When we’re feeling a little salty, let's all do a Constanza and start a mental health conversation with Jerry (or a mate not called Jerry!) over this cold craft and few pretzels.

Origin – Gerringong, New South Wales
ABV – 4.5%
Size – 375mL can
Style – Pale Ale

I'm at the dentist getting fitted for a mouthguard to wear at night to protect the enamel on my teeth, which have been worn down by constant grinding. I'm vaguely embarrassed as I thought I was chill, relaxed... serene! I mean, maybe I have been a little anxious, but it's been a time! I'm not the only one, says dentist Tim. He's run off his feet with the worried people whose bodies are trying to expel anxiety by grinding their teeth at night. And while it's tempting to think nobody could be on edge as we possibly are right now and that anxiety is a modern affliction that arrived with the smartphone and intensified with the pandemic, the Stoics – a school of Greco-Roman philosophers who were alive at the dawning of the first century - referred to it regularly in their writing. Be it the fear of not having enough money; losing a loved one, relationship or position; or getting sick, the Stoics accepted the hard times like a well-prepared student welcomes an exam. They believed that happiness was found in embracing the moment, no matter how great or gloomy.

 'We couldn't agree more, ' shares Andrew Prosser, who founded Stoic Brewing with his father, Steve. 'We take it one step further', he continues. 'We believe it's possible to transform any moment into an experience of pure bliss, just by adding a secret ingredient; our Stoic brew.’ And it may well be a case of many a truth said in jest, given how the brewery came about. Seeking permission to open a craft beer bar and sell other people’s beer, the local council rejected the plan, proposing that if they wanted to sell alcohol, they had to produce it. Treating the setback as a Stoic test, they turned the negative not only into a positive but into pride, satisfaction and joy when they opened the doors to the small town's first-ever brewery in late 2018.

A few years on and a few Indies awards later, Andrew and Steve have doubled the brewing capacity, ensuring that the likes of this XPA can reach the hands of more than just the locals. With a sweet caramel malt body complimenting the Enigma, Galaxy and Centennial hop, it's an elixir of joy with a body and aroma of rockmelon, citrus and stones fruits, finishing with a long lingering zing.

Dentist Tim said my best bet was to brush regularly and meditate before bed. Forget that. I'm just going to rinse with this Stoic XPA!