AIBA collaboration brew gets underway

The highly anticipated Australian International Beer Awards (AIBA) Collaborative Beer for 2016 is underway with brewers from 4 Pines Brewing Company, Thunder Road Brewing Company and Boatrocker Brewing Company beginning the process yesterday at Boatrocker’s Braeside premises.

The collaboration, in its fifth year, sees brewers from 2015’s Champion Large, Medium and Small Australian Breweries combine their knowledge, skills and experience to create a limited edition beer, to be unveiled at the AIBA Presentation Dinner held during Melbourne’s Good Beer Week.

Speaking at the Brew Day, Matt Houghton, Head Brewer and Founder at Boatrocker said about 1600 litres of the yet-to- be-named Amber Saison style beer would be made available.

“The 2016 collaboration brew will use both French and Belgian style yeasts, malt from Cryermalt and HPA Hops,” Said Mr Houghton, last year’s recipient of the Champion Small Australian Brewery Trophy.

L-R: Marcus Cox, Chris Willcock and Matt Houghton

L-R: Marcus Cox, Chris Willcock and Matt Houghton

Chris Willcock, Chief Brewer at 4 Pines Brewing Co. who won Champion Large Australian Brewery in 2015, added the brew would have a nice and balanced flavour to it, with the unique use of tangerine peel and herbs bringing sweetness and texture to the palate.

“With the attributes of sweeter layering, spicyness and unique fruit tones with the use of tangerine, the brew will be a dessert beer.”

Marcus Cox, who is part of the collaborative brew team for the second year running, after Thunder Road’s successive wins of the Champion Medium Australian Brewery in 2014 and 2015, said the brew did however alter slightly from the original style.

“The collaborative brew is darker than a normal variety Saison, which is traditionally a pale ale,” said Cox during today’s mash-in.

The beer will use malt and wheat ingredients supplied by Cryermalt and hops supplied by Hops Products Australia with brewing to continue with bottling in three weeks allowing for bottle fermentation, and the naming of the ale and packaging design also still to come.

The collaboration brew, a unique and popular initiative of the AIBA conducted by The Royal Agricultural Society of Victoria, will be unveiled on Thursday 19 May at the AIBA Presentation Dinner, Peninsula Docklands.

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