Roadtrippers, we’ve got a new one for you. Remember the old Markdel racecourse and stables in Fingal? Well it’s just been turned into a gorgeous family-friendly craft brewery. Write this name down: St Andrews Beach Brewery.
A few years ago this was a 92-acre horse property on the Mornington Peninsula, owned by the Freedman brothers. Group 1 winners like Makybe Diva used to call it home. Now there are 8000 apple and pear trees growing on the old track, and the horse boxes have morphed private drinking booths. In fact there’s not much to remind you of the old property—owners Andrew Purchase, Michael Freedman, Tommy Berry, Jack Dahan, Michael Wallace and David Warner (yep, that one) have done an amazing job on the transformation.
St Andrews Beach Brewery makes and packs all of its beer on-site in a 25HL brewhouse. At the moment they’re serving four core beers: a US pale ale, Aussie lager, summery Golden Ale and a crisp pilsner. They all go down pretty well with the menu, which is built around fresh-baked pizzas (try the pork sausage), healthy salads and hunger-busting burgers.
But there’s a bit more variety than you’d expect from your typical brewpub. The Green Tea Soba noodles are a refreshing summer blast, topped off with radish, edamame, pickled ginger and lemongrass chicken. And there's always Pilsner-battered fish n' chips if you're stuck for ideas. Throw in a few bar bites (Sydney rock oysters and ceviche tostada are standouts) and you’ve got the perfect menu for summer grazing.
The space itself is stunning. Bench seats and tables out in the sun. Steal and timber everywhere. Big high ceilings and a bar decked out in terrazzo and dusty old bricks. One part Mornington, two parts Richmond—that’s pretty much the vibe.
After your meal, make sure to wander ‘round the property. Check out the kitchen garden and the giant apple orchard. The guys plan to brew their own cider here in four year’s time (when the trees have matured). Until then, just soak up some serenity.
Image credit: Jess Prince