SPOILS HIT THE SAUCE

The Weekend Australian - Travel - - INDULGENCE -

WHEN Tim Cooper, man­ag­ing di­rec­tor of Coop­ers Brew­ery, and An­thony Paech, head of the Beeren­berg jam and sauce pro­ducer, got to­gether at a bar­be­cue, it’s no sur­prise they ended up talk­ing shop. Af­ter a few beers, the con­ver­sa­tion nat­u­rally turned to what makes a good bar­be­cue sauce and, hey presto, an idea was born.

The re­sult is Beeren­berg Coop­ers Ale Bar­beque Sauce ($4.50). Like the beer, it’s hardly run-of-the-mill. For a start, it may con­tain up to 0.5 per cent al­co­hol (get­ting drunk on a bar­be­cue sauce could be a first; it also gives a new mean­ing to ‘‘ hit­ting the sauce’’).

The prod­uct is 40 per cent ale, though most of the al­co­hol is lost dur­ing cook­ing; it has a dis­tinct smoky flavour, along with a bit of a kick. ‘‘ Beer and bar­be­cues are such a per­fect match, it seemed nat­u­ral to team them to­gether in a true-blue Aussie sauce,’’ says Paech, whose fam­ily has been work­ing on the 100ha farm at Hah­n­dorf, 25km from Ade­laide, since mi­grat­ing from Ger­many in 1838. Nowa­days it pro­duces a range of jams, mar­malades, condi­ments and mari­nades.

The latest cre­ation, in the Beeren­berg (and Coop­ers) tra­di­tion, is free of ar­ti­fi­cial colours, preser­va­tives and flavours. For the coolest ac­ces­sory, get hold of a Coop­ers zip-up stubby holder that neatly holds the bot­tle. With the com­pany’s logo on the front, it could be eas­ily mis­taken for a beer. Take a good swig and I doubt it’s a mis­take you’d make twice. Barry Oliver www.beeren­berg.com.au www.coop­ers.com.au

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