Don’t let COVID19 kill the conversation, rather lubricate one (virtually if req!) with this wonderful drop.
Origin – Surry Hills, New South Wales
Size- 330mL bottle
Style- Pale Ale
Beer has a proud history in Sydney as both a cultural icon and the traditional beverage of choice. It's well documented that the liquid amber was first introduced via the HMS Endeavour when Captain James Cook landed at Botany Bay in 1770. What's not so clear is who started the first brewery in Sydney. Bragging rights appear to go to John Tooth who is recorded as opening the Kent Brewery on Broadway in 1835, brewing the likes of KB lager. Yet Malt Shovel Brewery, backed by the folks at Japanese beverage giant Kirin, has spent millions of advertising dollars to persuade us that it was their man, the lovable rogue James Squire who kicked things off in 1805.
A million miles away from all of that are the folks at Sydney Brewery, who are more interested in great lager than boasting about location… which is probably in their best interest given they spent a good chunk of time crafting beers outside of Sydney. It was more of a paradox than a lie, and in any case, it's now been corrected; after five years away from the city, the Sydney Brewery is once again a Sydney brewery after opening a new home in Surry Hills. It's been a circuitous route for the brewer to end up, more or less, on the other side of the block from where it launched some thirteen years earlier.
Founded by Dr Jerry Schwartz in 2005, the brewery spent years located in the basement of the ancient Macquarie Hotel on Wentworth Street. When the hotel was sold, a clean slate, new branding and modern facilities established in the Crowne Plaza hotel in the Hunter Valley. It was the change needed to get them on a roll. That turned into an avalanche until, by the middle of 2018, they'd claimed more than 100 medals in all competitions, including ten trophies and eleven golds for the likes of their Surry Hills Pils, Darlo Dark and this Paddo Pale. Then in late 2018 they came full circle moving part of the pilot plant back to Rydges Sydney Central. While both the Hunter and Sydney breweries pump out plenty of specials, one beer that you'll always find on the pour is this unquestionably popular Paddo Pale. Like the suburb it was named after, this ale arguably has it all. Somehow though, everything's kept in just the right balance and proportions. So while getting those citrusy and floral aromas like all good pales, it's all relative. In the same way, the malt is a feature, but not the star, the bitterness is big, but not too big, and those hops are pronounced, but not over the top.
It’s the perfect beer for Sydney, one that, if the timing was right, Tooth and Squire could have sorted out their differences over.