Canberra’s Wig & Pen brewpub – Canberra landmark returns

After closing its city brewpub on 30 October, Canberra’s much-loved Wig and Pen poured first beers at its new Llewellyn Hall home on Monday 12 January.

Owner Lachie McOmish opted for a low-key launch, heralded by nothing more than a “not long now” Facebook post on 1 January.

Eleven days later the Wig opened. And the customers came. “We did about the same business as we would’ve on a usual Monday at the old Wig and Pen”, said McOmish.

On our visit a day later, patrons enjoyed their brews as workers – no longer visible in the bar area – completed the finishing touches to the brewing and storage rooms.

Brewer, Dr Tom Lillicrap, said he hoped to begin brewing at the new site by mid January. Meanwhile, the bar served beer brewed at the original site and kept in cold storage during the move.

Wig and Pen Thousand Monkeys Hefeweizen $12 pint, $7 half-pint
Dr Tom Lillicrap says he’s leaving the Wig for post-doctoral studies. But he’s handing over to Frazer Brown and Alan Ball, his collaborators on this delicious wheat beer, infused with fresh plumcots, navel oranges and lychees. The fresh fruit and orange-rind flavours make an already spritely, fruity beer even more enjoyable.

Copyright © Chris Shanahan 2015
First published 27 and 28 January in Fairfax digital media and the Canberra Times