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Thus Let Us Drink Beer - Feral Brewing, Future Mountain and Hawke’s Brewing

What’s in a name?

In the case of the nomenclature of Feral Brewing, I would be majorly disappointed if the brewery’s mission was characterised by anything less than the pursuit of an untamed and unapologetic raw instinctive approach to creating fulminant legacy beers.

Incepted after trips to the mecca of IPAs, i.e. the West Coast of North America, Feral Brewing’s founders felt the itch to try their hand at not only pursuing their beer related careers in sales and project managing brewery installations, but letting their respective imaginations run will and upping the ante by channelling their alchemy in the mission to brew refined beers based on exceptional ingredients and artistry.

Almost instantenously after launching their first brews, Feral Brewing was bombarded with accolades with each new releases being lovingly embraced by the beer loving community and as a result Feral has grown exponentially over the years.

If I had to pinpoint the quintessential Feral Brewing expressions you would want to try as a beer lover, I’d be amiss if I went past Feral’s hippity hoppity Biggie Juice:

What started as an expertly brewed small batch East Coast IPA styled beer in nature, due to its success quickly entered Feral’s core range. Juice being a telling component of the name, the melange of Amarillo, Galaxy and Vic Secret hops results in a tropical, pulpy delectable and dangerously more-ish flavourful passionfruity tour de force, which is subtly counterpoint by a delicate bitterness.

On the hop forward front, Biggie Juice is flanked by two superb IPAs: Feral’s Hop Hog ticks all the boxes in terms of resinous piney flavours slow dancing with citrussy highlights against a backdrop of an impressive yet balanced bitterness. With an ABV of 5.8% an excellent sessionable India Pale Ale.

The Full Metal Jacket themed American IPA and aptly named War Hog has become my new favourite for boilermakers as in terms of hoppiness, resinous notes and passionfruity aromas things are turned to eleven without ever running danger of entering novelty territory. One of my favourite recent discoveries and one that is bound to enter my heavy rotation.

I have recently developed a weak spot for sours and Feral Brewing’s Tropical Disco Sour proves to be an example par excellence for a refreshing summer beverage. The mango, guava and passionfruit nuances only add to the appeal.

Needless to say, Feral Brewing’s artistic inclinations also extend to their excellent merch range, more info on which can be found on their fun website.

Future Mountain

Some might claim that fermented brews, barrel aged beers and old-world style approaches to brewing result in concoctions that are an acquired taste, whereas I think it is a wonderful addition to an underappreciated facet of the Australian craft beer industry.

Enter Future Mountain.

Based on travels around the travel to experience and study the art of farmhouse brewing first-hand, a collective has formed with the mission to design an idiosyncratic Australian farmhouse brewery by utilising an open fermenting chamber and merging unique cultures and yeast strains with specifically sourced and cultivated oak barrels, thereby marrying the best of the old world with a distinctly contemporary approach with the focus set on provenance, sourcing their fruit locally.

Within merely three years, Future Mountain has established itself firmly on the firmament of Australia’s ever evolving local beer scene with their consistently delectable Lambic emissions that emerge out of their aptly named Culture Club, ranging in nature from Belgian-inspired saisons via pilsners to the barrel-aged, the barrel-fermented and the blended, with the common denominator being that each expression’s nomenclature is inspired by the owners’ musical references.

Future Mountain’s Constant State saison is essentially a formidable hybrid of pilsner malt, New World European hops and unmalted rye, rounded out by pear and citrussy nuances that are artfully counterpointed by peppery and earthy notes.

Take for example the oak barrel aged Alameda series with its batched expressions, which is not only accolade decorated, but a peachy tour de force that fully unveils its flavour nuances on the top of the mouth via honeyed highlights that dance against a backdrop of grounding oakiness before culminating in an acidic zingyness.

Given the ever-changing nature of Future Mountain’s releases and my weak spot for Belgian farm ales, I cannot wait to sample their other creations, which I hope delve deeper into funky cheese territory.

Hawke’s Brewing

Robert James Lee Hawke left quite a legacy in his wake, not merely in terms of the impact of his stint as Australian prime minister but overall in terms of his mission to build a nation devoid a second class citizens. Concepts like integrity were not unknown to the man, who besides his ethics harboured and actively cultivated a particular fun-loving side.

Having a penchant for great brews, a weak nostalgic spot for simpler times and for what Bob Hawke’s administration accomplished in terms of safety, authenticity, comfort and quintessential Australianness, the two founders of Hawke’s Brewing developed the concept of the brewery seven years ago to create the brewed equivalent to Bob Hawke’s characteristics and a centre point to bring people together.

Involving the man itself, Bob Hawke, never not the accomplished gentleman, agreed to be part of the venture under the condition that his share was to be donated to a charity dedicated to funding environmental restoration.

With its focus firmly set on what resonates well with larrikinism as well as the courageous unwavering spirit of Australia, what constitutes Hawke’s Brewery’s first emission is a straight-forward and honest slightly citrussy, mellowly malty craft lager brewed to suit Bob’s palate, which over the years has been joined by quite a few additions, all of which contribute to the creation of the idiosyncratic DNA of the brewery.

A favourite Hawke’s Brewery expression is the aptly named Patio Ale. A pale ale in nature, this stonefruity little number rests of a formidable melange of Fortnight, Ekuanot and Mosaic hops, the nuances of which are counterbalanced by pear, watermelon and floral highlights, set against a backdrop of delicately balanced by an earthy foundation and with a well calibrated bitterness.

If a lighter approach in the realm of beers is your jam, you would want to acquaint yourself intimately with Hawke’s Underdog Session Lage.

Conveniently situated in the mid-strength region, this fruity Amarillo, Idaho 7 and Cashmere hops-based pilsner is the ultimate hoppy Durstlöscher. Given the crispiness and the boxes it ticks in the crowded mid-strength space, it is not further wondrous that it attracted a range of accolades despite only having been recently launched.

With Hawke’s Brewing’s meticulous attention to detail and conceptually thought through approach, it should not come as a surprise that apart from delectable brews they pump out consistently eye-pleasing and innovative quality merch designs, which thematically not only revolve around Bob Hawke but add an interesting dimension as they include references to iconic Australian moments.


T • March 3, 2022

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