Think craft beer in Australia and you’ll likely think of Sydney’s booming brewing scene, and for good reason, the city is home to a fair number of breweries, many of which export their product domestically and internationally.
Take a trip down to Melbourne, however, and you’ll soon realise that the Southern city can more than hold its own in the brewing stakes and has some well-known names that call Melbourne home. Not only do these Melbourne-based breweries sling some salaciously delectable beers – which can also be found in any number of Melbourne pubs – but they’re also perfect places for weekend drinking sessions, with some hearty food on offer too. And while it might not rival some of the best walks Melbourne offers for scenery, you could easily create your very own, very boozy, pub crawl around the city, but remember always drink responsibly.
But which ones should you be putting at the top of your ‘to-visit’ lists? Allow us to guide you through the best and coolest breweries to be found in Melbourne.
Not a fan of beer but like to sip on a gin or vodka of an evening? Check out the best Melbourne distilleries instead.
Colonial Brewing Co.
While Colonial Brewing technically calls Western Australia home, a second site in Port Melbourne, opened in 2015, allowed it to reach more bars and bottle shops. Colonial’s beer range is diverse, encompassing sours, porters and ciders. It’s ‘Small Ale’ is one of the tastier varieties (and being mid-strength, you’ll be able to sink a few). The Port Melbourne facility has some of the latest beer-brewing and canning technology, so you can see how a state-of-the-art brewery really works, before trying the beers and feasting on some food.
Address: 89 Bertie Street, Port Melbourne, 3207
Phone: 03 8644 4044
Two Birds Brewing
Two Birds is owned and operated by female duo Jayne Lewis and Danielle Allen, who also take the title for opening Australia’s first female-owned brewing company. “The Nest” as the Melbourne site is affectionately called, began brewing in June 2014, a few years after the girls launched their first beers. A visit to the Two Birds tasting room will result in trying a fine selection of incredibly drinkable brews, the majority of which come in on the lighter side.
Address: 136 Hall Street, Spotswood, 3015
Phone: 03 9762 0000
Hop Nation Brewing Co.
Hop Nation Brewing Co. takes its name from the fact that its brewers enjoy experimenting with hop-forward flavours. Some beers are barrel-aged too since owners Sam and Duncan are former winemakers and so felt it necessary to experiment with bringing together the production methods. A visit to the taproom in Footscray will reward you with some 15 beers on tap – including the incredibly popular Jedi Juice – including some limited releases that you won’t find anywhere else. You can also sample the fermentation beers and wines.
Address: 6/107-109 Whitehall Street, Footscray, 3011
Phone: 0450 973 644
Urban Alley Brewery
Urban Alley Brewery was founded in 2015 and in its first year alone racked up a number of awards. Today, the range of beers brewed at the Docklands site is extensive, with many of the classics taken care of, think lager, dark ale and both Australian and American pale ales. Throw in some interesting choices such as an oatmeal stout a mid-strength tropical ale, and you’ll certainly be spoilt for choice with beers to try.
Address: G09/12 Star Circus, Dockland, 3008
Phone: 03 8080 9800
Henry St Brewhouse
This microbrewery may not have as big of a name as some of the others on this list, but it holds its own by brewing a five-strong range of core beers, which you’re able to sample (along with up to five other experimentation beers) with a visit to the small but sweet brewery bar. There’s no kitchen churning out food, but you’re able to order takeaway to the venue should you wish. Henry Street Brewhouse also offers a keg hire service, so you can fuel the ultimate house party.
Address: 5/38 Barrett Street, Kensington, 3031
Phone: 0490 753 993
Bonehead Brewing Co.
Also situated in Kensington is Bonehead Brewing Co. Founded in 2016 by two self-described ‘boneheads’, this brewery offers short tours for any curious customers, as well as 12 taps pouring not only the core range but limited, seasonal and micro-batch brews as well. It’s not the biggest taproom around, but find yourself a seat and you’ll find yourself hard pushed to leave.
Address: 86 Parsons Street, Kensington, 3031
Phone: 0490 334 892
Stomping Ground Brewing Co.
This Melbourne stalwart features in our round-up coolest Melbourne pubs. That’s because it’s so big you could easily forget there is actually a brewery on site. Found in Collingwood, Melbourne’s ancestral home of all things brewing, Stomping Ground – an independently-owned space – creates some 60 beers each year. The vast majority are limited releases, which you’ll only get to sample at the beer hall, but you’ll be able to see how they’re made with a three-hour tour that includes a six-strong tasting paddle at the end.
Address: 100 Gipps Street, Collingwood, 3066
Phone: 03 9415 1944
Bodriggy Brewing Company
With a name like Bodriggy, you shouldn’t be surprised to learn that this brewery and brewpub is Central and South American-inspired. It’s a huge space with room for up to 400 thirsty customers, and an equally huge bar pouring some 64 beers. Naturally, ales dominate the menu, including a New England IPA and an American-style Pale Ale. Team these with a menu that includes tacos, empanadas and spiced marinated chicken and you have yourself a watering hole you’ll want to make repeat trips to.
Address: 245 Johnston Street, Abbotsford, 3067
Phone: 03 9417 2293
Fixation Brewing Company
Fixation Brewing Company puts a heavy focus (or, fixation) on brewing the very best IPAs. A few award wins since its founding in 2015 and we’d say the team has certainly managed what it set out to do. A visit to what Fixation refers to as “The Incubator” will allow you to sample the varieties, meaning you can really decipher what it is that makes a West Coast IPA different from a Session IPA, for example. If you’re hungry, Red Sparrow Pizza, located next door to the venue, will be on hand to deliver.
Address: 414 Smith Street, Collingwood, 3066
Temple Brewing Co.
Temple Brewing Co. has a huge selection of mouth-watering beers on offer at its taproom in Brunswick East. Don’t believe us? With names such as Cakepricot, an Imperial Dessert Stout and the 888 Mandarin Ale, not to mention Temple’s Bicycle Summer Ale, a custom-blend of seven different hops, you’ll come away with a completely new appreciation for beer.
Address: 122 Weston Street, Brunswick East, 3057
Phone: 03 9380 8999
Moon Dog Brewing
Moon Dog Brewing has a couple of venues in Melbourne. The original site and more central location is in Abbotsford, but the brewery is also the owner of Moon Dog World in Preston, which is quite simply, massive. Moon Dog World has space for over 700 customers, has a waterfall focal point, including lagoon, kids playground and even a tiki-themed disco bar.
It’s a short trip outside of Melbourne CBD to get to, but the taxi fare will be well worth it, not just for the experience, but for the eclectic range of beers on offer, which includes traditional varieties such as pale ales and lagers, along with interesting concoctions such as an Apple Crumble Dessert Sour and a Chocolate Biscuit Milk Stout.
Address (Moon Dog World): 32 Chifley Drive, Preston, 3072
Address (Abbotsford): 17 Duke Street, Abbotsford, 3067
Mountain Goat Beer
Mountain Goat Beer has been brewing since way back in 1999 and was set up by a man called Dave and a man called Cam (who, before a trip to Vancouver, wasn’t the biggest fan of beer). The brewery has an ever-changing selection of beers on tap which comprises the core range alongside other specialities including barrel-aged beers, limited releases or single kegs of current experiments. Unlike some other breweries, Mountain Goat is open late, rather than during the day, and offers free brewery tours.
Address: 80 North Street, Richmond, 3121
Phone: 03 9428 1180
Fury & Son Brewing Company
Fury & Son is run by a father and son team – Fury is said to refer to dad Reno’s temper – who had been brewing together at home for some 15 years while involved in their own respective careers. Eventually, in 2016, they decided to go into full-production commercial brewing and took over a warehouse in Keilor Park. The taproom allows guests to sit right next to the vessels that the beer is brewed in, which can be enjoyed with BBQ food.
Address: 46 Concorde Drive, Keilor Park, 3042
Phone: 03 9331 6818
The Mill Brewery
It would be hard to accept that The Mill Brewery is only run for a four-strong team, such is the quality and quantity of the product it outputs. Found in Collingwood, The Mill has had the doors open to its brewery since 2017. The taproom has nine taps pouring its delights, although says that one of them is always reserved for “nitro poured beers”. With a core range that reads off a Pale Ale, a Pilsner, an American IPA and a Dark Ale alongside other such wonders as a “Hard AF Lemon & Lime” Seltzer, The Mill Brewery proves that good things can come in small packages.
Address: 40 Sackville Street, Collingwood, 3066
Phone: 0417 324 363
A stone’s throw from The Mill is where you’ll find Molly Rose. The blood, sweat and tears of owner Nic Sandery, who can list Little Creatures, Stone & Wood and Holgate Brewhouse on his resume, along with a few wineries in Victoria. He’s also experienced how beer is made in various countries around the world and has been able to channel that knowledge into his own product. The brewery and taproom can be found in an old furniture store, where you’ll be able to sample a wide range of changing beers, toasties and wine (if you fancy).
Address: 279 Wellington Street, Collingwood, 3066
Melbourne Breweries FAQ
How many breweries are there in Melbourne?
Coming with an exact number of breweries in Melbourne is tricky since there are just so many. There are well over 200 breweries in Victoria, many of which are independently owned.
Who founded Carlton United Breweries?
Carlton United Breweries has its headquarters in Melbourne and was founded in 1903 upon the coming together of several smaller breweries in Melbourne, known as the Society of Melbourne Brewers. It has gone through several name changes since and is now under the ownership of Japanese conglomerate Asahi Breweries.