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The Great Australian Beer Guide – Book Review

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by Emma Crameri (subscribe)
Editor of the Brisbanista website * Awesome things to do for Brisbane residents * brisbanista.com.au/
Published August 1st 2016
The Great Australian Beer Guide
The Great Australian Beer Guide


Crafty Pint founder James Smith has just released his second book on Australian craft beer called 'The Great Australian Beer Guide'. His first book was called '150 Great Australian Beers' and in the new introduction he remarks how much the craft beer industry has changed over the last two years and has reached critical mass.

The book begins with an abridged history of craft beer and brewing in Australia. He then explains how beer is made. There's a section with tips on how to get the best out of your beer, using an appropriate glass (rather than the bottle) and drinking it at the right temperature.

The book has a chapter on each of the major beer types: lagers, session beers, pale ales, IPAs, British and Irish ales, reds and amber ales, browns, darks and porters, stouts and imperial stouts, French and Belgian ales, wheat beers and speciality beers.

My beer loving husband's favourite beer is featured, which is currently Pirate Life Brewing IIPA.

The Great Australian Beer Guide
The Great Australian Beer Guide


There is a full page for each craft beer recommended which lists tasting notes, and a few paragraphs about the story. James lists a few other similar beers to try. There are notes on good food matches, availability, address and website of the brewery. There's a clear photo of the beer bottle so you can find it easily in the shops.

In between there are essays on some of the best craft breweries in Australia such as Pirate Life Brewing, Stone and Wood, Burleigh Brewing Company, Feral Brewing Company, Bentspoke Brewing Co, Boatrocker Brewery, and Two Metre Tall.

There are heaps of new craft beers I've never heard of, so if you are looking for recommendations then you are sure to find some suitable to put on your drinking wish list. Although I'm not sure I'd classify James Boag's Premium Lager, Knappstein's Reserve Lager Coopers Brewery Best Extra Stout as a 'craft beer'.

The Great Australian Beer Guide would make an ideal gift for Father's Day or a present for anyone who loves a good glass of beer.

About the Author
James Smith was born in the famous brewing town of Burton upon Trent in England. However, it was three decades and a move to Australia later before he became fully immersed in beer. A journalist by trade, he began exploring and writing about the country's burgeoning micro-brewing culture soon after arriving in Melbourne in 2008. Since christened 'Crafty' in reference to his website, The Crafty Pint, he writes about beer for Epicure, the Halliday Wine Companion Magazine and Time Out, and is a founder of the annual Good Beer Week festival in Victoria. The Great Australian Beer Guide is the follow-up to his hugely successful first book, 150 Great Australian Beers.

The Great Australian Beer Guide is available in hardcover from your favourite bookseller.

ISBN:9781743791394
Published by Hardie Grant Books
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Why? Discover Australia’s best breweries and beers
When: Out now
Cost: RRP: $29.99
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