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The greatest strength of a craft brewery is its process; after all, this is what differentiates home-grown brews from every other run-of-the-mill beer lurking on the shelves out there. Our unique brewing process incorporates rainwater along with time-honoured German techniques utilising custom home-made equipment, and every small, handcrafted batch blends the highest quality, freshest ingredients we source from around the globe.
A little over a decade ago, Ashley and Jane Huntington returned to Australia from France, where they had been operating La Baume, a small winery owned by Hardy’s. Upon returning, they bought several hundred acres of farmland running alongside the River Derwent in Tasmania with winemaking, once more, in mind.
Two Metre Tall’s Farmhouse Ale and Cider
From day one, Two Metre Tall set out to produce “farmhouse ale and cider”, specifically with a mission to develop a genuine estate ale: one using local river water, grain and hops grown on the site and fermented with whatever yeasts and bacteria call that part of Tasmania home.
“We used to cold soak the pinot noir grapes [when winemaking in France] to extract tannins and colour from the skin. So I thought as brewing was a hot process I would hot soak the spelt and drag some shit out of the husks,” recalls Ashley (of one of his earliest brews.
“I came back the next morning, having left the brewery feeling very satisfied, and thought, ‘What the fuck has happened?’ I now have a full and open explanation for it, but nine years ago I was disturbed.”
Power of word of mouth
Word was spread – frequently by his brewing peers. That is – Two Metre Tall’s beers were awful and, worse still. Consequently, Ashley posed a grave danger to the hopes of those looking to build an Australian craft beer industry.
It hurt. In fact, it hurt a lot. The best part of a decade later, the scars from these attacks still show. Yet, just as the “remarkably unpleasant” outcomes of his first brew didn’t put him off. His fascination and, presumably, his determination, grew.
He was addictively fascinated as to what was happening. With how [the brewing] was operating and also that he’d been so dismissed.
Back in Tasmania, Ashley continued trying to work out. How to use the quirks in his beers to create remarkably pleasant beers. Also, a beer that would genuinely be a representation of his farm. Hops were planted and brewing tanks were retrofitted to add expansion chambers. Thus making them more atmospheric and even further from the aseptic breweries the manuals would insist upon.
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