Rocky Ridge Brewing Co

Many breweries have a local focus. Many more highlight their focus on freshness. And there is a growing number with a focus on sustainability. But you can count on one hand the number of Australian breweries that tie all of these elements together in the way Rocky Ridge Brewing Co does.

Aside from collaborations – we’ll get to those soon – the beers that owner/head brewer Hamish Coates produces on his family’s fifth generation dairy farm, located 20 minutes outside Busselton in the Margaret River region, are created exclusively with ingredients grown and sourced inside the farm’s fence line. Rainwater fills the tanks, solar power keeps the brewery running, Rocky Ridge barley and wheat fill the mash tun, hop bines soar on trellises, and the proprietary house yeast was the result of an air sample collected on site then cultured up at the University of WA. It’s quite an achievement.

What’s just as interesting is the rate at which the brewery captured the hearts and minds of Western Australian beer drinkers. Since launching in early 2017, the steady stream of releases from Rocky Ridge has gathered considerable momentum, with many selling out within days of release; Rock Juice Double NEIPA and Peach Invasion Peach NEIPA just two such examples.

This noble pursuit of hyper-locality and sustainability does, however, have its limitations – not being able to use New World hops grown elsewhere or interesting adjuncts being the most obvious. Enter the collaboration.

Brewing and beer world peers have been lining up at Rocky Ridge’s doors since the middle of 2017 and, when embarking on collaborative ventures with them, Hamish has allowed himself leeway to play with ingredients that normally wouldn’t be permitted in his regular releases.

Within little more than a year of the first beer leaving the brewery, the distinguished list of brewing buddies includes Dainton Family Brewing, Cellarbrations Carlisle, The Dutch Trading Co, Indian Ocean Brewing Co, Cape Cellars, Baby Mammoth, Cheeky Monkey Brewery, Burnt Ends Smoking Co and relative neighbours The Beer Farm. Add in a joint venture with Vasse Valley Hemp that led to one of Australia’s first commercially produced hemp ales, Dr Weedy’s. and it’s clear Hamish and co are a sociable bunch.

While there has been considerable hype around each release, it’s a single beer of which Hamish is most proud. Named after his loyal brewery dog – also featured on the can – Ace Pale AIe has a particularly sentimental appeal because it features the Flinders hop. The variety was recently revived from an old growing region in Albany in the state’s South West and, while its exact origins remain a mystery, Hamish describes his love for Flinders in its point of difference.

“It’s so different,” he says. “There’s a unique flavour and aroma that has floral notes but underlays citrus, passionfruit and grapefruit.”

This belief in unique is also manifested in the Rocky Ridge branding. The modern geometric design that contrasts wonderfully with the romantic sensibility of Rocky Ridge is the work of an old uni pal, Matt Nankivell, who counts among his other clients the Saatchi & Saatchi design agency in London. Not a bad place for a new brewery to get some brand design done.

While the brewery is closed to the public, a cellar door and taphouse located on the edge of the Busselton foreshore redevelopment is on track to open by the summer of 2018. With interest in Rocky Ridge showing no sign of slowing – indeed, it's forced a loosening of Hamish's self-imposed rules as demand has far outstripped the amount of hops and malt they can produce on the farm – adding a public face to an already revered brewery will be welcome indeed.

Guy Southern

Name
Rocky Ridge Brewing Co
Address

665 Boallia Road
Jindong
WA 6280

Phone
0406217247
Website
Hours

Cellar door coming second half of 2018

Rocky Ridge Brewing Co Regulars

Rocky Ridge Pale Ale

One of two pale ales in the Rocky Ridge core range and the beer described as their flagship, this Pale Ale is a beer that makes use of the brewery's homegrown hops and malt to produce what you might term an old school pale in these increasingly fruit forward days. Sure, you'll pick up some melon, peach and citrusy touches but they're fairly restrained, sitting alongside a pale malt sweetness. On the palate, however, the hop character is much more of the earthy, drying variety, akin to something… Read more
Style
Pale Ale
ABV
4.8%

Rocky Ridge Ace Pale Ale

While there has tended to be considerable hype around each Rocky Ridge release, there’s a single beer of which head brewer and owner Hamish Coates is most proud. Named after his loyal brewery dog, who is also featured on the can art, Ace pale aIe is especially sentimental because it features the Flinders hop, a hop variety that was recently revived from an old growing region in Albany in Western Australia’s South West and is now grown in the Rocky Ridge hop garden. While its exact origins remain… Read more
Style
Pale Ale
ABV
6.2%

Rocky Ridge & 4 Skateboard Company 4 Seasons Lager

Tapped May 1st, 2018
Driven by sales manager Ricky Watt’s love of skateboarding, this collaboration sees the Busselton brewing team at Rocky Ridge hook up with local skate brand the 4 Skateboard Company to create a skate session beer: nothing too complex but nothing too beige, with the day’s cruising between skate spots in mind. The pale lager they came up with offers sweet biscuity malts and soft carbonation that come with a hop derived side of light peach and citrus flavours plus a medium bitterness that leaves… Read more
Style
Lager
ABV
5.2%

Rocky Ridge & Dainton Family Brewery Peach Invasion

Tapped January 23rd, 2018
Serendipity seems to surround Rocky Ridge Brewing Co’s Hamish "Hammer" Coates. Sure, there’s a lot of hard work involved too but the last four specialty releases - some of the most sought after beers in WA – have been kindly kissed by Lady Luck at one point or another. Most famously, the potential drain pour of Sour Buffalo – which made it to the Crafty Pints Best WA Beers 2017 – became a Coffee Infused Sour Golden Stout that’s spent the last few months bending minds and palates. The… Read more
Style
Peach NEIPA
ABV
6.3%

Rocky Ridge Brewing Co Specials

Rocky Ridge & Two Birds Elder Sour

Tapped November 22nd, 2018
In a meeting of minds, Jayne Lewis from Two Birds and Hamish Coates from Rocky Ridge wanted to celebrate her pre-beer, West Australian winemaking background with a release timed for WA Beer Week. After settling on a sour beer, seasonal serendipity struck as the mature elderflower tree behind Rocky Ridge’s small bar, Darleen's, was in full bloom, with the resultant onsite hand-picking of the delicate flowers extending the brewery’s normal terroir 15 kilometres beyond the farm gates. Beginning… Read more
Style
Elderflower Sour
ABV
4.7%
Stockists

Available now from Darleen’s and select WA venues before heading to Two Birds Nest

Rocky Ridge Devine Goodtimes Sparkling Saison

Tapped November 14th, 2018
Chances are, if you've read about a beer from WA in the past couple of years on The Crafty Pint, the words originated with Guy Southern or, to give him his online handle, Goodtimes Craft Beer. Not this time around, however. And that's for a very good reason: Guy was involved in the conception and brewing of this one. He travelled south from Perth to hook up with the team at Rocky Ridge, where they were also joined by folks from de Vine Cellars and set about creating the 4,723rd (or thereabouts) collaboration… Read more
Style
Barrel Aged Saison
ABV
8.0%

Rocky Ridge & Baby Mammoth Inglorious Chutney

Tapped November 2nd, 2018
It’s one thing to be creative and it’s another to make a chutney beer aged on apricots for six months in ex-chardonnay barrels. It’s also quite another to launch said chutney beer as the only liquid pairing for a six-course degustation but the Baby Mammoth team wouldn’t have any other way. Just to add to the collaborative creativity, when the dinner took place, each course included ingredients foraged from Rocky Ridge’s farm. To be clear, Inglorious Chutney is something unique – a food… Read more
Style
Barrel Aged American Spiced Amber Ale
ABV
6.9%
Stockists

Darleens Busselton plus selected retailers and venues

Rocky Ridge & LS Merchants Rosé Gose

Tapped October 8th, 2018
For Rocky Ridge and Margaret River rouseabout Jacob Nesbitt, the chance to blend grape and grain was a dream come true. Having assisted with LS Merchant’s 2018 grape harvest – as well as working on the farm brewery's packaging line – when winery owner Dylan Arvidson offered Jacob the chance to make a project wine with him, he saw the opportunity instead for a unique collaboration. As luck would have it, Dylan had been experimenting with salted rosé blends and Rosé Gose was born. Using the… Read more
Style
Beer-Wine Hybrid
ABV
4.0%
Stockists

Rosé Gose is the smallest Rocky Ridge release yet and initial demand has been fierce.

If you're keen, seek it out quickly from independent WA retailers.

More stockists...

Rocky Ridge Holy S**t, It's A Mid – The Mandarin Edition

Tapped October 2nd, 2018
Given how many high octane IPAs have been leaving the Rocky Ridge farm in recent weeks, it's perhaps not before time that they're serving up a little balance in the form of the latest edition in the Holy S**t, It’s A Mid! series. This time around, the brewery team rescued tens of kilograms of perfectly edible but second grade mandarins from landfill. Normally, farmers would have to pay to dump this fruit, however, thanks to Rocky Ridge, it now receives a second life, reborn in a refreshing, seasonally… Read more
Style
Mandarin Gose
ABV
3.7%

Rocky Ridge Karl Requires Assistance IIPA

Tapped September 20th, 2018
Karl requires assistance. Exactly with what remains a mystery but, for his debut in what looks to be the first of multiple releases in the "Saga of Karl", he sure could use a hand. Perhaps it’s the crushing weight of the five different malts that were employed in this imperial IPA – the most ever in a Rocky Ridge beer outside of the recent barrel aged imperial stout. These come across clear and sweet, yet Karl still requires assistance. Maybe it’s the curious selection of unnamed… Read more
Style
Imperial IPA
ABV
9.0%
Stockists

Karl will be accepting assistance across WA from September 21

Rocky Ridge & Carwyn Cellars Black Brute IPA

Tapped September 1st, 2018
Well, that didn’t take long. No sooner has a new style arrived than the barstardisation begins... And would it come as a surprise that these two collaborators – Melbourne venue Carwyn Cellars and WA brewery Rocky Ridge – would be shaking the tree? The origins of Black Brute began with venue owner Ben Carwyn on a West Coast holiday. He met brewer Hamish Coates, with the former keen to do something with coffee and Hamish excited about the nascent Brut IPA style; the ideas soon coalesced into… Read more
Style
Coffee Brut IPA
ABV
7.75%
Stockists

Available in WA from September and at a Rocky Ridge tap takeover at Carwyn Cellars on Sept 22

Rocky Ridge Citrus IPA

Tapped August 29th, 2018
Citrus IPA returns for 2018 in a deceptively understated form. Juice and peel from oranges and grapefruit grown locally to the Rocky Ridge farm – “about six buckets” was the technical information supplied - were added to a base similar to the brewery's ACE Pale Ale. The citrus chicanery shows as fruity flavour and with pithy restraint rather than delivering any sticky, marmalade hoppiness. The real subterfuge, however, lies with the near 7 percent ABV. Wherever that's been hidden, it's worthy… Read more
Style
Citrus IPA
ABV
6.8%
Stockists

Available at good retailers across WA

Rocky Ridge Kenny Wagon Wild Zebra

Tapped August 14th, 2018
Rocky Ridge's first charity beer, Kenny Wagon Wild Zebra, is one very close to the brewery’s heart. McKenzie Spalding – aka Kenny Wagon - is the daughter of one of the Rocky Ridge team and is currently undergoing treatment for Sarcoma, a rare form of cancer that affects the bones and connective tissue, including muscles and fat. The full 100 percent of proceeds will be donated to Sock it to Sarcoma!, a group that supports and raises awareness for those affected by the disease. Ambassadors Chris… Read more
Style
Milk Stout
ABV
5.0%
Stockists

Launched on Aug 15 at a charity dinner at new Perth burger & beer venue, Big Bopper

A limited release will follow via select WA retailers

More stockists...

Rocky Ridge & Beerland Brewing Undead Monk Belgian Stout

Tapped July 26th, 2018
Start dusting down your Enigma CDs because the monastic undead are wandering the country roads of Jindong. For Beerland Brewing’s first collaboration brew (partners-in-crime Rocky Ridge know a thing or two about making beer friends already), the cowled collaborators settled on a Belgian stout with a devilish ABV. Belgian yeast derived esters lead you into a lighter than expected body where chocolate, light liquorice and muted coffee appear alongside a little spice. The smooth mouthfeel is aided… Read more
Style
Belgian Stout
ABV
6.66%
Stockists

Following Undead Monk’s launch on July 27 at Northbridge Brewing Co, it will hit Whitfords & other good WA retailers

Rocky Ridge White Buffalo

Tapped July 13th, 2018
Let’s get this out of the way early – stouts weren’t always black. We can thank Guinness for popularising this idea, but the term stout originally meant a stronger form of any beer before becoming solely associated with stout porters and, ultimately, turning into its own thing. With this in mind, the Dr Seuss-like concept of brewing a golden coffee stout may have broader appeal than first glance might suggest as many drinkers aren’t inclined to darker beers. Once again, Rocky Ridge enlisted… Read more
Style
White Coffee Stout
ABV
6.2%
Stockists

White Buffalo is on limited release via WA retailers

Rocky Ridge Dirty Bitch Barrel Aged Russian Imperial Stout

Tapped July 6th, 2018
Described by Hamish Coates as the greatest beer produced in his young brewery’s life, Dirty Bitch certainly comes cloaked in expectation. Named after Indy, the lesser photographed and perpetually muddy brew dog, this Russian imperial stout has spent four months in cabernet, shiraz and Malbec red wine barrels with 200 litres of hand pressed, local Shiraz grape juice. Adding to this indulgence, two barrels were infused with coffee from the Margaret River Roasting Co, two with chocolate from Gabriel… Read more
Style
Barrel Aged Imperial Stout
ABV
12.5%
Stockists

Available at good WA retailers and being poured by Hamish himself at the Crafty Pint x Beer Sucks x Caboose event on July 12.

Rocky Ridge Holy S**t, It's A Mid! The Plum Edition

Tapped June 15th, 2018
Continuing his noble work in saving fruit from landfill, Rocky Ridge’s Hamish Coates and his expanding team have given 300 kilograms of plums a new lease on life in this iteration of the brewery's fruit gose series. Salty aromas lead the way on the palate with Holy S**t, It’s A Mid! – The Plum Edition showing similar restraint on the fruit front as the previous Kiwi edition. The refreshment of the base beer holds the spotlight with the plum characters providing tart acidity underscored by a… Read more
Style
Plum Gose
ABV
3.7%
Stockists

And for a limited time at other good WA retailers.

Rocky Ridge & Burger Baby Rock-A-Bye Baby & Barrel Aged Version

Tapped June 6th, 2018
Another week, another Rocky Ridge collaboration, this time with Margaret River craft beer and burger joint, Burger Baby. It’s a wonder the brewery team can keep pace with these releases, let alone punters! Not that anyone is likely to be complaining about a Baltic Porter arriving at the start of winter. It’s a style that finds occasional favour with Australian breweries but perhaps the longer lagering time - 42 days in this case - means it doesn’t have the profile of its speedier-fermenting… Read more
Style
Baltic Porter
ABV
7.77%
Stockists

Rock-A-Bye Baby is available in limited release from WA retailers and venues including Burger Baby, Margaret River.

Rocky Ridge & Old Bridge Cellars Stairway To Resin IPA

Tapped May 25th, 2018
An online pie chart divides the entire Led Zeppelin song book into three categories: "Sex", "Vikings, hobbits and some shit" and "Citrus". Adhering to these pithy – pun intended – guidelines should see Rocky Ridge’s latest collaboration with Old Bridge Cellars land in the latter segment. Not concerned with current trends, this duo has crafted a classic West Coast IPA that swells with citrus. While the referenced rock classic is in A minor, the beer is definitely… Read more
Style
West Coast IPA
ABV
7.8%
Stockists

The limited release - cans and draught – is available now from select WA retailers and venues.

Rocky Ridge Wet Hop IIPA

Tapped May 17th, 2018
Explaining the concept of wet hop beers to a local retailer, I suggested that many such beers allow some characters and nuance to come through that may be restrained or lost once hops have been through drying or pelletising. As a result, these beers may not always be the hop bomb that some punters expect but can be an excellent reminder that beer is, at its essence, an agricultural product, influenced by the seasons not a person in hi-vis, deep in a production facility. No sooner had I finished this… Read more
Style
Wet Hop IIPA
ABV
8.8%

Rocky Ridge Holy S**t, It's A Mid! The Kiwi Fruit Edition

Tapped April 25th, 2018
Already in its short existence, Rocky Ridge has made a considerable impact on the WA beer scene. Besides almost out-collaborating every other brewery in the state, the steady tide of limited releases has left little room for what most would consider a traditional core range. This seems a tenuous means of building a brand and, to a degree, it probably would be for owner/head brewer Hamish Coates if it wasn’t for the consistently high quality of his releases. Which brings us to the second iteration… Read more
Style
Fruit Gose
ABV
3.7%
Stockists

And in cans and on tap at other good WA venues and retailers

Rocky Ridge & Cellarbrations Carlisle & Cape Cellars Rock Juice V2

Tapped March 2nd, 2018
Early in 2018, the trio of collaborators behind last year's Rock Juice reunited to squeeze more juice from the rock. The sequel amplifies the original's hazy appearance and perceived fruit content while building on the the mouthfeel; however, the 9 percent ABV remains the same. For Rocky Ridge's core range of beers, the brewery sticks to the “Everything we brew, we grow” ethos; for the increasingly frequent collaborations, the team is happy to draw from beyond the fifth generation dairy farm's… Read more
Style
Imperial NEIPA
ABV
9.0%
Stockists

And other good beer stockists across WA

Hit enter to search or ESC to close