You already know Bendigo On The Hop is going to be filled with delicious beers for you to explore and sample, but who are the brewers behind the beers?
Read on to find out more about the brewers behind your favourite beers at #BOTH19, plus what special and exclusive beers they’ll be bringing for you to get your taste buds on.
Holgate Brewhouse (co-Major Sponsor)
This Woodend institution has been at the forefront of Australia’s craft brewing movement for 20 years. They’re 100% independent and have fostered innovation and creativity in traditionally crafted beers since 1999.
Co-founded by Paul Holgate and Tash Holgate, the family-owned business continues to share their passion for bold balanced beers through their production brewery and brew-pub.
At BOTH be sure to taste: *Beer Launch at BOTH19* Double White IPA for their 20th anniversary.
Bridge Road Brewers (co-Major Sponsor)
Conceived by Ben and Maria Kraus in 2004, Bridge Road Brewers was almost Bridge Road winemakers…
At the age of 21 Ben was a budding winemaker, travelling to Europe to learn more about the world and the art of making wine. Along the way he got distracted on the ski slopes of Austria, met his partner Maria and ended up working at Tiroler Bier —a traditional microbrewery in Innsbruck. He returned to Australia a brewer and with Maria.
Now the Beechworth based brewers have 11 beers in their core range plus a bunch of specialty releases that you should keep an eye on.
At BOTH be sure to taste: *Exclusive Festival Beer* Belgian Sticky Date Pudding.
The team at Fixation had a fixation (get it) with great IPA, so they decided to create their own! Their focus on the freshest beer possible has obviously paid off because since launching in late 2015, Fixation Brewing has been awarded the Trophy for Excellence in Consistency at the Australian International Beer Awards, following gold medal success in 2016, 2017 and 2018.
At BOTH be sure to taste: *Exclusive Festival Beer* A delicious Mango & Pineapple IPA.
BentSpoke Brewing Co is the brainchild of Champion Australian brewer Richard Watkins and Tracy Margrain. The pair travelled the world drawing inspiration for their ideal brewpub. In 2014 BentSpoke threw its doors open to overwhelming support from the local community. 3000 litres of beer was served in the first week. 2 years and several awards later, with over 300,000 litres and 50 different beers and cider brewed, BentSpoke is firmly cemented in the Australian beer scene.
At BOTH be sure to taste: *Festival Rare Beer* Launching the highly anticipated return of Bent Jetty Sour IPA. Brewed in collab with their mates at Jetty Road Brewery, this beer features Loral, Mosaic Galaxy and Ekuanot hops. The souring has been achieved by using the natural bacteria on the grain.
Even though they’re reasonably fresh to the brewing scene as a collective you’d never know from the beers they’re producing.
Originally founded by Stef Constantoulas and Mick Neil, they then brought on one of Australia’s first female brewers with one of the most impressive resumes in the business, Sam Füss.
They’re now brewing four beers, have won a bunch of awards and aren’t slowing down any time soon.
At BOTH be sure to taste: They team will be pouring their XPA and their newly released HAZE.
Modus Operandi (Latin for Method of Operation) was created while husband and wife Grant and Jaz Wearin travelled around the US six
months, discovering every nook and cranny of the American craft beer world.
Inspired, they returned to the Northern Beaches of Australia where they started brewing fresh, local beer with live yeast flown in from the USA and the finest specialty malts and hops sourced from all over the globe.
At BOTH be sure to taste: *Festival Rare Beer Release* Pavlova Milkshake IPA.
Jayne Lewis and Danielle Allen are Two Birds Brewing; the driving force behind Australia’s first female owned brewing company. Located in Spotswood, this award-winning brewery typifies everything that is good about the craft beer industry in Australia.
These Two Birds are trailblazing their way into the record books by developing sophisticated, approachable beers that can be enjoyed with mates at a backyard BBQ or on the dinner table with your favourite meal.
At BOTH be sure to taste: *Exclusive Festival Beer* Coffee IPA, the two things we love – coffee and beer!
Started by seven friends (including surfing legend, Mick Fanning) and with brewing extraordinaire Scotty Hargrave at the brewing helm, Balter has picked up awards for every one of their core seven beers, plus they’ve invented a new sort along the way.
At BOTH be sure to taste: Have a taste of Tins of Glory, a sport invented by the Balter crew, where the humble tinnie hits centre stage as an implement of mass game action.
Plus they’re bringing a special Limited Release that you can’t get anywhere else… But it can’t be revealed until the day.
Surprisingly, the Hop Nation boys were originally making wine in New Zealand before they decided to shift to their second love, beer. They then set up shop in a warehouse in Footscray which now hosts 15 taps, including their core range and limited release beers.
At BOTH be sure to taste: *Exclusive Festival Launch Beer* The legends from Hop Nation and Mr West Bar & Bottle Shop put their heads together to create Holy Cannoli 7.5%, a white pastry stout.
Exit Brewing founders Frase and Grum first met in 2000 working in IT in Melbourne, which went on to inspire the name EXIT (ex-IT).
From humble beginnings without a large brewing capacity and only one tank, they initially decided not to go with a core range of beers and instead brewed individual numbered batches.
The Exit boys now have a core range of six beers, but continue to brew one off kegs and experiments to help them keep fresh.
At BOTH be sure to taste: *Exclusive Festival Beer* 10% Bigger Than Ben Hur-digo Triple IPA.
Beginning as a literal homebrew out of Chris and Penny Farmer’s Seaford home in 2016, Mr. Banks has grown to have three core beers, plus a number of seasonal and limited releases, and even a taproom series exclusive to their brewery.
But who actually is Mr. Banks you may ask? Turns out Mr. Banks is… Chris and Penny’s dog, Banks.
At BOTH be sure to taste: *National Launch Beer* First-time BOTHers Mr.Banks Brewing Co spent a day brewing with The Hop Supply Co. to create Mayor Of Flavour Town 7.5% Hazy IPA, made with Sabro (citrus tangerine) and Aussie Galaxy (pineapple, passionfruit) aroma hops.
Boatrocker Brewers & Distillers
Founded in 2009 by Matt and Andrea Houghton, Boatrocker has come a long way from its beginnings of selling its first beers from the back of their car.
It all started back in the 80’s when Matt was a teenager, with a television show called ‘The Beer Hunter’. This show was an inspiration for Matt’s love of all things beer, which then took him to Europe to explore all their beer culture has to offer.
This then lead to Matt heading to Ballarat Uni to study brewing where he met Andrea.
After dabbling in gypsey brewing, they started Australia’s first barrel room and cellar door which has grown into one of the largest barrel ageing facilities in Australia.
At BOTH be sure to taste: *Exclusive Festival Beer* House White, a barrel aged Belgian Blonde.
This Torquay based brewery produces and cans all of their eight beers on sight.
Blackman’s is the epitome of a family brewery – right down to the names of their beers, which are predominantly family members.
At BOTH be sure to taste: *Exclusive Festival Beer* Blackman’s Brewery are treating us all to a delicious Milk Choc Dark Lager.
You may recognise KAIJU! from their colourful cartoon branding, but there’s so much more to this hop heavy brewery created by brothers Nat and Callum Reeves.
Meaning ‘strange creature’ in Japanese, you’ll notice that each of KAIJU!’s eight beers has a monster theme, a play to their devastatingly good beer.
At BOTH be sure to taste: *Exclusive Festival Beer* What About Barb – A Rhubarb Ginger Sour.
Hargreaves Hill Brewing Company
Before making beer, founder Simon Walkenhorst’s commonplace was a concert hall rather than a brewery, performing classical piano pieces to the masses. With Simon’s partner in crime and in life, Beth Williams, also being an opera singer and musician, there was a melting pot of creativity and talent that could not be contained to just one form of art.
They then channelled that creativity into beer brewing. Fourteen years on, surviving the brewery being burnt down in the Black Saturday fires, Hargreaves Hill is continuing to thrive with a solid, award winning core range, and an astonishing number of seasonal releases.
At BOTH be sure to taste: *Exclusive Festival Beer* Dark Chocolate Ale – Double Choc Salted Caramel Brownie with Ice Cream.
Owned and operated by Joel and Janna Drysdale Joel’s his father John and step mother Heather, the inspiration for Venom Beer came from directly from a snake itself.
When John was bitten by a snake in his Mansfield garden he waited for Heather to get home and cracked a beer. Joel couldn’t stand the thought of his father drinking mass produced beer while dying from a snake bite, and so the Venom Golden Ale was born.
At BOTH be sure to taste: A collaboration beer with Handle Bar and Hop Supply Co – the ‘West Bendigo IPA’. A West Coast IPA by style, 7.5% ABV. Continuing with the Bendigo theme, they have sourced their malt for this beer directly from a local Bendigo farmer Euan Bayliss.
As four mates sat around drinking beer and questioning how it was made, they decided to have a crack at brewing their own. Old Wives Ales was certainly not free from bumps in the road. The deliciously refined brews we know and love today came from a lot of hard work, exploding bottles, dead yeast and beer that tasted more like cardboard than malt. But as you can see (and taste) hard work pays off.
At BOTH be sure to taste: *National Launch Beer* The Old Wives Ales crew present their Mulberry IPA.
The brewers at Tooborac draw their ideas from the traditional beer recipes, with Australian inspiration. An example is the Shearers Lager; it has been brewed to quench the thirst with clear, refined taste that slides down the throat easily, whilst the big tasting beers, such as the Woodcutters Ale, have been brewed to admire the subtle glow of the beer in the evening light and savour the taste as you discuss the days events.
At BOTH be sure to taste: Texas BBQ Smoked American Red Ale, brewed using locally grown malt and specially selected red malts, showcasing everything that is great about Texas BBQ.
Situated in the Woollen Mills in Castlemaine, Shedshaker had was originally named The Castlemaine Brewing Company, but after a brief staring competition with Lion Nathan, brewers of Castlemaine XXXX, and the owners of the word ‘Castlemaine’ apparently (despite leaving town in 1874) – they changed their name.
Shedshaker Brewing owners, Jacqueline Brodie-Hanns and Doug Falconer, hail from the worlds of music, events, marketing and graphic design and their diverse experience informs their approach to making beer. Aided and abetted by their able brewing team of Brad Iles and Jeff Carr, plus a great bunch of bar staff at their Taproom, Shedshaker makes classic styles with a modern twist in the old Woollen Mills in Castlemaine.
At BOTH be sure to taste: *Exclusive Festival Beer* Carmen Miranda Fruit Salad Saison 7%.
Bandicoot strongly believe that beer is for everyone, which is why they have a huge 10 beers in their core range.
The Echuca based brewery is not just about drinking delicious award winning beers; it’s also about beer education and enjoying the brewery view, where their beers are made. At Bandicoot the people that serve the beer, brew the beer. Every day is a meet the brewer day and they definitely encourage questions.
At BOTH be sure to taste: Throwback to your youth with their Passion Pop Passionfruit Pale Ale 4.3%
What brewers are you keen to meet at Bendigo On The Hop?