New craft brewery Ballistic Beer Co is on its way to Salisbury.
David Kitchen, the owner of the Brewers Choice chain of home brew retail stores, started laying the foundations for Ballistic Beer Co way back in 2014.
“At the time, Queensland’s micro-brewery scene was still quite young and underserviced,” explains Ballistic Beer Co’s head brewer, Lachy Crothers, who comes to Ballistic fresh from a stint at Camden Town Brewery in London.
“So he took it upon himself to build a brewery and continue to grow and promote the scene here in Brisbane. After two years of planning he was finally ready to take the plunge and decided it was time to employ someone who knew about the practical aspect of building and running a brewery. That’s where I came in.
“Once I was on board we acquired an old World War II era shed in the munitions manufacturing district of Salisbury and went to work converting it into a fully functional micro-brewery and cellar door.”
The Brisbane craft brewery boom is well and truly on now — but Ballistic Beer Co head brewer Lachy Crothers thinks we’ve got a long way to go.
“To be honest, we don’t think that there are enough craft breweries in Brisbane,” he says.
“When you compare the number of breweries here to the thriving scenes in Melbourne or Perth, we have a lot of room to grow. But that’s the exciting thing about the scene here in Brissy — it’s still young and full of energy. We want to be a part of growing and promoting that.”
Even if there is room for the Brisbane craft brewery scene to grow, the reality is that any new establishment will have to compete with the likes of Green Beacon Brewing Co, Newstead Brewing Co and Brisbane Brewing Co. But Lachy doesn’t seem worried.
“What’s going to set us apart? For starters, we will be the first craft brewery in Salisbury and the surrounding area,” he says. “We hope to be an active part of the community and contribute to the gentrification of this part of Brisbane, and give the locals something to call their own and be proud of.
“Secondly, we have invested a heap of money designing our brewery to be quality-focused, as opposed to quantity-focused. We want to get people excited about beer, educate the public and create conversations. But mainly we are focused on producing high quality consistent beer that’s balanced and drinkable. Our core range of beers is slightly different to most but absolutely offers something that can satisfy everyone from hop heads to beginners.”
Lachy is particulary keen to introduce the world to his Australian Psycho IPA.
“I’m honestly excited about introducing all of our beers, core beers, specialties and collaborations,” he says, “but if I had to pick one it would probably be our Australian Psycho IPA. I created this beer to showcase the world class hops that we are growing here in Australia. It’s a pretty hefty beer weighing in at 6.5% ABV [Alcohol By Volume] and 70 IBUs [International Bitterness Units]. I describe it as an aggressively bitter, yet super well balanced, tropical fruit bowl.”
Lachy says that everything Ballistic brews begins with a pure love of beer.
“Just to be clear, we believe that beer is the greatest beverage in the world full stop,” he stresses. “We love beer because it promotes community, conversation and collaboration. It brings people together. It can be the focus of an occasion or take a back seat and enhance it quietly.
“Beer is a complex tapestry of literally thousands of flavour compounds masterfully woven and only limited by the brewer’s imagination, but beer is also the six-pack you take to your mate’s place when you go around to watch the footy. Beer can be as complicated or as simple as you want it to be. We believe no other beverage is this flexible, varied and exciting, and this is why beer is the most special drink of all.”
Ballistic Beer Co (53 McCarthy Road, Salisbury) is tentatively scheduled to open in December, though no opening date has been locked in. You can follow their progress at facebook.com/ballisticbeer.