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The Adelaide Hills region is blessed with some very innovative and passionate brewers of fine craft beers, and with an abundance of apple and pear orchards it's not surprising that apple cider and pear cider (known as perry) are also star performers. Local micro-distillers are further enhancing the drinks scene in the region, and it’s worth keeping an eye out for some of the boutique spirits on offer.

 Craft Beer Highlights:

  • Lobethal Bierhaus in Lobethal is a small all-grain craft brewery which produces a range of award-winning character beers. The popular bierhaus offers a tasting room, restaurant (with brew house and core brewing equipment in full view) and beer garden where visitors enjoy beer themed foods built around unique local produce. 
  • Prancing Pony Brewery in Totness (between Hahndorf and Mount Barker) uses traditional Southern German brewing methods. Drop into their fun 'Brewshed' to watch the brewer at work while sampling the beers and trying some unique and traditional brewery snacks.
  • Grumpy's Brewhaus at Verdun is a small brewery which produces full-flavoured European-style ales, including stouts, porters and bitter beers. Unfortunately their brewery and restaurant (renowned for is wood oven pizza) is closed to visitors at the moment due to a fire (December 2016) but they are still producing their beloved brews so keep an eye out for it at local pubs and restaurants.
  • Gulf Brewery in Hahndorf's main street offers a contemporary range of ales, lagers and ciders. Check out its low-alcohol and organic craft beers. Smoke Stack is a special smoky beer while Cabin Boy is a wheat beer flavoured with coriander. The tasting room serves gourmet tasting plates.

 Cider Highlights:

  • Kersbrook Hill Wines in Kersbrook where you can sample a handcrafted apple cider made from local Granny Smith apples. This traditional cider sits nicely alongside the company's range of small batch table, sparkling and dessert wines.
  • Sidewood in Verdun which is already known for its award -winning wines and is now also turning out handcrafted premium apple and pear ciders that are quickly gaining critical acclaim - drop into their cellar door for a taste.
  • Paracombe Premium Perry in Paracombe uses tree-ripened local pears and apples to create fine handcrafted perry and apple cider using the best quality fruit, traditional processes and minimal human intervention. Tours and cider making classes are available by appointment.
  • Cider aficionados should also look out for the award-winning ciders from the Hills Cider Company. The cidery does not operate a tasting room but you will find its range of apple, pear, and apple and ginger ciders on tap at several pus in the region.
  • LOBO, Rusty Bike, Joyson Cider Company, and Wicker Man Cider are additional local cider makers with product available at various pubs, restaurants and bottle shops.

Spirit Highlights:

Local boutique spirits to keep an eye out for at pubs, restaurants and bottle shops include:

  • 78° gin made by Adelaide Hills Distillery using a unique column and basket distillation and infused with 12 botanicals. Also look out for 'The Italian', their bitter orange spirit made in an aperitif style and 'The Gunnery' spiced white rum.
  • Handmade small batch craft gin from artisan producer Prohibition Liquor Co. using the finest botanicals.
  • Applewood Distillery’s whiskey, gin and other experimental spirits made in the Old Gumeracha Cold Stores.
  • Ounce gin made by Imperial Measures using carefully selected botanicals highlighted by orange, vanilla and cardamom invigorating a traditional base of juniper and coriander to yield a characterful dry gin.
  • "Eau De Vie", a 40% white spirit made from Adelaide Hills pears by Paracombe Premium Perry.

The Stirling Hotel's new Gin Club (open to the public) is an ideal place to start your appreciation of local boutique spirits - see this InDaily article for the lowdown. The Locavore restaurant in Stirling strives to source all food and beverages from within a 100-mile radius and features a great range of locally made beer, cider and spirits (and wine of course).

 

There's more than a day's worth of spirited adventure in the region (and so many reasons not to drive) so why not spend the night in the Adelaide Hills and wake up in a cosy cottage, family cabin, luxury villa or boutique hotel? Check out our extensive range of accommodation which can be booked online.