Duckstein Brewery actually has two separate breweries and outlets located in both the Swan Valley and Margaret River wine regions. The original 60-litre microbrewery (or should that be microscopic brewery) is one of the country’s smallest and is still on show at the Henley Brook restaurant, where it barely kept up with demand from the time it was first fired up in 2000. Duckstein’s founding owners, Erich and Gisela Massberg, are from northern Germany and the house beers were designed to complement the thoroughly Germanic fare served in their restaurant. Unusually, most of the early brews were ales and giving them sufficient conditioning time was always a challenge with such a small batch system. Now under new ownership, a second brewery has been installed at Saracen Estates winery and is a Czech-built 10-hectolitre plant, with several 20-hectolitre and 10-hectolitre fermentation and maturation tanks providing plenty of capacity. The new microbrewery came on-line in late 2008 and the core range of beers for both venues are now produced here; they include Duckstein Pils (using Tettnang and Hallertau hops), Duckstein Hefeweisse, Duckstein Dunkel and Duckstein Alt Bier. An Oktoberbrau is brewed both for the annual Spring in the Valley festival in the Swan Valley and for the traditional month-long Oktoberfest celebrations, and a raspberry-infused Framboise was produced for the first summer of operation in the Margaret River. The current brewer is Paul Gasmier.
Thoroughly German in style and execution, the Duckstein beers are true to their roots, with the odd raspberry seasonal for light relief.
Behind the Label
Duckstein wears its Germanic brewing credentials proudly on its sleeve, from the ‘Willkommen!’ message on their website, to their acknowledgement of the 1516 Bavarian Beer Purity Law – the Reinheitsgebot – which decrees that beer must be made from only water, malted grain and hops. The Duckstein logo features a wreath of barley ears with a single hop leaf as the dangling centerpiece, surrounding a foaming stein of beer.
9720 West Swan Road, Henley Brook 6055
Saracen Estates, 3517 Caves Road,Wilybrup 6280 Tours by appointment; bar; restaurantcomments powered by Disqus