Summer is coming, which is perfect for pale ales – the cold, refreshing fruitiness is just right for the warmer weather. Thankfully for the consumer, pale ales abound in the Australian beer marketplace. One such example is the Balmain Pale Ale, a beer I was first taken away with when I had it at a pub in their home suburb, a peninsula that almost kisses the Sydney CBD. I grabbed a four pack of it this time around when a summer BBQ was beckoning.
It’s an increasing trend in the craft beer world to sell beers in a four pack, as opposed to the much more orthodox six pack. But four is almost the perfect amount for a quiet BBQ:
– Beer #1: “How was your night last night?” banter
– Beer #2: Arguing over BBQ techniques banter
– Beer #3: Dinner banter, including how well the meat was cooked
– Beer #4: Post dinner banter
I say it’s almost the perfect number because there is inevitably a need to stay longer after the formalities are done, and you’re doing yourself an injustice by not having a beer to accompany said formalities. I’d love to see less four packs, just for the sake of those (like me) who like to stay a little longer.
Lemon and orange scents greet the nose in this amber coloured ale, and these two are the predominant flavours in the mouth as well. Interestingly, I was also picking up some biscuit flavours – an interpretation you’d normally find in darker beers rather than pale ales. Additionally, as the beer began to warm up a fraction (not too much though), some grain and wood flavours came through, which combined nicely with the citrus. There’s a bit of carbonation to it which makes it jump around on the tongue a bit, but overall it’s a very nice beer.
As most beers do, this tasted much better in draught form than from the stubby, but that doesn’t mean I’m dissing it. Far from it – Balmain Brewing Company have created a very decent pale ale. It might lack a little in the flavour department, but it’s a sessionable ale just waiting for this time of year when it’s sure to be a favourite.
Drunk: from the bottle