GABS FESTIVAL OF BEER MELBOURNE website review: Sam Bell photography: Erkin Kalayci (assistant: Tugba Caglayan)
Everything a beer lover needs. GABS craft beer festival has it all. No matter if you are a noobie beer drinker and want to learn the difference between an IPA and a stout, or if you are a hops aficionado looking to further explore the magic of infusions, GABS is the place to be. Starting with the Dan Murphy discovery deck, leading members though the many styles of beer and allowing participants to choose from a ridiculous number of brews (we’ll get the them later). Who doesn’t want a complimentary flavour tour through the winding and varied paths of hops brewing? Plus, for those who find themselves with a urge to learn more and to dig deeper into exactly what they are tasting, GABS Academy has you covered. With panels of experts, freely divulging their hard-won knowledge and advising guests on all manner of topics, from pallet deconstruction to food pairings. There is always more to learn, and GABS is where to learn it.
Not everyone want to know how the sausage gets made however. Some people know what they like and just want to be left alone to enjoy it. Fair enough. Why not sit back with a brew of choice and listen to some smooth jazz to accompany your smooth malt? The Ale Capones are there to flood the stage will sound and ensure your ears are having as much fun as your mouth. If that doesn’t float your boat then why not make the experience a bit more personal? GABS offers a silent disco to let you lose yourself in your own world. Just slap on some headphones and pretend you’re at home with a brew. Just make sure to watch out for that unconscious dance we all do when listening to great music. Even if it feels like you’re at home, you’re still dancing in a crowd with beer to aid your moves.
If dancing isn’t your thing, you can always put your body to some other use. GABS has a huge variety of party games and activities to play and challenge your friends with. Whether you are a beer pong champion, foosball legend, Jenga lord, or pinball wizard, GABS gives you what you need to show off your skills. For the truly Dexterous, the cornhole championship is always an option. With free practise rounds running through the day to let you brush up on your skills before you enter the competition and win yourself some prizes. If you don’t win, don’t sweat it. You can always head to the merch stand and buy a prize. Bribe your friends with a beer and no one will ever know. Plus you’ll end up with some of the fun alcohol themed paraphernalia on offer, and that’s always a good thing. Let’s face it, you can always use a new hoodie. Just don’t spill your beer on it.
it would be a crime to waste such beers anyway (I told you we’d get back to them). With 112 new beers and ciders on offer, GABS has an offering for every pallet imaginable. Plus a few beyond imagination. With GABS offering the 60+ breweries present a chance to show off their skills, things can get downright weird. Whether you want to play it safe with a classic cider, or chase your rumball stout down with a lamb souvlaki beer, GABS has you covered. No one wants to drink on an empty stomach and the less adventurous of you, may prefer to eat your jalapeno taco, rather than drink it. Fear not, GABS also has more food than you possibly eat. From kebabs to pizza, fried chicken and greasy burgers. GABS knows their audience, if you have a food you always crave when you hit the town, it is almost certainly present.
So whether you want to learn more about beer, expand your taste, test your skill, or just gorge yourself on a myriad of delicious treats, both alcoholic and not, GABS is the place to be. Covid has finally let us out of our houses, but that’s no reason to not get on the beers.
GABS FESTIVAL OF BEER QUEENSLAND NEW website review by Brett Styles photos: Brett Styles
Held at the Brisbane Convention and Exhibition Centre the GABS Craft Beer Festival ran across two sessions to manage the large crowds of eager tasters. Tasting panels, competitions & voting for your favorite car5ft beer made up some of the days activities. Mountain Goat Cornhole created a fun game to pay with a bean bag toss to win great prizes. Silent disco had the floor full with dancers in space age headphones dancing to their own tune.
We have received five samples of My Blue Tea for review : 1. blue myrtle tea
It is a natural, no caffeine alternative to your tea time. It keeps you to say in focus, warms you up on cold days (if it is drunk hot) and cools you down on hot summer days (when it is drunk as iced tea or cooled down from the fridge). It has lots of qualities apart from its distinctive myrtle finest aroma and taste: to suppresses your appetite and is excellent to be taken between the meals with some honey or vegan cookies. It contains all natural ingredients and is very healthy for you. It also detoxifies your body by flushing out the unwanted toxins and boosts your immune system. It is refreshing and very Zen. This is one of my favorite varieties we received from My Blue Tea company.
2. blue inspiration tea
This tea is also great in both hot and cold forms. It has irresistible blue color and looks and tastes very exotic and vibrant. It looks like a small ocean inside you cup (drunk hot) or glass (drunk cold). When flavoured by a little bit of fresh lemon or lime juice the tea turns into a very delicious and refreshing drink. Please note that acidity in this blue tea turns in from blue into purple or pink. It is great to have this tea as an alternative to alcohol at any party to be served for your guests to surprise them and to start a health conversation about health and vitality.
3. bamboo tea infusion
This tea variety from My Blue Tea company has a distinctive wooden note to its flavour and tastes very special. This tea contains Silica with reported benefits on nail and hair growth, bone density, the prevention of the absorption of aluminium into our bodies, and is also a building block of collagen. It is used for clear, healthy and tight skin. You will notice the benefits of drinking this tea after some time. Bamboo tea contains 70% of silica, more than any other plant. It is the star of all teas for people looking for improving their skin, nails and hair. You will need only 1 1/2 teaspoons to strainer in hot water and then you steep it for 3-5 minutes with the cup covered. The package will last long with lots of health benefits.
4. blue goddess tea
It tastes so naturally organic. It is sweet and floral. It has the addition of Goji berries that I love so much in his blend. It also contains Chinese oolong tea that makes the taste so delicate as the tea from the top shelves. It also contains the butterfly pea flowers. It is great for your good night sleep time. I found this tea variety to be simply amazing and the taste to be very original and unexpected and unforgettable. It will definitely make your tea mesmerizing. The color is royal blue and you will want to repeat the drinking with the second cup.
5. butterfly pea flower tea
Sip those blues away! It is your plant-based organic superfood tea. You can also add this rare tea made from edible flowers in any drink, in cooking, including baking as a blue food colouring. This tea will make you happy just by looking at its wonderful color. I made myself a Saturday cocktail and added a tea spoon of this tea in my drink to make it look different and attractive. The quality of this tea is high and you will want to make some facebook and instagram photos to surprise your friends. Remember also that this not very common tea improves your immune system, manages weight and reduces stress and anxiety. But be careful as it may become your IDEAL TEA!
Special thanks: Veronica Lind (Vermilion Pinstripes), Lee Heng (My Blue Tea)
DE BORTOLI ESTATE AND WINES website photos: Stuart Buchanan review / BTS images: Natasha Marchev wine tasting: Elena Tretiakova
What a gorgeous experience when you are welcomed and looked after as a top media crew in Melbourne. Our De Bortoli Estate visit was a delight. We were met at the doors on arrival by the marketing director, Carly and one of the wineries owners, Leanne. We were taken fearlessly to the fields where the crop gathering was taking place. Stuart was adjusting his drone and cameras, the technology always plays up when it is most needed... but all went well. We all made lots of BTS and professional images and the video including the not so well behaving at the start drone. The gathering happens fast. To take the photos of the bucket full of grapes uploading to the tractor you should run, run, run, "forest run...".
History reference De Bortoli is one of Australia's most dynamic family wine businesses, Now in it's third generation they have been established by Vittorio and Giuseppina De Bortoli in 1928 with the business then driven by their son, Deen and now, the third generation, by Darren alongside with his sister, Leanne and her husband, De Bortoli Chief Winemaker Steve Webber.
De Bortoli wines has been historically based at Bilbul (near Griffith) in the NSW Riverina, but more recently they have expanded into the YarraValley (where Leanne and Steve Webber are based), the HunterValley and also into Victoria's KingValley. The emphasis in all of the vineyards has always been upon innovation, with De Bortoli credited with the creation of Australia's most famous dessert wine, the Noble One. The De Bortoli winemaking philosophy is that great wine begins in the vineyard. Their belief is that sustainable vineyard practices will deliver exceptional fruit quality to the winery as well as real environmental benefits. With a focus on careful site selection, vine maturity, high input viticulture and a move towards biological farming principles, De Bortoli Wines are also focusing more and more on single vineyard wines and the expression of specific terroir through their wine. In the winery, minimal interference, allowing the wine to 'make itself' and the mantra ‘it is harder to do nothing’ encapsulate this focus and belief. With an enormous range of wines and labels, it is constantly impressive how consistent (and good value) the De Bortoli wines are. This comes from a simple respect for varietal purity, with Steve Webber renowned for his desire to see varietal expression in the De Bortoli wines. The real secret to the quality of the De Bortoli wines though is simply the winemaking talent. Beyond head honcho Steve Webber the team includes veteran Rob Glastonbury, award winning young winemaker Sarah Fagan and long time Noble One guru Julie Mortlock, all combining to headup one very able winemakingunit."
We were then taken to the inside cellar doors for tasting. We picked up the room with more light so Stuart could continue to work with no issues and we ran an interview with Leanne. She was very humble, very pleasant to talk with and very down to earth woman. She agreed to be interviewed so kindly. Leanne told us a bit the history of the winery and its first days, about the strong family connections in De Bortoli family and how much they learn in these 90 years in the business, about the current challenges and how the company introduces new wine varieties to the customers and to the market. The company is not afraid to experiment and it always works and get appreciated by the most spoiled wine lovers and critics. Leanne also told us about the perspectives of the wineries for the future. We got a very good film to share with all our youtube channel followers. Three wines were on the table to get reviewed. At the end of our interview we were given two posters to take home with the La Boheme title, such a good sign and a great match to our own work! Honestly we all felt very privileged to be at such amazing place and get this unique opportunity to talk with the people who have such a rich family history connected to the wine making history of Australia. Tiffany at the counter sold us some terrific wines to take home and continue to enjoy our day...
The wines on the table we tasted: 1. De Bortoli Pinot Noir 2019 The Estate Yard . Highly fragrant, alluring bright red, elegant and fruity, vintage, developed and slowly ripen during the growing season with timely spring rain, it is a terrific wine to try. The wine is unique by its light touch of savouriness with supple, fine tannin. It has a taste of red cherry, wood spice with some minerally flavours and summer violets. The wine is quite generous in character, plump and round in style. The fruit for this wine were hand harvested and hand sorted. It is a gorgeous, soft acidity wine.
2. De Bortoli La Boheme Cuvee Blanc Sparkling. It is an easy drinking wine with pale colour and a green tinge. It has a citrus, straw-hay, green apple, hazelnut dusting, brioche and lifted aromas. This fresh and youthful wine is complex but well balanced and clean, crisp and appetizing in its distinctive character. Its terrific consistency and taste are perfect and it is great to be served over a few share plates to enjoy in a good company with friends.
3. De Bortoli Noble One Botrytis Semillon 2017 is my personal choice. I did not intend to taste but I could not hold it. It is rightfully considered Australia's premier sticky, dessert wine with beautiful bright golden color and a taste to match. It comes in sweet and luscious apricot marmalade jam and barley sugar overtone with great volume and amazing texture, accompanied by smooth and thick hints of toffee, fresh vanillin oak and fig with the intense aroma of dried nectarines, peach-citrus-orange blossom honey. It is not over sweet, just right. This wine is an outstanding expression of Botrytis affected wine and powerful Botrytis spectrum, and a must have for any cellar! It is a delight for those spoiled in taste. Am expressive and perfectly harmonious wine that can be enjoyed just on its own or with a fabulous gourmet cheese and fruit platter. It also great to go with freshly shucked oysters or Foie Gras. This wine has garnered more than 117 trophies and 376 Gold medals both nationally and internationally.
special thanks: Leanne and Steve De Bortoli, Carly Turner and Tiffany.