AUSTRALIA: Olympic fans uncork the beer

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Champagne corks will be popping across Australia this year in celebration of the Olympics but it could be beer rather than bubbly in the bottles.True to typical Ozzy tastes, Lion Nathan is launching a new special vintage beer that will be sold in 750ml champagne bottles.The Hahn Special Vintage 2000 is a follow up to last year's Millennium Ale and is aimed at enthusiasts who would rather celebrate with hops than grapes.The beer will be bottle fermented and corked. But only 13,000 cases will be brewed so Australia's dedicated beer drinkers will have to stock up fast before the September starting gun for the biggest show on Earth."We've spent months in the brewery carefully crafting our next brew, using specialty malts and two individual yeasts to develop a beer of character and complexity," said Lion Nathan chief brewer Bill Taylor."We're expecting that real beer connoisseurs - and probably wine connoisseurs as well, will buy some bottles to enjoy now and then."The beer is described as having a complex toffee and spicy fruit flavour and will be 8% alcohol.David Robertson

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