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The Beers of Summer

Posted April 28, 2013 into Food & Drink by John Birmingham

Made the mistake of taking a dip in the pool after my morning workout the other day. The first time I'd done so in about a fortnight. Neither I nor the brass monkey will be doing that again until the end of the year. The first chill winds are nipping at the mornings and it won't be long now before I switch from beer and champagne to red wine.

I recall writing something for Blunty at the start of summer, my annual beer blog, about cheapies if I recall. It was a popular post, as those beery ones always are, but I scored more than the usual fee and the social meeja lovin' from it. A day or two after publication a six pack arrived from the venerable gents of the Burleigh Brewing company. Perhaps because I'd mentioned my fondness for one of their headline brews.

Big Head.

I'd been drawn to it by the artwork on the label. Yes, that shallow. But stayed for the no carb promise. To quote Leonardo Di C in Django Unchained, "You had my curiosity, but now you have my attention". One of the reasons I dont drink much beer is the carb content. A couple of stubs can quickly negate all of my gym work for a day.

Anyway, this summer, I downed more than a few Bigheads without noticable waistline issues, and knocked over a couple of their other tipples for variety. I think Hef, an antipodeon wheat bier, was my second fave, with the '70s style' pale ale, '28' coming in a close third.

I'm also still inching through a mixed carton of James Squire's porters and Amber Ales, left behind after an easter weekend family bbq, which I missed through being in Perth. The remaining porters I'll probably keep for winter, because they go so well with roast pork. The Ambers I quite liked, but once they're gone I'll probably revert to Big Heads for my winter beer needs, which are admittedly modest.

23 Responses to ‘The Beers of Summer’

HAVOCK21 reckons...

Posted April 28, 2013

YEAH...the PORTERS are FKN AWESOME..and why wouldnt thye be!

Snagged a slab of BROO BEER the other week, being retailed don here...not bad, its certainly not a lager like Crownies and they aint me fav anyways. Been doing the six pack test thing, I have about 30 beers in the fridge that OTHER people can drink cos I think they are SHIT though.

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Murphy ducks in to say...

Posted April 28, 2013

I've become a local beer snob after drinking a bit too much of the Boulevard Brewing Company's Wheat and 80 Acre Hoppy Wheat Beers. Another good summer beer is the mass produced, far more commercial Dos Equis Lager.

That said, most folks throw a lemon into their Wheat Beer. For the love of fucking all that is Holy, why? Haven't they been briefed on the Man Law concerning fruit 'n beer.

Or beer consumption via straw for that matter? Birmo, I'm looking at you, sir.

Respects,

Murph

On the Outer Marches

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John Birmingham mutters...

Posted April 28, 2013

With a mouth full of painkillers it was drink it thru a straw or not at all.

HAVOCK21 would have you know...

Posted April 28, 2013

you were overseas and you

  1. TOOK FKN PAINKILLERS
  2. Drank beer through a fkn straw

HAND YA FKN AUSSIE MEMBERSHIP AND MAN MEMBER SHIP FKN BACK IN YA MUPPET!...FFSAKES MAN!

Murphy swirls their brandy and claims...

Posted April 28, 2013

To be fair, he drank through a straw on your side of the lake, Havock.

And to be honest, I saw John drink many things in 2009 but I do not recall him bothering with beer. It was mainly scotch and sangria.

Respects,

Murph

On the Outer Marches

damian is gonna tell you...

Posted April 28, 2013

I've been washing down painkillers with beer this weekend. Slipped over while washing the dog last weekend, landing with the side of the bath under my ribs. Probably not a break, but you know how that goes... the most tender spot is a good 6 inches from where the bruising came up, will take just as long to come good as if I did crack one.

Must say, much as I enjoy the Weihenstephaner and the San Andreas IPA, I seem to fall entirely back on Coopers and Boags as a comfortable default.

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w from brisbane mutters...

Posted April 28, 2013

I'm a little surprised. In my life in Brisbane, I have never met anyone who markedly changes their choice of potation due to the season. Except for, perhaps, pulling out a bottle of port for those final dread winter's evening coffin nails.

Though relatvely, Brisbane's weather is not very seasonal.

w from brisbane is gonna tell you...

Posted April 28, 2013

Don't get wrong, changing your choice of drinks seasonally seems quite sophisticated. I just wondered, is it common.
In my circles, we don't over-think drink choice, perhaps a little too successfully.

Blake asserts...

Posted April 28, 2013

W. Clearly we have not met - (amazing considering you can't visit a shooping centre without running into half the city)

I switch beers on a six-pack basis. Admittadly that habit started when i was entrustred by a Norwegeian student who was leaving a share house i was moving into with finishing a beer wall. (The house had a beer sized mantlepeice about half a metre off the ceiling - we had started a challenge to fill it with no more than three bottles of the same type of beer)

Even so i will switch styles seasonally - James Squires used to help by doing a seasonal brew that was just that bit more special than their usual range.

My favorite Burlieigh is "My Wifes Bitter" but perhaps the pun pushes it over the line.

Problem is where I'm living at the moment, the only bottle shop that sells anything that isn't XXXX/New/VB is Dan Murphys and their range isn't as dynamic as the little local i used to frequent in Windsor.

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w from brisbane is gonna tell you...

Posted April 28, 2013

Thanks Blake. Maybe there is more of this seasonal switching and I just don't notice. And I like that you just change beers, though perhaps you are just keeping on topic (beer).

Burleigh beer : "My Wifes Bitter". Must try that one.
Reminds me of Chilli Willie's excellent range of hot sauces. They are good, produced locally, and have some interesting names.

"Fire in the Hole", 'Aussie Ring Stinger" etc. But the most notable name in their range is possibly their 9/10 heat rated chilli sauce "Smack my Ass and call me Cindy".


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Abe Frellman asserts...

Posted April 28, 2013

I found another cheapie for summer... An import from The Netherlands called Breda. My quasi local bottle -o is not averse to trying whatever the local importer is struggling to move, so I picked up a case of 330ml cans for $30-$35. A great summery beer.

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insomniac is gonna tell you...

Posted April 28, 2013

Buy a wetsuit and swim all year round, or get wetsuit shorts. They help with the brass monkeys. I can stride into the cold icy sea with confidence.

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Stevo 73 reckons...

Posted April 28, 2013

No carb beers and low carb beers a bit of a mystery to me.

Most of the time low carb is also sly code for weaker alcohol strength. Check the horse piss that is Pure Blonde as an example.

No carb I imagine would have to mean no residual sugars at all from the brewing process. This is tough work due to the attenuation of the yeast strain being used. Most yeasts used for beer have attenuations around 85 - 90%. To get the no carb perhaps a second wine yeast strain or drying enzyme is used to drive down the sugars.... Interesting I must research this.

If you like Squires, I have recently given the Sail and Anchor range a bit of a nudge, in the same ball park as Squires just a little different.

I loves me the Hefe, oh how I love the Reinheitsgebot, those Germans know how to make beer (and self propelled artillery). However if you are having the local stuff steer well away from Hargrave Hills Hefeweizen. RUBBISH! It tastes like one of my bad batches. Stick to the 4 Pines, YUM.

Dino not to be confused with asserts...

Posted April 28, 2013

Stevo 73,

Yes 4 Pines German Holsch(?) is divine.

Stevo 73 is gonna tell you...

Posted April 28, 2013

I love all the 4 Pines range, those boys and girls know how to brew!

Phil reckons...

Posted April 29, 2013

Hey Stevo, yeah all the low carb beers have additional enzymes added at the mash stage. Means the malt sugars are more easily fermentable, so you end up with a drier beer after the yeast is done. Then add in low alcohol, low colour/body malts to start with and you get practically no sweetness left at all. Voila! No carbs.

Dino not to be confused with would have you know...

Posted April 29, 2013

Quality varies widely from batch to batch though.

Dino not to be confused with mumbles...

Posted April 29, 2013

Sorry should have written 'Wildly"

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Bangar would have you know...

Posted April 28, 2013

I've been quite partial to Fat Yak since the Prof's first visit, though I am fond of the German beers for a treat.

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Jacques Stahl asserts...

Posted April 28, 2013

JB, if you are looking for a tasty dark beer for the winter months, you could do worse than try White Rabbit Dark Ale from Healesville. A very tasty drop.

Haven't seen Big Head around the traps down here in Melbourne, but will keep an aye out.

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Timmo mutters...

Posted April 29, 2013

I too am on the switch from beer to wine - my last case of summer beer has run out and I'm contemplating whether to get another or not. I've definitely made the switch from XXXX Gold to Cooper's Mild as my standard drinking beer - much more flavoursome, same mid-strength alcohol content and similar price. I also usually get a 6 pack of something new every time I buy a case just for variety - often a Monteith's variety or the current cheap European import.

I'm still on the white wines, but will make the switch to the reds as the cooler weather and heavier food makes a comeback.

(I will actually get another case of beer of course, just for choice, but the urgency of having run out of beer is gone.)

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Paul_Nicholas_Boylan asserts...

Posted April 29, 2013

Fat Yak.

That is all.

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