ROCKY RIDGE BREWING KEN OATS

Grab a pair of these crafts and invite over a friend to goof off. Then take a half time break from your lounge room version of the world game to start on a convo that could well change the world for your mate.

Origin – Jindong, Western Australia
ABV – 7.0%
Size – 375mL can
Style – Stout

Small, local and traditional. Several attributes associated with craft beer that go hand in hand with sustainability. However, some craft brews are more sustainable than others. A select few are so sustainable you could almost tell yourself you're saving the planet, one fresh brew at a time. Rocky Ridge falls into this latter category. Founded on the family's fifth-generation dairy farm by father and son duo Colin and Hamish Coates, along with wife Mel, Rocky Ridge joined the growing number of farm-based breweries that have left hipsters in the craft beer world grappling with terms such as farm-to-bottle, agri-fermenter and ground to glass.

But while they’re grappling, this trio is grabbing, literally, the bull by the horns to get him back out of their barley pasture! Named after the ridge of ironstone that runs through the centre of the historic dairy property, it was in 2017 that Hamish opted to diversify the farm. Having spent the previous two years brewing with Cheeky Monkey, it was a suggestion by father Colin that they start their own that got the ball rolling. Having learnt to grow hops, from Cheeky’s head brewer Ross Terlick, from the outset Rocky Ridge has created their beer exclusively with ingredients grown and sourced inside the farm's fence line. Rainwater fills the tanks, solar power keeps the brewery running, barley and wheat from the top paddock fill the mash tun, hop bines soar on trellises, and the proprietary house yeast resulted from an air sample collected onsite then cultured at the University of WA.

Yet, while its time-honoured and authentic practices that are used to make each batch, Hamish's steady stream of releases are anything but traditional. An illustrative example is this maple coffee breakfast stout. Starting with a standard stout, to give a 'breakfast' bent, they added plenty to the mix: oats, maple and coffee beans roasted specially for them by Margaret River Roasting Co. The oats help it punch well above its weight on the palate, while the dose of maple adds a sweetness to the aroma. Atop the malty base, the lactose contributes a smoothing creaminess, and the coffee comes on strong and then lingers alongside the beer's dry, roasty bitterness.

Raising a glass to mother nature has never tasted so good!

ROCKY RIDGE BREWING

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