Sunday morning on the insular peninsula (aka Sydney’s Northern Beaches) has seen a solid swell pounding the coastline. When the sun is out, which it has been for extended periods, it is warm and getting a summery feel. When the swell gets solid and comes from the East and South-East, the Queenscliff Bombora and Fairy Bower go off, and it is a day only for the good surfers. That makes for a fantastic spectacle from the Manly Esplanade, if only to see big waves – but even better if there are blokes riding them.
Given the warmth it seemed appropriate to try a Samuel Adams Summer Ale, which was bizarrely available at the Brookvale Cellars. Bizarre, because today we entered the last month of Autumn and we are on the slippery slope to winter. The Summer Ale poured out with an orange colour that was bordering on Fantaesque. There was a lovely rapid fine bead that remained throughout the drink, but the head dissapted quite quickly. The taste was distinctive with plenty of citrus but also a spicy bite. I couldn’t really put my finger on the taste, until I read up on the key ingredient. The label talked about the use of “Grains of Paradise”, which I assumed was beer label hyperbole for really good barley or wheat. In fact, grains of paradise or occasionally poetically known as alligator pepper is a West African spice from the ginger family. Makes for a genuinely different beer.