If you walked into any Australian pub twenty years ago and asked for a craft beer, it’s fairly likely that you would have been met with a pretty odd look behind the bar.
In 1999, Natasha and her husband Paul Holgate released their first beers under the Holgate Label.
Twenty years later, Holgate Brewhouse continues to shape the Victorian brewing landscape and leads the way in terms of producing top-notch quality beer.
I sat down with Natasha Holgate in Woodend, about an hour outside of Melbourne, inside Holgate’s newly opened taproom to learn more about the Brewhouse’s history and her desire to strengthen connections with the wider Woodend and Macedon Ranges community. Have a listen:
Duration: 8 mins 25 secs
(Photo: Natasha Holgate at the new Holgate Brewhouse Taproom, November 2019)
On the Holgate ‘love story’:
“Holgate Brewhouse was formed by myself and my husband Paul, we met a long time ago when we were at uni studying a science degree and basically I walked into the chemistry library and it was absolutely chockers and there were only two seats free and one was opposite Paul and he looked up and smiled so I sat opposite him and thirty something years later we’re still together, we’ve built this business and raised a couple of kids too it’s been a pretty amazing journey.”
On setting up Holgate Brewhouse:
“Paul and I used to drink quite a bit of beer in our uni days… we did some travelling to the US in the mid-nineties and discovered craft beer there. Paul was already home-brewing and probably brewing more Euroean beer styles and since then we thought it would be a great idea to start up our own business.. there are a lot of wineries in the Macedon Ranges and we thought that it would be compatible with that. It’s close enough to Melbourne and it gets a lot of tourism, so we thought we were in a pretty good spot to do it.”
On what makes beer special:
“Definitely the taste and flavour. I think once people realise that beer doesn’t just have to taste the one way, a lot of mainstream lagers world-wide have a very similar taste, but if you actually taste some beers and actually try to find out what you personally like, you might end up finding out you like dark beers, you might like sour beers, you might like really hoppy beers you might like all of them, it’s a really great adventure to get on board, try all different styles, work out what you like to drink.”
Holgate Brewhouse Website: https://www.holgatebrewhouse.com
Holgate Taphouse Address: 79 High St, Woodend VIC 3442