Brad Rogers leaves Matilda Bay, heads to Byron Bay

Brewer Brad Rogers recently headed for Byron Bay, New South Wales, after years behind the Matilda Bay brew kettles, making some of the best, most interesting beers in Australia.

Brad studied winemaking. But after a vintage or two he switched to brewing for Fosters in the mid nineties. He started at the old Tooth’s Kent Brewery, Sydney, and enjoyed a stint at Carlton Brewery, Fiji, before joining the company’s craft-brewing arm, Matilda Bay.

Although Matilda Bay originated in Fremantle, Brad worked mainly at their ‘Garage’ brewery in Dandenong, developing great beers like Alpha Pale Ale and Naked Ale – sold only at Young and Jackson’s,  Melbourne, home of the famous painting of Chloe.

Brad phoned the other day to say that he’d teamed up with entrepreneur Jamie Cook. He said that they’re developing a brewery in Byron Bay and expect to have their first beers available by August.
He’s not saying what styles we can look forward to – only that he’s going ‘to make just one or two properly’.

One of the partners owns eight pubs in the area, so the focus will be on draft beer. But there’ll be bottled stuff, too, so we may see Brad’s new brews in Canberra.

Copyright © Chris Shanahan 2008

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