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Thus Let Us Drink Beer - Vale Brewing IPA and Wayward Brewing Hazy IPA

Vale Brewing

Originally incepted fourteen years ago as McLaren Vale Beer Company, Vale Brewing’s reputation precedes as it has not merely established itself as a veritable heavyweight on the firmament of South Australian breweries but with is boundary pushing, accolade decorated, innovative, sessionable craft beers has shown its commitment to deliver consistent brews.

As I unfortunately missed out on Vale’s Margherita Sour, which quickly sold out shortly after its release, my first exposure to Vale was via their IPA expression, which proved to be a tour de force in merging the best that New Zealand, terra australis and the US have to offer in terms of quality hops, i.e. Nelson Sauvin, Galaxy and Citra variants, the total of which results in much more than the sum of the individual components would have you think.

With the hop forward emphasis being on tropical and citrussy flavours with a distinct passionfruit note, subtle nuances of malty caramel are weaved in and rounded out by piney notes and a delicately subdued bitterness, this could be interpreted as an Australian / New Zealand balanced take on a traditional American IPA.

Given the quality of the IPA, I can only hope that Vale Brewing will confidently venture into continuing to craft exotic, bigger and higher ABV expressions.

Wayward Craft Brews

If you have remotely followed this series, the fact that with its dedication to create exciting brews that marry traditional European approaches with its own idiosyncratic twist, Wayward Brewing is one of my favourite Australian craft breweries should not come as a surprise.

With the common denominator of Wayward’s Craft Brews being that they are all about flavour, especially their releases in the realm of India Pale Ales have been consistently knocking things out of the park and having refined and calibrated the DNA of their hazy variants over the last three years, Wayward’s 2022 incarnation of their Hazy IPA is no exception:

In essence, Wayward Brewing’s Hazy IPA with its relatively tame ABV of 5.8% is the epitome of what could be classified as a sessionable IPA. Based on a foundation of Sabro, Simcoe and Citra hops, the nostrils are tickled upon approach by an tantalizing juicy hoppiness.

With barely any remnants of bitterness, what materializes on the top of the mouth is a tour de force of tropical flavours with mango and pineapple nuances taking centre stage, subtly counterpointed by hints of resinous pine accents.

While I usually reach for the bolder section in the IPA department, Wayward expertly showcases with this tweaked little number that flavours do not have to be overwhelming to tick all the boxes and leave you savouring each and every sip.


T • May 12, 2022

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