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Inspired by a recent trip to the US Pacific Northwest, Sauce Brewing Co founder Mike Clarke wanted to brew a beer that would pay homage to the region’s traditionally hoppy reputation, while still being suitable for the current Aussie weather.

Clarke chose to brew a Cascadian dark ale and called it the Sauce ‘O Cascadia’. In essence, it is a hoppy dark beer, not dissimilar to a porter with an American pale ale hopping regime. Cascade, Amarillo and Simcoe add character but the beer features primary characteristics of chocolate, coffee and a touch of roast.

Cascadia is a “bioregion and proposed country” covering an area that roughly includes the US states of Oregon and Washington, and the Canadian province of British Columbia. The region has its own flag and anthem ‘O Cascadia’.

Named after the Cascade Ranges, which form the spine of the region, the area is also home to over 40 per cent of the world’s hop crop, and almost 90 per cent of the US crop. Many iconic US hops are named after landmarks in the area including, Cascade, Chinook, Willamette and Mt Hood.

Mt Hood features on the Sauce ‘O Cascadia’ can, which is available in limited quantities in key and 500ml cans.

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Two Bays Brewing Co will launch later this year on the Mornington Peninsular, making it the newest gluten-free brewery to expand Australia’s craft scene.

Two Bays owner Richard Jeffares was diagnosed with coeliac disease three years ago. From an avid beer family and a long-time enthusiast, Jeffares was devastated that he’d no longer be able to partake in his favourite beverage.

Jeffares started researching and like most craft brewers, looked to the USA. There, Jeffares found a fully-developed gluten-free space in the craft beer scene. In one venue, he describes being able to try up to 18 or 19 taps of gluten-free lights, darks, sours and goses.

From Portland over to Montreal “the beer quality was brilliant,” Jeffares says.

“So, I came back and spent the last year and a bit making this project happen.”

Two Bays Brewing Co has secured exclusive importation rights to 15 different specialty malt varieties. Made from millet, buckwheat and rice, Jeffares mostly sells to homebrewers with hopes to expand once his stock levels rise.

“The CSIRO puts the gluten-free market in Australia at about eight per cent of the population.”

While there aren’t currently many breweries targeting the gluten-free market, Jeffares is quick to acknowledge the ground-breaking work of John O’Brien of O’Brien Beer, one of Australia’s first commercially brewed gluten-free beers which was released in 2005. O’Brien Beer “is probably a global pioneer in the gluten-free beer space,” Jeffares says.

Jeffares is looking to provide the whole afternoon brewery experience, where people with gluten intolerance can still enjoy trying a range of beer products and styles.

Two Bays is set up with a 300-litre pilot system, with the view to providing beer into its taproom by the end of the year.

“We’re just recipe creating at the moment,” Jeffares says.

But brews could be ready as soon as August for local distribution.

Jeffares has ordered a 20hl Brewtique system that will “hopefully” arrive by the end of August.

“We’re progressing quite well, we just hope there’s not too many things that are going to get in our way.”

Two Bays is currently on its fourth or fifth brew.

“It’s about getting that first beer out so we can show people what a quality craft gluten-free beer can really be like.”

Jeffares says that the craft beer world love experimenting and hopes that Two Bays will attract a lot of people who aren’t gluten-free but who like the flavour from these alternative malts.

He has enlisted Andrew Gow, formerly of Mornington Peninsula Brewery and Mountain Goat Brewery, as head brewer. With 19-years experience as a commercial brewer, Gow brings a thorough understanding of the barley side of brewing.

While the flavour profile is different on Two Bays brews, Jeffares and Gow aim to brew “absolutely, through-and-through to style”.

“It’s not the same but it’s not a bad point of difference either,” Jeffares says.

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A lot of great stories come out of the Australian International Beer Awards each year and none more so than this week’s guest.

Kris Domagala, left, with mentor Steve ‘Hendo’ Henderson with their trophy.

Pete Mitcham recently caught up with Kris Domagala, who brews with our good friend Steve ‘Hendo’ Henderson at little known Melbourne Brewery, Brownstone Microbrewery. Brownstone surprised many – including Kris – when it was awarded the Gary Sheppard Trophy for best new exhibitor and a Gold medal for Kris’ pale ale at the recent awards.

Craft brewing is an industry that inspires many a homebrewer to say, I want to do that, and in many ways Kris typifies the journey that many of them are on in following their passion.

A programmer and app developer by profession, Kris has immersed himself in the beer world as a long-time member of the Brisbane Amateur Beer Brewers club, where he also served as Brewmaster, not to mention won awards for his brews. He has stewarded at the Qld Amateur Brewing Championship and the AIBAs, and done work experience at breweries in Qld and his new hometown of Melbourne.

He recently put his programming career on hold and divides his time brewing at Brownstone and working the bar at Stomping Ground while he makes plans his own brewery.

Enjoy the conversation.

If you like what we do at Radio Brews News you can help us out in a number of ways.

You can sponsor the show, either by a small monthly contribution or through a one-off donation.

You can also review us on iTunes or your favourite podcasting service. 

Tell us what you think about what’s going on in the beer industry by emailing us at producer@brewsnews.com.au. All letter writers will receive a brews news bottle opener, and our good friends at Beer Cartel sponsor our letter for the week. We will choose an email, a tweet or a comment each week and Beer Cartel will send you a mixed six-pack plus a Brews News bottle opener.

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Melbourne gastropub The Burnley is finally about to commission its in-house brewery, completing a long-held ambition for co-owner Neil Mills.

The Richmond venue, which opened last November, is about to run its first brew through its K500, a two-tired 500hl brew tank pioneered by Spark Breweries.

Mills said the project was delayed when he and his business partners had second-thoughts about how 1000-litre system that they first purchased would fit into the gastropub.

Having established their Burnley Brewing brand by guest-brewing elsewhere to supply the Richmond taphouse, they saw the demand for their beers and so had the confidence to keep the 1000-litre system and use it as a production brewery, while instead installing the 500-litre system on site.

The 1000-litre system has been installed in a facility in Dandenong, where they have been brewing since April.

Mills says the pivot has worked out well, giving them more room in the restaurant, “leaving the noisier stuff in the warehouse”.

Together with his business partners, Mills had been establishing the Burnley Brewing brand by guest brewing right across Victoria since November last year. He says it’s a relief to be able to brew in one spot and not be driving around the State with sacks of malts and kegs.

“Brewing with our friends gave us confidence in what we were doing, and showed us that there was a demand for our beers,” Mills said.

However, guest brewing often meant that Mills had to brew greater volumes of fewer beers than he really wanted.

Mills has always wanted to own his own brewpub, and so with long-time business partner Phil Gijsbers, teamed up with Renton Carlyle-Taylor of The Milton Wine Shop, Toorak Cellars, The Alps, The Mills and The Moon restaurants and bottleshops.

With the initially unplanned addition of the Dandenong warehouse as a much larger production hub, it allows the venture to keg for wholesale as well as package limited amounts of their production. It houses a 10hl 2-vessel Spark brewhouse and five double-batch tanks with more on the way.

“Basically, just packaging cans or bottles in a restaurant wasn’t going to work and we sort of did want to get the beer out there,” Mills says.

The Richmond brewpub will act as a secondary brewing facility, but with a speciality serve-on-site model with the benefit of being public facing.

Mills describes the brewpub as a modern take on Melbourne’s pub scene and is keen to create an atmosphere that caters to everyone.

“I reckon there’s a risk with the kind of pointy end of the craft beer scene that it gets a bit exclusive,” Mills says.

“We just wanted to make sure we had a kind of nice pub first so we could introduce the beers to more people.”

Mills wants his customers to feel comfortable sitting at the bar and asking a few questions about the beer. He hopes that his big chunky hardwood bar is going to be the hero of the space.

The new model Spark K500 along with four stacked fermenters with brite tanks on top will feature in the venue.

“The K500 is designed to be an inexpensive, compact, professional brewing system,” Spark engineer Julian Sanders explains.

“It’s designed to look good, while allowing brewers to brew and serve on site without needing to keg the beer,” he says.

Mills says that the K500 just gives them flexibility.

“We like doing small-batch stuff, so having 14 taps here, it just means we can have a nice cascading range of beers on.”

“We’re well on track to having a new beer out each week, indefinitely.”

Burnley Brewing has enlisted Michael Stanzel as head brewer of both its Richmond Brewpub and Dandenong Brewery. Stanzel is the first Australian to attain the Brewer and Maltster apprenticeship accreditation exclusive to Germany.

Burnley Brewing is located at 648 Bridge Road, Richmond. Brewery openings are presented by Melbourne-based Spark Breweries and Distilleries, the finest in Australian quality commercial brewing and distilling equipment.

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Stone & Wood’s annual Stone Beer tradition is ready for release. Once again, the team has come together to honour an ancient brewing technique. The nighttime ritual adds wood-fired stones to the kettle to caramelise the batch.

Barrel-Aged Stone & Wood Stone Beer Stone Beer 2018 Vintage Release Wood Fired Porter

7.5% ALC/VOL | Available in 330ml x 4 packs, 24 pack cartons and 50L kegs

The 2018 Stone Beer is a dark porter with aromas and flavours of roast barley, hints of coffee and dark chocolate. The winter release finishes with a firm bitterness from the kettle hops and black malts.

Malts include: Simpsons Maris Otter Pale, Weyermann Caramunich 2,  Weyermann Special W, Weyermann Carafa special 1, Weyermann Caraaroma and Briess Cherry Wood.

Hops include: Tettnang and Galaxy.

Stone Beer 2018 Barrel Aged Release Wood Fired Porter

7.3% ALC/VOL | Available in 500ml stone crocks and 50L kegs

Last year, the Stone & Wood team syphoned some of the 2017 Stone Beer into a handful of port and second-use whiskey barrels for 12 months of ageing. Dark and robust, barrel-ageing this full-bodied beer has added smooth and velvety chocolate and vanilla notes to the roasted caramel aroma and cocoa flavour.

Both Stone Beer varieties are available now.

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Australian Brews News by Radio Brews News - 6d ago
Dr Andre Sammartino

This Good Brews Week Pete and Matt are joined by Dr. André Sammartino to discuss the beer news of the week.

André is an Associate Professor in the Department of Management & Marketing at the University of Melbourne and his main research interests are at the intersection of international business and strategic management. His recent projects have looked at the geographical reach of multinationals, reconfiguration of international competitive advantages, and the cognitive processes of individual executives making international decisions.

He was the right guest in the right week as this week we look at:

We also discuss our letter of the week which included the following question from listener Landon Moss:

The purpose of me writing this is to share a major gripe I have, and is one of the reasons I love craft beer in cans so much. 

Most of the craft beer available locally and the most affordable comes in bottles and I find after the first swig all I can taste is metal or to be more precise rust.  There is not always a glass handy and I shouldn’t have to wipe down every bottle before I take a drink imo. Is this something you have come across?

We threw the question out to a couple of production managers and received this reply from Richard Crowe, Production Manager at Stone & Wood after we recorded:

This phenomenon is typically due to inadequate drying under crowns before secondary packaging (cluster/wraps). The beer-contacting part of the crown has a wadding layer which is designed to form a tight seal and protect against air ingress. However, if you look at the underside of a crown on close inspection, you’ll see that the outer perimeter is still exposed metal and its here where water can reside and effectively leach metallic flavours – ending up on the mouth of the bottle.

I’ve tasted this myself and it is unpleasant, and the onus is on packaging plant design to dry under crown as much as possible before putting into secondary pack. Beyond this I’m unsure how feasible it is for crown suppliers to put this wadding material over the entire crown underside right to the perimeter, but that too could help with things.

Thanks to Landon for his email and to Richard for his reply.

If you like what we do at Radio Brews News you can help us out in a number of ways.

You can sponsor the show, either by a small monthly contribution or through a one-off donation.

You can also review us on iTunes or your favourite podcasting service. 

Tell us what you think about what’s going on in the beer industry by emailing us at producer@brewsnews.com.au. All letter writers will receive a brews news bottle opener, and our good friends at Beer Cartel sponsor our letter for the week. We will choose an email, a tweet or a comment each week and Beer Cartel will send you a mixed six-pack plus a Brews News bottle opener.

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Stockade Brew Co, the new brewery and bar from Australia’s fastest growing independent craft beer producer, has officially opened its doors. Located in the heart of Marrickville, Stockade Brew Co is an art-déco inspired brewery, complete with expansive bar, dining space and intimate tasting room for fourteen.

Designed by RAD Studios, Stockade Brew Co has taken cues from industrial surroundings, transforming the old factory space with terracotta tiles and furniture made from blackbutt wood. Large steel screens and customised lightbox menu boards from Macgyver Models, play to the building’s industrial history. The brewery has also commissioned a bespoke bar front which has been made using repurposed staves taken from barrels used for Stockade’s beers. Those visiting will sight the tasting room, containing two vintage stave-clad brite tanks upon entry.

Stockade Brew Co offers a core line-up of five ‘sessionable’ beers alongside a number of limited edition brews, all created in house by Head Brewer Daniel Fardon. The Mountie, the maple syrup-infused imperial stout is poured exclusively at the venue and Old Money is featured on tap for launch. Stockade Brew Co also serves a number of revolving guest taps including Randall’s, Bucket Boys and 3 Ravens Brewing.

Click to view slideshow.

In creating the cocktail list, The Stockade Brew Co. team took inspiration from the hops that surround them, drawing on their unique flavour characteristics of citrus, floral, pine, flowery aroma, and of course, bitterness. The result is a rotating list of six seasonal cocktails that caters to an abundance of varying taste buds, using raw spirits infused, aged and finished on-site. Hop Dreams, for example, uses gin and a house-made four-citrus liqueur to bring out the grapefruit, orange, melon and apricot notes of the Amarillo hops, while Stockade’s G’n’T (Galaxy & Tonic) plays up the bitter, in-depth passionfruit flavours of the Galaxy hops.

A number of barrel aged wines, blended on-site with Urban Winery Projects, are also served by the glass or carafe. Barrel-ageing the wine adds a subtle wooden undertone to the flavour found at the back of the palate, giving the wine a fast-tracked mature. Once the wine is prepped and ready for consumption it is all shifted into keg, keeping it fresh and ready for drinking.

On the food front, Stockade Brew Co have created a monthly changing line-up of collaborations, with Baby Rey’s confirmed for the brewery’s opening month. Known best for their Wild West Burger, the burger purveyors serving up a number of their classic dishes, with a Stockade twist. Their maple bacon jam now features Stockade Brew Co’s Mountie stout, while their chilli and cheese-loaded fries are served with a generous dollop of Chop Shop Ale dressing. Following Baby Rey’s tenure, pan-Asian BBQ truck Tsuru will take over in August, before Grease’n’Grind burgers in September and La Raza Mexican Cantina in October.

The brewery is the brainchild of Stockade Brew Co’s Anton Szpitalak. Having launched the company in 2015, he wanted to create a space that celebrates what they love most, while still appealing to locals who prefer to unwind with a cocktail or wine in hand.

“Beer is our bread and butter at Stockade – it’s what we know and love best, so we wanted to create a venue that is not only serves our beers but celebrates beer on a wider level. We’re working with a number of local independent brands and bringing their expertise in-house to deliver food, wine and cocktails that celebrate hops.”

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Lion has furthered its expansion into Asia, opening its first Little Creatures venue in Singapore.

Little Creatures’ regional brewer, Jum Ryan, will brew across the new Singapore and existing Hong Kong breweries.

Little Creatures Mohamed Ali Lane, a 180-seat brewpub in central Singapore, is Lion’s second venue in Asia, having opened Little Creatures Kennedy Town in Hong Kong in 2016.

Lion Global Markets Managing Director, Matt Tapper, said there has been a surge in demand as the Asian craft market flourishes.

“We know that consumers across Asia appreciate quality products with genuine credentials.  Now is an excellent time to step into the South East Asian market by creating a home for one of Australia’s best loved craft beer brands in Singapore.

“The Lion Global Markets strategy is built around patiently and sustainably embedding our portfolio of high quality products in gateway cities worldwide.  The combination of productive free–trade agreements and the emerging Asian middle class are providing just the right conditions for Lion’s expansion into new markets.

“We pride ourselves on the positive reputation that all of our venues across Australia and Asia have within their local communities.  We’re dedicated to continuing this focus, to ensure that Lion becomes an integral part of the local Singapore community as we provide great beers, a great menu and a great hospitality experience,” he said.

The new venue has capacity to brew on-site, though the Little Creatures core range and a selection of White Rabbit beers and James Squire Orchard Crush Cider.  Local brewing will be limited to a targeted local seasonal range. The venue will feature a casual Mediterranean-inspired menu “with a Fremantle twist”.

In addition to Lion’s Little Creatures venues in Singapore and Hong Kong, Lion is planning to open a third venue in London by the end of the year.

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The Independent Brewers Association Seal of Independence that launched last month is tracking well nation wide, with breweries signing up to support the campaign ‘Ask For Indie Beer’.

Breweries across Western Australia and ACT have already publicly thrown their support behind the IBA initiative.

“We are excited to sign up to the IBA’s Independence Seal, as it will equip customers with the knowledge to make considered purchasing decisions, and will help bring the stories of Australian brewers into public discussion,” said BentSpoke Brewing Co founder Richard Watkins.

As an avid member of the IBA since the brewery’s inception in 2014, Richard said “it’s very important for independent brewers to have a united voice as a sector… and to have a forum to discuss matters that impact all small brewers.”

One of the first Western Australian brewers to sign up and publicly throw their support behind the IBA’s Independence Seal, is Margaret River Brewery Cheeky Monkey. Brewer Ross Terlick said he hopes that the rest of the state will follow their lead.

“In Western Australia, there are so many great beers being produced by a wide range of passionate brewers, and the industry is really beginning to boom.”

“As the IBA’s Seal of Independence gets bigger and starts being seen by consumers over the next few months, we hope that more Western Australian brewers will sign up and support the movement.”

As it stands, the Seal can be used on packaging, marketing collateral, merchandise, point-of-sale materials, websites, social media and other promotional material.

According to the IBA, consumers can expect to see labels appearing on IBA-member products within the next three months, however brewers aren’t do sure. To date none have added the seal to their packaging, due to cost and timing issues.

While there is strong support for the IBA Seal, Cheeky Monkey Managing Director Brent Burton says they won’t be implementing the seal into their packaging until later this year. This comes after their move to introduce bottles as well as cans to the Cheeky Monkey range. By waiting until November, Brent hopes to avoid costs associated with printing different labels.

Fortitude Brewing Director Jim O’Connor says that while he thinks the indie seal is “fantastic”, putting the seal on their packaging just isn’t a consideration right now. The brewery had just undergone a pretty extensive product rebrand before the seal was launched.

O’Connor says there are so many elements to consider when designing packaging that to go back and make those changes would be costly.

Despite delays with packaging, breweries like Stone & Wood Brewing and Wayward Brewing Company have incorporated the Indie Seal into their social media campaigns. Many have also opted to use the point-of-sale items provided by the IBA at no cost during the introductory period to support the campaign.

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After a record number of votes for the 2018 Husky People’s Choice Awards Australia, GABS has announced two new champions.

GABS People’s Choice Awards Best Festival Beer and Best Festival Cider has been running for six years now and previous winners include Yeastie Boys, Bacchus Brewing, La Sirene, BrewCult and Stockade. Previous national cider champions include The Hills Cider Co and KAIJU.

Best Festival Beer

South Australia’s Big Shed Brewing Concern won with ‘Boozy Froot’, a New England IPA take on the humble Frosty Fruit. Their win saw them back up from the 2015 award with Golden Stout Time.

Runners up were:
  • Feral Brewing Co ‘Shooter McGavin’s Breakfast IPA’
  • Wolf Of The Willows ‘Tom Collins Sour’
  • Akasha ‘The Eagle IIIIPA’
  • Australian Beer Co ‘3yr Aged Bourbon Imperial Stout’
Best Festival Cider

Of the 14 Festival Ciders at this year’s GABS, Tasmania’s Devils Brewery took the crown with ‘Grandma’s Jam Cider’, a cider based – unsurprisingly on Grandma’s jam.

Runners up were:
  • Willie Smith’s Cider ‘Tanninator’
  • McCashin ‘Rochdale Mojito Cider’
  • Grand Ridge ‘Twisted Sister Apple Cinnamon Cider’
  • Napoleone ‘Honey I’n Cider’
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