Something brewing in the Aussie alps

Kevin and Alison O’Neill created the Snowy Mountains Brewery brand in 2004. Although the beer has been brewed at AIB near Camden (and at Geelong and Mildura, too, following its success), the couple always planned to build a brewery in Jindabyne, connecting the ales tangibly with their alpine-inspired names – Crackenback Pale Ale, Bullocks Pilsner, Razorback Red Ale and Charlotte’s Hefeweizen.

But alas for Kevin and Alison, it looks like Chuck Hahn, of Sydney’s Malt Shovel Brewery (owned by Lion Nathan), will be in the Aussie Alps before them.

Chuck expects to be brewing in Jindabyne’s Banjo Paterson Inn between January and March 2009. He says he’s established the Kosciusko Brewing Company and, assuming development and licensing approval, should be serving the first of his Kosciusko beers long before 2009’s first snowflakes appear.

He says the beers will have local names and be brewed to the local taste – kicking off with a refreshing pale ale style and following with something stronger and hoppier for the ski season. Chuck says visitors will be able to see the copper kettles from the bottle shop and to view the beer cellar through portholes in the floor.

Ben Granger-Holcombe of Snowy Mountains Brewery says that his company still hoped to open a brewery in Jindabyne but that plans had not been finalised.

Copyright © Chris Shanahan 2008