GRAND BREW

Alpine Observer - - Front Page - By JUSTIN JEN­VEY

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.”

PHOTO: Justin Jen­vey

PHOTO: Justin Jen­vey

BULK BEER: Head brewer Richard Cham­ber­lin is lov­ing Bright Brew­ery’s new whole­sale pro­duc­tion fa­cil­ity.

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