A unique black beer was launched at Anvers chocolate factory in Latrobe on Black Friday by celebrity chef Ben Milbourne.
Black Inca is the latest release from Seven Sheds Brewery and is made with rare Fortunato # 4 cacao beans from Peru, as well as organic quinoa and oats from Kindred, Tasmania.
“These remarkable cacao beans are the real ‘hero’ in Black Inca,” says Seven Sheds owner/head brewer Willie Simpson. “We wanted to create a beer that was every bit as complex, delicate and mysterious as the cacao itself.
“Other breweries have made chocolate-infused beers but once I heard the fantastic story behind Fortunato # 4, I knew we had to give it a shot. Locally-grown quinoa adds a nutty character and, of course, also originates from Peru, while the organic oats provide a creamy texture which complements the distinctive cacao flavours.”
Anvers Confectionery is Australia’s sole importer of Fortunato # 4 chocolate which hails from a remote mountainous region of Peru. Earlier this year, Anvers’ founder/managing director Igor van Gerwen travelled to Peru for the annual harvest at the Fortunato cacao farm.
“In my 30 years of searching for different varieties of single-origin chocolate, I have never tasted a chocolate this intense,” says Mr van Gerwen. “The floral aromas and exotic fruit flavours make Fortunato # 4 a very complex, powerful chocolate which finishes with minimal bitterness.”
In fact, Fortunato # 4 cacao belongs to the “Original Cacao” strain, thought to have been wiped out by disease around 100 years ago. While Anvers imports the finished Fortunato # 4 chocolate product, they have also started bringing in a supply of cacao beans for Seven Sheds Black Inca.
Igor van Gerwen is returning to Lima, Peru for an international chocolate conference in July, this time accompanied by his 14-year-old daughter Kate van Gerwen.
A Belgian, a German, a Dutchman and a Kiwi walk into a bar and order a new Tasmanian beer they've all collaborated on.
Rather than the beginning of a joke, this is the story behind Platypus 200, the latest release from (New Zealand-born) Willie Simpson’s Seven Sheds brewery. To celebrate the Railton microbrewery’s 200th batch of ale, Willie called on fellow Cradle to Coast Tasting Trail producers to supply some exotic ingredients.
Like the egg-laying, duck-billed, beaver-tailed, otter-footed mammal, Platypus 200 is a quirky, one-off beast. This rich, dark brown ale has been infused with a trio of exotic ingredients sourced from the Cradle to Coast Tasting Trail – cocoa nibs supplied by Anvers Confectionery (founded by Belgium-born Igor van Gerwen), toasted quinoa grown by dutch couple Lauran and Henriette Damen of Kindred Organics and ginseng grown by German-born Ziggy Pyka from 41 Degrees South salmon & ginseng farm. Their subtle flavours were chosen to enhance this toasty ale style, while the ginseng – some say – can put a wiggle in your tail …
Platypus 200 represents the first major collaboration from the newly-formed Cradle to Coast Tasting Trail and is a great beer for sipping on slowly; or enjoying with dried muscatels and nuts, apple pie or strudel, hard cheese or dark chocolate, salmon or venison.
Just 500 bottles (750ml) of Platypus 200 have been produced, each individually-numbered and available exclusively from Seven Sheds’ cellar-door at 22 Crockers Street, Railton from January 22. Price: $18 per 750ml bottle.
Here's a list of festivals, events and markets we've confirmed over the next few months:
- First Saturday of the month March to July - Harvest Market Launceston
- 8 March 2014 - Steam Fest, Sheffield
- 9 March 2014 - Taste the Harvest, Devonport
- 16 March 2014 - Mt Gnomon Farm Open Day, Ironcliffe Rd, Penguin
- 30 March 2014 - Seven Sheds Hop Pickin'
- 26 April 2014 - Taste of the North West, Sheffield
Established by Willie Simpson and Catherine Stark in 2008, Seven Sheds has evolved from offering a single beer – Kentish Ale - to having five brews available all-year-round, plus regular seasonals and a range of single-batch “brewers reserve” beers that provide examples of diverse beer styles from around the world.
Seven Sheds beers are handcrafted in an alehouse designed around traditional brewing methods. Flagship Kentish Ale typifies the robust, flavoursome beers that form the backbone of the Seven Sheds range. A great match for bratwurst sausages or a rabbit pie, Kentish Ale is the most popular Seven Sheds brew and can be enjoyed at select tap locations including Cradle Mountain Hotel, Mole Creek Hotel (where it’s sold as Tassie Tiger Ale) and Stanely Hotel as well as Hobart’s Lark Distillery Cafe.
Other regular brews include Willie Warmer, a spiced dark ale; the Belgian-style Elephants Trunk which at 7% is one to enjoy while strapped to your favourite armchair; and the raspberry wheat beer Razzamatazz, which is a great thirst quencher on a hot day. Winter seasonal Stark Raven is a full-bodied oatmeal stout and Paradise Pale, now a part of the permanent lineup, is a refreshing brew designed to wash down seafood, salads and other summer fare. The Seven Sheds Brewers Reserve range includes brews such as Royal Willie (11.6%), St Ella IPA and Peru-inspired chocolate and quinoa Black Inca (6.8%) which are only available in 500ml bottles.
Seven Sheds beers are available by the glass at Tasmanian events throughout the year including Launceston’s Festivale, Devonport’s Taste the Harvest, Sheffield’s Taste of the North West, Wynyard’s Bloomin’ Tulips, Deloraine’s Tasmanian Craft Fair, and Hobart’s Taste Festival, as well as the Tasmanian Association of Micro-Breweries showcase events (locations vary) and the Seven Sheds Hop Harvest (March) and Oktoberfest on-site in Railton.
Seven Sheds beer is also available at the following outlets:
- Railton - Railton Hotel
- Lower Barrington - Barringwood Park Vineyard
- Launceston – the bottle at Crown Cellars, Davies Grand Central, Dickens Cider House and St John's Craft Beer Bar
- Weldborough - Weldborough Hotel (often has the much-sought after St Ella IPA on tap) http://www.hotel.weldborough.com.au/microbru-experience
- Elizabeth Town - Ashgrove Cheese, Christmas Hills Raspberry Farm Café
- Mole Creek - Mole Creek Hotel (on tap)
- Latrobe – Anvers Chocolate Factory - Café and Shop
- Devonport - Mrs Jones (on tap), Laneway Deli, Drift, Wagyu Pie Company, Devonport Visitor Information Centre
- Ulverstone - Lancaster House
- Burnie - Club Hotel bottle shop, Makers Workshop
- Stanley - Stanley Hotel (on tap), Old Cable Station restaurant
- Cradle Mountain - on tap at Cradle Mountain Hotel, by the bottle at Discovery Holiday Parks (guests only) and Cradle Mountain Hotel
- Moina – Moina Tavern
- Hobart – on tap at New Sydney Hotel, Lark Waterfront Distillery Café, The Winston, Westend Pumphouse; by the bottle at Garagistes, a common ground, Cool Wine, Sidecar, Alabama, Blue Eye, Eumarrah, Preachers, The Abbey
- Cygnet – Red Velvet Lounge
- Bruny Island - Bruny Island Cheese Co
Railton is a great place to stop and stretch your legs with level, easy walking. Visitors can check out the cafes, gift shops and topiary, a stroll along the Tasmanian Trail to contemplate the edicts in Sykes Sanctuary reserve or take the kids up to Goliath Park to kick a footie or play on the swings. Grab a Cradle to Coast Tasting Trail map for other tasty treats ranging from chocolate to salmon and ginseng, raspberries, apples, honeys, cherries, cheese, fresh fruit and vegetables, pinot noir and cider, jams and relish. Check out http://www.cradletocoasttastingtrail.com.au for more information about food; and http://www.sheffieldcradleinfo.com.au for local visitor information and accommodation options.
Since opening in 2008 Seven Sheds has had an ever growing number of label and memorabilia collectors asking for Seven Sheds items.
We appreciate that some collectors have come to our cellar door and purchased beer or other items when making their request. More often than not, however, these requests have come with an expectation that we will distribute collectible items free of charge to locations all over the world.
Once one collector has hold of a new label, coaster, barblade or other item, others quickly want to have it too.
Some breweries have big marketing budgets and don’t mind allocating staff time, stock and distribution costs to send out each new label, coaster, or bottle opener they produce to collectors or clubs.
Seven Sheds is a very small enterprise and doesn’t have the resources to accommodate these requests. As these demands are increasing over time we have decided that we will not distribute collectibles such as beer labels and coasters. Other items such as t-shirts, hats and bottle openers are sometimes available for sale at the Seven Sheds cellar door and via www.sevensheds.com.
We respectfully ask that memorabilia collectors refrain from approaching Seven Sheds staff, contractors, graphic designers and associated businesses and individuals in pursuit of labels, coasters and other memorabilia.