Cheers for fresh beers

Natasha Holgate and her daughter Emily sample beers in the new taproom. (Luke Hemer)

By Jessica Micallef

Discover a love for beer at Woodend’s Holgate Brewhouse.

A new discovery learning centre and taproom was officially opened last month at the brewery.

Brewhouse co-owner and co-founder Natasha Holgate said the centre and taproom was built to showcase their beers.

“People can come and taste our beer,” she said.

“We’ll also be offering platters of food. We are also going to have some local beverages, so local wines, gins, ciders.

“It’s a very modern space … with glass and timber.

“It’s a really nice contrast to the historical hotel. The hotel is a beautiful red brick building with stained glass windows and it was built during the gold rush.”

Ms Holgate said it had been a long time coming for the opening of the brewery’s $8 million addition, with construction starting four years ago.

Visitors will also be able to get an exclusive behind-the-scenes look at the process to making the perfect beer.

“It’s about learning as well,” Ms Holgate said. “We’ll have time to talk to people about our beer, how the beer is made. We’ll be doing more tours of the place.

“The other thing is the taproom is right inside the brewery. You’re actually inside the centre where the beer is being made. You can see the brewers doing their work.

“You can smell what’s going on. It’s a really different experience that is not available in the Macedon Ranges.

“It’ll bring tourism in the area and create more jobs. It’s a lovely space for the town.”