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FOOD & DRINK

Six Beverages to Drink If You're Keen to Support Local Winemakers, Brewers and Distillers

From Melbourne-brewed beers to top tipples from East Gippsland, add these Victorian drops to your must-drink list.
By Sarah Ward
July 31, 2020
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Six Beverages to Drink If You're Keen to Support Local Winemakers, Brewers and Distillers

From Melbourne-brewed beers to top tipples from East Gippsland, add these Victorian drops to your must-drink list.
By Sarah Ward
July 31, 2020
  shares

SIX BEVERAGES TO DRINK IF YOU'RE KEEN TO SUPPORT LOCAL WINEMAKERS, BREWERS AND DISTILLERS

in partnership with

From Melbourne-brewed beers to top tipples from East Gippsland, add these Victorian drops to your must-drink list.

It seems that 2020 is the year of staying local, although you don't need us to tell you that. For months so far — and for months to come — we're all making the most of our own backyard. We're eating local, and supporting local businesses. And, whether you prefer a yeasty brew to cap off your week, a full-bodied wine with dinner or a few cocktails whenever the mood strikes, you can drink the state's finest tipples as well.

We're always keen to highlight local folks doing great things, of course — and, to showcase homegrown winemakers, brewers and distillers, we've teamed up with our mates at BWS to celebrate a few of the best. Here are six must-try Victorian drops that you can pick up at your nearest BWS.

  • 6

    If you’re a casual craft beer drinker, you might think that sours aren’t for you. You could be under the impression that they’re an acquired taste, and best sipped every now and then. Let Stomping Ground’s Watermelon Smash Sour change your mind, immersing you in the joys of tart, fruity beers. A gose, it’s made from real watermelon. Yes, that means that the brew’s distinctive taste and smell is 100-percent authentic. It’s no wonder that the Collingwood brewery makes it all year round as part of its permanent range. This outfit is proud of its location, and of the suburb’s ties with beer-making that date back over a century — but we’re certain no one made beers like this one a hundred years ago.

    Support local makers like Stomping Ground by picking up a four-pack — or a carton — at BWS.

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  • 5

    Running the length of the city, Little Lonsdale Street is home to a wide variety of establishments — but the roadway only graces the name of one distillery. That’d be the aptly titled Little Lon Distilling Co, an outfit that knows, loves and embraces its location, as well as the fact that it was once an infamous red light district. As a result, its gins have character. Flavour, too, as its Little Miss Yoko tipple demonstrates. Pour yourself a glass of this double-distilled spirit, and you’ll be soaking in the vanilla, lychee and baking spice aromas in no time. Little Lon recommends drinking it with tonic and raspberries, or as part of a sour — and they’re both top-notch choices.

    Support local makers like Little Lon Distilling Co by picking up a bottle at BWS.

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  • 4
    Blue Gables Vineyard

    Before Blue Gables was a vineyard, it was part of a dairy farm. If you’re also fond of eschewing milk for wine, Alistair and Catherine Hicks clearly know how you feel. The pair named the seven-acre East Gippsland site after a farmhouse, harking back to its beginnings — and, since 2004, it has grown seven varieties of grapes. If you’re a pinot noir fan, you’ll be pleased to hear that’s one of them. When anyone drinks the popular red, they want to know that they’re drinking it — they want the taste to linger, and the scent too — and Blue Gables’ mid-weight variety ticks all those boxes. Expect notes of cherry and strawberry, as well as a rich, spicy flavour.

    Support local makers like Blue Gables by picking up a bottle at BWS.

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  • 3
    Moon Dog OG

    Had the kind of long day that only an ice-cold beer can fix? Kicking back without a care in the world? Whichever end of the spectrum you fall on — and even if you’re placed somewhere in-between — Moon Dog’s Old Mate Pale Ale will suit the occasion. Clean but still both malty and citrusy, it’s a sold all-occasion beer. It’s also well-named, because this is the kind of brew that you can keep going back to like an old friend. That’s the Abbotsford-based brewery’s vibe in general, though, with these yeasty beverage purveyors dedicated to making great brews and having a blast doing so since setting up shop in 2010— and making sure that, when you’re drinking its ales, lagers, sours and stouts, you’re feeling the same way.

    Support local makers like Moon Dog by picking up a six-pack — or a carton — at BWS.

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  • 2
    KAIJU! BEER

    When you name your brewery after monstrous Japanese creatures, you’re obviously aiming to grab attention. When Godzilla tramples its way across the planet, it doesn’t go unnoticed after all. Kaiju! Beer’s brews have happily followed in the eponymous class of critters’ giant footsteps, too, picking up a huge swathe of accolades — including three consecutive top ten placings in the annual Hottest 100 Australian Craft Brews countdown. If you’re going to opt for just one beer, our pick is the Kaiju Krush! Tropical Pale Ale. This is an easy-drinking, super-clean brew that is big on tropical flavours as its name suggests. It’s also made from a blend of US, Australian and New Zealand hops — because, if you’ve seen a monster movie, you’ll know that kaiju know no bounds.

    Support local makers like Kaiju! Beer by picking up a six-pack — or a carton — at BWS.

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  • 1
    6Ft6

    When Geelong’s 6Ft6 launched in 2003, it only made two varieties of wine: pinot noir and shiraz. Lovers of white vino will be glad that it expanded its range in 2015, with the winery’s sauvignon blanc ideal for anyone keen on a lighter — but still fragrant, of course — splash. With this drop, you’ll smell passionfruit curd, and taste gooseberry and lychee. And, while you’re drinking it, you’ll be supporting a family-owned vineyard that’s now being run by a second generation. 6Ft6 makes 100-percent vegan tipples, too, if you’re looking for a cruelty-free wine. Plus, for those feeling experimental or fancying something other than a plain glass of the good stuff, 6Ft6 recommends using its sauvignon blanc in a mojito spritz or watermelon sangria.

    Support local makers like 6Ft6 by picking up a bottle at BWS.

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Check out more standout drops from Victorian suppliers at your local BWS.

Top image: Moon Dog World, Kate Shanasy.

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