The second release in Stone & Wood’s newly minted Beers From Our Backyard range is a pilsner-inspired brew called Big Scrub.
The first beer inducted into the range was Cloud Catcher, which is now available year-round on draught and 500ml bottles.
Released this week, Big Scrub is a 5.5 per cent ABV ‘new age lager’ that balances a subtle malt foundation with a firm bitterness and dry finish.
“It pours golden with a slight haze from extended cold maturation and no filtration with a luscious white creamy head,” Stone & Wood says.
“It oﬀers impeccable balance of ﬂoral aromatics and spicy herbal nuances, and with subtle hints of lemongrass from dry hopping with Dr Rudi.”
Big Scrub is currently a limited release product but if all goes to plan, it will become a permanent fixture in the bigger bottles alongside Cloud Catcher.
Aussies ready for serious lager
The new beer is close in style to a pilsner, a style that Australians have struggled with in the past, according to Stone & Wood co-founder Ross Jurisich.
“A good pilsner is 32-plus IBUs and a lot of Australians struggle with that bitterness,” he told Australian Brews News.
“It’s a beer that looks so approachable in the glass but is actually quite complex. It tends to have a higher bitterness unit than what the colour would suggest.”
However, Jurisich is confident that Australians’ palates are maturing and he says lagers remain vastly under-represented in the craft beer sector, with only a handful making it into this year’s GABS Hottest 100 Craft Beers.
“In the same way that people are developing a love affair with big hoppy IPAs, they’re also identifying that lagers can be great and they’re something worth revisiting.”
He says that leaving Big Scrub unfiltered has taken the edge of its bitterness, “whereas traditional pilsners are nice and bright”.
‘Big Scrub’ explained
The name Big Scrub was inspired by fact that just one per cent remains of the largest sub tropical rainforest on Australia’s east coast.
“The remnants of Big Scrub serve as a reminder to preserve the natural beauty of our backyard,” Stone & Wood says.
“A lot of regeneration and restoration work has gone into the area and continues with Big Scrub Landcare leading the charge.
“We are looking forward to working with this not-for-profit into the future and supporting their 18th annual Rainforest Day on 16 October.”