The first two beers created by Stone & Wood's impermanent Mash Collective side project pushed the style boundaries. Debut Amasia was a strong, dark, German style wheat beer brewed with molasses and rum; number two, Aureus Chrysalis, fused the Belgian Dubbel and smoky Scotch Ale styles. So where would they head with number three, particularly as the Collective this time around features the Sydney artists behind some of Dinosaur Jr's artwork, Sydney-based Swedish photographer Ingvar Kenne, an award-winning Brisbane architect and He Died With A Felafel In His Hand author John Birmingham?
A lager, that's where. "Really?" you say. Well, yes, but no ordinary lager. Starting with a desire to create a beer that captured the transition from winter to summer and one worthy of someone that gets jobs done, they settled for a strong lager - a strong, red-hued, fruity lager, in fact - featuring an eye-catching label design from Sonny and Biddy Moroney and some of the finest words you'll find on a beer label from Birmingham. The beer uses Aussie hops that bring to mind the soft, subtle, spicy aromas of their German forefathers, while in the mouth it's a fruity, slightly sweet affair wrapped up by a gentle bitterness that leaves you wondering how it could possibly weigh in at 6.6 per cent.