Perth loves a good brewery, and with WA producing some of the finest craft beers in the country, why wouldn’t it? Follow our guide to find the best in town, whether you’re in the mood for a trendy urban bar or a rustic countryside microbrewery. Bottoms up!
NORTH OF THE RIVER
Indian Ocean Brewing Company
It’s little wonder this venue won WA’s Best Brewery at the 2013 Perth Royal Beer Show: situated in Mindarie Marina, Indian Ocean Brewing Company boasts incredible sunset views and top-notch beers. Drink The Indi White Cap,
a Belgian Wit Bier that’s equal parts cloudy, sweet and spicy. 33 Ocean Falls Boulevard, Mindarie (08) 9400 1111
SOUTH OF THE RIVER
Black Salt Brewery
This beachside venue offers a whole lot more than just stunning views of Port Beach and the Indian Ocean beyond. It also boasts the communal spirit of a small brewery – while you enjoy the house brews and seafood, let the kids go wild in Black Salt’s on-site playground! Drink The Black Salt Original Pilsner or Blonde. 42 Port Beach Road, North Fremantle (08) 9430 6866
This iconic Freo powerhouse thrives as both an internationally recognised brewery and a local go-to for comfort food. With an outdoor deck overlooking Freo’s Fishing Boat Harbour and a cavernous interior space, it’s easy to see why Little Creatures is one of Perth’s favourite breweries. Drink The always popular Pale Ale or Bright Ale. 40 Mews Road, Fremantle (08) 9430 5555
Situated along the buzzing South Terrace, The Monk Brewery is an easy-going space for lovers of live music, craft beers and delicious pub grub. Open till late and a perfect place for everything from pale to porter, The Monk will surely leave you well oiled and well fed. Drink The fruity and slightly spicy Kolsch.
33 South Terrace, Fremantle (08) 9336 7666
The Sail and Anchor
A long-standing veteran in the local brewing industry, The Sail and Anchor is a classic, quintessentially Freo venue that doubles as a viewing balcony for weekend street performances, as well as a convenient husband crèche for avid market punters. Drink Seasonal craft beer from one of the traditional English hand pumps. 64 South Terrace, Fremantle (08) 9431 1666
This multi-million dollar microbrewery is set to become Northbridge’s favourite new watering hole. Along with the capacity to produce 150,000 litres of beer per year, the venue will comprise a two-storey bar and skydeck overlooking the greenspace of Northbridge Piazza. Drink The Lager, created by famed brewer Ken Arrowsmith. Corner of Lake and James streets, Northbridge.
The Generous Squire
The home of internationally renowned James Squire beer is situated at the start of bustling Shafto Lane. The Generous Squire serves as a well-known social
refuge and the place to unwind after a hard day’s work. Drink Shafto’s Reward, a special bitter that is brewed fresh on site. 397 Murray Street (corner of Shafto Lane), Perth (08) 6311 7071
The Old Swan Brewery
This is arguably one of Perth’s most renowned breweries, and widely considered to be home to the best steak in town. Stunning views of the Swan River makes the Old Brewery the perfect place to enjoy a sumptuous Sunday lunch with award-winning beers. Drink The multiple award-winning Angus Pale Ale. 173 Mounts Bay Road, Perth (08) 9211 8999
Last Drop Brewery
A meeting point for creatures of comfort that appreciate a dimly lit Tudor-inspired venue, Last Drop Brewery welcomes all those who love a wallet-friendly, traditionally brewed pick-me-up. Drink Bock, a barrel-aged dark lager made with German and Czech hops. 507 Nicholson Road, Canning Vale (08) 9456 4228
The Principal comfortably lies within the bounds of both a contemporary brew bar and a chic, Modern Australian restaurant. This Midland establishment is the perfect pit stop on the way to or from the Swan Valley. Drink The Principal’s Pilsener is a local favourite.
23 Cale Street, Midland (08) 9250 2995
This understated East Vic Park microbrewery produces all natural, preservative-free beers and ciders. Look out for $6.50 pint specials, and eat your fill from their extensive menu, featuring tapas, steaks and more. Drink The Mexican Pilsner and Tokyo Super Dry. 774 Albany Highway, East Victoria Park (08) 9470 5818
Duckstein Brewery offers an authentic taste of Germany, from its jovial beer-hall ambience to its traditional cuisine. On weekends, the Swan Valley brewery fills with merrymakers keen for a frothy stein and some toe-tapping to the regular live music. Drink The brewery’s classic Germanic beers like the Hefeweiss or Dunkel. 9720 West Swan Road, Henley Brook (08) 9296 0620
Elmar’s in the Valley
Warm and enchanting, Elmar’s has a sense of Hogwarts’ Great Hall charm to it. The Swan Valley venue hosts an in-house brewery, family-friendly restaurant and charming small goods shop. We love the long communal tables. Drink The Schwarzbier (a dark lager) or the refreshing Ein Stein Pilsner. 8731 West Swan Road, Henley Brook (08) 9296 6354
Feral Brewing Company
With up to 16 craft beers on tap at any given time, it’s no wonder this brewery has a reputation among beer fanatics for offering more than just your average pint. We highly recommend enjoying the picturesque surroundings and
a pint with Feral’s generous charcuterie board. Drink The chocolatey Smoked Porter. 152 Haddrill Road, Baskerville (08) 9296 4657
With seasonal, hand-crafted beers as well as fresh wood-fired pizzas, there’s no better way to while away an afternoon than in Ironbark Brewery’s sun-dappled courtyard. The only challenge is deciding between the 45 beers available on any given day. Drink The subtly spiced alcoholic Ginger Beer. 55 Benara Road, Caversham (08) 9377 4400
The appropriately named Mash Brewing produces an exciting mishmash of beers inspired by both international favourites and the usual suspects. Take a seat at a communal table to watch the brew crew at work while you down a pint or two. Drink The 7% Charlie Brown Belgian Dubbel – an American spin on English brown ale. 10250 West Swan Road, Henley Brook (08) 9296 5588
TOP TEN CRAF BEER VENUES
In the mood to broaden your beer horizons? Then a visit to one of Perth’s craft beer bars is a must.
1. The Quarie Bar and Brasserie
Hammond Park’s favourite watering hole is also home to a 100 bottle-strong list of craft beers hailing from Belgium, the UK, Denmark and the US, to name a few. So good is its list, in fact, that Beer & Brewer Magazine dubbed it the country’s second-best beer list. Not too shabby! 2 Macquarie Boulevard, Hammond Park (08) 9414 3500
2. Clancy’s Freo
There’s more to love about Clancy’s Fish Pub Fremantle than just its chilled-out vibe, massive fireplace and regular John Butler sightings. It’s widely considered Australia’s first craft beer venue, and is a champion of local craft brews, with taps pouring Bootleg, Mash, Cheeky Monkey, Feral, Nail, Swan Brewery and Cowaramup Brewing Company. Oh, and Little Creatures, of course. What are neighbours for? 51 Cantonment Street, Fremantle (08) 9335 1351
3. Five Bar
With an ever-rotating selection of local and imported craft beers and hip Beaufort Street digs, Five Bars is where the north-of-the-river folks go for a pint or two… or three. Our favourite night of the week is Taphouse Wednesdays, which combine local craft beer with dude food fare such as wings, hotdogs
and ribs. 560 Beaufort Street, Mount Lawley 0467 534 267
4. The Precinct
The self-proclaimed ‘beer nerds’ at The Precinct have created a beer lover’s dream menu, stocked with ales, porters, lagers and stouts from the four corners of the world. Our favourite – just for sheer wackiness – is the Founders Breakfast Stout, which is brewed with chocolate and coffee. Best of all?
It’s perfectly acceptable to order with brekkie. 834 Albany Highway, East Victoria Park (08) 9355 2880
5. Norfolk Hotel
Need further proof that Fremantle is the beer capital of WA? Norfolk Hotel boasts 32 taps serving draught cider from local breweries The Real River Company and Billabong, along with eastern states’ brews from the likes of Dogbolter, Mountain Goat and Two Birds. 47 South Terrace, Fremantle
(08) 9335 5405
JUST BREW IT
Much to our chagrin, some of WA’s best breweries are too busy brewing to bother with hospitality. They include the award-winning Gage Roads Brewing in Fremantle, Billabong Brewing in Myaree, the internationally recognised Nail Brewing that brews out of Bassendean, and Beaten Track Brewery in Kalgoorlie-Boulder.
Think wine is the only thing worth drinking in the southwest? Think again.
Blackwood Valley Brewing Company
We’re not sure what we love more: this brewery’s cosy fireplace or its award-winning Stout Porter. Enjoying both is bliss. 43 Gifford Road, Bridgetown
Bootleg’s picnic table-strewn lawn is one of Margaret River drinkers’ favourite places to knock back a cold one. Corner of Johnson and Puzey roads, Margaret River
This Denmark brewery is producing some of state’s best German-style beers, including Hefeweizen and Festbier. 678 South Coast Highway, Hay
Bush Shack Brewery
Unconventional to say the least, Bush Shack Brewery’s beer comes in zany flavours including chilli, chocolate and mango. 3 Hemsley Road, Yallingup
An idyllic view, awesome beer and a kick-arse playground for kids. What more could you ask for? 4259 Caves Road, Margaret River
Set on a sprawling estate surrounded by vineyards, Colonial is the perfect wine-tour pit stop. Osmington Road, Margaret River
Cowaramup Brewing Co
This family-owned brewery is as popular for its spacious deck as for its chorizo-topped pizza. 229 Treeton Road North, Cowaramup
Eagle Bay Brewery
Beloved for its epic views, amazing food and Pale Ale, it’s a brewery you could spend the whole day at. 236 Eagle Bay Road, Naturaliste
Moody Cow Brewery
Like the sound of a Lemon Lime Lager? You can find it at this family-friendly brewery. Ferguson Road, Ferguson
Located in the heart of Dunsborough, Occy’s location is as convenient as its beers are tasty. Dunn Bay Road, Dunsborough
Old Coast Road Brewery
The reasons to visit are many: regular live music, award-winning beers and even tours of the brewery itself. National Route 1, Myalup
Wild Bull Brewery
Weekenders flock to this brewery for its beer and moreish chips. 562 Pile Road, Ferguson
BEST IN BEER
According to the Australian Bureau of Statistics, Australian beer consumption is at its lowest level in 66 years. But don’t go thinking that means Aussies are losing their taste for ale. The changes simply reflect smarter spending. “Beer drinkers are more discerning these days about what they spend their money on,” says brewer Sean Symons. “They might be drinking less in terms of volume, but what they do drink is of a much higher quality than in years past.” And he should know. Sean was the chief judge of this year’s Perth Royal Beer Show in October, a task that required he taste 423 artisan beers by commercial and amateur brewers alike. So how did WA’s vibrant craft beer scene stack up against the competition? “WA’s craft beer scene is a little more mature than other states, and is known in the industry as being tough to beat,” says Sean. “That being said, there’s been this real explosion in the eastern states and the quality of entries this year proves that.” Nevertheless, the local brews that impressed Sean the most were Feral Brewery’s Hop Hog, the Saison from Last Drop Brewery, and Nail Brewing’s Clout Stout.