What’s Happening in SA: Issue #6


HAPPY NEW YEAR to all my readers, I thank you for following along in 2017 and 2018 looks to be a belter. Already there is news of at least ten new breweries or tap houses that will be opening or upgrading in 2018, which is huge news considering we are not even one month in to the year. Since the last issue, I managed to take a short road trip (7200km) over to Western Australia and check out a small snippet of their beer scene. They have some great bars and beers, it was just unfortunate I didn’t get to see more. The middle of January, leading into February, is party time for South Australia, with the weather still very much conducive to a good beer. I look forward to hosting more events in 2018 and providing more new and interesting content for my site. Again, I thank all my readers for following along and I wish you all the best for 2018.

Remember, if you have something that you think fits the parameters of this newsletter style post, please email the details through to me at thecraftbeerking@gmail.com. Let’s begin.


All SA craft beer events can be accessed via the events page for more details, however, here is a simple run down of some events coming up. In order of date.

Big Shed NEIPA Launch @ West Thebby Social

Sparkke’s 1st Birthday @ Rocket Bar and Rooftop

Font of Tartness @ Wheaty

Tour De Fork @ Elder Park

Pikes Beer Co 3rd Birthday @ Pikes

Beer-B-Q @ Little Bang

Hottest 100 Countdowns @ Prancing Pony, Gilbert Street and West Thebby Social

Thebartonia- Summer Festival @ Wheaty

Beer and Bite @ Gumeracha 

New Beers:

Wheaty: Two new beers from the Wheaty Brewing team. The first in the form of a collaboration with Bridge Road, Berried Alive, is Bretted Blackberry Saison co-fermented with Dupont Saison Yeast and Bridge Road’s Brett C strain straight from their Foeder and the second is a watermelon and lime gose launching on the 19th of January.

Pirate Life: Continuing on with their barrel ageing program, the Pirates have launch a Strawberry IIPA. A crazy amount of strawberries was used at a variety of different stages in the creation of this beer, including in the barrel and for dry hopping.

Little Bang: Two new beers from the Stepney lads, Fancy and Little Banger. A farmhouse style ale co-fermented with Cabernet and Sauvignon grapes, Fancy is the first beer released from their barrels. Whilst Little Banger, is a 3 percent session APA, with an easy 18 IBUs.

Libation Army: (See also news) Two first off beers for Marco and his new label Libation Army. A tropical Belgium style pale ale called Tropical Riot and a 3.8 percent session ale named Gentle Upheaval.

Robe: The Great Southern Ocean Gose will be launched soon from the Robe Town Brewery. The beer is described as, “a simple gose style ale made using a sour mash and ocean water.”

Forktree: Ben’s second beer, a red ale called Sunset Ale, is now in circulation around SA. A malt driven beer, with light hop aromas, a nice toffee flavour and gentle bitterness.

South Australian Craft Beer News

Grumpys: It seems that Grumpy’s Brewery in the Adelaide Hills is under contract after it was put on the market following a fire in the kitchen.

Mismatch: Brewing has commenced at their Nairne site in the Adelaide Hills, meaning fresh beer will be hitting the shelves and taps very soon. An IPA joins their core range, alongside the already popular Session Ale, Pale Ale and Lager. The new site is huge, with plenty of space to grow in the future. The cellar door looks to be open around mid 2018. Watch this space.

Big Shed: Why just brew beer, when you can make vodka too? The lads in the Big Shed have converted the famous Golden Stout Time into a spirit version, creating a vodka that can be likened to a honeycomb liqueur.

Ministry of Beer: Brett’s Mosaic dry hopped Berliner, Raspberry Berliner and barrel fermented Saison have been given the bottle treatment and is in stores now. These are getting snapped up quickly and are selling at a cracking price too.

Libation Army: Libation Army has been added to the directory and owner, Marco, has two new releases to start the ball rolling. A contract brewer, brewing his first two beers at the TAFE.

Sweet Amber Brewing: The taps are in, the brewhouse nearly ready and the tanks being cleaned literally as you read. Sweet Amber’s brewing arm is nearly all systems go for opening with just a few more touches to put in place before starting to brew. Their 8-tap system allows beer to be drunk fresh from the cold room or taken home in the form of a 1L bottle. Their new brewer, Brayden Owlinson, comes with brewing experience from NOMAD in Sydney, with a short stint at Birra Del Borgo in Italy. He also has brewing ties with the NZ beer scene and will be the face of the label moving forward.

Shifty Lizard: While we are on new venues, the Shifty Lizard lads have just announced the opening of their own taproom in Willunga. Their official opening is planned for the end of January 2018. The space is an old butchers shop that has been retrofitted to suit a 75-person front of house and a micro-brewery out the back.

Pikes: Pikes Beer Co turns three years old and they are celebrating with a shindig at their Clare brewery. For more details check the events calendar. Congratulations guys on three successful years brewing.

Sparkke: Another birthday, however, the Sparkke girls are slightly younger, turning one year old and they too are throwing a party, in the city. Again, check the calendar for info and congratulations on one year.

Gilbert Street Hotel: A small crew flew to Sydney to put down their first ever collaboration with Modus Operandi. The watermelon and mint Gose will be ready and pouring in time for their Hottest 100 party on the 27th of January.

Coopers: The malting factory at Coopers has been in full swing since opening officially in late 2017 and their wares are starting to hit breweries including local labels, Little Bang and Rehn in the Barossa.

Little Bang: Tinnies have arrived in Stepney ready for the canning of their Icon lager.

Mephisto: A new batch of Mephisto IPA is set to hit the taps on Thursday 11th January. Pete has tweaked the recipe slightly and has said that “it is tasting pretty damn good.” The first keg will be pouring at the King’s Head before the end of the week.

Woolshed/Robe: These two breweries have teamed up to brew a beer for the Beer and Bite Festival at Gumeracha in February. An artisan sourdough ale, aptly named Barley Sandwich, is a Golden Bread Ale.

Wheaty: This year’s Font of Tartness kicks of on Sunday 14th of January will a killer line up:

  1. ​Lervig – Mango Squirt
  2. Rodenbach – Grand Cru
  3. 8 Wired – Palate Trip
  4. Bridge Road/Wheaty Bar Series – Berried Alive! 
  5. To Øl – Santa Gose Fuck It
  6. Wheaty Brewing Corps – Heaps Berry Saison

Just to start off. Ben from Bridge Road Brewers will be in the house on Wednesday 17th of January from 6pm to share a beer and a chat.

Hottest 100 Beers: If you haven’t voted for your favourite beers of 2017, jump over to the GABS website to have your say. The results are announced on the 27th of January via the same website. South Australia has had some great success in previous years and it would be great to see more SA beers out muscle the other states.

News aplenty in this issue and there is definitely heaps more fun to come this year, with new bars, breweries and tap houses popping up everywhere.

If you have any news, events or general shenanigans about the SA craft beer industry, please send through an email, thecraftbeerking@gmail.com. Cheers.

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