BRIGHT Brewery official opened its new production facility last night after the recent completion of the multi-million dollar project. Head brewer Richard Chamberlin (pictured) will now be tasked with introducing the company’s mountain crafted beer to markets across the country. The new 1050sq metre brewhouse called the ‘Fred Shed’, in memory of Bright Brewery co-founder, the late Fiona ‘Fred’ Reddaway has the potential to produce two million litres of beer a year. Mr Chamberlin said the aim in the first 12 months will be to produce about half a million litres.
It’s Thursday, February 8 and Richard Chamberlin is busy checking a batch of beer he’s making in Bright Brewery’s new production facility in Churchill Avenue.
Chamberlin is still getting used to the new setup which is three times the size of that on-site at the brewery’s Gavan Street location.
He’s brewing Hellfire Amber Ale on this morning, one of Bright Brewery’s core range of beers which they hope to soon introduce to markets across the country.
Despite opening more than 10 years ago, the first decade of Bright Brewery’s history has been spent developing the brand as a destination and hospitality offering in the heart of Bright.
But the new 1050sq metre brew house called the ‘Fred Shed’, in memory of Bright Brewery co-founder, the late Fiona ‘Fred’ Reddaway is about to change all that.
“Initially our focus will be Victoria and particularly Melbourne which has such a big craft beer scene,” head brewer Richard Chamberlin said.
“It’s a key market for us to get into, a lot of people who come to Bright Brewery are coming up from Melbourne for their holidays and enjoying our beer.
“They often ask where they can get our beer in Melbourne but a part from maybe some specialist craft beer stores or from our online store there really isn’t anywhere.
“Being able to satisfy those demands first and being able to have our beer as widely available in Victoria as possible is what we’re aiming to do.”
The multi-million dollar facility which was designed and built with a focus on sustainability, and delivering a better product via an improved level of efficiency during the brewing process, has the potential to produce two million litres of beer a year.
Mr Chamberlin said the aim in the first 12 months will be to produce about half a million litres.
“We can produce 1250 litres per batch at the other site but with this new setup we can make 3500 litres per batch,” he said.
“Having four process vessels in the brewhouse compared to two and a larger water storage facility means we can do up to four brews a day.
“Being able to produce around 14,000 litres a day is where the big advantage is of having this kind of setup.
“Currently we produce around 120,000 litres a year so with the amount of tank space we’ve got at the moment we should be able to make about half a million litres a year, that’s the goal for the first 12- 18 months.”
Bright Brewery will focus its initial wholesale production on its core range of beers, those being Blowhard Pale Ale, Hellfire Amber Ale, Alpine Ale and Bright Lager. “Pale Ales and IPA’s are the most popular beers on the craft beer market but it’s actually only in the last year that our Pale Ale has become our best seller,” Mr Chamberlin said.
“That’s obviously one of the beers we want to push but the beers we produce on a large scale are going to be determined by the market.
“We might start wholesaling our core range but people might not take a liking to them and decide you know what we love the Fainters Dubbel or Staircase Porter.”
Ahead of the production facilities official opening last night, Mr Chamberlin said he was still pinching himself in regard to the size of his new workplace.
“We spent nine months designing it and even before any soil was turned I couldn’t picture what it was going to look like,” he said.
“Even during the build it was still quite difficult to envisage but the result is just fantastic and even when I walk through the door in the morning I still think ‘wow’. “The sundeck out the back is a pretty good addition but I’m a brewer so I love seeing shiny stainless steel and the bigger we grow the more stainless steel tanks we’ll have.”
BULK BEER: Head brewer Richard Chamberlin is loving Bright Brewery’s new wholesale production facility.