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Barrel Breed: Christmas Ale 2016

Although we were quite happy with the big, plummy quadrupel we brewed for the 2015 Christmas Ale, the average Australian summer Christmas called for something a little lighter. Finding a beer that would suit both barrel ageing and 35+ degree quaffing weather was a bit of a trick, so this year we opted for a Golden Strong Ale. Though the style originates in Belgium it doesn't harken back to some musty monastery, but instead to an innovative brewer in the 1940's, allowing for continuous experimentation - the Belgian way! We also thought a bit of time on Tassie oak would do it justice.

Belgian Chateau Pilsner malt lends the beer a pleasant bready malt character and a deep golden colour. A small percentage of brewing sugar keeps the body light. Specialty yeast strains impart spicy phenolics and fruit esters reminiscent of pear and a hint of tropical fruit. German Hallertauer hops give the beer a mild bitterness. Ageing in Lark Distillery whisky barrels give the beer a rounded oak character and a dry finish. Though deceptively light bodied, the 9.6% abv means this is a beer meant to be shared with good company.



Deep gold.


Phenolic, pear, tropical fruit.


Wyeast 1388 and Fermentis US-05 yeasts. Light bodied, mild bitterness, rounded mouthfeel and a dry finish.

Other Ingredients

Aged in oak barrels from Lark Distillery.







Chateau Pilsner.




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