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Beers & Wines

The whole point of travel is to see and experience a different culture, and a large part of that is finding new foods to eat and seeing how local people enjoy life.
 
Australia is famous for its beer and wines – and if you like either or both of these – here is some information that may help you.
 
Originally each state of Australia had a dominant brewery and the brands became synonymous with that state. In Western Australia it was Swan and Emu brands; in South Australia it was Coopers; Victoria VB, Fosters and Carlton; Tasmania Boags and Cascade; Queensland XXXX, and in NSW Tooheys.
 
While overseas, people think of Australian beer, they think of Fosters, but here in Australia, Fosters is almost nowhere to be seen!
 
Today the most popular beer brands in Sydney are VB and Tooheys, but you will also find a number of popular imported beer brands too – including Heineken and Corona, as well as boutique beer brands like James Squire and others.
 
Each brand has its followers – but try a Cascade or Boags on tap or a Crown Lager in a restaurant.

There are also some Irish Pubs too in the city CBD – and these have Guinness of course.
 
In Sydney, Hotels and clubs are often called ‘Licensed Premises’ – meaning that anyone older than 18 can buy alcohol.
 
You will also find restaurants that serve beer and wines, or just wine, or maybe what is called BYO (bring your own) which means you can buy liquor elsewhere at a Liquor Store or Bottle Shop (Off Licence) and bring it with you to the restaurant.
 
It is in almost all cases cheaper to buy liquor from a Liquor store, rather than at a restaurant that will mark up the price.
 
When it comes to wine there are literally 1000’s of wineries and vineyards located in all states of Australia, as well as New Zealand and imported wines from France, Germany, South Africa, Chile and Argentina – but if you are in Australia, you should buy Australian wine.
 
You will be spoiled for choice in wines to buy – and it is possible to buy a cheaper wine at A$10 and it will in most cases also be fine to drink too. Being more expensive should mean a better wine, and in most cases it is. If in doubt just ask the waiter, bar tender or bottle shop attendant for help in making your choice, and they are sure to be able to help you.
 
Originally, Australia called its wine using original French and German names like Champagne, Riesling  and Moselle – but these changed in the 1990’s to reflect the grape variety or region in Australia – so you will now find names like Semillon, Sauvignon Blanc, Chardonnay, Cabernet  Sauvignon, Pinot Noir, Merlot  – so still French sounding but avoiding the regional names in Europe.
 
So, enjoy some Australian wine and beer when you dine out in Sydney, or relax at one of Sydney’s many bars or hotels.
 
Cheers!
 
Happy Travelling!
 
Geoff Stuart

Happy Traveller

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