Australia is famous for beer—drinking it, as well as making it. Amongst some social classes, beer is almost a religion. Beer drinkers tend to be loyal to their brew.
One major misconception is that all Australians drink Foster’s. Chalk that one up to advertising—in America. Fact is, you rarely see Foster’s, except in Queensland, though you see a lot of Foster’s products: VB (Victoria Bitter), Crownies (Crown Lager), Carlton, Sterling, Cascade, etc. The Foster’s you get in North America is actually made in Canada (read the label, mate).
Other major beers are XXXX (called 4X) from Queensland, Swan Lager from Western Australia, Boags from Tasmania, Tooheys from New South Wales, Victoria Bitter (VB) from Victoria, and many more. There are many smaller brewers, like Western Australia’s Little Creatures and South Australia’s Coopers, plus micro breweries, like Feral, Bootleg, and Mountain Goat. Hundreds of boutique breweries have sprung up throughout the country, each making their own brew to their own recipes, served fresh to locals and tourists.
Domestic beer isn’t cheap—about twice the U.S. price. You can expect to pay A$30–50 for a carton (case), or A$12–15 for a six-pack, depending on the brand. If you hanker for the taste of home, Budweiser, Miller, and Corona are available as expensive imports, along with many beers from Europe. When it comes to a good brew what’s a few dollars? Besides, one doesn’t buy beer; one just rents it for an hour or so...
Australia, what a concept...
I moved to Australia from the U.S. when I was fifty. The transition looked deceptively simple. After all, I’d visited there a half-dozen times, I knew my way around, and the Aussies speak English—how hard could it be? I quickly found there’s a big difference between being a tourist in a country and having to make a serious go of it. This blog covers what I had to learn the first few years in order to survive.