Yarra Valley brewer Matilda Bay has used COVID to create “Lockdown Release” versions of its favourite brews, which are now ready for craft lovers to drink.
Matilda Bay welcoming back founder Phil Sexton in 2019 to lead a relaunch of the brand in partnership with Carlton & United Breweries (CUB), which acquired the business almost 30 years ago.
Sexton has just launched its first new beer under the Matilda Bay label – Original Ale. The team have also re-vamped and modernised Matilda Bay classics, Redback, Alpha Pale Ale and Dogbolter.
The beers are the first to be brewed at Matilda Bay’s sustainable brewery in Healesville, which opened on Boxing Day last year.
“Our doors are well and truly open,’’ Sexton said. “We’ve taken the opportunity COVID has thrown at us to focus on the things we’re passionate about – the beer, the food and the experience.”
Original Ale is a classic, European golden ale, made with pure, Yarra Valley mountain water. This unfiltered and unpasteurised traditional beer is described as smooth and creamy, with a subtle bitter finish.
“The Original Ale is an interpretation, a morphing or a riff if you like, on a particular beer that we really love that’s in the English market,” Sexton said.
“It’s reminiscent of the classic ales on tap found in bars around Europe. Of course, we can’t visit these bars at the moment, so the Original Ale is the next best thing.”
Sexton said the re-imagined classic beers have evolved to a modern era.
“If I’d been running Matilda Bay right through from 1990 to today, those original beers would have changed and evolved, because we’d be doing all that was core to Matilda Bay – experimenting, adapting, changing with the times,” he said.
“Myself, my son and head brewer Harry, and the rest of the people involved have worked tirelessly to create the new range. We knew we couldn’t just recreate these classic beers – like us, they’ve evolved enormously in the past 30 years.”
Matilda Bay’s four brews are available from the brewery at 336 Maroondah Hwy, Healesville. It’s open seven days a week
Categories: New releases