The Sunshine Coast Brewery was founded in January 1998 with the intention of making a fine local Ginger beer. A task well achieved with much recognition from both beer drinkers and beer judges alike. However, it was not only the Ginger beer that captured beer drinkers’ attention in the brewery’s first year of operation. Sunshine Coast Extra Stout went on to win two Gold Medals at The Australian International Beer Awards before being crowned champion stout at the National Festival of Beers – a very strong start for a young brewery.
The Sunshine Coast Brewery continued brewing the Ginger beer, stout and many others as well as developing a new line of tropically inspired beers made with ingredients including pineapple, lime, coconut and chilli. The introduction of a small bottling line allowed beer lovers in other centres to enjoy the results of their endeavours.
In mid-2006 the brewery underwent a change of ownership to the Curran family. Under the management of Greg Curran, The Sunshine Coast Brewery began a process of transformation, focusing more on traditional beer styles and “New World” craft beer interpretations. Their efforts were rewarded with a number of medals at the 2007 & 2008 Australian International Beer Awards (AIBA) – confirmation that they were on a winner!
However, perhaps the greatest recognition of this came at the 2009 AIBA held at the Melbourne Crown Casino where The Sunshine Coast Brewery was awarded Gold Medals for two of its brews – the Sunshine Coast Summer Ale and the Sunshine Coast Dunkel Weizen – as well as two silver medals and two bronze medals. The awards did not stop there! The very popular Summer Ale went on to be announced the Champion Reduced Alcohol Beer – a prestigious award!
The Sunshine Coast Brewery’s gold medal-winning Dunkel Weizen was one of three finalists for AIBA Champion Wheat Beer, an award for which SCB was just pipped by the legendary Weinstephen brewery in Germany. Overall, the Sunshine Coast Brewery’s results were so outstanding that it was one of the 2009 finalists for the Champion Australian microbrewery. All up, this was an extraordinary result for a microbrewery as small as The Sunshine Coast Brewery – an award of which we are justifiably very proud.
Building on these successes, the brewery is continuing to develop, forging a strong reputation for itself both locally and interstate. A selection of our beers is now available at liquor stores, restaurants and pubs from the Sunshine Coast to Melbourne. As growing public awareness of boutique beverages brings the world of craft beer into the spotlight, we are also seeing an increase in the number of people wanting to further their knowledge on the subject and those looking to swap their usual mainstream tipple for a more flavoursome, hand-crafted drop. As beer lovers ourselves, we are committed to sharing this passion with others, and are enthusiastic about helping to create a wider public recognition of “real beer”.
Below is a short video compiled by the Queensland State Library about the Sunshine Coast Brewery, outlining the changes undergone over the past few years and its direction for the future.