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Food and beverage stories

Join the shout on Tassie’s Beer Trail

Edition162 Join the shout on Tassie's Beer

Beer and pubs have been close to Tasmanian hearts since the early 1800s and now an official Beer Trail will help more visitors to share the local pleasures.

The Tasmanian Government and the Brewers Association launched the trail in June as a key element of a two-year Tasmanian Beer Tourism Plan.

“As promised, we are investing $250,000 in the Tasmanian Beer Tourism Plan, along with $100,000 from the Brewers Association, to promote and grow the industry,” the Premier, Will Hodgman, said.

A dedicated website offers an extensive guide to local breweries, tours, tastings, festivals, events and sales.

Tasmanians started brewing in the early days of settlement and were soon growing their own world-class hops and barley. They always enjoyed access to excellent water, the third key brewing input.

Cascade Brewery in Hobart and James Boags & Sons in Launceston are among Australia’s oldest and finest breweries.

In recent years they have been joined by boutique operations, such as Moo Brew, Iron House Point, Van Diemen Brewing, Seven Sheds, the Two Metre Tall Co and Hazards Ale.

The smaller brewers fulfil a yearning for pre-industrial times, when beers with individual flavours were essentially artisanal products using locally grown hops and barley and being sold to local consumers.

The State is dotted with pubs, many of which are among the oldest in Australia.

Tasmania’s highly successful brand – which helped attract $2 billion in tourists’ spending in the year to March – owes quite a debt to beer.

Cascade Premium, in a stylish bottle with a beautifully designed wilderness label, lifted the national profile and price of Tasmanian beer in the 1980s.

In the 1990s, James Boag’s Premium was launched into the same upper-end market and secured quick success in Australia and Asia.

James Boag’s Premium can claim to be the most-awarded beer in Australian brewing history.

Through marketing based on place-of-origin and a firm commitment to quality, Tasmania’s two esteemed premiums helped build the State’s brand during the final decades of the 20th century.

(Former Brand Tasmania Council Chairman, Lyndon Adams, was involved in launching and marketing both the premium pacesetters).

Now the Tasmanian Beer Trail will complement existing wine, whisky and cider trails and will be promoted in a targeted advertising campaign.

A beer events season starts in Spring with the Micro Brew Fest in Hobart, followed by Beer Lovers Week and the capital’s world-class Tasmanian International Beerfest in October.

Early next year Launceston will again host its Esk Beerfest. For everything you need to know visit the Tasmanian Beer Trail


7 July 2015, Edition 162

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