Coke backs Aussie beer


In December, Coca-Cola Amatil announced its long-anticipated return to the Australian beer market and its entry into the rapidly growing cider market.

CCA’s imported-beer portfolio includes US brands Coors, Blue Moon and Samuel Adams, as well as Fiji Bitter and Vonu from Fiji. Its Australian brands, brewed by Griffith-based Australian Beer Company (CCA’s joint venture with the Casella family), are ARVO Premium Lager and the on-premise Alehouse draught brews, Original Pale Ale Draught and Summer Gold.

The Australian Beer Company is also producing Pressman’s Original Australian Cider, which will join Sweden’s globally successful Rekorderlig Cider in CCA’s portfolio. There’s nothing small or boutique about CCA’s return to beer. They’ve moved full speed into the fastest-growing segment of the market. It would appear to be a masterful final act by retiring group managing director Terry Davis.

Pabst Blue Ribbon Lager  ★★★
473ml $16 for a six-pack

McLaren Vale Beer Company began importing Pabst Blue from the USA late last year. Like most big-volume beers it’s made to please many people and offend none. That means a lighter-style, well-balanced beer for everyday quaffing, with a light, pleasing, hoppy aftertaste. It’s easy to drink, but don’t expect excitement.

Little Creatures Single Batch ★★★★
The Rule of Three 568ml $7.50

Little Creatures’ latest one-off brew combines the Belgian ‘‘dubbel’’ and English bitter styles, spruced up with styrian golding hops. The result is a 5.7per cent alcohol, mid-amber  ale, featuring pungent, bitter hops that cut through warm, sweet, malty flavours and lengthen the firm, bitter finish. For hops enthusiasts only.