's well documented that the rise of craft beer and the popularity of hop forward beer styles have led to frequent hop shortages. Globally, the growers of certain New World varieties are unable to keep up with demand. And it's fair to say the situation could be far worse too.

How? Well, if every brewer in the world favoured the sort of hops to volume ratios beloved of Kaiju! brewer Nat Reeves, there wouldn't be a hop shortage. No, we'd be suffering the sort of hop famine that would make the seven-year stretch Joseph and his people suffered in Biblical times look like that day your local cafe ran out of egg and bacon muffins before you made it through the door.

Of all the new wave of brewers that love brewing hop-centric beers, Kaiju! go harder than any other: there isn't a beer on their lineup that isn't hopped to the Mikey Burton-drawn eyeballs. Sure, they love lots of other things: Japanese movies, monsters, heroes, high alcohol beers, silliness – but they love hops more than anything; the four fridges in the brewery stuffed with them are testament to that.

It's an obsession that has stood them in good stead, and not just because many of the more hardcore of Australia's beer drinking public are hop obsessed too. It helps that they know how to do it rather well. Their Hopped Out Red won an Australian International Beer Awards trophy before the brewing company was a year old, while they've picked up more golds there and at the Craft Beer Awards since.

As to the "they" that makes up Kaiju!, it's a core trio of Nat, brother Callum and his wife Clara, who started the Golden Axe cider brand together. Initially, they were called Monster Mash and operated as a gypsy brewer out of Cavalier. Then a certain energy drink company came calling and demanded they stop using the name Monster Mash, claiming it was similar to their name (something Kaiju! are now rather happy with), while, by 2015, they were established enough to start building their own premises. As a result, they're now based in Dandenong South, with Exit Brewing as permanent house guests and others, including BrewCult, making use of any spare capacity.

As eye-catching as their beers is the packaging in which they come. It's the work of the aforementioned Mikey Burton, a New York based artist with whom Clara had always wanted to work in her other life as a game developer. He takes the trio's concepts – all inspired by their love of Japanese monster (kaiju) films and comics – and turns them into some of the best labels you'll find anywhere in the world. There's a developing story too: most labels feature kaiju but some are heroes (who battle kaiju), such as the one adorning their Robohop golden IPA.

Look closely and you'll find other neat touches: the face and eyes of the monster on the Betelgeuse labels are formed by the constellation Orion where the star of the same name resides; where a beer is an imperial version of another in their range, look for the character from the smaller beer's label being monstered in some way.

If it all sounds a bit daft, it is. But isn't fun an essential part of what makes craft beer so appealing?

Name
KAIJU! Beer
Address

10 Superior Drive
Dandenong South
VIC 3175

Phone
(03) 9706 5924
Website
Hours

Not open to the public

KAIJU! Beer Regulars

KAIJU! Cthulhu On The Moon (Can)

Tapped May 11th, 2017
Krush has company. Last year, the having-a-bucket-of-tropical-juice-dumped-over-your-head pale ale of that name became the first KAIJU! release to appear in a can – and what a fine looking can it is too. It was no one-off, no cashing in on the arrival of East Coast Canning on the scene, but rather a sign of where things are heading for the brewery that burst onto the scene with a double IPA and has continued to launch hopped 'n' boozed up beers ever since. If you're a fan of such beers, it can… Read more
Style
Black IPA
Strength
6.5%
Stockists

Other stockists TBC

KAIJU! Krush Tropical Pale Ale

Tapped December 5th, 2016
Well, the 'Sup's sunrise carpet is going to be more colourful at this year's Meredith than ever before... Yes, another day, another Aussie craft brewer with a beer in can, as Mr East Coast Canning continues to wear ruts into the roads between Brisbane and Melbourne. Yet, when the results are as colourful as this first KAIJU! can, bring 'em on! Provided they don't attract the ire of the makers of Candy Crush like they did the lawyers employed by Monster energy drink in their first guise, one assumes… Read more
Style
Pale Ale
Strength
4.7%

KAIJU! Beer Robohop Golden IPA

After establishing their name as one synonymous with hops, Japanese monsters and, frequently, steepling levels of booze, KAIJU! decided they should probably have a beer in their lineup that was a little more approachable. One that could be consumed in rather greater numbers. It's something you see from pretty much every brewery at some point, no matter how out there their schtick. Yet, with KAIJU!, approachable still means only a notch or three under the 6 percent ABV mark. Robohop is that beer –… Read more
Style
IPA
Strength
5.7%

KAIJU! Beer Metamorphosis IPA

When Fixation Brewing Co appeared on the scene late in 2015 and announced that it was going to brew and release nothing but IPAs, there was at least one voice from the beer world that piped up to say KAIJU! was already doing just that. And while the brothers Reeves might not have slapped the IPA tag on all of their beers, there's certainly an argument to be made for that case. That said, it's the Metamorphosis that is the beer they regard as the most IPA of their beers, the junior in the ranks to… Read more
Style
IPA
Strength
6.7%

KAIJU! Beer Where Strides The Behemoth

It's well known that KAIJU! like to throw lots of hops at beers. Equally, to ensure they're drinkable rather than the liquid equivalent of licking the inside of a hop flower, they have to ensure there's plenty of malt and alcohol there too. And Where Strides The Behemoth is a beer in which it's fair to say there's lots of everything – then a bit more on top – at play. It's tagged as a Double India Black Ale, so kind of a bigger, beastlier brother to Cthulu's black IPA, which means it's very black,… Read more
Style
Double India Black Ale
Strength
10.8%

KAIJU! Beer Cthulu On The Moon

When we invited KAIJU! to be one of the guest breweries at the 2015 Good Beer Week World of Beer Masterclass, alongside Hawkers, Edge, Evil Twin and Baird Beer, it was this beer that we chose for their Q&A session with attendees. There was a bit of personal preference involved as it's our favourite from the brewery's lineup, while it was also coming off the back of a gold medal at the Craft Beer Awards. What we didn't realise until the Q&A is that it's also the least hoppy beer they brew. That… Read more
Style
Black IPA
Strength
6.5%

KAIJU! Beer Hopped Out Red

If their debut beer, the double IPA, caught the attention of the country's beer geeks from their very earliest days, the arrival of the Hopped Our Red helped bring the Reeves' clans talents to a wider audience. Less than a year after launching their brewing company, they were called to the stage to collect a trophy for this beer at the Australian International Beer Awards. As the name suggests, it's another beer in which hops are very much to the fore, albeit with the malt characters – toffee,… Read more
Style
Red Ale
Strength
6.4%

KAIJU! Beer Aftermath Double IPA (Can)

Tapped June 10th, 2017
Aftermath is the beer that announced, in no uncertain terms, that there was a new hop fiend on the scene. However you look at it, opening your account with a 9.1 percent ABV "ludicrously hopped" double IPA is a bold statement. It was one that was noticed by Aussie beer lovers, particularly as – then under the Monster Mash banner – the KAIJU! crew managed to deliver their ludicrous hop barrage with a meaty enough backbone of malt and booze to keep it together. As is usually head brewer… Read more
Style
Double IPA
Strength
9.1%

KAIJU! Beer Specials

KAIJU! & Breakside & The Catfish Peregrination IPA

Tapped July 7th, 2017
Portland's Breakside Brewery was among the cohort from the US city that travelled to Melbourne for the most recent Good Beer Week. While in Australia, brewer Ben Edmunds joined forces with KAIJU! and the team from The Catfish in putting down a collaboration brew. It was a reimagining of his brewery's Wanderlust IPA, a serial medal winner that in its original form is a showcase for hops from Breakside's home region, Northwest USA. For this version, those hops were swapped out for Aussies. The result… Read more
Style
Australian IPA
Stockists

Other stockists to follow post launch

KAIJU! & Exit Schopsh II

Tapped June 24th, 2016
The chaps at KAIJU! Beer and Exit Brewing have always got on well, so well in fact that they moved in together, with the latter becoming house guests at the former's new brewery in Dandenong South. Last year, they consummated their relationship with Schopsh, a beer that took a beer style Exit love, a smoky Scotch Ale, and added lots of the hops with which KAIJU! are synonymous. It's not the most common of combinations; indeed, we recall a conversation with former Temple Brewing man Ron Feruglio… Read more
Style
Hoppy Scotch Ale
Strength
6.5%
Stockists

Other stockists TBC

KAIJU! Beer Compendium

Tapped June 1st, 2016
A compendium is a collection of things. And, in the case of KAIJU!'s 2016 GABS beer, it's a collection of many of the things they love: hops, malt (seven varieties) and booze. But this time there's a new (at least for them in the commercial sense) thing too: the addition of a Belgian Abbey yeast for added fruitiness. As a result, they're calling it a Monastic Red IPA and have slapped a robot monk on the label (becoming the second hero, as opposed to kaiju, to appear on a KAIJU! label). As with their… Read more
Style
Belgian Red IPA
Strength
7.2%
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