Foster’s Lager, once Australia’s top-selling beer, can now be found on tap in just ten bars and pubs scattered right across the entire country.
The last surviving Foster’s Lager venues were revealed by Carlton & United Breweries following its launch of Foster’s Classic, a new packaged-only variant created to leverage the brand’s retro appeal.
Bondy’s, a Sydney CBD bar that celebrates the Alan Bond era of 80s excess, opened in October 2014 with an ironic drinks list that includes Foster’s on tap alongside a $20,000 cocktail and a 1980s Penfolds Grange vertical.
“Foster’s is selling really well in our venue,” says Bondy’s manager Jeremy Staf, whose bar is one of only two in New South Wales to pour Foster’s, alongside The Beach Hotel in Byron Bay.
In Western Australia, Broome’s Divers Tavern re-introduced Foster’s about eight months ago for the “old school factor”, says general manager Mick Wescombe.
“It was purely for the shock value of having Foster’s back in Australian pubs. I haven’t seen it on tap since I was 15 or 16 years old, going to pubs with my parents,” Wescombe says.
“I thought it was pretty cool to put it on tap and it got a fair bit of traction there for awhile. Obviously the poms love it and it was quite cheap.”
Foster’s sales are steady at Perth venue The Flying Scotsman, manager Shaun Elder told Australian Brews News.
“I think it sells just for the nostalgia and the fact that people never see it – aside from some pommy guys that come in and they always drink Foster’s,” he reports.
So irony, novelty, nostalgia and English tourists appear to be keeping Foster’s Lager alive in Australian venues. Time will tell whether this will be enough to kickstart a genuine resurgence for the brand.
Here is the complete list* of venues still serving Foster’s on tap:
Fisherman’s Wharf Tavern, Gold Coast, QLD
Communal Bar & Eat House, Brisbane, QLD
City Backpackers, Brisbane, QLD
Carlton Brewhouse, Abbotsford, VIC
Lucky Coq, Windsor, VIC
Young & Jacksons Hotel, Melbourne, VIC
The Beach Hotel, Byron Bay, NSW
Bondy’s, Sydney, NSW
Divers Tavern, Broome, WA
The Flying Scotsman, Perth, WA
*CUB cautions that this list is correct at the time of writing, but may be subject to change.
Do you miss Foster’s? Want to see it on tap in your local? Let us know in the comments below.