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Beer reviews

Here's To Beers with Bob AnthonyBob Anthony, columnist and home brewer

I'm a beer columnist and home brewer. Here I cover everything to do with one of the most popular and discussed beverages in the world.

Cheers! Bob

Cascade First Harvest

Tue, 2009-05-26 10:15 -- bob
Cascade First Harvest

LIMITED release beers are like a ‘lucky dip’ for your taste buds – you are never really sure about what you might get but from experience it’s usually pretty good.

Cascade have been bringing out a limited release drop called First Harvest for eight years now and after tasting this delightful ale, it’s easy to understand why it comes and goes very quickly.

As the name suggests, this ale uses the first hops and barley of the harvest season and the result is a wonderfully flavoursome beer which isn’t overpowering in its flavour.

Mac’s Gold Malt Lager

Tue, 2009-05-19 12:15 -- bob
Mac’s Gold Malt Lager

BEING a responsible beer drinker can often leave you short of options and despite there being a host of mid strength or ‘gold’ beers on the market, finding a good one can be a challenge.

From across the Tasman comes Mac’s Gold Malt Lager in a very distinctive bottle to try and muscle in on the Aussie market.

This beer is slightly higher than regular mid strengths at 3.8 percent and was surprising in taste when it came to the name – malt lager.

Monteith's Summer Ale

Tue, 2009-05-12 14:20 -- bob
Monteith's Summer Ale

WITH the beer market being ‘compromised’ by infused drops, Monteiths Summer Ale represents a refreshing change.

Forget the fact that summer has gone and winter is upon us, this beer is just ‘bloody easy to drink’ at any time of the year.

On the label Summer Ale says that it is ‘honey spiced’ and in the past I have found some honey beers to be a little to sweet for my liking.

Using Rata honey, Summer Ale has a sweet aroma but there is a more fruity flavour that comes through more than being sweet.

Fat Yak from the Matilda Bay Brewery

Thu, 2009-04-30 11:09 -- bob
Fat Yak from the Matilda Bay Brewery

THERE must be a lot of people sitting around the Matilda Bay Brewery dreaming up outlandish names for new brews.

Their latest creation, Fat Yak, continues this crazy naming tradition, but more importantly it also continues the flavour tradition for which this brewery is famous.

My guess it the boys were sitting around chewing the fat, having a yak about their new creation, and in a moment of brilliance which comes after a beer or three, the name evolved.

Carlton Dry Fusion

Tue, 2009-04-14 11:09 -- bob
Carlton Dry Fusion

THERE’S a steady influx of ‘flavoured’ beers coming on to the market and while the purists will frown at these beers, there is no denying their popularity, especially among the younger set.

The latest to emerge in Australia comes from the Carlton Dry family with Dry Fusion Lemon.

This joins stablemates Carlton Dry and Dry Fusion Lime and this beer is infused with lemon as the name suggests.

Good Bastards

Tue, 2009-03-31 14:54 -- bob
Good Bastards

WHEN a beer is touted as "the world’s most humorous beer!", you have to ask, what’s it taste like?

Is it the most humorous beer because it’s a joke or is it because that after a few, you lighten up and see the funny side of why the beer is called Good Bastards Dark Ale?

Brewed by the New Zealand-based West Coast Brewing Company, Good Bastards is a unique drop which, seriously, is a very good dark ale.

Cuba 59

Mon, 2009-03-30 07:50 -- bob
Cuba 59

When you see a new beer, you must try it, and when that beer is on special, it’s hard to go past.

That's the case with a beer floating around the place called Cuba 59.

Apparently this beer was inspired by the 1959 Cuban Revolution – how is beyond me because it tastes more like it was inspired by the Mexican revolution – a la Corona.

For those who like their beer with a full body, Cuba 59 might be a bit lacking, but I found it to be a refreshing lighter style of beer well suited to steamy days in Havana (I've never been)..

Bighead, from the Burleigh Brewing Company

Tue, 2009-03-24 09:05 -- bob
Bighead, from the Burleigh Brewing Company

WHEN I first heard about the Burleigh Brewing Company releasing a no-carb beer, my thoughts were “no way”.
“Had modern technology advanced so far as to be able to allow man to do such a thing?” was the question which I asked but actually what I was thinking was “What does it taste like?”

Would the bold claim of no-carbs come at a cost to the flavour and body of the beer?

Bighead is the name of the drop and as a lager, it retains sound flavour and body, as well as fulfilling the promise of no carbs.

Oettinger Pilsener

Tue, 2009-02-24 15:40 -- bob
Oettinger Pilsener

WHILE going out for dinner recently, I thought I’d pop into a bottlo and pick up a six pack.

naturally with this job, it is my duty to try a beer which I don’t drink on a regular basis.

The challenge was to try and match a beer to the restaurant which I was heading to, in this case Greek.

It’s always a tough decision when confronted with dozens of six packs all calling out "pick me, pick me!"

But the decision was made for Oettinger Pilsener.

Green Fern

Tue, 2009-02-17 12:25 -- bob
Green Fern

SOMETIMES, well OK all the time, it’s good to be the beer columnist because you get calls out of the blue about beers which normally you would come across.

One such drop is Green Fern Organic Lager from the West Coast Brewing Company in New Zealand.

Now I must confess that I have found that some Kiwi beers have failed to live up to expectations but Green Fern doesn’t.

Marketed as an organic lager, it meets the demands of a market that is now requiring more natural processes in brewing, less additives and preservatives and a greater emphasis on flavour and body.

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