Sydney Brewery Hunter Valley
430 Wine Country Dr, Lovedale
(02) 4991 0000
The Hunter Valley may be known for its wines, but there’s another beverage in the area that’s quickly building a strong reputation.
Hops, malts and yeast are the region’s new best friends, brewed into craft beers that are gracing bars and pubs all over the country.
One of these newcomers is Lovedale Brewery, part of the Sydney Brewery family – a craft beer producer that creates award-winning brews in the heart of the Hunter. Located on the grounds of Crowne Plaza Hunter Valley, the brewery is establishing itself as somewhere well worth a visit.
Head Brewer Michael Capaldo joined the Sydney Brewery family in 2010. He completed a Graduate Diploma in brewing science at Edith Cowan University in 2008, and trained at two of Australia’s largest craft breweries in Little Creatures and Gage Roads before joining the Sydney Brewery team in his maiden Head Brewer position. In 2013 Michael moved from his hometown Sydney to lead the project for Lovedale Brewery, in the hope of adding to the vibrant craft brewing scene in the Hunter Valley.
Take the brewery tour to discover the stories and processes behind the beer, ranging from the lightest of pale ales to the darkest porters. The signature Lovedale Lager is a traditional Munich-style lager that combines three types of German hops for a full-flavoured brew. Made with filtered Hunter Valley water, the lager has a super-clean base, combined with citrus aromas and toasty malt to create a tasty, sessional beer. It’s this finesse that earned Lovedale Lager a trophy at the Australian International Beer Awards (AIBA) in 2014 and 2016 for the Best European Style Lager, and Best Draught Beer in Show at the Sydney Royal Beer & Cider Show 2015.
You’ll also be able to witness the process behind the Sydney Brewery beers, including Glamarama Summer Ale, Pyrmont Rye IPA, Darlo Dark, Paddo Pale and Surry Hills Pils. All the beers are brewed by hand to bring out the characteristics of the ingredients and reflect the personalities of each Sydney suburb. This attention to detail results in even more award winners: Glamarama picked up a trophy at 2016 AIBA, while Sydney Cider was a Sydney Royal 2015 Champion.
Once you’ve seen behind the scenes, head to the restaurant and bar next door to taste all the beer varieties. Offering delicious fare and a laidback atmosphere, the Lovedale Bar and Restaurant is an ideal spot to refuel after a day exploring the sights of the Hunter Valley.
You’ll find all your favourites on the pizza menu alongside a few unusual combinations, such as the Peking duck with plum and hoisin sauce, green shallots, coriander and cucumber; or the Lovedale Meat Lovers, stacked up with pork meatballs, chorizo, pepperoni, bacon, Lovedale lager-braised onions and BBQ sauce.
Those less inclined to share can opt for a range of burgers, sandwiches or the larger mains, such as the braised grain-fed beef and porter pie, the chermoula blue-eyed cod, or the slow-braised bourbon BBQ pork ribs.
Lovedale Brewery is a welcome addition to the Hunter Valley experience – a relaxed brewery and eatery that will win over even the most dedicated grape- lovers to the cause of malt and hops.