One brewery, two sours and a great bar.

This week, I had the opportunity to try a couple of really lovely sours. They are a beer style I really want to enjoy, but I have not always had success with the ones I’ve tried. This week was different. With a free Saturday night, my wife and I planned to head out to a bar and then dinner. Before we set off I had time to try out a botte that was lurking in my fridge – Holgate Hop Tart, a semi-sour Pale Ale. This is a lovely beer. Not everyone seems to think so, but perhaps they are approaching it with pre-conceived ideas. As the bottle says, ‘it is a new beer not bound by style’. That could be marketing speak except that it is a fair description for the beer. You can taste the malt and some very present Australian hops giving it a citrusy flavour. Over the top of this is a light sourness, making the beer taste very fresh and refreshing. I think this will be a fantastic summer beer and give it an 8.9.

hop tart

After enjoying the Hop Tart, we headed off to BOSC at West End. This is one of my favourite bars – it is quite small and only has about 8 taps available. But the owners are lovely and the bar is friendly, relaxed and unpretentious, with everyone sitting in view of each other. One of the other reasons I like BOSC is because my wife, who ironically does not drink beer, absolutely loves their gin cocktails. I have tried a few over time and they really are works of art. Before visiting BOSC the first time, I thought Gin was really only good for a G & T’s in summer, but how wrong I was. Gin cocktails can range from creamy through fruity – we had both while we were there. But I digress. BOSC also had a new brewery, Brouhaha, on tap. Brouhaha has recently opened in Maleny adding to the number of breweries up the north coast. So, a weekend beer trip is on the books soon, I hope.

Having just had the Hop Tart at home, I chose Brouhaha’s Raspberry Saison as my first drink at BOSC. It too was a lovely light beer, even my wife had a few sips. Raspberries can be a bit dry in a beer and for me I would perhaps have liked the beer a little sweeter but then I like sweet beers. It was still a lovely clean beer and a credit to the brewing skills of Matt Jancauskas, formerly of Beavertown Brewery in the UK. I give the Saison an 8.7. While there I thought I would try Brouhaha’s Coffee Milk Stout, which was another nice beer. I wrote a week or so ago about my dislike for over-coffee’d beers, but Matt has found a nice middle ground, where the coffee and milk flavours sit nicely balanced with the stout. Worth an 8.6.

And as a late entry, today I tried the Modus Operandi Caribbean Queen Dark Ale – a great beer. Not as heavy or bitter as a stout, and a little sweet, thanks to the coconut, lactose and milk chocolate. I really liked this beer and unfortunately it was another that I chose to share and then immediately regretted doing so! This is a very smooth 6.7% beer and I give this an 8.9 as well.


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