We’re funny here at Brews News. Many magazines routinely guarantee editorial in return for advertising dollars, but sponsor us and we barely give you an editorial mention lest we be accused of being corporate shills. Still, when its deserved, it’s deserved and McLaren Vale Beer Company this week sent me a sample of their new Vale IPA and, at risk of looking impartial, it was a cracker. I have enjoyed a couple of incarnations of this beer over the past twelve months and now the bottled version delivers a rich malt character with a determined hop note that is both strongly aromatic and assertively bitter, more so than the 41IBU listed below would suggest. It is decidedly an IPA, and a pretty good one at that. Call me a shill, but try it before you do, you might even agree with me…
And our resident beer historian, Dr Brett Stubbs, happened to be in SA last week and checked out the new McLaren Vale brewery which is real and is taking shape. Council approvals are holding up the brewing but these will hopefully be resolved soon and the beer will soon be brewing. [Ed]
Follow the dots. Introducing VALE/IPA in a sexy red bottle…
It’s red, it’s got the dots and it tastes bloody awesome! After much anticipation McLaren Vale Beer Company’s VALE/IPA is finally available in bottle nationally and it’s well worth the wait!
The American-style India Pale Ale achieved national on-premise keg distribution in late 2011 and since then the positive feedback and support from loyal fans and new adopters both on social media and in person at pouring venues has smashed expectations. Its bottle release was always going to be a popular move.
First tapping VALE/IPA back in August 2011 at the company’s hospitality venue – The VALE/INN Taphouse & Kitchen, head brewer Jeff Wright was excited about adding a more robust, hop driven style to the range.
‘I always aim to bring my own interpretation to particular styles. While a big IPA is always a brewer’s favourite, it’s often a style that is quite challenging for consumers. Our IPA was brewed to offer an approachable interpretation whilst still packing a punch with flavour and maintaining that distinctive hop character.’
‘The beauty of our IPA is that it appeals to both established craft beer lovers and emerging flavour seekers. The way Aussie palates are going, I’m thinking this might challenge our VALE/ALE in the versatility stakes’, says Jeff.
VALE/IPA is a distinctly hop driven beer using a combination of hops from three countries – Galaxy from Australia, Nelson Sauvin from New Zealand and Citra from United States. The beer offers strong pine and citrus notes, along with stone fruit and passionfruit characters. The malt structure is beautifully matched with the dry hopping, giving this beer a refined balance and making it the perfect accompaniment to a range of both sweet and savoury dishes – think braised lamb shanks, blue cheese or even passionfruit cheesecake… not at the same time of course…
VALE/IPA was voted number 11 on the Local Taphouse Hottest 100 Craft Beers list – a fantastic result given that it has not been available in bottle until now.
McLaren Vale Beer Company is all about offering great interpretations of well-known craft styles that are flavoursome and interesting but which are also approachable for the Australian market. The company’s motto is to ‘BE SILLY/ BE HONEST/ BE KIND – a philosophy that flows into their whole business practice and shapes their attitude to making beer.
VALE/IPA – India Pale Ale. 5.5% ABV, 41 IBU
RRP: $14.99 / 4-PK
Available in Dan Murphy’s, BWS and Woolworth’s Liquor stores nationally
We are a South Australian Beer Company that brews the Gold Medal-winning portfolio of VALE/ALE, VALE/DRY, & VALE/DRK. Our newest addition to the portfolio is the much-anticipated VALE/IPA.
Like any good beer company we own an Inn, The VALE/INN Taphouse & Kitchen in McLaren Vale, that serves great food to match our range of brews. Just down the road is our Willunga Brewery – the ultimate playground for head brewer, Jeff Wright, to produce flavoursome and sessionable craft beers for the Australian market.
Our beers are designed to be enjoyed as you please, with or without food, in a glass or from the bottle – you choose. For best results we drink with a flavoursome meal, from a big glass after swirling.
BE SILLY / BE HONEST / BE KIND