One would normally be a little disheartened to hear the head brewer of a highly ranked top 5 Aussie brewery moved on to pursue other challenges, but, to sell his portion of the iconic Riverside label to ex-Mountain goat head brewer John Bogan was a brilliant idea, as they are also a highly ranked top 5 Aussie brewery. Well we aren’t here to talk about Mountain goat so on with the review.
Served in a shaker glass the amber pour arouses a bubbly 1 finger head that retains quite well, leaving healthy lace trails clinging to our glass. Quite a subdued aroma for Riverside, although this could be due to our expectations from the likes of the 77 and the mammoth 777. Mild herbal overtones with some light pine florals running underneath are nicely balanced by a clean malt backbone. As the beer warms, a resinous hop aroma reveals itself adding some much needed depth. In the mouth it’s smooth with a light prickly carbonation. Mild-medium body. What is slightly lacking in the aroma is made up for in flavour as a solid burst of spicy Cascade hops refreshes the palate. An assertive bitterness cuts through as grapefruit and herbal/grassy notes move forward through the mid and result in a firm bitter finish with plenty of citrus backing up on the back end. Good length on display here. Super sessional and the clever move to match the label with the ABV (5.5%) is another ode to this tasty beverage. Just like Michael Bevan, this pale ale is a great all-rounder.