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Desert Brews

EXTREME HEAT, EXTREME cold, extreme downpours, extreme droughts, extreme distances from everything. Life in Alice Springs has a lot to contend with when it comes to isolation and the elements, and quite frankly, it’s thirsty work.

By Hannah Muir

And what better to quench the thirst of the collective desert palette than a locally made beer?

The aforementioned plague of extremes quite literally makes Alice Springs a brewer’s nightmare, but that has not deterred Kyle Pearson, who went against all sane and sound advice from his trusted friend Brian, who has 20 years brewing experience under his belt.

“There were definitely lots of barriers at the start, but I was just really passionate about it,” he says.

“I put a lot of work into the planning and had worked for some big breweries in the past, so I had an idea of how it could be done”.

By 2018, Kyle had decided that the screaming need for local beer far outweighed the advice from his sensible mate and threw caution to the wind with a 50-litre pilot brewery. In true Alice Springs fashion, the project was thrown straight into the deep end with nothing but a keg full of hope to keep them afloat.

And as it turns out, the gamble paid off. Alice locals have been burping in glee while Kyle’s naysayers sip their humble stout.

Fast-forward a few years, and Alice Springs Brewing Co. is going from strength to strength! In 2020, after a $200,000 investment into upgrades, the team welcomed new Head Brewer Jum Ryan who is no stranger to local brews, having been part of the Little Creatures early days.

“He did 10 years at Creatures, both in Fremantle and Geelong, and helped them open up in Singapore. He’s just brought so much brewing knowledge and process.”

Alice Springs Brewing Co. is now producing three times the amount of beer in the same amount of time that it used to.

“That’s given us the capacity and ability to branch out to Southwest Queensland, South Australia and Darwin,” Kyle said.

Even though they are reaching far and wide across the country, with further and wider in their sights, Kyle is pleased to report that they have a strong local following as well.

“We all know that people in Alice regularly drive long distances to go on holiday but complain about the 6km to the other side of town. When we were first starting, we had people asking, ‘how are you going to get locals south of The Gap?” he laughs.

“But we’ve found ourselves greatly supported by locals, and we appreciate that.”

12-10PM | SUN, 12-8.30PM

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