Sydney has quite a collection of places where they brew their own suds. Here are some of Sydney's best microbreweries.
The Lord Nelson Brewery Hotel
The Lord Nelson's microbrewery churns out six varieties, ranging from the light and fluffy Trafalgar Pale Ale (an English-style bitter) to the full-bodied and malty Old Admiral Ale. The Lord Nelson's lovely old interiors have exposed sandstone walls, timber floorboards and plenty of comfy spots to settle in and imbibe some ale. The pub's bar menu includes burgers, pies, curries, pasta and steak sandwiches, while the bistro serves up hearty eats like fish pies, rabbit ragout and great slabs of steak.
19 Kent Street, The Rocks
(02) 9251 4044
Harts Pub is the home of The Rocks Brewing Company and the majority of the 12 tapped beers poured in the venue come from the basement. They also pour beers from indie breweries like Young Henry's and the Illawarra Brewing Company. The taps change regularly, but like The Lord Nelson, expect to run the gamut from golden ales and pale ales through to porters and stouts. If you don't want to commit to an entire glass, they also do tasting paddles.
176 Cumberland Street, The Rocks
(02) 9251 6030
Schwartz Brewery Hotel
In the belly of this old boozer (formerly the Macquarie Hotel), you'll find Schwartz's microbrewery, which produces ales such as Dr Schwartz Pils, Pale Ale and Schwartz Bier. They also produce cold weather seasonals like the Hefeweizen, Belgian Strong Ale and Porter, as well summery brews like the Sydney Summertime Ale. The Schwartz's Pub Life bistro dishes out interesting eats to match your brews. Every Wednesday is crazy burger night. Expect things like the Tropic Thunder (fried chicken, topped with a beer battered pineapple fritter, cheese, and jalapeño and bacon relish).
40-44 Wentworth Avenue, Surry Hills
(02) 8262 8888
Redoak Beer Cafe
This city beer joint brews 40 beers in-house and offers around 20 on tap at any given time. Head brewer David Hollyoak has won numerous awards for his work. To see why, try the Framboise Froment (a Belgian-style ale with fruity notes) or the Bock (a strong, malty German-style lager). The adventurous can also sample the Blackberry Hefeweizen, Oatmeal Stout or the Belgium Choc-Cherry Stout. The food is taken seriously as well, with beer and food matching tasting plates particularly popular. Amber fluid is also part of the desserts – try beer chocolate truffles or beer ice cream to cap off your meal.
201 Clarence Street, Sydney
(02) 9262 3303
4 Pines Brewing Company
Located just a skip and a jump from the ferry wharf, this place is a shrine to the amber fluid. Try their Pale Ale, Kolsch, Hefeweizen or Extra Special Bitter. You can learn more about the beers by reading the tasting notes on the wall or by simply diving headlong (by the pint or 365-millilitre sizes) into the action. For eats, there's fish and chips, eggplant parmagiana and towering hamburgers. They also do some pretty neat thing with mussels, serving them with garlic, white wine, basil leaves and crusty bread.
29/43-45 East Esplanade, Manly
(02) 9976 2300
Set in the most unlikely of places (across the road from Flemington's bustling produce market), Paddy's Brewery is an award-winning beer purveyor located in the Markets Hotel. Choose from an array of exciting brews including the Choc Porter (a rich dark ale, especially good if it's cold outside) or if it's the middle of summer, sip a Paddy's Wheat Beer. The pub itself is a great big sprawling palace, open 24/7 and filled with an ever-lively crowd.
268 Parramatta Road, Flemington
(02) 9764 3500
Young Henry's produces sensational brews ranging from the English-style Real Ale to the sturdier Hop Ale. The Black Hart is a German-style wheat beer with a fruity palate and is awfully drinkable. For the moment, you can't drink here, but there are plans for a bar including seating for 90 patrons and a food menu based around barbecue meats. Until the bar opens, you can try Young Henry's beer at The Midnight Special(link), East Village Hotel, The Little Guy(link), The Royal Albert, Mojo Record Bar(link) and The Baxter Inn(link). You can also head on over to the brewery to buy takeaway growlers (640-millilitre bottles) from their cellar door.
76 Wilford Street, Newtown
(02) 9519 0048