MELBOURNE | Bad Shepherd Brewing Co. have a simple motto – “Leading you into temptation”, and when you walk into their Cheltenham brewery and try a few of their beers, you soon realise that they’ve done exactly that.
Owners Dereck and Diti Hales, head brewer and American BBQ cook respectively, left the corporate world behind to start Bad Shepherd in 2015 and have been successfully running the popular spot since. The brewery is located in an industrial part of town, with a bit of an office park vibe to match, but when you walk inside it’s easy to forget where you are. High ceilings, brick and white tiles create a space that’s modern and welcoming, and it’s full of people from all walks of life, young, old, families, it doesn’t matter. Outside is a small courtyard to enjoy when the weather is good.
The brewery shares the brewing equipment with Wolf of The Willows, and on the taps you’ll find beers from both breweries, along with a few guest taps. There’s a good mixture of core range and specialty beers, and the option of a tasting paddle of four beers if you’d like to try a few different things. Our go-to Bad Shepherd beer is the Hazelnut Brown – a 5.9& Hazelnut Brown Ale that’s packed full of real hazelnuts, hazelnut extract, vanilla and Frangelico to create an intensely flavoured, well balanced, smooth beer that’s one of the best examples of the style we’ve ever tried. The Double Choc Hazelnut Brown, if it’s on tap when you visit, is even better.
Bad Shepherd’s Tiny IPA, a 3.5% Session IPA, is one of our favourite examples of a low ABV beer, and their 5.2% American Pale Ale is fantastic too. From the Wolf of the Willows range, the JSP – Johnny Smoke Porter, a 5.2% Smoked Porter with notes of chocolate, espresso and of course smoke, is our favourite.
The food here is more than just an afterthought, with some of the best American BBQ in town on offer. Meat is smoked low and slow in a competition grade upright smoker from Louisiana with apple wood and red gum wood. Pulled pork and lamb, brisket, pork ribs, mac & cheese, buffalo wings and Boston beans are all fantastic, as is most of the other stuff on the menu.
Bad Shepherd Brewing Co.
386 Reserve Road
Telephone: (03) 8555 3175
E-mail: [email protected]
Wed – Thu: 12:00pm to 11:00pm
Fri – Sat: 12:00pm to 12:00am
Sun: 12:00pm to 9:00pm