Stomping Ground Brewery and Beer Hall, Collingwood
Who doesn’t enjoy a beer with a view … of the fermentation tanks where it was made? In brewing terms there’s no greater mark of freshness.
This shiny brewpub in Gipps Street Collingwood is where the team behind The Local Taphouse (St Kilda) brews its own beer. The selection ranges from an ever-reliable pale ale to the tart, citrusy Bad Seed Berliner Weisse. The food is quality – there’s a delicious fennel and barley stuffed pork belly – and the glass-vaulted ceiling gives the place an airy feel unlike anything else in Melbourne.
Loop Rooftop, Melbourne
This rooftop on Meyers Place is one of those intriguing pockets of Melbourne you at first only see from afar – distant coloured lights swinging above a rooftop three storeys up.
It’s accessible via a long staircase next to Loop Bar. Once in the intimate space you’ll find succulents in planter boxes, matte-black walls, a black Astroturf floor and blue baubles that tremble in the breeze. All around are views of the rooftops and skyscrapers of Melbourne’s CBD, lending the space a private-house-party vibe. Alongside cocktails it offers a handsome list of craft beers, including Red Hill Pilsner and Bastard Son Pale.
Arbory Bar & Eatery, Melbourne
Situated along 150 metres of prime real estate lining the Yarra River, Arbory Bar & Eatery feels like a private oasis to the side of a metropolis. A long shipping-container-style building designed by Jackson Clements Burrows Architects looks out over a wide deck dotted with chairs, tables and plane trees. While away the evening choosing from a selection of craft beer and cider producers such as Mountain Goat, Pirate Life, Stone & Wood and Golden Axe Apple Cider. There’s also a range of cocktails.
The Imperial Hotel, Melbourne
This inner-city pub is one of the most famous old-school sports bars in Melbourne. When soccer fans aren’t streaming from the wood-panelled downstairs bar in the early hours of the morning, the Bourke Street pub is relatively quiet and relaxed.
That’s partly because the enormous upstairs balcony is the place to be. Score a stool here and you’ll be treated to sweeping views of Parliament House and gardens. The bar has 20 beers on tap, including White Rabbit, James Squire, Kosciuszko Pale and Little Creatures.
Sometimes you need to look beyond the city limits and seek a different perspective. Head an hour out along the Great Ocean Road to Torquay where you’ll find one of the very best pubs, with a sweeping ocean view. Cradle a beer in the expansive beer garden out front and gaze across Bass Strait to Sorrento in the distance. The long drive is worth it all the more for Growlers’ crispy Mexican chicken wings, solid beer list and live music every weekend.
This article is part of the Summer Craft Beer Quarterly presented in partnership with James Squire.