The Boilermaker is a classic cocktail that’s gaining in popularity, and Boilermaker House (the ultra-cool bar on Swanston and Lonsdale Street) knows how to showcase it to the max. The whisky-and-beer combination makes total sense once you’ve tried it — and then that’s all you’ll want to drink from now on. We were invited to partake in their brand-new Boilermaker: a combination of Newstead Brewing Company’s Rivet Red Ale, paired with Glenlivet Nadurra Oloroso Cask.
Fellow craft beer lovers and TPO writers Ember, Jenny, Matt and I headed into the dimly-lit and oh-so-cool venue. Boilermaker House is all dark wood, booths — and the largest collection of liquor bottles you’ve ever seen. We had prime seats right up against the bar, so we could survey the room and see the cocktails being made.
Having a chat with venue manager Max Hart, we learned that Boilermaker House partnered with Newstead Brewing Company, a craft brewery from Queensland. I know what you’re thinking: Queensland has craft beer? That’s exactly what I said to the Boilermaker House guys, and they assured me the beer scene there is in full flight. Because of a personal connection with the brewers, Boilermaker House chose Newstead to help bring their new Boilermaker combo to life. Max and co-owner Greg Sanderson even flew up to Brisbane in April to kickstart the brewing process.
To create the perfect Boilermaker, we found out, it’s usual to begin with the beer and find a whisky to match it. In this case, the Newstead Brewers were given a brief: create a beer that goes perfectly with Glenlivet Nadurra Oloroso Cask. And go perfectly it does. It’s deep and dark, and more than holds its own against the whisky. You sip first one, then the other. Then repeat.
And what to eat? Something salty and more-ish, of course. We, um, ploughed our way through the Ploughman’s Platter, with its four types of meat, three cheeses, olives, pate, and pickles. I recommend two things when sharing a Ploughman’s platter with friends: make sure one of them is a vegetarian, and that it’s closest to you and furthest from the male in the group. I more than got my fill. Thanks, Jenny and Matt.
There are only 18 kegs of the Rivet Red Ale in the world, and you’ll have to visit Boilermaker House to try it. You know you want to add it to your Untappd account. I want to return to try their new Moon Dog Pickle Back beer. Looking ahead, it will be fun seeing which new beers Boilermaker House helps create in future. They’re onto something good.
Co-founder of The Plus Ones, Theresa needs to try Boilermaker Houses’s levitating cocktail before she dies.
Get your own Boilermaker at Boilermaker House’s 1st Birthday party on Saturday 12 June, from 8pm.
209-211 Lonsdale Street
Melbourne VIC 3000