The Gold Coast's Top Craft Beer Breweries
Craft beer is made by traditional means and brewed with the intention of creating interesting, complex and unique flavours. While the big breweries are slowly moving in on the craft brewing industry, there are still plenty of great little breweries on the Gold Coast creating craft beers that more than satisfy this definition.
Brewery vs microbrewery
The difference between a brewery such as Lion Nathan, and a microbrewery is size and output. While a traditional brewery produces millions of barrels of beer every year, a microbrewery may only produce a few hundred, if that.
Microbreweries are about specialty beers which are typically made in small batches to experiment with new styles and flavours, using different ingredients and fermentation processes.
Because they are so small, most microbreweries do their own promotion and distribution. Most have a tasting room or ‘cellar door’, often attached to a pub or restaurant so patrons can view the process then sample the creation.
Why craft beer is better
There are several reasons why craft beers are becoming so popular and one of the main ones is because they just taste better than the mass produced alternative.
Craft brewers spend a lot of time focusing on the quality of their beer, as they generally use natural ingredients. This is so the finished product has all the body, flavour and character which the brewer envisioned for each recipe.
Craft beers also pack more punch than regular beer, averaging between 5-10% alcohol content. This not only translates into a cheaper night out, but fewer trips to the toilet as well.
Craft beer also not only tastes better, it’s also better for the local community. Microbrewers tend to keep their money in the local area and support (and sometimes even creating) other local businesses around them.
4. Health benefits
And believe it or not, craft beer also has health benefits (in moderation of course), containing soluble fibre, some B vitamins, silicon, antioxidants and more nutrients than a glass of red wine.
Craft breweries on the Gold Coast
The Gold Coast's microbrewing industry is going from strength to strength. Whether you're eager to sample the creations of craft masters or try your own hand at brewing, here are some of the finest independent breweries that have opened their doors throughout the region.
Aardvark and Arrow, Varsity Lakes
Aardvark and Arrow offers the quality of a large corporation, whilst providing the service of a family-owned business. It’s the perfect place to go with a group beer enthusiasts for a day of creative and challenging brewing, mentored by brewery experts.
Balter Brewing Company, Currumbin
Balter Brewing Company is one of the Gold Coast’s most awarded breweries, founded by pro surfers Mick Fanning and Joel Parkinson. The brewery offers brewery tours, a laneway bar, and a cellar door.
Laughing Lizard Brewing Company, Arundel
One of the region's most versatile brewers, Laughing Lizard Brewing Company has a range of craft beer, from light, crisp beers to dark, smoky ales. Visitors can create their own flavours over a two week period, including every stage from brewing and fermentation to bottling and capping.
Pickled Pig Brewery, Tweed Heads South
Take a tour of Pickled Pig Brewery, a family-run brewery specialising in a range of organic beers that are free from chemicals, preservatives and hangovers. The brewery is completely eco-friendly, and offers tasting tours for keen beer connoisseurs.
Burleigh Brewing Company, Burleigh Heads
A microbrewery with a difference, the Burleigh Brewing Company favours traditional methods of brewing to get more authentic flavours. Beer enthusiasts can take a tour of the brewery before sampling the range of European-style beers and ales.
Try it for yourself
Now that you know how it’s made, who’s making it and why it tastes better, here’s a list of great brew bars in Coolangatta where you can sample some of Australia’s best craft beers for yourself:
An enticing selection of tapas and desserts and a well-stocked bar of local beers, creative cocktails and vintage wines - Bin 72 is the ideal location for a long lunch with a view.
Great food, mouth-watering desserts and a well stocked bar including Stone & Wood on tap, Pickled Pig cider and a great range of locally brewed beers.
Located in the Boardriders store, you can enjoy home-style food, artisan coffee and an extensive range of beers both on tap and bottled whilst in a surf store. You can have craft beer and a shop at the same time - what more could you want?
Have a look at what’s on at The Strand Coolangatta when you’re next on the Gold Coast!