Canberra’s microbrewery scene is about more than the lager – it’s about appreciating the creative process, drawing on local produce, and finding the best match for scrumptious meals.
Microbrewery and local hangout
Lovers of craft beer are flocking to Canberra’s BentSpoke Brewing Co. in Braddon. It is the brainchild of Canberrans Richard Watkins, one of Australia’s most respected and awarded brewers, and Tracy Margrain.
The brewery has recently picked up more accolades, with two of its beers making the top 20 in the GABS Hottest 100 Aussie Craft Beers. Bentspoke's Crankshaft beer was awarded eighth place and Barley Griffin came in at 19.
BentSpoke offers almost 20 different varieties of beer and cider all brewed on premises, including cask-conditioned real ales, lagers, seasonal one-off batches and barrel-aged Belgian styles.
The variety of brews with names such as the Barley Griffin, Mort’s Gold and Braddon Bitter pay homage to Canberra identities and landmarks. Handcrushed cider using apples from nearby popular apple growing region, Batlow, is another speciality of BentSpoke.
The brewery is on full-display so you can watch the head brewer hard at work on the next batch of beer while sampling the latest brew, while the tasty menu consists of pub food using regional produce.
Continue your Canberra craft beer journey by visiting Zierholz Brewery at Kembla Street in Fyshwick. Since 2005, brewer Christoph Zierholz has been brewing German-inspired beers with a Canberra twist. At their University of Canberra bar, you can catch some tunes while sampling a bitter, dry Pils or a smooth, rich flavoured ale.
In Fyshwick you can also enjoy an outstanding German-inspired menu and take in the view of the brewery. Zierholz is also served on tap at many of Canberra's best restaurants and bars.
The traditional Canberra tavern
Be sure to visit Canberra's legendary Wig and Pen Tavern and Brewery on the ground floor of Llewellyn Hall on the Australian National University campus.
Founded in 1993 by microbiologist Lachie McOmish, this institution has been a stalwart of all things wort when it comes to Canberra brewing.
Brewing 16 different varieties of beer, the vibe is ‘English pub’ with a menu of seasonal, annual and special brews plus traditional pub food.
Also keep an eye out for local brews from Pact Beer Co., available in many fine local bars and restaurants across Canberra. Local bottle shops and liquor stores also sell their native brews to take home to enjoy.
Capital Brewing Co. create ‘good natured brews’ that are rich in malt and hops. Their beers are available on tap at many local Canberra bars.
Want to try brewing your own unique blend? Head out to Hume to Tortured Gum Brewery where you can create your own gourmet brew using commercial-grade microbrewery equipment. You can even design your own label for your bottles.
There is a thriving food and wine culture in Canberra, so keep up-to-date with the latest news by subscribing to our newsletter.