Brookes Brewery

For too long Bendigo had been without a significant commercial brewery to call its own. In fact, for too long, one of Australia's largest regional cities had been without pretty much any craft beer full stop.

Then, starting with the The Dispensary Enoteca and continuing with the efforts of Bendigo Beer, things began to change .

Finally, in July 2013, Doug Brooke and his partner Melissa Church threw open the doors of Brookes Brewery and the transformation was complete. Housed in a former abattoir on the edge of Bendigo, it's a brave new venture from a man who has spent his life in the corporate world of oil and airlines before deciding to take destiny into his own hands and turn a passionate pastime into his life's work.

Bearing his surname but with a logo inspired by the boxer who lent Bendigo its name, the brewery launched with a range of traditional ales and lagers and plans to find tap points and fridge space throughout Doug and Melissa's newly adopted hometown. That said, it wasn't long before they were casting their eyes further afield and planning to take their APA, Bohemian Lager, IPA, Brown Ale and seasonal releases to the busy Melbourne market and beyond.

The intention remains to become a beer and brewery that's synonymous with Bendigo, hence developing beers that bear the city's name.

Name
Brookes Brewery
Address

4 McDowalls Rd
East Bendigo
VIC 3550

Phone
0408 594 733
Website
Tours

Brewery bar hours:
Thursday: 4pm to 8pm
Friday: noon to 11pm
Saturday: noon to 8pm

Brookes Brewery Regulars

Brookes Beer Mr Bendigo IPA

Tapped June 1st, 2016
The evolution of Brookes' IPA continues with Mr Bendigo. And it's been quite the transformation, from the initial spiced white IPA through an intensely bitter West Coast US inspired IPA to a beer now that takes its inspiration from beers from the other side of the US. That said, while Mr Bendigo has roots of a sort in the IPAs coming out of the north east of the States, it's not one that goes heavy on the haze and is well short of anything milky or turbid. Instead, the beer that took out People's… Read more
Style
IPA
Strength
5.2%

Brookes Beer Bendigo Pale

First, they brought commercial brewing back to Bendigo, then they added beers to their lineup that bear the city's name. The idea with the Bendigo Draught and this Bendigo Pale was to create something for the local market that would help bridge the gap between the mainstream offerings on tap throughout the city and Brookes' typically more ballsy core range beers. So, while there are two pale ales in the Brookes family now, there's much to distinguish them. The American Pale Ale comes bearing big,… Read more
Style
Pale Ale
Strength
4.3%

Brookes Beer IPA (2015 onwards) – RETIRED

Doug from Bendigo's Brookes Beer has always stated that he's on a never-ending mission to improve his beers (see his highly entertaining Brew & A elsewhere on this site). And that's certainly been the case this year as he's rolled out tweaked versions of his Brown Ale featuring Kiwi malts that's a challenger to Mornington Peninsula's Aussie brown crown and a reworked version of his American Pale Ale. Both those fit into the category of evolution. The reworking of his IPA is much more revolution,… Read more
Style
IPA
Strength
5.2%
Bitterness
70 IBU
Stockists

Brookes Brewery

Other good beer venues around Victoria

Brookes IPA – RETIRED

The fourth release from new Bendigo brewery is not what it seems. Brewer Doug Brooke confesses to having no great affection for the big, bolshy US-inspired hop bombs. So he's created something else entirely. The Brookes IPA is, in fact, pretty much as far removed from what you might imagine an IPA to be. Yes, they've used New World hops to create citrus and spice aromas, but other than it's wheat based, features spices - ginger, cardamom, anise and coriander - and a Belgian saison yeast that gives… Read more
Style
Spiced Belgian IPA
Strength
5.2%

Brookes Brown Ale

"In Brown Ale style, malt is king" say Brookes' notes for what was the brewery's second release. And it's a beer that delivers on that front, with aromas of chocolate, dark caramel and dusty cocoa following through onto the palate. It manages to carry those flavours on what's a relatively light body, given the beer a sessionability that's further aided by a drying, lightly toasted bitterness.… Read more
Style
Brown Ale
Strength
5.2%

Brookes Bohemian Lager – RETIRED

It's a bit of a playful one this, with the label saying Bohemian Lager but Doug creating instead a darker, Vienna style lager. It's a traditionally bottom fermented and cold stored lager that uses Dark Munich and Crystal malts to give it its light copper colour, as well as a solid mouthfeel and "gutsy" malt profile. Saaz and Cascade hops give the beer a 'stingingâ? hop profile to create a lager the brewer hopes people will find "an enjoyable session beer".… Read more
Style
Vienna Lager
Strength
5.2%

Brookes American Pale Ale

As launch beers go, Brookes' American Pale Ale was one that suggested this was a brewery that wouldn't be pussy-footing around trying to find something inoffensive to please the masses. Barely pale – more a deep rusty bronze – it doesn't hold back in any way, building a rich, caramel and biscuit base on which to showcase a collection of predominantly American hops, in particular new star Mosaic. They lend the beer a confectioner's tray of citrus and tropical fruit aromas and juicy fruit flavours… Read more
Style
American Pale Ale
Strength
5.2%

Brookes Brewery Specials

Brookes Beer Das Unterseeboot Imperial IPL

Tapped November 6th, 2014
The latest single batch, draught-only release from Bendigo's Brookes Beer was inspired by a meeting of brewer Doug's lips and Pliny the Elder's juices. It's not the first (and won't be the last) time such an occasion has inspired flights of fancy in a brewer, but it may be the first time the brewer has attempted to create a tribute to one of the world's most revered hoppy drops in the form of a lager rather than an ale. But that's what he's gone and done, creating Das Unterseeboot (German for U-Boat):… Read more
Style
Imperial India Pale Lager
Strength
8.0%
Bitterness
260 IBU
Stockists

Brookes Brewery Bar

Goldmines Bendigo

Royal Standard

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Junction Beer Hall

Valley Cellar Door

Alehouse Project

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Brookes Beer Hocus Crocus

Tapped September 21st, 2014
With so many new taps to pour through at his newly opened brewery bar, we suspect that there will be too many tiny batches of beer coming out of Brookes in Bendigo for us to keep up with. However, it seems that some of these will be slightly bigger than tiny batches and will be sent rather further afield. One such beer is Hocus Crocus, which we chanced upon and thus made enquiries of its brewer. Turns out it’s the second beer in a series of occasional releases that will be draught only, of about… Read more

Brookes Bavarian Wheat

Tapped January 22nd, 2014
Bendigo's new microbrewery continues to show they won't be constrained by style boundaries - even by the names they give to their beers. In their core range is a Bohemian Lager that's closer to a Vienna Lager, while their IPA is a spiced, white Belgian affair. Now they've brought out a summer seasonal bearing the name "Bavarian Wheat" but which they admit is more of a Hopfenweisse, in other words a hopped up version of a wheat beer. Using brewing techniques that emphasise the clove / spice… Read more
Style
Hopfenweisse
Strength
5.0%
Stockists

Stockists TBC

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