Tag Archives: Best Craft Beer

Beer Of The Month Club. Watts River Brewing

Hi folks,

Long time between cheers! At least in blog terms.

We continued our never ending search for the best craft beer every month to deliver to our members and it was by chance my parents ran in to one of the Watts River Brewing family at a local bowls club.

So when Mum told me the story I wanted to know more about the two brewers who used to work at the famous White Rabbit brewery in Healesville, Victoria and thought.. these guys must know what they’re doing! I say this because the White Rabbit Dark Ale was one of the first craft beers I had the pleasure of tasting back in the day and was so impressed I started drinking more and more and..anyway back to Watts River Brewing.

Check out the Watts River Micro Brewery in the Yarra Valley on Google maps >

Watts River Brewing call Healesville their home in the Yarra Valley, Victoria - and use the Watts River right next to them as one of their main supplies of brewing water. In other words, it’s a great foundation for producing fresh locally produced Australian craft beer.

“Why did you leave White Rabbit?” I said to Ben (Watts River Brewing Co-founder), “We wanted to brew our own beer without the quality being watered down.” Okay, enough said. But I still love the White Rabbit Dark Ale.

This months Beer of the month selection is the Stout aka Dry Roasty Stout from Watts River Brewing.

Dry Roasty Stout

Dry Roasty Stout

Quote from the Watts River Brewing website.

“A dark, dry, roasty stout built on flavours of coffee and dark chocolate as well as a tiny hint of smoke drifting around in the background. Perfect to savour by yourself or share with an old mate.”

So instead of a roast, I propose a toast to the Watts River Brewing family and say cheers to a job well done. P.s we loved it :)

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Looking for a gift?
Give someone a membership to the
Beer Of The Month Club
It’s a monthly beer club where members
receive a different pack of craft beer every
month for 3, 6 or 12 months!

 

GABS Best Craft Beers Australia

The GABS 100 best craft beers made in Australia has just been released.

Craft beer tasting paddle

Craft beer tasting paddle

The poll is supported by Dan Murphy’s, Crafty Pint, Australian Brews News and The Local Taphouse which attracts thousands of Australian craft beer fans voting for their top 5 Australian craft beers.

So here it is. Chug, chug..err I mean drum roll please..

GABS Hottest 100 Australian Craft Beers.
1 ‘Pacific Ale’ Australian-style Pale Ale (Stone & Wood, NSW)
2 ‘Hop Hog’ American-style IPA (Feral, WA)
3 ‘IIPA’ Double American-style IPA (Pirate Life, SA) NEW
4 ‘Pale Ale’ American-style Pale Ale (Pirate Life, SA) NEW
5 ‘Pale Ale’ American-style Pale Ale (Little Creatures, WA)
6 ‘150 Lashes’ Australian-style Pale Ale (James Squire, NSW)
7 ‘Pale Ale’ American-style Pale Ale (4 Pines, NSW)
8 ‘Kolsch’ (4 Pines, NSW)
9 ‘Former Tenant’ American-style IPA (Modus Operandi, NSW)
10 ‘Karma Citra’ Black IPA (Feral, WA) GABS (2011)
11 ‘Throwback’ Specialty IPA (Pirate Life, SA) NEW
12 ‘Hop Thief 7’ American-style Pale Ale (James Squire, NSW) NEW
13 ‘Taco Beer’ Specialty Beer (Two Birds, VIC) GABS (2013)
14 ‘Milk and Two Sugars’ Sweet Stout (BrewCult, VIC) NEW / GABS (2015)
15 ‘Beechworth Pale Ale’ American-style Pale Ale (Bridge Road, VIC)
16 ‘Golden Stout Time’ Sweet Stout (Big Shed, SA) NEW / GABS (2015)
17 ‘War Hog’ American-style IPA (Feral, WA) NEW
18 ‘Pale Ale’ Australian-style Pale Ale (Coopers, SA)
19 ‘Summer Ale’ Australian-style Pale Ale (Mountain Goat, VIC)
20 ‘Steam Ale’ Australian-style Pale Ale (Mountain Goat, VIC)
21 ‘Dark Ale’ Dark Mild (White Rabbit, VIC)
22 ‘Ramjet 2014/15 (Whisky Aged)’ Russian Imperial Stout (Boatrocker, VIC) NEW
23 ‘Three Sheets’ Australian-style Pale Ale (Lord Nelson Hotel, NSW)
24 ‘Red’ American-style Amber Ale (Nail, WA)
25 ‘India Red Ale’ American-style IPA (Prancing Pony, SA)
26 ‘777’ Double American-style IPA (Riverside, NSW)
27 Noisy Minor ‘Admiral Ackbar’ American-style Amber Ale (Fortitude, QLD)
28 ‘The Chancer’ Blonde/Golden Ale (James Squire, NSW)
29 ‘Cloud Catcher’ Australian-style Pale Ale (Stone & Wood, NSW)
30 ‘Newtowner’ Australian-style Pale Ale (Young Henry’s, NSW)
31 Noisy Minor ‘ANZUS’ American-style IPA (Fortitude, QLD)
32 ‘Fat Yak’ American-style Pale Ale (Matilda Bay, VIC)
33 ‘Bright Ale’ Blonde/Golden Ale (Little Creatures, WA)
34 ‘Small Ale’ Specialty IPA (Colonial, WA)
35 ‘Indian Summer Pale Ale’ Australian-style Pale Ale (4 Pines, NSW) NEW
36 ‘Hangman’ American-style Pale Ale (Rocks, NSW)
37 ‘Copy Cat’ American-style IPA (Mash, WA)
38 ‘XPA (Extra Pale Ale)’ American-style Pale Ale (Wolf of the Willows, VIC)
39 ‘Vale Ale’ Australian-style Pale Ale (Vale, SA)
40 ‘Dog Days’ American Wheat (Little Creatures, WA) NEW
41 ‘Imperial West Coast Red Rye IPA’ Specialty IPA (4 Pines, NSW) NEW
42 ‘Praline’ Belgian Specialty Ale (La Sirène, VIC) GABS (2014)
43 ‘Return of the Dread’ Foreign Extra Stout (Little Creatures, WA) NEW
44 ‘Roger Ramjet 2015 (Bourbon Aged)’ Russian Imperial Stout (Boatrocker, VIC) NEW
45 ‘IPA’ American-style IPA (Hawkers, VIC) NEW
46 ‘Tusk 2015’ American-style IPA (Feral, WA) NEW
47 ‘IPA’ American-style IPA (Little Creatures, WA)
48 ‘Australian Pale Ale’ (4 Pines, NSW) NEW
49 ‘Fred’ American-style IPA (Murray’s, NSW)
50 ‘Growler’ American-style Brown Ale (2 Brothers, VIC)
51 ‘Fancy Pants’ American-style Amber Ale (Mountain Goat, VIC)
52 ‘Windjammer’ American-style IPA (Green Beacon, QLD)
53 ‘Pale Ale’ American-style Pale Ale (Hawkers, VIC) NEW
54 ‘Watermelon Warhead’ Berliner Weisse (Feral, WA) GABS (2012)
55 ‘Californicator’ American-style IPA (Big Shed, SA) NEW
56 ‘Pale Ale’ Australian-style Pale Ale (Kosciuszko, NSW)
57 ‘Citrus IPA’ Specialty IPA (4 Pines, NSW) NEW
58 ‘Golden Ale’ Blonde/Golden Ale (Two Birds, VIC)
59 ‘Temptress’ Porter (Holgate, VIC)
60 ‘Pale Ale’ American-style Pale Ale (Hawthorn, VIC)
61 ‘Calypso’ American-style Pale Ale (Odyssey, VIC)
62 ‘Two to The Valley’ American-style IPA (Newstead, QLD)
63 ‘F-Yeah’ American-style Pale Ale (Big Shed, SA)
64 ‘Kung Foo’ Pale Lager (2 Brothers, VIC)
65 ‘Garden Ale’ Australian-style Pale Ale (Stone & Wood, NSW)
66 ‘Pale Ale’ Belgian Pale Ale (White Rabbit, VIC)
67 ‘Sunset Ale’ American-style Amber Ale (Two Birds, VIC)
68 ‘Dark Red IPA’ Specialty IPA (Six String, NSW)
69 ‘Atomic Pale Ale’ American-style Pale Ale (Gage Roads, WA)
70 ‘Angry Man Pale Ale’ American-style Pale Ale (Murray’s, NSW)
71 ‘Winston’ American-style Pale Ale (Shenanigans, NSW)
72 ‘Hopsmith’ American-style IPA (Akasha, NSW) NEW
73 ‘Clout Stout 2015’ Russian Imperial Stout (Nail, WA) NEW
74 ‘Grizz’ American-style Amber Ale (2 Brothers, VIC)
75 ‘#010 West Coast IPA’ American-style IPA (Exit, VIC) NEW
76 ‘Draught’ Kölsch (Colonial, WA)
77 ‘IPA’ American-style IPA (Mornington Peninsula, VIC)
78 ‘ESB’ Extra Special Bitter (4 Pines, NSW)
79 ‘Yenda Pale Ale’ Australian-style Pale Ale (Australian Beer Co, NSW)
80 ‘Rogers’ American-style Amber Ale (Little Creatures, WA)
81 ‘Splice of Heaven’ Specialty IPA (Moon Dog, VIC) NEW
82 ‘West Coast IPA’ American-style IPA (Batch, NSW)
83 ‘Vanilla Milk Stout’ Sweet Stout (Thirsty Crow, NSW)
84 ‘Barrel Breed Barley Wine’ UK-style Barleywine (Mountain Goat, VIC) NEW
85 ‘Bling’ American-style IPA (Bridge Road, VIC)
86 ‘The Fox’ Vienna-style Lager (Rabbit & Spaghetti, SA) NEW
87 ‘Session Ale’ Australian-style Pale Ale (Mismatch, SA)
88 ‘Crankshaft’ American-style IPA (BentSpoke, ACT)
89 ‘Pale Ale’ American-style Pale Ale (Mornington Peninsula, VIC)
90 ‘28’ American-style Pale Ale (Burleigh, QLD)
91 ‘3 Quarter Time’ Australian-style Pale Ale (Newstead, QLD)
92 ‘White Ale’ Witbier (White Rabbit, VIC)
93 ‘Sly Fox’ American-style Pale Ale (Feral, WA)
94 ‘ESB’ Extra Special Bitter (Hargreaves Hill, VIC)
95 ‘55’ American-style Pale Ale (3 Ravens, VIC)
96 ‘Metamorphosis’ American-style IPA (KAIJU!, VIC)
97 ‘Sparkling Ale’ Australian-style Pale Ale (Coopers, SA)
98 ‘Zoo Feeder’ American-style IPA (Modus Operandi, NSW)
99 ‘Hopped Out Red’ American-style Amber Ale (KAIJU!, VIC)
100 ‘Hazelnut Brown’ UK-style Brown Ale (Bad Shepherd, VIC) NEW

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Looking for a gift?
Give someone a membership to the
Beer Of The Month Club! It’s a beer subscription club
where members receive a different pack of craft beer every month for 3, 6 or 12 months depending on the length of their
membership. It’s the craft beer gift that keeps on giving
when other craft beer gifts are gone and forgotten.
Beer Of The Month Club

 

Beer Of The Month Wins Best Beer Award

Two Birds Brewing has won the best beer award at the Wetherspoons Real Ale Festival. And what was the beer called? “Sunset Ale” which was selected by judges from over 50 craft beers.

Two Birds Brewing Sunset Ale

Two Birds Brewing Sunset Ale

“Our goal is to source and deliver the best craft beer available”, said Rob from the Beer Of The Month Club, “whether it’s a small hard to find micro brewery or an award winning beer, we’ll do our best to find it!”

The Two Birds Brewing Sunset Ale beat entrants from around the world including Australia, Netherlands, Britain, New Zealand and other craft beer brewing countries.

“It was the beer judges said they would have come back for another one and had the most distinctive flavour,” said Jayne Lewis. Jayne is one of two co founders from Australia’s first female owned micro brewery called Two Birds Brewing.

In addition the Two Birds Brewing Sunset Ale has won a number of awards at home in Australia in its short history of brewing craft beer. But is it the best craft beer in the world?

“Well it was the best beer at the festival”, said Jayne with a smile.

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Are you looking for the best gift idea for men?
Give him a membership to the
Beer Of The Month Club 
where members receive a different pack
of hard to find and award winning craft beer every
month for 3, 6 or 12 months!

 

1 Week Old Craft Beer Direct from Brewery to Members

We went searching for the next craft beer of the month and found the Hargreaves Hill Brewing Company in the Yarra Valley,  Victoria. The Yarra Valley is traditionally known for it’s beautiful vineyards and is building a highly reputable craft beer region with a group of dedicated micro breweries brewing some of the best craft beer in Australia and the world. So we thought it was time to pay a visit to the Hargreaves Hill Brewing Company to learn a bit about their history and what they were brewing.

Hargreaves Hill brew craft beer with “simple ingredients; malted barley, hops, Yarra Valley water, and yeast,” and have been brewing since 2004. The brewery was founded by Simon Walkenhorst and his wife Beth Williams with a goal of introducing more choice and quality in to the Australian beer market. And after successfully producing a Pale Ale and Porter, this husband and wife team opened the Hargreaves Hill restaurant and cellar door just a few years later in a beautiful town called Yarra Glen. “The company has a simple philosophy, choose good quality ingredients, and create great flavour, and balance.”

But like a lot of great plans not everything went to plan, and in 2009 the Hargreaves Hill brewery that was first started in Steels Creek was destroyed by the Black Saturday fires along with Kinglake and Marysville towns. So a few micro breweries got together to help Simon and Beth get started again  and after a short but long 6 months were able to set up a new brewing site in Lilydale, Victoria.

I arranged to meet with Wayne (aka Hargreaves Hill Brewing Company Sales Manager) at their Lilydale brewery and was presented with the following craft beers.

Wayne (Sales Manager Hargreaves Hill Brewing Company)

Wayne (Sales Manager Hargreaves Hill Brewing Company)

Hargreaves Hill Hargreaves Stout
Quote, “Brewed in the Foreign Export Stout style, this beer is made from 5 different roasted malts, and gently hopped using Goldings hops from the UK. It is quite complex and dry, with notes of espresso and dark chocolate.”

Hargreaves Hill ESB (Extra Special Bitter)
Quote, “This bitter has delicious fruity aromas of passionfruit and grapefruit, which are produced by dry-hopping. The hops add flavour and aroma without bitterness at this point, and give the beer a great pungency and depth. The beer also has a rich malt profile which balances the bitterness well. ”

Hargreaves Hill Pale Ale
Quote, “This is a medium body English style Pale Ale in which we use American Cascade and Amarillo hops. Some say that is has a marmalade bitterness. It is full of flavour. Great to try with a steak sandwich, beef burger or hearty steak.”

Hargreaves Hill Hefweizen
Quote, “This is a cloudy style of beer which focuses on the yeast esters of banana and cloves. It is delicate in flavour, and not bitter or hoppy. It’s quite fruity, and good to recommend to non beer drinkers. We use a Bavarian yeast in this beer called Weihenstephaner from a Bavarian brewery famous for its Hefweizen beer.”

Hey Wayne, we’ve featured a Pale Ale, Porter, Extra Special Bitter, Dark beer and more for our members, but haven’t tried a German Hefweizen before, what do you think? “Well a large percentage of your members will love it, more than say a dark beer which has a specialty taste, plus Kai (head brewer) and Shane (assistant brewer) have just brewed a batch a week ago and because we don’t put preservatives in to craft beer and the bottle is light you’ll be getting the freshest and best craft beer experience possible, direct from the brewery!”

Kai (Hargreaves Hill head brewer) and Shane (assistant brewer)

Kai (Hargreaves Hill head brewer) and Shane (assistant brewer)

So with Wayne’s expert advice we chose the Hargreaves Hill Hefweizen craft beer for our Beer Of The Month Club members and hope you get as much enjoyment out of it as we did.

Rob at the Hargreaves Hill Brewing Company brewery

Rob at the Hargreaves Hill Brewing Company brewery

Cheers,
Robert (founder) and team from Gift Of The Month Clubs

Rob delivering the Hargreaves Hill Hefweizen beer for members

Rob delivering the Hargreaves Hill Hefweizen beer for members