It’s a little known fact that autumn is actually the best time of year for sourcing much of our local seafood, fresh dairy products and an abundance of vibrant fruits and vegetables.
But whichever ingredients you’re planning to base your meal around, you should also keep in mind that there’s a whole range of beers (and a few ciders) perfect for enjoying in the autumn climate and ideal for matching with particular seasonal flavours.
So if it’s a refreshing ale or full-flavoured lager that you fancy most, simply take a look at the recommendations below for a well-rounded list of offerings, great for any autumnal meal.
Murray’s Craft Brewing Co., Manly, NSW
Angry Man – pale ale
By using New Zealand hops and blending ale styles prevalent in the UK and USA, Murray’s Craft Brewing Co. have created a beer that offers sweetness on the nose, whilst welcoming a mixture of late-summer stone fruits, which come through strongly on the palate.
Food Match: find some sunshine and enjoy this pale ale with some takeaway food. Fish and chips or a pizza would be my choice!
2 Brothers Beer Brewery, Moorabbin, VIC
Growler – American brown ale
Set on making good beers for good mates, the funky brothers located just down the road have brewed an exceptionally full-flavoured American brown ale. Expect sweeter notes and tastes including biscuits and roasted nuts, driven by strong malt characteristics. Due to its makeup, this ale is also great for using in a boilermaker (beer and a nip of whiskey), or alongside some dark, spiced rum and the classic Pedro Ximenez.
Food Match: rich chocolaty desserts. I’d definitely point you towards to a Latin-style chocolate pot.
Bridge Road Brewers, Beechworth, VIC
Chevalier Saison – Saison
Traditionally created by Belgian farmers and their workers, using only the Saison yeast strain, this beer is not often brewed away from home. And because a Saison commonly allows for much of the surrounding environment to impact its flavour, it’s great to see that our local produce is providing a worthy Australian twist on the style. That said, this is a very balanced offering, boasting tart, dry and acidic notes on the palate and – in the best way possible – smells like you’re actually in a barnyard.
Food Match: great with white meats of any kind.
Burleigh Brewing Co., Burleigh Heads, QLD
Fig Jam – India pale ale (IPA)
‘Fig Jam’ says it all. This beer is a confident, hoppy, bitter drop, typical of all IPAs with a floral nose and some fruity sweetness coming from the yeast strain used in the brewing process. The guys from Burleigh have done a great job to step away from the typical easy-drinking lager so common in Queensland to create something completely rustic, weird and wonderful, whilst still suiting the warmer weather. Sorry, it contains no figs!
Food Match: any Southeast Asian-influenced dishes containing a bit of spice, or alternatively, great alongside a charcuterie platter.
Mash Brewing, Swan Valley, WA
Rye the Hop Not? – rye extra special bitter (ESB)
This beer is quite simply perfect for autumn. Despite the use of rye grains, which generally makes for a drier beverage, this ESB contains surprisingly sweet notes and is balanced with malty spice, midway through the palate and on the nose. Be sure to check out Mash Brewing’s upcoming illustrated ale series, featuring a selection of unique seasonals with labels designed by local artists (set to be launched in the coming months).
Food Match: smoky barbecued meat.
Spreyton Cider Co., Spreyton, Tasmania
Vintage – apple cider
Spreyton has been growing apples for over a century, so it’s sort of logical that they decided to use their great produce to create cider! Born from a few drunken discussions, these guys decided to make five ciders, including a vintage, which is definitely my pick for autumn. Although the notes say it is quite sweet, there is also a good amount of acidity that comes through, along with a great oaky taste, despite never being aged in a barrel. A great marriage of versatile flavours, this apple cider will suit both beer and wine lovers alike.
Food Match: a selection of great cheeses is ideal for enjoying with this cider.
Products are available at all good bottle shops.