For as long as anyone cares to remember the State of Origin represents that fierce annual encounter between the maroons and the blues, which has held us captive as the pinnacle of rugby league for over 37 years. Every winter we anticipate with excitement this great Australian tradition, a best-of-three rugby league series upheld as one of the country’s longest and greatest sporting rivalries.
With the exception of 2014, Queensland have won every State of Origin series consecutively since 2006. Each year this gripping series brings Queenslanders and New South Welshmen to the edge of their couches thrice for 80 impassioned minutes each. But what they will be holding in their hands during all the cheers and cussing from their lounge rooms is also symbolic of another long-standing rivalry – Beer.
Tooheys New is synonymous with all that stands for NSW and its long standing battle to regain the series…and of course XXXX that symbol of clever, cheeky and bold marketing with a slogan that stills rings in our childhood ears…”Australians wouldn’t give a XXXX for anything else”.
Being south of the border, naturally we lot at Bayfield’s tend to gravitate towards the Blue and the New, but in all honesty we don’t give a XXXX either – quite frankly they are both outstanding, classic, legendary Aussie brews that will long take their place in this country’s history and hearts.
Whoever you barrack for – we hope you enjoy learning a little about the best beers New South Wales and Queensland offer us.
Can you get anymore iconic than Tooheys New? Established back in 1869 by two brothers born to Irish parents; John and James Toohey had always demonstrated a spirit well before their time. When in 1931 they crafted a light, crisp Australian Lager in an environment when warm British Ales were the beer-du-jour, they revolutionised the Australian beer culture by creating a new beer style designed to be served ice cold! The brothers set up the Darling Brewery in Sydney and went on to transform their dream to a great Australian legend. From crafting new beer techniques, to supporting local community groups and sponsoring local sporting events, the brothers lived and breathed their ‘have-a-go’ mantra.
What we know and enjoy today as Tooheys New is all that we’ve come to love about Australia – its culture, climate and our love of sporting and outdoor pursuits. It is an iconic Australian BBQ beer with no artificial additives or preservatives. A classic, easy drinking Australian lager with a smooth malt character – perfectly balanced with light hop aroma. Make sure you serve ice cold.
In another state, a different set of brothers, by the name of Edward and Nicholas Fitzgerald were also busy with a beer dream of their own. In 1878, their goal to create the finest Ales known to man and loved by generations across this sun-drenched land of ours was realised. After starting out in Castlemaine Victoria, the Fitzgerald boys decided they needed a world-class brewery (and a warmer climate), so they packed up and moved lock, stock and two smoking beer barrels to Brisbane. And so the Castlemaine Perkins brewery was born, known today as the home of XXXX.
People often ask what the X’s stand for. Back in the day, beer quality was measured in Xs. The brewery’s premier brew produced was XXX Sparkling Ale, which was awarded only three Xs. The results were promising, but something was missing. So in 1924, they refined the recipe further, gaining a fourth X. In the same year, Mr FOUREX was introduced to the world and he soon became one of the most recognised symbols in Queensland. The rest, they say is history.
XXXX GOLD is a refreshing mid-strength beer that continues the great tradition of brewing heritage, by being brewed with the finest Australian malt, barley and unique golden cluster hops. Gold has a balanced, smooth flavour and body, complimented by mild bitterness and a trace of sweetness from the extra malt.