For those of us still seeing the Australian winter through to its bitter end – anyone north of Brisbane excluded – sweeter, smoother and silkier brews are still on our minds and on our lips.
Modus Operandi Black Label Series is wrapping up this month, with its third and final beer release.
The Black Label Series started in June with the Modus Operandi Silent Knight Porter. Described by Modus’ Jonny Bucknall as a bit of a “dark horse”, the Silent Knight Porter has been on tap at the brewery since day one. The name originates from Edward Hallstrom, who invented the fridge known as the silent knight. Hallstrom had land where the brewery now is and so a few of the Modus origins link back to that.
Bucknall said that because demand for kegs had been rising so rapidly, the brewery team decided to package the fan favourite for a national release.
“We brewed the porter to have all the depth of a Russian Imperial Stout but with approachability,” Bucknall said.
Brewed with nine types of malt, the result is a dessert-like blend of chocolate and caramel flavours, with a roasted dryness. The Silent Knight Porter comes in at a moderate 5.6 per cent ABV.
Second in the Black Label Series was the Modus Cascadian Howl Black IPA. Released in July for Modus’ fourth birthday, the Cascadian Howl was first brewed in 2017 as a GABS beer. Originating out of the Cascade Mountains in the Pacific Northwest of the USA, this Black IPA style is imbued with citric and resinous Northwest hops.
The Cascadian Howl is said to have a cult-like status at the brewery. It’s an expensive beer to brew, so this is a seriously limited package release that packs a punch at 8.1 per cent ABV.
The third and final beer brewed in its Black Label Series is the Modus Southern Hemispheric Black IPA. Celebrating some of the best of Australian and New Zealand hops, Bucknall said that this beer is a Down Under take on an American-style IPA.
To contrast the US-inspired Cascadian Howl, this Black IPA has its roots firmly in the Southern Hemisphere.
“A bit of a what you see isn’t what you get,” Bucknall said.
“It’s black, but we’ve thrown Wakatu, Motueka, Galaxy and Enigma hops to give a tropical punch – you can imagine what it smelt like on canning day.”
Coming in at 6.9 per cent ABV, this is a joint tropical hop assault wrapped up in a tidy, black package. Set for release on August 24, Southern Hemispheric will be available at launch venues nationally.
Modus will be celebrating the Black Label Series with a Black Label Dinner on Thursday, August 23.