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Mystery Pub: Brightstar Brewing

Like a compulsory compensation within the water cycle it needed to happen in Thebarton. The recent closure of both Coke and the West End brewery meant the local refreshment industry required replenishment and last week it occurred with the opening of Brightstar Brewing.

Ahh, the water cycle. I knew being a Year 9 Geography alumnus/survivor would come in handy.

The gentrification of this compelling inner-west suburb continues apace as the old industrial landscape is transformed. Attractively set in the old University of Adelaide building the brewery’s red brick façade is simultaneously modern and emblematic of a sepia generation.

We claimed our booked table on the deck and began working on our beverages: a gin for Claire and a pilsner for me. My beer was fruity (no, not in that way) and approachable as one might expect for 4.45 on a balmy Friday.

Looking down towards the Torrens is a lush lawn functioning as a village green and the owners’ licence extends there. They’ve plans to host live music too and I can already hear a Sunday jazz quartet. A gaggle of high-vis enthusiasts was gathered under a marquee waiting for the nearby barbecue while a steady liquid stream was maintained between bar and grass. A staff member rolled out a couple of colourful picnic blankets by the ancient chimney.

Wine’s a curious omission from the grog menu but there’s beer-based cocktails for the suitably brash. Across this fetching scene they pump plenty of sixties British music and this adds appreciably to the festive feel. I hear two Rolling Stones’ songs and this always enhances my current cup.

Inside are more generous tables and a swanky bar that’s imposing and inviting. There’s fresh paint and energy and we’re told a chef will soon take charge of the kitchen. Of course, a rack of souvenir t-shirts and hoodies waits in the corner.

Later, in search of the euphemism we see that the building’s other spaces are ready for conferences and artisans and start-ups. It’s exciting. Oh, to be a twenty-something entrepreneur with pants rolled up well north of my ankles.

I also learn that those on the beer taps have completed the Cicerone Certification Program which ‘elevates the beer experience.’ I’m sure it does and my session ale is also zesty fun and straw of hue. Investigating the CCP I note that a point of instruction is defining a clean glass as being free from ‘soil and oil.’ This factoid is pleasing but a little voice tells me that regardless of international beverage pouring education, it should be a given. To my knowledge the pints down at the Broady have never housed any ‘Bay of Biscay’ or Castrol.

On the deck Claire and I speculate on the future of this part of town and conclude that being proximate to the tram and CBD and with an array of eclectic architecture ripe for apartment conversion it’ll hold increasing appeal. Brightstar Brewing will exaggerate this.

And with our Year 9 Geography homework done (Claire- A+, me- C: it was always thus) we point our motor at South Road.