Alstonville home to Australias best beer

Kevin and Andrea Rowland with their Champion Australian Beer, the Northern Rivers Stout.

Kevin and Andrea Rowland consider themselves Australian by choice and although Kevin is from Canada and Andrea the UK, they have made the Northern Rivers their home and beer their business.

The couples love of the amber ale inspired them to establish the Northern Rivers Brewing Company near Alstonville, and despite not being born and bred in Australia, it seems they have a natural knack for brewing a fine drop.

The couples Northern Rivers Stout was recently named Champion Australian Beer at the Australian Hotel Beer Awards in Sydney, making it officially Australias best beer.

It was a total surprise that we won, said Kevin, and really, really unusual for a stout to win. Apparently the judges were astounded themselves.

The Northern Rivers Brewing Company defeated a field of 104 beers, scooping the award over last years winner, Western Australias Little Creatures, by only one point.

Since opening 18 months ago, Kevin and Andrea have been perfecting their four types of beer, which are all naturally brewed with no chemicals, additives, preservatives or added sugar.

They didnt even know about the Australian Hotel Beer Awards, entering at the last minute when a supplier asked them if they were going down to Sydney to the Australian Beer Festival.

We were told we were too late to showcase our beer at the festival, said Andrea. But we could still go into the awards, so we thought wed give it a shot.

To find out about the Northern Rivers Brewing Company visit the website at Or try out their winning beer at this years Taste of Byron food festival on Sunday, October 15, on the beach front at Byron Bay.

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