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Hemingway’s Opens History Books On Town’s Rich Past

May 9, 2016 Destination Global No Comments Email Email

Hemingway’s Brewery has drawn inspiration from Port Douglas’ rich and sometimes colourful history to create a range of specially crafted beers reflecting the Far North Queensland town’s unique character.

A key part of The Reef Marina’s multimillion-dollar expansion, construction of Hemingway’s Brewery at The Reef Marina in Port Douglas began in August last year and is nearing completion with a soft opening scheduled for the middle of next month.

When it opens next month, Hemingway’s is destined to inject an exciting new energy into the town’s busy marina hub – effectively putting the ‘port’ back into ‘Port Douglas’ while providing a relaxed leisure and events destination complete with authentic craft beer brewed fresh on-site and quality food. The much-anticipated two-level venue with uninterrupted views of the Marina incorporates a microbrewery, bar and restaurant with indoor and outdoor seating on spacious decks for at least 500 people.

The microbrewery – currently under construction at Port Douglas Marina – has honoured the classic pairing of a good yarn with a great beer by matching each of its range of six signature brews with an amazing tale from the annals of local history.

Scheduled to open in June 2016 as a key part of the Reef Marina’s multimillion expansion, Hemingway’s Brewery will serve a selection of craft beers that were developed and brewed in-house to reflect particular aspects of the region’s past, ranging from the pioneering prospectors of the gold rush to the resilience shown in the wake of the devastating 1911 cyclone.

Hemingway’s Brewery owners, Tony Fyfe and Craig Parsell, appointed Brisbane agency Rumble Creative and Media to create branding detailing the stories that inspired each variety of liquid amber.

“Our vision for Hemingway’s Brewery was to offer a waterfront destination that would stand apart in its authenticity and become part of the Port Douglas story,” Mr Fyfe said.

“As locals ourselves, Craig and I know there is much more to this part of the world than its picture-perfect appeal, and we wanted to be able to share some of those tall tales of the past with a new generation of punters.

“After all, what could be better than sitting back in paradise with a glass or two of authentic craft beer and sharing a good yarn with mates?”

Matching growing demand in the global market for craft beer, Hemingway’s range of locally produced ales includes the IPA, Doug’s Courage, named for the way heart prevailed over hurt as the town rebuilt after being levelled by the second tropical cyclone in five weeks on 16 March 1911.

Hemingway’s signature pale ale, Pitchfork Betty’s, meanwhile, was inspired by the legend of Old Betty Whiting, a former Port Douglas publican and staunch defender of the town’s original character who was best known for brandishing an iron pitchfork against unruly patrons. 

They are just two of the tales to be featured on the draught beer taps as part of a comprehensive package of contemporary branding linking to Hemingway’s website, said Rumble Creative and Media managing partner Remy Brassac.  The website will become ‘live’ mid-July in line with the venue’s grand opening celebration.

“Tony and Craig’s innovative vision for Hemingway’s Brewery comes from a genuine passion for Port Douglas and for the craft of brewing and we are thrilled to be working with them to bring every aspect of the brand experience to life, from the identity and labels, to the stories behind each brew and more,” Ms Brassac said. 

Hemingway’s Brewery beers and their stories: 

1.Mrs Watsons (small ale)   In the late 1800s, the sea slug trade in Far North Queensland was a profitable and surprisingly perilous way to earn a living. But none felt this more than Captain Robert Watson’s wife, baby daughter, and servant. Their tale lives on in this ale.

2.The Prospector (pilsner)    James Venture Mulligan was the first to find gold in the Palmer River. It was because of his
thirst for adventure and tireless efforts that Port Douglas came
to be, and it’s his story that has inspired this refreshing brew.

3.Pitchfork Betty’s (pale ale)           She ruled a local watering hole
not with an iron fist, but with a trusted and slightly rusted pitchfork. A staunch defender of the good time and good life in Port Douglas, and the inspiration for this beer.

  1. Doug’s Courage (IPA) March 16, 1911 was the day Port Douglas was levelled by the mother of all cyclones. Battered but hardly beaten, a band of courageous locals rebuilt to continue the story of this place we love, and their spirited fortitude is celebrated in this ale.
  2. Hard Yards (American dark lager) In 1877, when gold was found,
the Bump Track was the only
road to Port Douglas and it
was no leisurely Sunday drive. Unforgiving and treacherous, it brought meaning to the term no pain no gain, and it lives on in this dark lager.
  3. Kick Back (ginger beer) If you’ve ever come eye-to-eye with a cassowary, chances are you’ve felt its brutal kick. Armed with a pair of daggered claws, it’s a bird feared by many but respected by all and is the inspiration for this spicy little drop.

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