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The Joys of Summer

Discussion in 'Australia & New Zealand' started by heygeebee, Nov 27, 2012.

  1. Folks,

    Have just been considering this with the hot weather about to hit Sydney - that is, the joys of being an Aussie Brewer, highlighted to me at this time of year. In reality as well, the heat has come late, so we are usually looking at well over half the year as hot. Add to that, a quick peek at Murray's tap list shows that the, ah-hem, just-right-for-summer Seasons of the Abyss (and Heart of Darkness) have still not shifted by the keg and are still occupying tap space.

    Does this pose serious challenges to the Aussie Craft Brewer? who is trying hard to align to the innovation of the US, where the cold weather is much more the norm, thus heavier styles prevail.

    I know that I personally steer toward 4.5% or so beers at this time of year, and actually found an LCPA to be heavy going one night after playing football in that it did not quench my thirst - I found it too heavy. Not saying all brewers need to go the Blue Sky route (at all!!), but is there a real need to get innovative with thirst quenching lighter and lower ABV styles?

    Discuss.....
  2. Lukie

    Lukie Savant (415) Australia Jun 16, 2007

    Where is my 3.2% Saison I can sit down and smash pint after pint after pint?

    You make a valid point, and it is something I was thinking about yesterday. So many styles of beer that are just on the way-side that are so suited to lower alcohol and the Australian climate.
  3. This theme was touched in the All About Beer mag from the US, November issue. How the lower ABV 'session' styles have been left by the wayside and have only recently been reviewed by craft breweries. It was interesting to hear from guys like Lagunitas saying that the $$ to release a low ABV session beer was not worth it. Is it the same for Aussie brewers?

    I know a lot of people go for bang for your buck for ABV but what is the point if your forcing it down and not 100% enjoying it. I just recently took out a growler of Cheeky Monkey's Travelling Monk to share over the weekend afternoon and the 3.5% Red Ale had more flavour than most other full strengths. Other beers like Birra del Borgo Stars & Stripes APA @ 2.9% get my tick of approval also. Sunday arvo session over Sunday arvo sleep anytime!!
  4. barls

    barls Aficionado (175) Australia Nov 15, 2006

    working on that mate.
  5. mulder1010

    mulder1010 Initiate (0) Australia Aug 29, 2008

    Am going to post. Why waste my time on Low ABV beers. Dull and a waste of time. Man up and drink big beers. The idea of drinking multiple low ABV is just repulsive.

    Seriously, now. I think sydney is a bit different. See a bunch of the lower ABV beers moving well where I am at. Slowly seeing a change to Lower hoppy ABV beers than in early spring. I also work in a restaurant and now the move to SB' s is in full force
  6. There will be plenty of new lower ABV beers on the market this summer, I think.
  7. Lukie

    Lukie Savant (415) Australia Jun 16, 2007

    But will any of them be good? That is the real question.
  8. foles

    foles Savant (410) Australia Jan 28, 2007

    Yes would be nice to see us brew to our conditions a little more rather than trying to emulate the USA. I love session beers but some strong styles are also well suited to summer. I want more well brewed craft lagers (especially), more saisons, aussie pale ales, etc. A golden strong, imperial pils or belgian blonde (or local variations thereof) would also go down a treat during the summer. We are getting some of these, but only from the fake craft brands (Sail and anchor, Squire, etc). So they are poor examples.
    danieelol likes this.
  9. I'm not sure states such as California and perhaps more specifically L.A. has cold weather most of the year, in fact quite the opposite. Given that a large concentration of breweries in southern Cali, I presume that they can manage the seasonal change as well as any other U.S. brewers.

    It's more about about appropriate planning. People are far more likely to drink IPA's and Sours in the Winter as compared with Drinking 13.5% Bourbon Barrel Aged Imperial Stouts in the summer. (Pat aside of course cause he aint the norm !)
    CarlisleWineBin likes this.
  10. danieelol

    danieelol Advocate (510) Australia Jun 15, 2010

    Even IPAs can be a struggle to drink in the summer

    Absolutely agree with foles, would love to see some nice crisp craft lagers, saisons and *gasp* maybe even berlinerweisses in the summer.
  11. Lukie

    Lukie Savant (415) Australia Jun 16, 2007

    Proper Berliner-weisses though.
  12. Yeah but imagine having a Mikkeler Black on a 40 degree day, hmmm taste those malts, so chocolatey. A real treat as I just turn my air conditioner down to 17 degrees
  13. danieelol

    danieelol Advocate (510) Australia Jun 15, 2010

    I'm saving my Black Buffalo for the middle of January. Will give new meaning to the term "hot".
    Lukie likes this.
  14. MrKennedy

    MrKennedy Advocate (585) Australia Dec 29, 2006

    Definitely a shortage of Pale Ales, the Taphouse Hottest 100 earlier this year highlighted that...

    Busy couple of days coming up then?
    danieelol likes this.
  15. I've been smashing Radebergers this week. Goes well with the hot weather (40 here today). Good price too.

    Also noticed Bitburger is $30 a case - didn't know it was that cheap. Couldn't find Konig.

    Wish Woolworths brought in Paulaner Hefe at that sort of price.
  16. I'll just take a summer of drinking Stone & Wood Pacific Ale - that's close enough to a mid-strength for me :)
  17. joecast

    joecast Advocate (570) Australia Jun 30, 2003

    I used to be convinced strong and dark beers were only for cold weather. Through the years I've changed my mind a bit. Only in that strong / dark beers can be great any time of year... However, that doesn't mean I don't prefer a lighter, lower abv beer on days like today (30+, warm northerly, sun beaming).

    It would be great to see more good lagers, lower abv saison, pale ales. There are a few good ones out there. Will just have to support the brewers that are doing it well and the message will be heard.
    heygeebee likes this.
  18. joecast

    joecast Advocate (570) Australia Jun 30, 2003

    I think what the US do well is have a good mix of year round brews and target their special releases/seasonals to the season. And many more now are not limiting themselves to four specials a year.

    They've got their four proper seasonals, a pumpkin Halloween beer, an anniversary, a (or several) colab, a special one for a venue, a charity release. It goes on...
  19. spicelab

    spicelab Savant (425) Australia Nov 6, 2009

    It must be said that it's easier to hold this view in Tas, where you don't have to deal with persistent disgusting humid nights in the low 20's.
  20. mulder1010

    mulder1010 Initiate (0) Australia Aug 29, 2008

    quote="spicelab, post: 683503, member: 390185"]It must be said that it's easier to hold this view in Tas, where you don't have to deal with persistent disgusting humid nights in the low 20's.[/quote]
    So if you were in Tampa or Miami would this thread exist?
    Would you not by Marshall Z just because it is summer and it is humid?
  21. spicelab

    spicelab Savant (425) Australia Nov 6, 2009

    So if you were in Tampa or Miami would this thread exist?
    Would you not by Marshall Z just because it is summer and it is humid?[/quote]

    Absolutely. And find a lovely air-conditioned room to drink it!
  22. dgilks

    dgilks Advocate (665) Australia Jul 14, 2008

    Correct answer. Almost any style, almost any time, just so long as I can manufacture a suitable drinking environment.
  23. danieelol

    danieelol Advocate (510) Australia Jun 15, 2010

    My ideal drinking environment for most Belgians would be a magical land where they taste like an IPA.
    Lukie likes this.
  24. dgilks

    dgilks Advocate (665) Australia Jul 14, 2008

    That's unfair. It should be a magical land where they all taste like DIPAs. :D

    And where all IPAs and DIPAs taste like Gueuze. Kriek is also okay.
  25. Yes - I guess this was the point of my post - to make the brewers think... I am also not advocating neccessarily a bland out, a well made Berlinerweisse would do the job methinks quite nicely. Also drinking a lot of beers recently and won't name names that are hugely high in ABV and the style just says 'not needed'. They are really not needed on a 30+ day....
  26. MrKennedy

    MrKennedy Advocate (585) Australia Dec 29, 2006

    Although if it is about need, you'd reach for cask wine. If its about want, it really depends on the individual.

    San Diego is hardly cold climate and IPA's are pretty popular there.

    If its good beer, people will drink it regardless of the temperature.
  27. danieelol

    danieelol Advocate (510) Australia Jun 15, 2010

    I think he might be referring to a certain brewery which makes 9% pale ales
  28. dgilks

    dgilks Advocate (665) Australia Jul 14, 2008

    But they're purple and peated. With those characteristics 9% is like water.
  29. American IPA is a year round beer for me.
  30. All beers are year round for me, but not when I've just finished sweating my arse off all day. Then, I want something lighter. And that tends to happen more in summer than it does in winter.

    "Craft" beer is easier to make and sell a percent or two higher than it is a percent or two lower (in my humble blah blah blah). But I do look forward to seeing some interesting new lower ABV beers this summer and next.

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