Food and Drink

   

Beer Walking

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I like walking, history and beer. Not necessarily in that order. But combine them all and I’m a happy camper – or a tipsy one. The affable Dave Carswell from tour company Melbourne By Foot feels the same way and has recently started Beer Walks around Melbourne.

The tour starts outside the Immigration Museum, where Dave serves up a rollicking history of Melbourne through the lens of the beer glass, with plenty of opportunities to stop and refresh along the way. Dave talks and walks us through Melbourne’s murky past – from corrupt pollies and bootleggers to the temperance movement.

I learned a heap of facts that might just come in handy at the next pub trivia night. For example, did you know Melbourne’s first newspaper was published in a pub, and our fair city’s first town hall meeting occurred in a booze house? (Fairfax journos and local councillors might argue not much has changed).

In-between the frothy fountains of knowledge our group stopped at places like the The Mitre Tavern in Bank Place, the city’s oldest continually operating pub, and got to sample some fine Victorian microbrews.

By the time the tour got to Beer Deluxe our group had imbibed significantly more than one for the road and were getting on like a gaggle of seagulls, discussing hop signature vs IBU counts. Or something like that. All that stopped when the burger dinner came about and we swooped again like seagulls. All that learning’s thirsty work.

If you want to learn a little more about Melbourne and its hoppy past look out for the next Beer Walk at melbournebyfoot.com. Tours run every Thursday night at 6.30pm or by appointment.

Photos by Misho Baranovic.


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