Wednesday, 23 November 2016

Sweet, Sweet, Denmark

Denmark is another of those beautiful locations nestled on the south coast of Western Australia. We went for a day trip, with the intention of checking out Bartholomews Meadery, Boston Brewery, and scoping some of the scenery, coming to the conclusion that you could easily spend many more days in Denmark and we can't wait for our next visit!
Ever since sipping the godly nectar that is mead at the Michigan Renascence Fair, Jen and I have been on the lookout to find some more of the stuff here in Australia. Earlier on the year you may recall the “Game of Thrones” themed night we attended with the HEMA fighters. We did get our hands on some mead at this event, however it was more like a cider than the divine wine we were on the lookout for.
Bartholomews Meadery was our hope to find this beverage we sought, and they had quite a nice drop indeed! They brew a few different meads, but are waiting for the bees to complete their job so they can fill their shelves with all their varieties! We sampled three different meads, Sweet Forest Mead, Berry Mead and a Cinnamon Blend. The Sweet Forest Mead was pretty much smack bang on with what we were looking for, a nice sweet honey flavoured wine, so we grabbed a couple of bottles to enjoy later! The Berry Mead was interesting, similar but with a bit of a fruity flavour, and we decided to grab a bottle of that too! The Cinnamon Blend was served hot, and seemed like a very British type thing, would be a lovely night cap on a cold night. They also had a great variety of honey, which you are free to sample. They even had a chocolate honey, which was awesome! We also managed to grab some more tasty ginger honey which we have been missing since we visited the Honey Place over near Coffs Harbour.
To finish off a lovely morning of honey sampling, we found ourselves licking away at some honey based ice cream! Bartholomews Meadery is set in a beautiful spot, it is quite relaxing to just sit amidst the delightful smelling bushland. Inside the shop there is also a glass hive display, so you can watch some beers making their honey. They have 300 locations where they collect their honey from, and they are all located away from most farm land, canola in particular. This gives them a variety of unique and delicious Aussie blends. Margot and Finn gave us great customer service and we'll definitely pop in again for some more mead, and ice cream... and chocolate honey in the future!

Now that we were on a honey buzz we thought it was best to burn some of that energy! We went down to William Bay National Park, which is known for its artfully sculpted granite outcrops along the shore line and it's turquoise waters within its bays. Just like the rest of southern WA, there were plenty of wild flowers still in their spring bloom. First we went for a small walk to check out the Elephant Rocks, a collection of granite boulders that look like elephants playing on the beach (above). We then returned back over to Greens Pool where we decided to go for a bit of a dip. The warmer weather starts a bit later this far south, and quite often this western chunk of the south coast has quite a chilly wind blasting through it. When the wind isn't too bad and the sun is operating as it should on an almost summer day, it's quite enticing to ignore how cold the water is and just get wet! We weren't the only ones taking advantage of this delightful weather, there were plenty of people, and fish also enjoying the cleansing ocean water. I even had a starfish peaking out from under a rock to say gday.

Next we moved on to Willoughby Park to visit the Boston Brewery and it was a top location for a post snorkel feed! We grabbed a couple of beer paddles, which was a good plan, as all their beverages wouldn't fit on a single paddle! With two paddles, we had to double up on two beers, which we decided on the stout and nut brown, not a bad choice at all!
Boston Brewery had 10 beers to sample: Hefeweizer, Lager, Indian Pale Ale, Rye Pale Ale, Amber Ale, Maibok, Rauchbier, Nut Brown, Stout and a Ginger Beer. The Hefeweizer had a bit of a banana like flavour, which was odd, but tasted really awesome with the Pork Belly. Their lager was a bit too bitter and hop friendly for me to really consider a lager. The Indian Pale Ale was a pretty smooth for an IPA, yet retaining that fruity hopiness you'd expect. The Rye Pale Ale, smelt like passionfruit, very hoppy with a bitter aftertaste. I didn't rate the Amber Ale when I first tasted it, but returning to it after eating some calamari, I felt I could taste more in it, giving off a honeyish burnt flavour. The Maibok was quite malty and burnt, while covering the 7.5 alcohol taste.The Rauchbier had a smoky baconess about it, quite hoppy but not bad. The Nut Brown ended up being my favourite, it was a slightly burnt American style dark ale with, you guessed it, a nutty flavour! Jen's favourite was the Stout, burnt coffee flavours, slight hit of hops while remaining smooth and creamy. Lastly was the ginger beer, which tasted a little more gingery than a lot of other craft ginger beers, but still had the sickly sweet cordial taste over the top.
For our meal we shared a platter that goes with the beer tasting! It was a pretty cool idea, the only down side is they didn't have any notes of what goes with what, so we were pretty much winging it. This worked out fine, as good food and good beer usually go together without too many worries! The property also had a winery, but due to time constraints we weren't able to visit on this particular trip, but there's always next time!

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