Hart’s Pub has rapidly embedded itself into the list of BotF’s favourite pubs in Sydney. The 4 Pines and Murray’s at Manly are wonderful spots to continue a robust discussion that occurs on the Back of the Ferry, but there’s nothing wrong with getting the conversation going early. With its relatively close proximity to Circular Quay and its constantly changing line-up of outstanding tap beer – Hart’s is the chosen place for pre ferry libations. This month it has also introduced us to a new brewer on the Sydney scene and I am happy to be an enthusiastic early adopter.
In the past month, two offerings from a new brewery have been available. The new brewery would appear to be very new (website is less than a month old, twitter account is small and single figure Untappd check-ins), but based on what I’ve tasted they deserve to become popular and well-established. I write of Pinchgut Brewing Co, which has been founded by a bloke who has quite a resume brewing for other people, but is now going it alone. Gerard Meares has recently returned from the Czech Republic at the Pilsner Urquell brewery and has clearly been inspired by what goes on there. He really is starting from scratch – pumping out his initial brews and then trying to seek stockists.
Pinchgut’s Black Pilzner is a wonderful, wonderful beer. It has a wonderful black hue and a great combination of malt and saaz hops. There’s some big vegemite hints in this, but the aftertaste is quite long and softly bitter. For what I believe is only the 2nd batch brewed – this is a bloody good start. I also tried the Pilzner, but will reserve complete judgment until I try it without having a Feral Brewing Hop Hog first (it was #IPADay). So far, Pinchgut can be tried at Hart’s Pub and the Riverview Hotel, Balmain. The name Pinchgut is a nickname for a Sydney landmark – Fort Denison. Pinchgut is either a narrowing of a harbour or the effect of starving convicts on Fort Denison, which happened in the early days of Sydney’s existence. Wikipedia says the latter – so I’ll go with the former.