Thunder Road Brewing Company Announces Return of Grafton Bitter – “The Pride of the North”
After Decades of Absence, Grafton Bitter Flows Again in Northern New South Wales December 19, 2012 – Thunder Road Brewing Company today announced the reintroduction of the heritage beer Grafton Bitter in the town of its birth, Grafton N.S.W.
Known as “The Pride of the North” Grafton Bitter – and the Grafton Brewery that produced it – were enormously successful in the years after the brewery commenced operation in 1952.
Founded at a time of widespread beer shortages after WWII, the brewery and beers flourished, but like many regional beers became a victim of its own success and was targeted by much larger brewers in Sydney, including Tooheys.
Utilizing cheap subsidized rail freight, the Sydney-based brewers flooded the market with cheep beer and in 1961 Tooheys took over the distressed Grafton brewery, and promptly killed off the “Grafton” brand. The Grafton brewery continued to produce Tooheys’ beers until the company shut the brewery down in 1997. (( The Revival and Decline of the independent breweries in New South Wales, Dr. Brett J. Stubbs ))
Like many regional towns, the economy in Grafton is tough, but the reintroduction of Grafton Bitter has received broad support from pubs, clubs and local beer lovers. Unlike many of Australia’s heritage brands that have failed and never returned – Grafton Bitter is back – and along with it, a tangible sense of fighting spirit and pride in the town that gave this beer its name.
In researching the original Grafton Bitter, Thunder Road’s management team and brewers held extensive discussion with one of the last remaining employees of Grafton Brewery, who worked for the company prior to and after its take over by Tooheys Brewery. These discussions led to a very solid understanding of the ingredient profile and brewing processes used at the time – and have been instrumental to the reintroduction of Grafton Bitter.
Grafton Bitter is brewed with 100% all malted barley and real Australian hops. The beer is unpasteurized, and delivered chilled on-tap for peak freshness and a robust flavour that cannot be matched by mass-produced national beer brands. Grafton Gold, a mid-strength beer, is currently being developed and will be introduced in the first quarter of 2013.
Grafton Bitter can be found fresh on tap at the following venues: The Great Northern Hotel, Jacaranda Hotel, Good Intent Hotel, Royal Hotel, The Grafton Golf Club and will be available throughout New South Wales in 2013.
For additional information on Thunder Road Brewing Company, please visit: www.thunderroadbrewing.com