By Vanessa Cavasinni, editor Australian Hotelier
After two years and an investment of $70 million, Lion has unveiled its new brewhouse at the West End Brewery, an iconic South Australian landmark.
The upgrades include additions to brewing capacity, and the restoration of a copper kettle used by the brewery in the 1930s. South Australian Premier Jay Weatherill was on hand with West End Brewery’s director, Idris Jama, to officially unveil the West End Brewhouse.
The upgrades mean that the brewery will now be able to produce up to 120 million litres of Lion’s beers annually. It will brew South Australian favourite, West End Draught, alongside Toohey’s, Hahn, Guinness and Kilkenny. Lion’s cider portfolio is also represented in the upgrades, with a new cidery installed where James Squire Orchard Crush, 5 Seeds and Kirin ciders will be produced.
Prior to the refurbishment, the brewery predominately produced large quantities of Lion’s main beers, but the changes now make it one of Lion’s most flexible breweries. The site now has the capacity to produce smaller batches of various beers in the portfolio under tighter deadlines.
Jama was pleased to reveal the changes to the local community, who have been integral supporters of the brewery. “West End Brewery has been part of the South Australian community since 1859 and this upgrade will ensure we can keep making the highest quality beer and ciders for many more years to come.”
“The upgrade has taken around two years to complete and we are particularly proud of the beautifully restored copper kettle we have given pride of place in the window for passers-by to see. The kettle has been with the Brewery since 1938 and although it’s not in use anymore, it is there to remind us of the years of brewing that came before us, the tradition of our craft, and most importantly, our long standing relationship with the local community.”
Weatherill echoed Jama’s sentiments about the local community, “South Australia’s reputation for great local produce doesn’t stop at food and wine – we have some of the best beers in the country, made right here in our state," he said.
“We welcome Lion’s continued investment in the state through the upgrade to the West End Brewery and the Brewery’s continued support of our local community.”