Beer of the Week

Five Things About … Akasha’s Korben D

1) Remember the old day back of 2012 when Dave Padden at Riverside was the hottest brewer in town? Ye Gods, the beer geeks went nuts for his stuff. So much so that the man had to quit his day job and become a full-time brewer so as to keep up with demand. I was one of those geeks; I reckon I pestered him a number of times about sending some beer down to Wollongong.

2) While he said, “yeah, okay”, I’m sure he was thinking “sweet Jesus, I still can’t get enough tbeer around Sydney and you want to me to worry about a whole different city? In your dreams sunshine.” Well, he finally got some down our way and it was worth the wait – especially the hefty arsekicker that was the 77 IPA and the 44 amber (which surprised me because I don’t usually have much time for amber ales).

3) But eventually the hype about Riverside faded as as beer geeks went onto the next shiny thing. And then Dave left the business – don’t know why, though for some reason I presume the explanation behind it wasn’t pretty. It surely must have sucked to leave behind all those recipes he created too.

4) Rather than go back to his day job, he opted to start up a new brewery called Akasha (which means “I Googled it for a minute or two and couldn’t find out what it means” in another language). It was good news, but I don’t really recall there being quite the Riverside-mania level of excitement this time around. Maybe because we’d all grown up and decided to act a little bit cooler.

5) But we do get excited about this little number – and not just because it’s a double IPA (seriously, have you ever seen a beer geek go “a double IPA? Meh”). Korben D (it’s Bruce Willis’ character in The Fifth Element) is not in the core range and only get a release every now and again, but it is worth getting excited about. It’s big on the fruit characters but is also insanely well-balanced. So much so that I have a sneaking suspicion that it’s not really an 8.5 per cent beer. I can’t work out where Dave hid all that alcohol – how the hell do you make a double IPA smashable?

Free or paid for?: I bought a four-pack a little while ago and only discovered it in the spare fridge at home this week. Happy days!

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