Local Brewing Co

It’s often said that good people drink good beer and, while that’s often very true, there’s an added benefit when drinking good beer can bring about good too.

It was such an idea that drove a group of mates in Melbourne to launch A Local Beer at the start of 2019 with the aim of using beer as a way to help feed those in need. The brewing company went about it by teaming up with SecondBite, an organisation that rescues food from major supermarkets and passes it on to hungry families. For every six-pack or pint of XPA sold, SecondBite would be able to secure a meal for someone facing food insecurity.

The team behind the beer was Claudia Mitchell, Chris Cefala, Hugo Mylecharane, Sam Harris and Nick Campbell; they’d met at university and shared a love not just for craft beer but social enterprise as well.

Their range wouldn't be limited to XPA forever, however, and neither would the beer label stick with the name A Local Beer. In October 2020, they became Local Brewing Co and expanded their core range to include Runaway IPA and Pacific Paradise alongside the newly-monikered Sunset XPA.

One thing that hasn’t changed, however, is the original ethos that brought Claudia, Chris, Hugo, Sam and Nick together: for each pack or pint sold – now alongside a growing band of limited releases – someone would receive a meal.

By the time of the rebrand, Local Brewing had donated close to 18,000 meals to people in need. What’s more, their beers were finding an audience well beyond Melbourne too, as the team secured distribution across Australia’s East Coast.

Without a brewery of their own, the group worked with some of Melbourne’s local breweries to turn their recipes into beer, with the majority brewed in partnership with Burnley Brewing. The pair may yet become neighbours as well as partners as postcode 3121 is something of a home base for the Local Brewing Co team: it’s where you would most likely have found the first of their beers and, while it’s far from a reality at time of writing, it’s where you can expect to find any future taproom too.

For now, their focus isn’t just on making sure food gets to those who could use it but also on cutting waste; the group has teamed up with their brewing buddies at Burnley on the Fruits Of Our Labour series. These beers use excess sourdough from a local bakery and highlight not only different fruits but also the sheer amount of food that is wasted.

Conversations have taken place over beers for millennia; now Local Brewing Co hope the conversations sparked by theirs will bring about positive change too.

Will Ziebell

Name
Local Brewing Co
Address

116 Murphy Street (Office)
Richmond
VIC 3121

Phone
0432 909 040
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Local Brewing Co Regulars

Local Brewing Co Sunset XPA

The beer that started it all for the crew at Local Brewing Co was this XPA and, although it’s called Sunset, it doesn’t have the same auburn hue a truly stunning sunset can have. Instead, it’s a pale, yellow and hoppy beer that fits nicely into the XPA category that might have confused even the more knowledgeable beer geeks in 2015 but has become a ubiquitous trio of letters in the beer world. The sunset in the title instead refers to the state of mind the beer hopes to conjure in the drinker:… Read more
Style
XPA
ABV
5.0%

Local Brewing Co Pacific Paradise

Packed inside a golden and blue can, Pacific Paradise manages to conjure images of beaches a little more picturesque than those skirting Local Brewing Co’s Melbourne home. The core range beer feels like it’s been designed for a spot of post-swim refreshment too: a pale, light and highly quaffable affair. It’s brewed with one of Germany’s newer hops in Huell Melon (well, it’s been around a little while at the time of writing but it’s hardly centuries old) and an American craft beer stalwart… Read more
Style
Summer Ale
ABV
4.2%

Local Brewing Co Runaway IPA

The biggest and boldest beer in Local Brewing Co’s core range at time of writing, Runaway IPA is also their most traditional, a slightly odd fact considering you don’t exactly have to delve that deeply into the annals of brewing history to find the earliest examples of a West Coast IPA. It does, however, speak volumes of how much the brewing industry can change, where already for many big, lean and hoppy IPAs have given way to juicier, softer, sweeter variants. In the case of Runaway, the beer… Read more
Style
West Coast IPA
ABV
6.2%

Local Brewing Co Specials

Local Brewing Co & Burnley Brewing Fruits Of Our Labour: Mango Nectar Sour

Tapped April 15, 2021
The ongoing bread-saving collaboration between Local Brewing Co and Burnley Brewing reached its third iteration in April 2021 with Mango Nectar Sour. The Fruits of Our Labour series utlizes bread destined for the bin, in this case from three separate bakeries, and fresh fruit and like all Local Brewing beers, each pack sold provides a meal for someone in need through SecondBite. It might be a sour but really the keyword in the beer’s name is “nectar” with the mango oozing out quite sweet… Read more
Style
Mango Sour
ABV
3.5%

Local Brewing Co Runaway DIPA

Tapped February 18, 2021
February 2021 is the two-year mark since the team behind Local Brewing Co launched and plenty has changed in that time. For one, they used to be called A Local Beer and only had a single beer too but in 2020 their name change saw the team expand the core range to become Sunset XPA, Pacific Paradise and Runaway IPA. To celebrate turning two, the brewing company has doubled down on the last of those to brew a double version of Runaway. The DIPA contains the same hop combination of Simcoe, Ekuanot,… Read more

Local Brewing Co Gingerbread Brown Ale

Tapped December 11, 2020
To welcome Christmas’ fast approach (and potentially say goodbye to the wild ride that 2020 has been) Local Brewing Co have launched a dark but light-on-its-feet, holiday-inspired beer. Gingerbread Brown Ale does present with plenty of ginger notes but it's joined plenty of pantry items too. There's nutmeg, cinnamon and allspice, combining with slight chocolate notes from the malt to quite fittingly capture a baked treat in a can. But there’s still a dryness to the beer too and the malts are… Read more
Style
Gingerbread Brown Ale
ABV
6.0%

Burnley Watermelon Crush (with Local Brewing Co) & Wit Me Away

Tapped November 4, 2020
The perennial fruit gatherers at Burnley are back plundering trees again. For their second Fruits of our Labour collaboration with Local Brewing Co, who use beer to provide meals to those in need through their partnership with SecondBite (and recently rebranded from A Local Beer), they follow their banana bread brown ale with Watermelon Crush. Again, the beer makes use of sourdough bread destined for the bin and, while watermelon is often showcased in sours, here it’s found in a hazy pale, where… Read more
Style
Watermelon Hazy & Belgian Witbier
ABV
4.8% & 5.4%

Local Brewing Co & Burnley Brewing Fruits Of Our Labour: Banana Bread Brown Ale

Tapped September 3, 2020
Melbourne-based A Local Beer have made it their mission to help ensure less food is wasted and more goes to people who need it, and the brewing company’s collaboration with Burnley Brewing takes that philosophy a little further. The Fruits Of Our Labour series takes food otherwise destined for landfill and creates a beer from it, and through A Local Beer’s partnership with SecondBite, each four-pack sold provides a meal to someone in need. The first release in that series is Banana Bread Brown… Read more
Style
Banana Bread Brown Ale
ABV
5.8%
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