An IPA? No way


It’s probably a sign of beer geekery that, even if you don’t think much of a certain brewery, that you hunt down a special release of theirs. Or maybe it’s just a sign of stupidity…but I’m going with the beer geek option myself.

This was the case with Monteith’s and their Brewer’s Series. Now I once had a soft spot for Monteith’s, thought they were awesome. But now I realise their beers are actually ordinary. But when I saw this Brewer’s Series, I thought they might have taken a chance or two because that’s often the case with this sort of limited release beer.

I’d found out two of the series were available at BWS – an IPA and an apricot wheat. The latter I found at the first BWS I entered but the IPA was a much greater hassle to find. I had to visit all five BWS stores to find the IPA, which is odd given that both beers are advertised in the chain’s NSW catalogue. More odd was that two of the five BWS outlets in Wollongong stocked neither of the two beers.I’m not the only one who has had this BWS problem – Darren over at 250 Beers has been dealing with the same issue in Brisbane.

Now really, why the hell do you advertise that beers are available across a state when that’s obviously not true? Because I’m actually a bit pissed off that I drove around to five different BWS shops to find this IPA.

And I’m equally as pissed off that the Monteith’s IPA is ordinary (yeah, I should have expected that given my experience with Monteith’s. Maybe it was in fact a sign of stupidity and not beer geekery).

The back label says “There’s plenty of rich maltiness from this Pale Ale..”. Note that it says “Pale Ale” and not “India Pale Ale”, which is weird.

But not as weird as the front label, which says this beer has 35 IBU. Now what kind of IPA has only 35 IBU? That’s pale ale territory. And certainly not “a beer for the IPA aficionado” as the back label claims.

There are claims of aroma hops but not much evidence of them. Flavourwise, there’s not a lot of the “rich maltiness”. Or much hoppiness, except for a bit of bitterness at the very end. All-up there’s really not a lot happening here.

Would I drink it again?: I’ll have to as I took advantage of the “two bottles for $10” deal at BWS. After that I doubt I’ll drink it again. It’s not a bad tasting beer, just ordinary. And incorrectly labelled because this is NOT an IPA.

Categories: IPA

Tagged as: , ,

5 replies »

  1. I’m having one now, I would’ve pegged it as a lager. Actually, I’m tempted to open a bottle of their Golden Lager (they were a thoughtful but misguided present) and see if I can tell the two apart. They both have the same apple seed taste that creeps in with the generic bitterness at the end, must be endemic at the brewery.

    Uh… cheers.

    PS – I found this post by googling “Monteith’s IPA is lame”.

    • Hey Andrea,
      I found that, if you think about the IPA as just a pale ale, it makes more sense. That’s really what they should have called it. But they do have an actual pale ale and my God is it ordinary.

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