Pubs switch to craft beer as they chase younger clientele
THE old front bar at the Prince Alfred Hotel certainly wasn't without its charms, but one look at what now lies in its place and you might find yourself having one of those road to Damascus moments.
Where a toilet used to be, there is now a huge bar serving up 72 beers, ciders and other tasty alcoholic treats.
Lining the ceiling are lights made from empty kegs and beer steins.
In place of the old outdoor area is a line of funky, cylindrical, enclosed dining areas with rounded off, double tinted windows to filter out the powerful afternoon sun.
PA Hotel manager Peter Coultas said while there was a calculated risk in tearing up the old front bar, the public reaction to the new craft beer venue had been overwhelmingly positive over the first month.
"What we've done here is brought in the craft beer without making people who like the mainstream beers uncomfortable," Mr Coultas said.
"In that sense we are bringing the generations together, because grand-dads, fathers and sons can all come here and find a beer they like."
Craft beer is what Tap'd is all about, however. Mr Coultas believes the venue's 72 taps is the most of any beer bar in the southern hemisphere.
Bar manager Tim Rule is passionate about every drop that comes into the place.
"We order one keg and once that runs out we replace that tap with something else," he said.
"People are always wanting to try something different.
"My personal favourite at the moment is the Batlow and Brau Bon Pommes.
"It's a French-style beer that is made in Mt Tamborine and it's about 7.4% alcohol.
"It's mixed with apple cider and really complex - I just love it for its originality."
Locally made beers are easy to find but with so many taps, beer lovers will find almost anything from almost anywhere in the world - including good old VB and XXXX, if that's your thing.