On a hot day there is nothing better than a cold beer. As Australia has no shortage of hot days, it's no coincidence that it also has no shortage of cold beer. In Melbourne, the business of churning out craft beers from microbreweries is really starting to explode, so the next time you find yourself in Melbourne with a mighty thirst brewing, try one of these marvellous microbreweries.
Little Creatures Brewery is originally from Western Australia, but it relocated to Melbourne, where it has been a staple for discerning beer drinkers for over a decade. People flood to its beloved Dining Hall for hearty beer-friendly food like pizza, cheese and bacon croquettes and minced veal pie. However it is the Pale, Amber and Bright Ales that really draw in the crowds. These brews have become so loved that they have risen to national acclaim throughout Australia. For something a little different, try the European Pilsner or the new Aspall Cider.
If you’re looking for a refreshing Summer Ale, which bears hints of tropical fruits or the 'perfect for anytime' German-style Red Truck Lager with biscuit-like maltiness, head to True South, which specialises in seasonal and single batch creations. Visitors to True South are treated like royalty by the friendly and laid back staff who, upon request, will take you samples of each beer. So sit back and enjoy Port Phillip Bay while deciding between the robust Pilsner or Brown Porter and enjoying some of the best Argentinean cuisine this side of Buenos Aries.
For those being dragged to Matilda Bay brewery by a friend, you might get scared for your life at first. This brewery is tucked away on a shady dead-end road in the industrial district, and visitors have to navigate a narrow path before being greeted with a bright and bustling brewery.
This brief panic is replaced by sheer awe upon entering. The walls are lined with massive tanks full of brewing beer. The staff can be seen casually sampling the fruits of their labour alongside customers, making for quite the cozy atmosphere.
The brewery hosts an extensive list of regular brews, as well as small batch brews that include the increasingly famous Fat Yak Pale Ale, the refreshing Amber Lager and the bitter Redback Wheat Ale. Try brews by the glass or order a sampling platter of select flavours.
Mountain Goat, much like Little Creatures, has been soaring in popularity over recent years. The all-wood interior is beautiful and inviting, there are fun foosball tables and the beer is fantastic.
Although Mountain Goat doesn't have the extensive list of beers that other breweries in Melbourne can host, they prioritize quality over quantity at Mountain Goat. Its powerful India Pale Ale, rare batch releases and a slew of awesome Ales have kept the thirsty masses coming back for more. Due to its rising popularity, you should get there early on the weekends if you want a seat. Its Surefoot Stout and pizza run out quickly once the place begins to fill up as well.
Be sure to sample the Rare Breed batches whenever they are on the menu. These small batch beers are served in massive 640ml bottles and contain much more of an alcoholic punch than the regular brews.
The microbrewery of 2 Brothers has risen to national acclaim in Australia, which is saying something, because like Matilda Bay it is near impossible to find in the southeast jungle of Melbourne. However, when armed with mighty cab driver and a GPS, the search is well worth it.
2 Brothers has everything you could possibly want from a beer hall: a roaring pizza oven, live music, a slew of televisions and some of the best craft beer in the city. Brews like Growler Brown Ale, Kung Foo Rice Lager and Taxi Pilsner are always on tap. In fact, the Growler and Taxi both won bronze and silver medals respectively in the 2008 Australian International Beer Awards. However, it is the darker beers like Voodoo Porter, James Brown Belgian and Terminator Doppelbock that really seem to be creating a buzz around Australia.
White Rabbit has held strong to its original ethos of brewing beer only with fresh and locally grown ingredients, ensuring that each bottle it brews and serves is filled with the same roasted malt goodness.
With its open fermenters near their taphouse, when visitors enter the brewery they are greeted with the comfortingly robust aromas of great craft beer. Beers like the Dunkin Dormouse Oktoberfest, Tea Party Porter and Cheshire's Pumpkin Ale are all playful on the palate. Its 14-beer sampler, which consists of all their permanent brews, is a great way for new customers to really experience just how many different flavours this brewery has embraced from all over the world.
Three Ravens Brewery is dedicated to the old way of doing things. All of its great brews are brewed on location, by hand, and then bottled by hand.
This brewery specializes in traditional European style brews that are quickly putting the company on the international radar. Its classic tipples like Blond Alt-Bier and Bronze Pale Ale have beer-lovers flocking to this brewery as often as they can. The brewery also invites enthusiasts to visit at 2pm every Friday to sample its beers all for free.
The Local Taphouse
Although The Local Taphouse isn't technically a brewery, when talking about microbreweries in Melbourne, you just have to mention it. The Local Taphouse gathers beers from all the above microbreweries, as well as around 30 others, and serves them to the thirsty masses. This innovative gathering of local beers has made The Local Taphouse and institution in Melbourne over the past few years.