An Australian is putting a little piece of the NSW Riverina on the map in Scandinavia.
Brewer Andrew Colley created an Australian Pale Ale for one of Sweden's oldest craft brewers south of Stockholm, where he had worked for more than five years.
The Ankarudden Aussie Pale Ale - which features a historic map of the NSW town of Henty on the label - has become the brewery's third best seller and a summer favourite to boot.
Mr Colley said the pale ale happened almost by accident at Nynashamns Angbryggeri, where he is head of production.
He said they were working on another brew when changes in the process forced a rethink.
"The Aussie Pale Ale has become popular because the Swedes think it's exotic and it's got Australian hops in it," he said.
"Nynashamn is such a cute little seaside town of 20,000 and the Aussie Pale has definitely helped me become a local here.
"As a country lad who spent many years moving around Australia's capital cities, it is really nice to belong somewhere again.
"It's very pleasing to hear the Swedes walk into the bar and order an Aussie!"
Having grown up at Henty where his parents moved to teach at Billabong High School, Mr Colley had an idyllic country lifestyle including a paperboy run delivering The Border Mail.
"There's a little bit of Henty tied to the Pale Ale," Mr Colley said.
"If you look closely on the label there's an old settlers map of the Henty area featuring Doodle Cooma Swamp and Buckingingah and Billabong creeks."
Working for Harvey Norman a decade ago, Mr Colley developed a keen interest in homebrewing in Adelaide, where he met his Spanish future wife Dr Astrud Tuck, a doctor of research.
They followed Dr Tuck's work to Sweden, where they also had a midsummer wedding during 2019.
"We live on the southernmost tip of the archipelago; summer life is really something magic," he said.
"In winter we go skating on the ice.
"Last week we went up north to see the Aurora (polar lights) and the dog-sledding. My wife went swimming in minus 24 degrees!"
IN OTHER NEWS:
Mr Colley said Nynashamns Angbryggeri would celebrate its 25th anniversary this Swedish summer.
He said they made 25 different beers a year with a focus on producing the best "old world" beers in Sweden the likes of Franconian lagers and British ales.
"Brewing at Nynashamns has opened so many doors for me," Mr Colley said.
"Brewing together with Ska Brewing in Colorado, Ganstaller in Germany and Cantillon in Belgium would definitely be highlights.
"The brewery helped establish a brewing course with the local technical school during the past few years. I hold a few lectures on flavour profiling with them and we host interns from there and also German brewers. It's really nice to give back there but it works both ways."
Having gained Swedish citizenship six months ago, Mr Colley said they felt settled for now.
"We're living our best lives," he said.
"All in all, the leap of faith to a new country, culture, language and profession was the hardest thing we have done. But it is also the best and most rewarding thing we have ever done!"
Sign up for our newsletter to stay up to date.