30 November 2011

Warners At The Bay Beer Festival 2011@Newcastle Australia

On Sunday it was Warners At The Bay's Annual Beer Festival which this year coincided with Newcastle Craft Beer Week.
What a day! Held from 12pm to 4pm the event held in the motel car park of my favorite bottle shop hosted over 80 Beers from 25 suppliers and a couple of  ciders sunk in too! The weather after a week of non-stop rain Sunday really turned it on with blue sunny skies and the mercury  hanging round 30 degrees Celsius--purrrfect beer sampling weather in my book!

The event was a sell out with tickets capped at 700 and by the looks of things everyone showed up! Each ticket holder was given a coopers show bag which contained a pen, a back issue of beer & brewer magazine, info sheets,beer tickets, a copy of the excellent  Beer Lovers Guide To Australia and the most important thing of all a 200ml Warners At The Bay tasting glass!  On to the beers!

Rogue Hazelnut Brown Nectar

Wow and I mean WOW! This ale was a big surprise. Big malty character on the nose with a bit of caramel thrown in too. The mouth full is where the awesome Hazelnuttyness  hits you wonderfully smooth going down and satisfying. I get abit funny about brewers adding stuff to beers...BUT this is done right in true Rogue Brewery fashion- these guys really know what they are doing.  Had this over at the Innspire Craft Beer Merchants tent- a great bunch of guys who bring in some incredible beers from around the world.  Check out their ute/pickup below.

Over at the Stone & Wood Brewery tent the home of one of my favorite brews Pacific Ale which was as always excellent... the fellas were also sampling a Spanish lager brew called Moritz

A very thirst quenching brew very smooth going down in the spring sun and a somewhat faint vanilla taste to it on the finish. Very nice! Will definitely be picking up a case of these on a scorching hot day this summer!

Next up was the Lord Nelson Brewery Stand

These guys from Sydney's institutional brewpub  were very informative and great to chat with... the beer was great too! They had the Three Sheets Pale Ale and Old Admiral strong amber ale on tap for the day. The Three Sheets was great- not too overpowering in the hop department and a very inoffensive ale- Extremely refreshing. The Old Admiral on the other hand had a good malty backbone to it-would be great by the pint on a cool evening. The brewpub is a great place to check out if you find yourself  in Sydney-a great establishment that is a part of Sydney's and Australia's craft brew history.

Next up we made our way over to the wonderful peps at the Beer Importers and Distributors (BID) stand

Sam Adams Lager as always-- a great Vienna style lager with malty goodness went down a treat! Warstiener a very clean bright  larger which would rival any Mexican style lager as the easiest drink brew out there . Noble Pils from Sam Adams was also a good example of the style. Hope to see some Belgians next year from BID as they provide the Aussie market with some cracker beers from beer's holy land.

McLaren Vale

I have converted a few peps over to craft brew with Vale Ale from these guys. I was pleasantly surprised they also brew an IPA which was one of the only IPA's available for tasting at the event. And what a great IPA at that! Big hop aroma on the nose and a sweet maltyness going down, finishing up with a awesome hoppy bitterness which hop-heads like me are addicted to. Hope to see more from these guys.
Notable Mentions:

Mudgee Brewing Amazing Wheat beer! Has the biggest banana aroma of any wheat beer I have ever tasted! Great to see a good Aussie brewer making a PROPER wheat beer.

Black Duck Brewery Great beers on show especialy the PROPER bitter lovely beer could've drank it all day... and that has nothing to do with the fact it has PROPER in its name I swear (^_^).

Ekim Brewing & Happy Goblin best pale ales at the event-great bunch of guys too!

Mark's Home Brew- Mark and Shawn great guys and last minute suppliers for taps and things so the breweries could serve us beery people beer! Thanks Heaps!

Last but not least a massive thanks to Mark Mead & Crew from Warners at the Bay and Corey Crooks & crew from the Albion Hotel & Newcastle Craft Beer week Founder for making this amazing event happen....us beery folks really appreciate the enormous time and effort that you guys have  put into this event to make it a cracker! Cheers fellas.

22 November 2011

Women & Beer event @ Bar Petite Newcastle Australia

Well here we finally are at this very special week in November! Newcastle Craft Beer Week has begun!! One of the opening events was a Ladies only night  event hosted by "the beer Diva" Kirrily Waldron at Bar Petite on King Street here in beaut Newie!

Now you might be thinking did PROPERBEERMATE have to wear a wig, mascara and a pretty dress to get in and review this event?  Sorry to disappoint you but no....I sent in the PROPERBEER MAIDENS!  Who took all the photos and notes for me to complete this review!  Cheers ladies!
Now onto the beers!
Hargreaves Hill Hefeweizen

A wonderful representation of the style and one of my favies too. Aromas on the nose are the traditional lolly banana and clove you'd expect from a good Hefe along with a welcome surprise of  some vanilla notes as well. Great drinkability smooth and very refreshing going down. The PROPERBEER MAIDEN'S favorite of the night!

Matilda Bay Bohemian Pilsner

Little to no hop aroma on the nose,  very appealing appearance and easy drinking as most pils type beers are but with a slight bitter finish.Nothing fancy here.... very close resemblance to the macro brew lagers available on tap at most pubs.

2 Birds Brewing Golden Ale

Big strong honey notes on the aroma along with a somewhat fermented soy bean quality too! Very smooth going down due to the intentional low carbonation of this beer. Would go great with any chilli based spicy foods to cut through the heat.

Ninkasi's Angel Tripel

The first all female brewer collaboration brew here in Australia! Which is also named after an ancient beer goddess, is a Belgian inspired style of  beer which incorporates local ingredients to complement the traditional Tripel style. Big spice notes on the nose, full bodied and quite strong on the alcohol make this brew a sipper not a chugger by any means. Goes great with a good cheese and crackers on a cool night! 

Hunter Beer Co. Lambic

Very young home brew and sour aroma to this brew. Again on the taste very yeastie  applely and SOUR!  Needs more time to mature in the bottle maybe to mellow it out a bit perhaps... but then again this is a sour style. The Chocolate tart that complemented this brew however was excellent! 

Thanks again to the PROPERBEER MAIDENS for their superb tasting skills and notes!

And to Kirrily Waldron "the beer Diva"  who has broken down so many barriers and perceptions of beer appreciation and beer culture for both females and males over years through her constant hard work in the beer community here in Australia and aboard. We beer enthusiasts thank you for your passion and commitment towards the craft that is beer. Cheers!

04 November 2011

Newcastle Craft Beer Week @Newcastle Australia! Update

Hope everyone enjoyed the festivities during the Oktoberfest month! Here is the finalized listings for the upcoming Newcastle Craft Beer week which now includes an event hosted by one of my favorite brewers Richard Watkins from the Wig and Pen Brewpub in Canberra!
Click on the image below to view the updated event list!