Otway Estate Brewery
Located 12 kilometres from Colac, Otway Estate Winery was established in 1983, specialising in cool-climate wines; a microbrewery was added in 2007. Head brewer Luke Scott oversees the production of up to 15 different brews produced from a Chinese-built 10-hectolitre system. The range covers everything from a low-alcohol lager right up to an impressively ambitious trio of French and Belgian farmhouse-style ales, which are packaged in heavyweight bubbly bottles. Unsurprisingly, many of the brews are still works-in-progress under Scott’s hand since he came on board in December 2007. Previously, Scott brewed for the Hunter Beer Company and has worked for both the reputable Mean Time Brewery in the UK and Foster’s in Melbourne. He has a soft spot for lesserknown European-beer styles, which is a nice fit with the vision of Otway Estate’s owners for a broad portfolio of brands. ‘Kolsch is my favourite beer style,’ Scott says, ‘but the name isn’t well understood in Australia.’ Prickly Moses Summer Ale is a kolsch by another name and the brewery’s flagship brand. ‘It’s the sort of beer you could drink all day while watching the cricket.’ At the other end of the scale, Scott is experimenting with maturing some of his strong speciality ales in wine barrels, which brings some nice synergy by combining Otway Estate’s twin operations involving fermented grain and grape. There are several other potential crossover products, which I look forward to sampling.
Otway Estates’ broad and still-growing range of styles extends from easy-drinking lagers right up to take-no-prisoners strong ales matured in ex-wine casks.
Prickly Moses Summer Ale
Behind the Label
Visit Otway Estate during spring and you’ll see plenty of prickly moses shrubs in full yellowflowered bloom. The spiky customer is a member of the wattle family (Acacia farnesiana) and the common name is a corruption of prickly mimosa. The flower doesn’t actually feature on the label – unless you count the bright yellow background on their signature Summer Ale – but, rather, another prickly individual in an echidna. The nearby town of Kawarren means echidna in the local Aboriginal language and the trail of ants on the label represents the native animal’s favourite tucker.
10–30 Hoveys Road, Barongarook 3429 Tours by appointment; tastings; bar; restaurant; takeaway salescomments powered by Disqus