There's a tradition in parts of the Northern Hemisphere whereby brewers create festive ales at this time of year. Although not overly common, whether it's Belgian Christmas ales or British winter warmers, they tend to be of the darker, boozier and spiced ilk. Essentially, imagine the sort of dessert you'd be served up if you were celebrating the holiday season around a fire as the snow falls outside – but in liquid form in a glass – and you're on the right track.
Yet how do you go about creating such a beer for our rather hotter climate? In answering that question, Molly Rose brewer Nic Sandery has opted to keep much of the Northern Hemisphere in play while looking to add a dash of refreshment. Local Horizons, an "Aussie holiday farmhouse ale", features a malt bill that, in combination with time spent in a former Port barrel, lends it a Belgian amber-esque base, while the addition of local botanicals create lively, floral, spicy, gin like aromas atop those aged, creamy malts. There's some deep citrus / fruit cake spices and a lightly acidic and tart yeast character that adds complexity while lightening the palate weight too.
It comes across as a cross pollination of a spiced, citrusy cocktail and Christmas pudding, with a sub-6 percent ABV and that refreshing acidity keeping it Aussie holiday appropriate.
NB you could win some Local Horizons as part of a Molly Rose gift pack. Head to the Crafty Facebook or Insta pages to find out more before we pick a winner at random on December 21. View our competition rules here.