Four Points by Sheraton Docklands "Brew Off" Showcases Amazing Local Craft Beer
On Wednesday 13 September, 2017, craft beer lovers were treated to a fabulous night of beer tasting, food and entertainment at the new Four Points by Sheraton Melbourne Docklands. Four Points by Sheraton, a booming Marriott International hotel brand known for its love of beer, is embarking upon a global tour discovering the world’s best brews. The journey kicked off at the new Four Points by Sheraton Manhattan Midtown West and The World Loves Melbourne was part of the most recent event at Four Points by Sheraton Melbourne Docklands.
Four Points by Sheraton Melbourne Docklands is the perfect destination for any beer lover because of their Best Brews program – every Four Points by Sheraton hotel around the world has a local craft beer on tap. Travellers can stay at a Four Points by Sheraton hotel and know they will have an authentic taste of the local beer culture.
And at this event the task was to select the Best Brew for Four Points by Sheraton Melbourne Docklands. For this there was a crowd of eager beer lovers, as well as The World Loves Melbourne hosting and judging as a "beer influencer", a title we enjoy.
As a global event, the pressure was on Melbourne to produce world class craft beers that would stand the test. But as we know, Melbourne is a craft beer "mecca". The craft beer scene here is thriving and mature with a number of amazing breweries about the city. Melbourne also has several beer festivals each year which have captured the imagination of the world.
A sumptuous array of cheeses and charcuterie awaited guests on arrival.
Beers on the tasting lineup for the Best Brews Brew Off (above) and top notch tunes from the DJ (below).
Criteria for the judging the winning craft beer included taste, popularity, quality and proximity to the property.
The two beers that fought it off on the night to be crowned the winner were Mountain Goat and Two Birds Brewing. In Melbourne, and indeed Australian beer circles, these are considered to be craft beer royalty!
Guests included Melbourne media, a handful of media from Perth and Sydney as well as New Zealand, plus members of the Marriott International and Four Points by Sheraton team and sales partners.
To start the evening, it was great to hear from Shu Ping Liang, Director of Brand and Marketing with Marriott International Asia-Pacific, who spoke about the excellent Four Points by Sheraton brand, Best Brews program and Best Brews Around the World tour.
David Hagger from The World Loves Melbourne hosted the event, introducing the breweries and different beers and helping educate guests on how to taste and judge beer.
David invited Nathan Seamons, National Sales Manager at Mountain Goat, and Wilson Hede, Head Brewer at Two Birds Brewing to each speak about their brand and brews to be tasted on the evening.
Mountain Goat was founded in 1997 by Cam Hines and Dave Bonighton. The World Loves Melbourne has met Cam and Dave before - affable and passionate beer lovers who turned their beer dream into a stunning reality. They are making beer even bigger and better today with Mountain Goat brews available across the country.
Mountain Goat featured 3 of its finest beers -
- Organic Steam Ale – a crisp and clean golden ale that is fruity and tropical with a refreshingly dry finish.
- Pale Ale – a well-balanced, extremely drinkable hop-driven and American inspired Pale Ale that has a dry and fruity palate.
- Hightail Ale - a classic English style amber ale with strong malt background that's rounded off with a soft hop finish.
The World Loves Melbourne has also visited the Mountain Goat brewery in Richmond; a large hipster-looking warehouse with the brewery and a small bar/dining area where they pour their fabulous beers and serve fresh tantalising pizzas. With one of their brews and a pizza in hand, you're in heaven!
Staff were amazing in serving the beers to the tables, providing exceptional service and collecting scorecards.
Two Birds Brewing was started by two passionate friends Jayne Lewis and Danielle Allen who have also turned their beer dream into a stunning reality – and earned the title of Australia's first female owned brewery! It’s about brewing beers they wanted to drink themselves; the philosophy being balanced, flavoursome, approachable beers with a little bit of fun! Starting with a single beer in 2011 they now have 5 beers. The Golden Ale is where it all began and it is their flagship beer with its toasted malt characters and notes of stone fruit and citrus.
Two Birds Brewing also featured 3 of its finest beers -
- Taco - a hoppy zesty ale with fresh coriander, lime and corn! It’s fruity and zesty.
- Pale – a super Pale Ale brewed with oats to give a smooth and silky mouthfeel with pine, passionfruit and pineapple notes!
- Double Sunset - a bold double red ale that’s hoppy and malty with rich toffee malt and grapefruit hop notes!
Wilson Hede, the Head Brewer at Two Birds Brewing told The World Loves Melbourne he enjoyed working with Four Points by Sheraton Melbourne Docklands at this standout event.
Magic is produced at Two Birds Brewing’s brewery The Nest, in suburban Spotswood. A big favourite of The World Loves Melbourne is the Double Sunset. The Pale is also a showstopper and Two Birds Brewing also produces seasonal brews and right now is featuring a Saison!
David Hagger then took guests through how to taste and judge a beer. Guests had a Beer Tasting Scorecard in front of them and were encouraged to look at the following criteria:
- For beer tasting it’s best to pour the beer into a beer glass rather than drink it out of the bottle to get the full aroma and taste of the beer across the palate.
- Always look at the colour of the beer first. Has it got a great colour that’s desirable? Its colour - golden, amber, copper, red, brown, black – can tell a lot about the type of beer you’re going to drink.
- Next you need to gently swirl the beer in the glass – it helps capture the aromas and the beer’s subtle nuances.
- Try to articulate the aromas – are they malty, roasty, hoppy, earthy, fruity, sour, spicy or smokey? These all play into the beer drinking experience.
- Time to taste! Have a taste and let the beer coat the top of your tongue and also the top of your throat. Articulate what you are tasting – is it tart, bitter, sweet or boozy (this means it’s likely a heavy beer)? Or several of these characteristics?
- The way the beer feels in your mouth is the "mouthfeel". Can you sense some depth of flavour across your palate or is it thin? Is it light-bodied, medium bodied, full-bodied, or effervescent?
- Now that you’ve looked at these elements, it’s time to give an overall rating – what’s your favourite? Guests were encouraged to enter a score on their scorecard out of 5 (1 is good and 5 is great) for the tasting and to remember their judgement is personal!
Beers were brought around by staff in buckets of ice to keep them cold for tasting.
And the tasting began!
Once all the scorecards were collected and scoring was underway, Four Points by Sheraton Melbourne Docklands put on a fabulous BBQ.
Not to mention some fabulous door prizes including accommodation!
Stephen Ferrigno, General Manager of Four Points by Sheraton Melbourne Docklands giving away one of the prizes to a lucky guest.
Who was the winner of the brew off? The scores were extremely close.
The runner up was the Two Birds Brewing Taco - congrats to Two Birds Brewing on their awesome brew!
The overall winner was the highly acclaimed Mountain Goat Pale Ale! Nathan was thrilled to receive the trophy and he came on stage to say a few words of acceptance - a worthy winner! That means the Mountain Goat Pale Ale goes on tap at Four Points by Sheraton Melbourne Docklands as the hotel’s “Best Brew” from 1 October, 2017 for three months and Mountain Goat takes home the trophy.
Huge congrats to Nathan ("Mons") and Mountain Goat!
The World Loves Melbourne pictured at the Best Brews bar in the hotel’s lobby with Stephen Ferrigno, General Manager at Four Points by Sheraton Melbourne Docklands, Nathan from Mountain Goat and Mitchell Goff, an associate at the hotel and in-house beer expert.
Our winning beer!
Thanks to Four Points by Sheraton, Four Points by Sheraton Melbourne Docklands, the brewers Mountain Goat and Two Birds Brewing and the guests for a fabulous evening celebrating the best of craft beer in Melbourne. #sp