Ballina brewer says koala beer was a ‘no brainer’
THE team behind plans to build Australia's largest mobile wildlife vet hospital are testament to the fact that when the going gets tough, the tough get going.
Seven Mile Brewing Co have partnered with Byron Bay Wildlife Hospital on a limited release craft beer called Koala Lager.
Casting aside his own difficulties caused by the COVID-19 pandemic, the Ballina brewery founder Lou Wilson said it was a delight to craft a new beer for such a good cause.
They don't make a cent from the beer, as $2 from each tinny will go directly to the cause.
"We are a big part of our own community, we want to try and do things to help our own community," Mr Wilson said.
"These guys approached us to do the Koala beer, we thought it was a great idea.
"It was a no-brainer."
Mr Wilson said they were fortunate they opened two years ago - any later and COVID-19 would have knocked his business on the head.
"We lost about 75 per cent of our business," he said.
"JobKeeper has saved our butt, we were able to keep our staff on and we shifted into making hand sanitiser.
"It's going to take us a long time to recover but it looks like we will recover."
Developing the Koala Lager was a year-long project.
"In the case of the Koala beer, it was about trying to have some Australian flavours in it that related to our native wildlife and our fauna," Mr Wilson said.
"We looked originally at eucalyptus but it's way too pungent, so the next best thing was lemon myrtle."
They are considering doing a series of beers for the cause, and will look into that option more seriously down the track.
"The plan is to have several beers, and do a wildlife series," Mr Wilson said.
It is available on Seven Mile Brewery's website, so you can order it online if you're not living locally.
The new lager will also be stoked at the following points:
• Cooly Liquor
• Cabarita Cellarbrations
• Evans Head Bottlemart
• Sun Bistro bottle shop
• Salt Bar Kingscliff
• Alstonville Cellars
• Great Northern Hotel
• The Park Hotel Motel (Suffolk Park)
• Sunrise Cellars
• Murwillumbah Cellars
• Lennox Point Hotel
• The Cellar Bangalow
• The Cellar Ballina
• The Cellar Byron
• Cellarbrations Pottsville
• Curious Craft Ales Lismore