Beer of the Week

Beer of the Week – Garden Ale

wpid-img_20150209_083642.jpgThe beer: Stone & Wood Garden Ale.

Where did it come from?: From the brewery. No, I’m not being a smartarse, I actually got a few bottles sent from the brewery for me to review. And that’s something I wish more breweries would do – send me beer. I love it when a beer package arrives at work for me.

What’s it like?: It’s really tasty. The dark colour tricks you into thinking it’s going to be stronger than it is. On the nose there are some light fruit notes and when I drank it, they slid back behind the malt characters. And at 3.8 per cent, it’s a mid-strength beer that doesn’t taste like anything’s missing.

Why do you like it?: I like it because I’ve got a thing for really good mid-strength beers. See, when you brew a mid-strength, you usually use less malt than a full-strength beer, which usually ends up feeling a bit thin. It can be quite easy to tell there’s something missing.

But that’s not the case here.

I also like lower-alcohol beer because it tests the skill of the brewer. High ABV beers give a brewer heaps of room to hide mistakes or dodgy brewing practices. Go below 4 per cent and there’s nothing to hide behind – you’ve got to know your shit. And the Stone & Wood people obviously do.

Finally, I just think we should have more mid-strength beers. You can drink more without getting tanked and less alcohol equals less fat which equals less beer gut.

Okay, now you can tell the story you think is funny/interesting?: The beer is promoted as coming out ‘‘just in time for summer’’. Which is odd, given that it was released in early February when summer was already two months gone.

It should have been released earlier because it’s a cracking good beer for summer. Here’s hoping March is a pretty warm month too.

4 replies »

  1. “You can drink more without getting tanked and less alcohol equals less fat which equals less beer gut.”

    That’s not strictly true. If the brewer opts to use the same malt profile as a full strength beer and terminate the fermentation early (compensating for the sweet maltiness with more bittering hops), then that would have more calories in it than the equivalent full strength beer. Which is perhaps why Carlton Cold has more calories than Guinness, for example.

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