There’s a new craft brewery in the Sydney suburb of Botany and it’s bringing with it the sounds of the Caribbean.
Named after a signature reggae beat, One Drop Brewing Co is the first craft brewery to open in the area.
It all started about three years ago when husband and wife co-founders Meg Barbic and Clay Grant decided to quit their jobs and go out of their own. Barbic established her software technology business while Grant went into catering.
Specialising in whole barbeque pigs, Grant was doing the rounds of the breweries in Sydney’s inner west when he decided – and Barbic agreed – that Botany could benefit by having its own brewery.
“We both loved craft beer and having our own startup was something that really excited me and making beer and serving good food was something that really excited him, so we thought that we’d start working on it together,” Barbic said.
The brewing business was started in mid-2016 when Barbic and Grant created the brand and starting planning. The couple sold their house in mid-2017 to fund the brewery build and decided to go on a family holiday to Croatia.
During their holiday, the One Drop family met Nick Calder-Scholes, who was brewing for Croatia’s The Garden Brewery at the time.
By the end of 2017, Barbic and Grant secured a site for their brewery and construction began.
Formerly of London’s Fourpure, Calder-Scholes joined the team as head brewer in September 2018.
One Drop Brewing Co is located on a quiet street in Botany in an old paper store, which has been restored to bring back as much of its old, natural charm as possible.
One Drop brewery and taproom opened to the public last month on the first Sunday of 2019, which is also the postcode for Botany.
“We wanted to launch the year as the year of Botany beer,” Barbic explained.
“Being the first brewery in the south-east, we really wanted to rep our area.
“We have an awesome community behind us so we definitely wanted to represent them.”
One Drop’s best selling beer is its Botany Bay lager, which Barbic says is a beer for the people.
The couple sourced all of their brewhouse equipment from Canadian company DME and includes a 12hL two vessel brewhouse and six 24hL fermentation tanks. Brews News understands that One Drop Brewing Co was one of DME’s last customers to receive their equipment before the company went into receivership.
East Coast Canning has been engaged, with canning due to start in April at the brewery.
The brewery’s aesthetic centres on that One Drop reggae beat, whereby much of the music is reggae and dub.
Having joined the craft beer industry as newcomers, not knowing anything except for their own tastes in beer, Barbic said that opening One Drop has been a crash course in learning as you go.
“But what we’ve found is that if you stay open-minded and are able to go with the flow, people are very helpful,” she said.
“We feel very excited that the idea was a good one.
“There are so many people in the community that definitely appreciate the space and a locally-made product that’s of really good quality.”
The brewery will have a lineup of rotating food trucks as well as a live music rotation. Currently on tap is the Botany Bay Lager, Pilsner, XPA, IPA, Mango and Lime Sour and Table Pale.
One Drop Brewing Co is located at 5 Erith Street Botany 2019 NSW.
Brewery openings are presented by Spark Breweries and Distilleries.
Read more: How to start a brewing company: Part One.