WHEN you drink European beers or English ales or Irish stouts for that matter, one of the things that amazes those of us who hail from the Antipodes is the unbelievable age of the breweries themselves.
Guinness got cracking in 1759.
Kronenbourg in France began brewing in 1664 and still markets a drinkable lager carrying the date as its name. German purity laws specifying what can go into beer, the Reinheitsgebot, date from 1516.
In Australia, things are a bit different.
Hugh the neighbour and I sat down to try a beer neither of us had come across before - the Australian Brewery's Australian Pale Ale - a beer from a brewery that was established in ... 2010.
Starting out as a craft brewery attached to the Australian Hotel in Rouse, Sydney, the brewery has developed a reputation for innovation and, most importantly, drinkable beers.
Interestingly it claims to be the first craft brewery in Australia to can its beer, both to keep its products fresher and be easier to recycle.
The pale ale pours a cloudy yellow in the glass with a finger of head that lasted to the bottom of the glass.
HTN's first impression was of fruity drinkability, with the hops really kicking in from the first sip.
I could certainly get passionfruit notes on the nose, which combined with a thinnish mouthfeel and modest bitterness, made this a quaffable drop.
As always, we probably started drinking with the beer a bit too cold to fully get the flavour, and Hugh commented that as his warmed up, he found the hops became more prominent.
If you drink enough beer and take notice of what is in it, you can start to pick up on certain ingredients.
I now find Galaxy hops, which features in this pale ale, gives an unmistakable whack as soon as you begin to pour it into the glass - Gage Road Single Fin and Wild Yak, too, feature these hops.
At 4.8% alcohol content it is a full-strength offering.
This is a supremely drinkable beer. And well worth a try.
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375ml cans; 4.8% ABV; 26 IBU; $21 per six-pack; $69 per carton of 24.
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