Behind all the wisecracks was men are falling through the cracks of life. We must change that! Next time we meet with a mate rather than hiding our feelings behind the jokes, let’s share one of these and openly talk about our blackdogs.

Origin – Cronulla, New South Wales
ABV- 3.5%
Size- 375mL can
Style- Pale Ale

The gun-toting operator of a big cat park in Oklahoma left millions of viewers gripped by his stranger-than-fiction tale. The drama that can best be described as a carnival sideshow became a cult phenomenon. In the early days of lockdown, amid the uncertainty and fear that gripped the world, the Tiger King helped distract us from the pandemic with his ludicrous antics. Yet while many of us were binge-watching Joe Exotic trying to arrange the assassination of his nemesis Carole Baskin to evade the reality of Covid, the lads behind this Easy Tiger found another way to escape.

Although it was never the intention, as those mates joked over Zoom about opening a brewing in their own backyard, a full-blown plan was hatched. 12 months later, Sharks halfback, Chad Townsend and mates Daniel Wagstaff, Adam Goode, Tim Frowly and Ryan Gardner would be supplying most pubs in the Cronulla Sharks heartland. As the story goes, the group began brewing and handing them out to mates for taste testing. With Townsend unable to break the NRL bubble on the Gold Coast, every time they found one that hit the mark, they'd send off a few in an esky. Confident that they nailed the recipe, they got together with a few local brewers for a blind tasting night. They put what would become their Next Level XPA up against some of the best craft beers from around Australia.

To their amazement, it ranked second. Under the guidance of head brewer Frowly, production of the cleverly hopped XPA was quickly upsized. Yet despite going from brewing 20 litres in Tim’s garage to making 600,000 litres overnight at The Rocks Brewing Company, the creative approach to hop usage remained, as evidenced by the waves made at the 2020 GABS Hottest 100, landing the Next Level in 52nd. It's also an approach used to significant effect in this Easy Tiger, Cronulla Beer Co's latest release. The ample use of Talus hops provides complex characters in taste and aroma of pink grapefruit, citrus and dried roses. Combined with small amounts of Cascade and Columbus thrown into the mix, it finishes with a familiar classic taste of a pale, but with a twist in the tail.

Though not as bold as Joe Exotic, if you’re looking for a mid strength that feels like you aren’t missing out on anything, you've found your tiger!