Records tumble at Tap’d


When the owners of the Prince Alfred (P.A.) Hotel in Booval put plans in motion for a new bar dedicated to a range of craft beers and ciders, it turned out in the end to be an Australian record, and shows that Ipswich residents love to try something different.

The new Tap’d bar at the PA Hotel has a total of 72 beers and ciders on tap, which is more than any other location in Australia, and Operations Manager Tim Rule knew that the pub was onto something special but didn’t realise they’d be breaking records.

“We saw the success of selling craft beer, and we knew it was a growing market,” Tim said. “The original plan was to do 26 beers, but the pub’s owner went to San Diego to look at some venues and saw a place with 130 beers on tap, then another with 260 beers on tap! When he came back he said ’26 ain’t gonna cut it’, so we upped it to 72!

“The interest in these beers has come from what was initially a decline in beer sales a few years back. People decided to go for quality over quantity, and they wanted more bang for their buck. Just like the explosion in café’s and coffee, the younger crowds prefer something a bit different, and that 18-30 year old market has pushed the demand for craft beers.”

For those who don’t know much about craft beers, Tim explains.

“Craft beer is a very broad subject. It includes beers from the popular ones like XXXX to big bold stouts and IPA’s (which stands for India Pale Ale and has a higher hop content which increases the fruity character and bitterness).

“It’s easy to make the transition to craft beers, as we try to cater to all markets. Yes they can get a glass of Gold, but we have a range of gateway or ‘transition’ beers on tap so people can start to explore the range available to them.”

Approximately $1.5 million was spent on the renovation and creation of Tap’d and Tim admits they didn’t do any big investigations into who has the most beers and ciders on tap, but only discovered the record after construction was under way, and possibly is the most amount of beers on tap in the Southern Hemisphere.

“My advice to the average person who wants to explore beers? I’d recommend something like the ‘1842 Lavoob’ original lager…its our own beer, as the PA hotel was built in that year, and what happens when you spell ‘Lavoob’ backwards?

“Clean, crisp, and easy drinking. It’s a perfect beer to start your steps into craft beers.

“Personally I’m a man of many tastes, I’m a big fan of hops. The more the better. There are many unusual beers on tap, like Coffee-infused oatmeal stout, Chilli-Lamington ale, Choc-Hazelnut dark ale, Hard Lemonade and Choc-Cherry Beer Cocktail as well!” Tim said.

“It know it sounds odd, these flavours in a beer, but many of these aren’t a dominant flavour. For instance with the lamington beer, you get a Choc-Vanilla infused taste, but then after you’ve swallowed it you get the chilli kicking in. Or the Cherry Sour beer is like drinking a Sour Warhead. It’s quite different. These types of beers have been increasing in popularity for several years now.

“We had a Mango beer on opening, and it was our fastest moving product, and such a perfect beer for summer. That’s coming back, and we’re looking at a Watermelon wheat beer, a Pineapple cider from New Zealand and even a Lychee beer!” Tim said.

“We’re always looking for these unusual items that are perfect for an Ipswich summer and I love to see new flavours, its very exciting. The first reaction from customers is they are blown away with the range, but they all love it. Every time you come here you can try something different!”