Quaffers: Craft brewers on rise

Chris Shanahan

University of Queensland researcher Brett Stubbs lists "history of alcoholic beverage industries" as one of three areas he specialises in. For beer drinkers, Stubbs's painstaking research bubbles to the surface as easy-to-read articles in brewsnews.com.au.

Stubbs' latest piece chronicles new breweries appearing on the scene in the few months to July 2014.

Wine and beer lovers alike will be interested to learn that at Pokolbin, in the lower Hunter Valley, Hope Estate (formerly Rothbury Estate) brewed its first beer in May. The brewing gear came to Hope Estate from Murray's Brewing at nearby Port Stephens following an upgrade, Stubbs reports.

Among the new brewers, Stubbs reports two from the NSW high country: Borenore Brewhouse, near Orange, and Canberra's Bentspoke Brewing Company, Braddon. Further afield, new breweries opened in the Tweed Valley, Sydney (Brookvale), Clifton Hill, Wodonga, Spotswood, Loch, Moorabbin and Thebarton.

Moondog Jukebox Hero IPA
330ml $4.65

The darling of craft brewers originated in Britain's colonial era as a turbo strength ale able to endure shipment in barrels to India – hence, India Pale Ale, or IPA. Moondog, from Abbotsford Victoria, offers a particularly fruity, rounded, alcoholic version of the style, with the obligatory mother lode of hops.

Dalgety Brewing Co Pale Ale
330ml $3.90

From Dalgety in the NSW Snowy Mountains foothills comes this tasty and bitter ale. The bright lemon colour and persistent, generous head capture our attention before the pungent and appealing, indeed compelling, hops aroma takes over. The fruity, brisk palate supports the hops and the lingering, intense bitterness.