Say hello to Mark Butterworth, one of three that head up the brew team at Beer Garden Brewing Company in Port Lincoln. Before taking on the mission to build a brewery, Mark worked as a process engineer for a mining company. Both Mark and his wife Janie, who is actually an analytical chemist, recently completed a brewers course at TAFE SA to further develop their brewing knowledge. Throw in their new head brewer Dan and the team is complete; Janie and Dan will feature in subsequent weeks. Take a look at Mark’s answers and learn a little more about Beer Garden Brewing.
Q1. Who are you and how are you involved in the SA beer industry?
Mark Butterworth, joint owner of Beer Garden Brewing with my wife Janie, and part of the ménage á trois brewing team we have going on here (Janie, Dan and I form our brewing team).
Q2. What are some of the great moments you have had whilst being involved in this industry?
Opening day on 2 December last year! It was the culmination of about 15 months of intense planning, execution of the plan, stress, some family time and consulting work to keep on top of the bills. Since we’ve opened the great moments are interacting with punters who enjoy our brews and our beer garden.
Q3. Predicting the future, what trends are coming in the near future for beer in Australia?
I think IPAs will remain a core part of craft beer taste but we’ll see other styles joining the fray. Sours will be popular but I don’t see them breaking ground with all punters, I see beers that are more appealing to the broader beer drinking public coming into prominence as craft beer continues to attract a wider appeal amongst drinkers. This will ultimately lead to more lagers and I’d love to see darker beers such as rich, malty English browns, porters and stouts.
Q4. What is your favourite beer style and how did this come to be?
I’ve got a bit of a Hefeweizen thing going on at the moment; I love the surprise packet that is the Hef with its banana and clove esters, I think it looks like Clark Kent in the glass but packs a Superman ka-pow of estery goodness that is tasty and surprising to the first-time drinker. Not a flavour that all enjoy but one that I really look forward to on a warm day.
Q5. Where is one place that you would love to see good beer served?
On airplanes; there’s plenty of great craft beer available in cans nowadays but none has yet made it to any of the flights I’ve been on. It would make any flight more enjoyable sitting back with the headphones on, drinking a nice IPA and imagining that your personal space was intact.
Q6. Do you have any exciting news you can share with me? Maybe about future plans, collaborations or anything new?
We currently have six brews (Eyre Peninsula Ale (Australian Pale Ale), Cage Diver IPA, Captain Porter, Section 49 Wheat Beer, Bitter Pils Pilsner and Original Sin Coffee Stout – a collaboration with Eyre Roasted, a local coffee roaster) and we’ve got a yet to be named Berliner Weisse (open to suggestions) fermenting away. I’m excited, I hope everyone else is excited to taste what we come up with!
Q7. What gets you out of bed in the morning?
Someone’s feet in my face, typically one of our three boys’ feet that is.
Q8. Do you dream about beer? If so, what is your most memorable dream about beer?
I dream about not passing my final University exams a lot, as for beer I’d say my only recent dreams are about our brewery failing in some way. Sometimes it’s safer for my mental health to stay awake.
Q9. What is your favourite season for beer drinking? Why?
There’s no off-season for beer, but I think winter when there’s a nice (controlled) fire inside, it’s freezing outside and I’m enjoying a coffee stout with my family and friends.
Q10. If you could choose any profession, what would it be? Why?
What I’m doing now, and I’m not kidding! I’ve thrown away a career in mining to pursue a dream of applying process engineering and chemistry for the enjoyment and good of humanity, it doesn’t get much better than that from my way of thinking!
Anyone want to help out with a name for Beer Garden’s new Berliner Weisse? Get in contact and I will forward on your suggestions. I personally haven’t been to Beer Garden Brewing yet but need to get there sometime soon, we should get a few cars together from Adelaide and make a weekend trek. Thanks Mark for your answers, over the next few weeks we will feature Dan and Janie.