Posts Tagged ‘australia’

Stone & Wood

July 20, 2021 – 2:17 pm 1 Comment

On our way back home from our trip to Malaysia and Thailand via the Gold Coast we pulled in to Byron Bay on NSW’s north coast to check out one of Australia’s most innovative Breweries  in terms of beer Style, Stone & Wood. This visit would also turn out  be one my best beer experiences ever!

Being a Saturday afternoon the brewery was actually closed for business but just by chance we were greeted by Ross Jurisich one of the founders of Stone and Wood Brewing  at the gate as he was there with his mates doing a father and son brew day…. and after a quick chat he kindly offered to show me and the fam around!

Stone and wood produce one of my favorite beers ever Pacific Ale which was formally known as Draught Ale which is hopped with a fairly new hop to the brewing scene-Galaxy- a hop that produces an awesome fruity passion fruit aroma and taste- which also in fact is an Australian hop!

It has become one the PROPERBEERMATE staple of beers (which is very rare these days as I am always looking to try something new)  awesome off tap and great out of the bottle too as long as it’s poured correctly for example slowly pour half of the bottle into the glass first then swirl the remainder round for a bit and again pour the rest in!

Awesome passion fruit aroma on the nose, sparkly almost wheat beer and very well carbonated mouth feel going down with the accompaniment refreshing taste of fruity hops going down. The after taste is awesome on this brew again with the Galaxy hops playing center stage with basically no bitterness linger coming into play at all. Great for hot day at the beach! This brew is a really good converter beer for people not really into craft brew- it really is that approachable! A good food match would be a basic Chicken Schnitzel with heaps of lemon and salty chips or a serve of tapas style Garlic Prawns would also go great!

Back to the brewery tour ……

As Ross showed us around the fantastic but simple set up  the main center piece were the two newest members of the Stone and Wood Brewery the twin 10,000 litre tower vessels stood out in the centre like beacons of triumph in the craft brewery and could tell Ross was very proud of them.  Looks like there’s gonna be alot more of Stone and Wood’s brews out in the wild soon!

It was great to listen to Ross explain the brewing process at the brewery of basically keeping it simple and user friendly to achieve at the end of the day a tasty brew. We had a smell of the hops including some great fresh Hersbrucker which is a spicy noble hop used in Stone & woods  Jasper Ale~ a kinda German alt/Amber ale styled brew.

Another great brew from these guys, Enticing red hue and a dark amber colour on the pour  along with with some spicy hoppy aroma paired with the smell of rich maltiness. Goes down smooth as while giving a ever so slight hop bitter bite on the aftertaste. Pretty much a to me a all seasons beer with would pair great with a spicy Beef Rendang or a hearty hot pot stew!

But I must say the best part of the tour was having a cheeky taste of the beer straight out of the fermentation tanks above…. Above: Oooh fresh Pacific Ale just about ready to be bottled an kegged! So fresh and tasty a little on the warm side from ale fermentation temps but definitely one of my best beer experiences ever! Cheers Ross!

A great innovation by stone and wood recently is the Mash Collective-rather than going down the well trodden path of doing collab brews with other brewers,  The Stone & Wood guys give the everyday beer lovers and homebrewers the chance to come and put together a style of beer and brew it together.  I Present to you the Amasia Rumweizen!

A very interesting brew…. hints of strong sweet maltyness on the nose and pours a cloudy dark amber with good carbonation. It tastes sensational extremely smooth going down with a big rum raisin ice cream flavor and a tiny rum burn/bite paired with well placed sweet malt on the finish. A absolute cracker of a brew! Reminds me of a good German Dunkle but… with balls! Get it if you see it in your local…..Goes great on a cold rainy night!

Stone Beer is another brew that the the guys bring out once a year which is brewed by a more traditional way of brewing by grabbing some stones and heating them in a wood fire at the brewery. A very tasty brew that from what I hear ages well.

Their 2012 release is out now and I plan to grab some to review!

A German styled Pale Lager is also a flagship brew by the Stone & Wood crew which I have had the pleasure indulging in a fair while back….. I plan to pick up a case or two this Summer!


Again Cheers to Ross for taking the time out to show us around and good on the rest of the Stone & Wood crew at beaut Byron Bay for making truly approachable and tasty brews for the average punter and beer geek alike!


Home Brewing with ProperBeerMate Part 1

May 16, 2021 – 3:00 pm 2 Comments

Hey Guys I’m going to show you how I brew my beer at home here in Australia. Today I’m doing an all grain brew using the Brew In A Bag method (BIAB)  I’ll be brewing a Czech Dark Ale Version of one of my all time favie beers Budvar Dark!

Here’s my Grain bill and Ingredients which is a recipe from my local Home Brew Shop- Marks Home Brew here in beaut Newcastle Australia .

Cracked extra fine (0.9mm) for BIAB
Premium Pilsener  3.230 Kg
Munich Dark 0.586 Kg
Cara Munich T2  0.586 Kg
Wheat Chocolate (yummy!) 0.220 kg

Saaz Czech (T90) 79g @60mins boil time

Safale US-05 ALE Yeast (I’m using Muntons Prenium Gold this time round though)

Here’s my cleaned and sanitised Equipment + Grains

From Left :

  1. Thermometer -decent scientific one.
  2. Hydrometer  to calculate abv and gravity
  3. Whirlfloc tablet- finning/to clear the brew at end of boil
  4. Saaz Hop Pellets-Yay- Hops!
  5. Grain bill-Malty goodness!
  6. Burner- Mine’s an Italian spiral type

More Equipment:

-My good ‘ol faithful brew bag that holds 5 kgs of grain no worries! Cleaned and ready for action!

My Brew pot that I picked up In Thailand last year- 36 litre capacity and does the job. Filled up with just over 20 litres of good ‘ol H2O.

Here’s some Spare Pots from previous brewing adventures along with a strainer and my mash paddle which is also great for stir frys too!

I prop the burner up onto my old barbie (BBQ) for safety reasons pop the pot filled with water on top  and connect the gas up to the burner and let her rip! Aiming for 50 degrees Celsius strike water temp I grab the thermometer and monitor the temp.

Woo-hoo! After about 10 mins the water temp nears 50C strike temp- time to get the bag and grains ready!

So after the temp hits just over 50c I turn off the gas and take the pot down off the burner (with oven gloves on- as I don’t like getting burnt) . Now the bag goes in the pot followed by the grainy goodness being poured in nice ‘an slow.

Now the grain is given a good stir making sure I get all the lumpy bits mashed and all the grains are wet. Oohh it smells good! Once thats done I pull the tie on the bag to seal it up and pop the top on the brew pot.

Now I’ll put the brew to bed for 60mins to let it mash— have a beer and read some and properbeermate!


What I use to wrap the pot up to maintain the mash temp is a towel and some old clean bed covers -does the trick!

In Part two the which will be posted  next week we’ll start the boil and add the magic that is HOPS!!

Cheers till then!


Murray’s Grand Cru

May 7, 2021 – 9:39 am 2 Comments

When the beer poured out?
Have a light alcohol with dark fruity aroma.

How’s the taste?
The entry have a light sour with dark fruity flavour. Very nice aroma that linger with light bitter. At 8.8% the beer is quite carbonated. The beer give a light after taste of light dark sweetness.

What’s the colour of the beer?
Pale yellowish orange

Where to drink?
Properbeermate bought this from Australia.

My Opinion:
The beer is quite strong and very aromatic. Is nice to drink it slowly as the warm up taste have a slight change that I like. As it warms up a bit the alcohol balance up more with flavour and aroma. Although have the same colour is IPA but the bitter is not sharp at all. Lovely beer.

Hoppy Hefe!

April 1, 2021 – 9:15 pm 1 Comment

Mad Brewers here in Australia have created something special ………a Hoppy Hefe!

The first thing that hits me is the massive citra hop aroma when I pop the cap followed by the sweet smell of the malts.

On the pour it generates a awesome fluffy creamy white head with a orangey hazey body just like a good hefe-wheat beer-a pleasure to look at! Again I’m in hop heaven on the aromas of this crafted ale….big piney citrus and good punchy hoppyness on the nose- much like an aggressive American IPA one of my favorite styles.

Going down the mouth feel is full and some what sweet as well. Dangerously smooth and satisfying! Superb hoppy bitterness thrown in too.  Abit syrupy on the finish like a good barleywine but not in a bad way at all. And very refreshing again like a good hefe should be.

At 7%ABV you gotta watch yourselves though! I reckon you should treat this brew more like an IPA and savour with a food match of Pepperoni Pizza.

This Beer ticks all the right boxes for me as it combines the characteristics of two of my favorite beer styles the German hefeweizen and the big hop monster ales of the USA . Too bad its only a limited addition-I’ll have to visit my local homebrew shop guy and try and clone brew it (^-^)


Warners At The Bay Beer Festival 2011@Newcastle Australia

November 30, 2020 – 7:00 pm Comments Off

On Sunday it was Warners At The Bay’s Annual Beer Festival which this year coincided with Newcastle Craft Beer Week.

What a day! Held from 12pm to 4pm the event held in the motel car park of my favorite bottle shop hosted over 80 Beers from 25 suppliers and a couple of  ciders sunk in too! The weather after a week of non-stop rain Sunday really turned it on with blue sunny skies and the mercury  hanging round 30 degrees Celsius-purrrfect beer sampling weather in my book!

The event was a sell out with tickets capped at 700 and by the looks of things everyone showed up! Each ticket holder was given a coopers show bag which contained a pen, a back issue of beer & brewer magazine, info sheets,beer tickets, a copy of the excellent  Beer Lovers Guide To Australia and the most important thing of all a 200ml Warners At The Bay tasting glass!  On to the beers!

Rogue Hazelnut Brown Nectar


Wow and I mean WOW! This ale was a big surprise. Big malty character on the nose with a bit of caramel thrown in too. The mouth full is where the awesome Hazelnuttyness  hits you wonderfully smooth going down and satisfying. I get abit funny about brewers adding stuff to beers…BUT this is done right in true Rogue Brewery fashion- these guys really know what they are doing.  Had this over at the Innspire Craft Beer Merchants tent- a great bunch of guys who bring in some incredible beers from around the world.  Check out their ute/pickup below.


Over at the Stone & Wood Brewery tent the home of one of my favorite brews Pacific Ale which was as always excellent… the fellas were also sampling a Spanish lager brew called Moritz

Very thirst quenching brew very smooth going down in the spring sun and a somewhat faint vanilla taste to it on the finish. Very nice! Will definitely be picking up a case of these on a scorching hot day this summer!

Next up was the Lord Nelson Brewery Stand

These guys from Sydney’s institutional brewpub  were very informative and great to chat with… the beer was great too! They had the Three Sheets Pale Ale and Old Admiral strong amber ale on tap for the day. The Three Sheets was great- not too overpowering in the hop department and a very inoffensive ale- Extremely refreshing. The Old Admiral on the other hand had a good malty backbone to it-would be great by the pint on a cool evening. The brewpub is a great place to check out if you find yourself  in Sydney-a great establishment that is a part of Sydney’s and Australia’s craft brew history.

Next up we made our way over to the wonderful peps at the Beer Importers and Distributors (BID) stand

Sam Adams Lager as always- a great Vienna style lager with malty goodness went down a treat! Warstiener a very clean bright  larger which would rival any Mexican style lager as the easiest drink brew out there . Noble Pils from Sam Adams was also a good example of the style. Hope to see some Belgians next year from BID as they provide the Aussie market with some cracker beers from beer’s holy land.

McLaren Vale

I have converted a few peps over to craft brew with Vale Ale from these guys. I was pleasantly surprised they also brew an IPA which was one of the only IPA’s available for tasting at the event. And what a great IPA at that! Big hop aroma on the nose and a sweet maltyness going down, finishing up with a awesome hoppy bitterness which hop-heads like me are addicted to. Hope to see more from these guys.

Notable Mentions:

Mudgee Brewing Amazing Wheat beer! Has the biggest banana aroma of any wheat beer I have ever tasted! Great to see a good Aussie brewer making a PROPER wheat beer.

Black Duck Brewery Great beers on show especialy the PROPER bitter lovely beer could’ve drank it all day… and that has nothing to do with the fact it has PROPER in its name I swear (^_^).

Ekim Brewing & Happy Goblin best pale ales at the event-great bunch of guys too!

Mark’s Home Brew– Mark and Shawn great guys and last minute suppliers for taps and things so the breweries could serve us beery people beer! Thanks Heaps!

Last but not least a massive thanks to Mark Mead & Crew from Warners at the Bay and Corey Crooks & crew from the Albion Hotel & Newcastle Craft Beer week Founder for making this amazing event happen….us beery folks really appreciate the enormous time and effort that you guys have  put into this event to make it a cracker! Cheers fellas.






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