Tag Archives: Mountain Goat Brewery

beer, breakfast, and three men drinking better beer

Beer Expo posters

(picture is of some promotional posters snapped at previous evening’s beer showcase as part of AIBA)

Beer and breakfast.

No, it does not sound like a marriage made in heaven.

However, I’m not a stranger to having beer in early part of the day. When I used to live in North Melbourne, I lived with an excellent homebrewer who had kegs and taps and everything. I was living the drunkard poetaster dream. One morning (8am or so), two of us woke up to discover that due to roadworks in the area we had no water.

We got water back at 3pm. Shall I let you connect the dots?

So no stranger to beer and breakfast, I went along to the ‘Hair of the Dog’ Breakfast at Beer Deluxe hosted by beermen.tv. I’m an avid hater of long, talky podcasts (though beermen.tv are really a ‘vodcast’ – that term doesn’t have much popularity though) but indebted to Todd of beermen.tv for kindly e-mailing some beer tasting notes my way (the term ‘mouthfeel’ is actually starting to creep in to my beer vocabulary and it feels goooood).

Being a little late, we were rushed through the door and sat down – it was a full house. Upon arrival, a glass of Mountain Goat’s organic steam ale, a beer I’ve enjoyed plenty of. Argue with me if you like, but this beer tastes markedly different on tap to what it’s like from the bottle and I prefer the latter. Don’t stone me yet though. Better yet, go and buy a 6-pack of it to drink, and then pay the Mountain Goat brewery in Richmond a visit and compare.

First course was already up as we rushed to our seats. Everything was too fast and furious for me to take notes on the dishes, so I’ve cheated and pinched a bit of info off James’ blog post whose blog you should all be reading anyway. I feel pretty guilty about this, so James, if you’re reading, I owe you a drink…or three *wink*.

Behold, crepes stuffed with ricotta, mandarin and sultanas. Scoffing these down was easy as piss. I haven’t had stuffed crepes for ages.

crepes stuffed with mandarin, ricotta and sultanas

This was matched with the Razor witbier by Bright Brewery. Like James, I too do not jump for joy for at witbiers but they’re a damn fine start for breakfast. Would definitely buy a 6-pack for some good old session beer drinking.

Bright Razor witbier

The second course was a slice of Spanish omelette with leek and prosciutto. I found this a bit dry and oily. Of course, that didn’t stop me from demolishing it.

Spanish omelette with leek and prosciutto

It was matched with Murray’s Whale Ale. There were jokes from beermen.tv fellow Mark that they chose this for its cute label, giggle. This is an American-style wheat beer, but it doesn’t have the characteristics of a traditional wheat beer that put me off. Quite a refreshing drop, and I would drink it again.

Murray's whale ale

For the third course of toasted rye bread topped with bratwurst and fruit chutney, we were given two beers in accompaniment. Pictured below with the course was Red Hill’s wheat beer (largely responsible for my palate deciding to give wheat beers another go). Apologies for the blurriness – the staff at Beer Deluxe were fantastically efficient! The second beer was Bridge Road’s Hans Klopek Hefeweizen. I wasn’t a big fan of the Bridge Road hefe the first time I tried it at a bar (at night, even). It seemed much nicer with food. My favourite breakfast beer and food match was this course and the Red Hill wheat beer, the beer being one of my least favourite beers from Red Hill Brewery, incidentally.

Red Hill wheat beer

Bridge Road Hans Kloper hefeweisen

Lost count of the courses and beers yet? We had started with beers with an ABV of 4.5% and slowly moving up the scale to 5% and this was in the space of about, ooh, thirty minutes? Work, kidneys and liver, work damn you!

I somehow managed to not get a snap of our fifth beer – Stone and Wood’s Stone Beer. I’d tried this the night before at the AIBA beer tasting in the Atrium, Fed Square and not liked it much. On this occasion, it was so much better. The fourth course nosh was baked lima beans with tomato and caramelised onion. The servings of this were huge and enough for me to get seconds! I looooove beans and seems like not everyone on my table shared this love. Oh well, more for me!

baked lima beans with tomato and caramelised onion

Two beers to go with the last two courses which were desserty – first the Sable Breton, my favourite course. These were just scrumptious! I found that the Holgate chocolate Temptress (a beer I could jolly well marry) went better with this than with the last course of Belgian waffles drowned in chocolate sauce. The richness of the Holgate and the fig were heavenly. Technically, however, it was the White Rabbit dark ale that was served with these pastries. The White Rabbit dark ale is far more sessionable drinking than the Holgate which I love as an after-dinner beer. I’ve knocked down a few pints of the dark ale and have to confess…I’m a little over it – it was my least favourite beer at this event. Good thing White Rabbit have a newly released white ale!

Sable Breton with crème fraiche and a fig molasses

White Rabbit dark ale

Holgate Temptress chocolate porter

Everyone was a bit sozzled and full by the time the Belgian waffles in chocolate sauce came out. I still managed to force one down, hehe.

Belgian waffles with chocolate sauce

A fantastic event. We were amply guided through the beer and food with good humour by our lovely hosts Mark, Damien and Todd and I even got to meet Mark briefly which left me starstruck for the day! I think I would have liked the breakfast to be a bit more leisurely as we really were cramming down the food and beer pretty fast but that’s a minor issue – the staff at Beer Deluxe were flawless and our fellow diners were friendly and keen to share thoughts on the beer. It was twenty (yes, that’s all!) bucks well spent! I understand that the event was possible due to the extreme generosity of all brewers of the beers served and you could do no wrong to go out and get a 6-pack of any of these beers. I even got to chat to Tom from Mountain Goat and met James of Beer Bar Band for the first time – I swear this dude is my beer twin (we seem to love a lot of the same beers and have similar preferences).

So guys, when’s the next one?!

Beer Deluxe on Urbanspoon

the local mountain goats got me


This coming week is going to be a BIG beer related event week for me, so here begins the first of three posts for the week – two will be on breweries, and one will be a zine review (yes, people write zines about beer! How cool is that?). Don’t worry, there’ll be lots of food action to go along with the beer because good food does go well with good beer.

After accidentally sleeping in due to a disco nap, I (legally) raced on over to the Mountain Goat brewery in Richmond one rainy Friday evening. I may have driven past it a few times…in the dark, you can’t really tell what it looks like as it blends in perfectly with all the industrial buildings around. Once inside, it’s actually rather classy – pretty much a converted warehouse with big communal tables and lots of space to encourage bike-riders to bring in their modern-day chariots. The photo above is of the vats, and it reminds me of that scene in Goldeneye where Bond has to bomb similar tank-like things after Trevelyan has crossed him. Um, I remember it so well because of the game on Nintendo 64, don’t judge me!

I’d never been before to the Mountain Goat brewery and was lured by the promise of their beer ‘Rapunzel’ being served three ways – regular, oaked, and ‘Randied’, which meant ‘hopinated’. Yes, beer is very technical…to be honest I’m not exactly sure what the hopinator does – I just know that the beer is rendered hoppier by being run through it with fresh hops. Don’t worry, you don’t get any floaties in your beer. The beer being run through the hopinator changes every time the brewery is open to the public (generally Wednesday and Friday evenings from 5pm).

Randall the hopinator

Sadly, only oaked Rapunzel was available when I arrived. Here’s more info straight from the brewery’s blog about her:

Rapunzel is brewed in the style of a true Belgian Abbey beer. In the days of old monks used to brew these beers with the help of the almighty (we assume). We’ve taken a leaf from their book and combined Pilsener Malt, German Hallertau hops and a Belgian Yeast strain to produce a full-on, 7.7% alc/vol slice of Flanders. This current 2010 version also comes with extra baggage – there’s an Oaked version. Last May we filled a chardonnay barrel with 2009 Rapunzel, and we let it sit for 9 months. The French Oak has imparted distinct vanilla, apple and honey characters that just can’t be delivered other than by oak. We blended it back with a little of the 2010 Rapunzel, and whammo. It’s really something out of the box (barrel?).

Ooh, she was yummy – quite alcoholic for a beer, and not quite like wine, but possessing some characteristics thereof. The barrel definitely left its mark on the beer. Hopefully I’ll be able to compare to Rapunzel regular when she’s on tap at the Local Taphouse in St Kilda.

Bit O’ Meat was at the brewery beforehand and got to sample more of the produce, to put it rather finely. I got to taste some of his Riwaka Pale Ale, some of the Randied Galaxy IPA, and the Steam Ale on tap. Steam Ale tastes a little bit like Coopers Sparkling – but not so in the bottle. The Riwaka was hoppy, but not nearly as much as the Galaxy, nom. Amusingly, he also made new friends – some lovely engineering/dancing types. They were capital fellows. It was like walking into an episode of Cheers or something. My last drink was the Surefoot Stout, which was more like a really robust, smoky porter, though very much a stout in colour. To have this with oysters would have been a damn treat. If you don’t like dark beers, or stouts, I still think you should give this a go. Perfect given the day had got so chilly what with all that rain.

If you check my personal Twitter profile, it says that I’m a beer, cheese and prosciutto assassin, and so I ordered a pizza so that I could indulge my appetite for my culinary holy trinity – a prosciutto and cheese pizza. Imagine it – pizza slice in one hand, pint glass in the other. Is that not the perfect Friday night? It’s bittersweet looking back at this because my loves are also my vices, and I’ve been instructed to drastically cut down my appetite for all three (with great success, I might add).

cheese & prosciutto pizza

Richmond’s not too far from the city centre and it’s excellent fortune to have a brewery in a metropolitan area. As soon as I went, I caught myself starting sentences with “Next time I come here, I’m going to have…” and the like. I’m puzzled as to why so many people (and I’ve definitely been guilty of this myself countless times) go to average pubs and order pint after pint of the commercial swill when we have places like this. I admit it – I lost more than my fair share of brain cells on Carlton Draught jugs (yeah, not pints, but JUGS) at the weekly social night for a musical society I’ve previously had dealings with. Is it that we’re cheap, or stupid? Probably both!

Mountain Goat Brewery on Urbanspoon