Saturday, December 31, 2011
4 Pines Brewing Company Pub Review
When I was in Australia one of the places I visited was Sydney...of course. At the hotel I came across the brochure of a local brew pub - 4 Pines - located on Manly beach. Yes, I know how that sounds. Well, while we were at the Sydney Opera house (which is sort of overrated to be honest), we decided to take a ferry to Manly beach and check out the brew pub.
After a wonderful (and expensive) 30 minute ferry ride we arrived at Manly beach. Luckily the pub was only about a 2 minute walk along the beach. The pub is located on the second floor of a building situated alongside the beach, providing some amazing views of the water while you are sipping on pints and pints of beer.
I ordered a sampler, which came in this awesome vessel for only $15.
OK, here is a non-artsy photo showing the true colors (to the best of my phone's camera's abilities) of each brew.
The samples are actually quite big compared to other sampler packs I have ordered other places. You can easily get a pretty decent buzz from consuming them all. There are 5 brews on tap at all times (at least this is the impression I was under) - a cider, a hefeweizen, a bitter, a pale ale and a stout (I am more than positive you can identify the beers by their colors). There was also a Kolsch and a specialty beer, which I did get a pint of. More on that later.
The Cider - awesome! Crisp and refreshing with a fantastic boozy/flavour balance. Aussies love their ciders and this is a pretty awesome one.
The Hefeweizen - though I am not a huge fan of this style, I do have to admit that the hefeweizen was well done and pretty enjoyable. However, it was nothing spectacular.
The Bitter - brewed just the way I like it. Hops and malt were well balanced and there were plenty of dried fruit notes as well as some roasted flavours. At the end I wish I had purchased a pint of this or a 6 pack to take with me to the hotel.
The Pale Ale - I guess good enough for the Aussies, but not good enough for us North Americans who are used to hoppy American Pale Ales for sale around here. There was very little hoppiness, but not as much as I expected. I wouldn't buy it again, but it is not a bad beer for those who are not huge fans of hoppy beers.
The Stout - also not bad, but I have had better. I don't remember much about this one because it was not very memorable, but it was a decent drink since I finished it easily.
In addition to the sampler, I also had the specialty beer - Wee Heavy. A pint set me back $13 which I thought was a bit pricey considering most pints around here are between $6 and $8 no matter how alcoholic or authentic the beer is. The Wee Heavy had a decent ABV of 6.8%, but I thought was way too smokey for my taste. Don't worry, the rest of the beers are around $8.50 for a pint. By the time I was done consuming all this, I felt too intoxicated to try the Kolsch, but I am saving that for next time.
Overall, between the awesome views and the decent beers, I rather enjoyed my time at the pub. If I go there again, which I probably will when I go back to Sydney, I would stick to the cider. It was refreshing and perfectly matched the warm and sunny weather.
I also got a sweet t-shirt for $30.