After about a year of umming and ahhing, I finally signed up to the Bridge Road Brewers Posse earlier this year. The Posse is basically a wine club, but with beer replacing the wine. So every three months I get a delivery of a case of beer from Beechworth’s Bridge Road, who just happen to be one of the finest breweries in the country.
What took me so long? Well, buying a slab of beer at a time, basically. I seldom even buy a six-pack of beer, preferring to buy singles so I can try something new. And the cost was a bit of a factor too. I was able to explain away the latter concern by telling myself it would just mean I’d need to buy less beer from other sources and it would all balance out (in case you’re wondering, no, I didn’t end up buying less beer from other sources). And the former? Well, I came to my senses and realised this was the only way I was going to get my hands on Bridge Road beer, as no-one in my city stocks it.
There is also the added benefit of getting beers brewed just for Posse members -beers that you can’t buy in stores. When you’re a fan of a brewery, something like a genuine limited release beer is a pretty big hook.
A few weeks ago I got my second Posse Pack delivery, and the first with a members only beer. The Winter Ale is essentially a dark Belgian wit – a wit beer made with the same ingredients, except using a darker malt. Weighing in at 5.5 per cent, it’s a wonderful beer. I especially loved the flavours of chocolate and orange, which is a bit odd because I usually hate choc-orange things like Jaffas or those orange segments coated in chocolate. But I love this one.
However, I love another beer in the Posse Pack more (the packs are a mixed case – so there are 12 bottles of the Winter Ale and the rest is a mix of their other beers). The special one was a beer I’d been reading a bit about but figured I’d never see it. It’s called Victoria’s High Country Brewery Trail Rule 47. It’s a collaboration between the breweries in that neck of the woods – Bridge Road, Bright, Black Dog and Sweetwater.
It’s a Belgian tripel, which is linked in with what Rule 47 is – apparently that’s “drink tripels, don’t ride triples”. The region is big with mountain bikers, so I assume a triple is some sort of cycling reference. Knowing this was a tripel, that it clocked in at seven per cent and seeing its dark colour, I was expecting a heavy beer with loads of stewed fruit/ fruitcake aromas and flavours.
So I was hugely surprised to get a big waft of pineapple aroma from this beer. An aroma that immediately whetted my appetite. Those amazing notes carry over into the beer, where they’re married with some delectable caramel tones. It’s an absolutely wonderful beer and one that definitely doesn’t feel like a seven per cent beer.
The only downside is that there was just the one bottle of it in my Posse Pack. Such a shame for a beer that is now in my all-time favorites list.