Good Beer Talk: Dark N Northerly - Amber Ale

Good beer chat with our beer experts...


We want to get the good beer chat flowing and your mouth salivating. In our latest blog series Good Beer Talk, our beer experts will be discussing tasting notes, history and what goes into our beer of the month. It's not always what we have in the tanks or taps but beer styles handpicked by our brewers that we really love.

This month our beer of choice is a Dark ‘N’ Northerly Amber Ale which is our spin off the popular cocktail, Dark ‘N’ Stormy.

The cocktail was invented in the 1800’s in Bermuda, an island known as the shipwreck capital of the world. Surrounded by miles of coral reef, on which many a vessel have dragged their bellies and have been found ruined at the bottom of the North Atlantic.

The Gosling’s were one of the English families whose ship managed to avoid that fearsome coral reef and they became one of the most prominent settlers on the island, starting their own rum production business in 1857. Ginger beer, another favourite drink in Bermuda and with its piquant bite it was the perfect compliment to Gosling’s Black Seal Rum. The Dark 'n' Stormy was born.

We like to take it slow and keep things simple, so 12 months ago our brewers headed out to the paddock with our mates from The Farm and we planted heaps of ginger. Knowing full well that at the time of harvest, a few months ago, we’d return to pick our ginger to add to our amber ale. The ginger, as well as lime and fresh mint we’re added to our brew, we then soaked a portion of it in a Husk Distillery Rum barrel, allowing it to draw out flavours of slight oak whilst enriching the hue and body that our base malts, Carared, Caramunich and Carafa supply.

Whilst it didn’t sit as stormy or cloudy in glass, we wanted to give it a name with a Byron twist. This time of year, the Northerly winds start howling into The Bay, disrupting surf conditions and our laidback lifestyle of relaxing near the beach.

Introducing the Dark ‘N’ Northerly

A gorgeous copper hue sitting under a zesty aroma of lime, ginger and mint, this amber ale has been created to remind us of one of our favourite cocktails, the Dark N’ Stormy. Half a kilo of mint was added into the whirlpool, keeping it summery and refreshing. We then added a kilo of hand-picked fresh ginger that our brewers planted themselves last year with our mates at The Farm. That, along with the zest and juice of 30 limes, was dry-hopped into the fermenter. Half-way through the ferment, we settled our brew into a Husk distillery rum barrel to soak up further colour, flavour and aroma. All this contributing towards a finishing mouthfeel that is light, tangy and will keep your warm for a breezy sunset at the wreck.

Words by our Canadian beer wizard, Jess Flynn