14/08/2007 - 22:00


14/08/2007 - 22:00


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Empire Beer Group Ltd, the owner of Margaret River’s Colonial Brewing Co, is still searching for a suitable site to launch the mircrobrewing business into the Perth market.


Empire Beer Group Ltd, the owner of Margaret River’s Colonial Brewing Co, is still searching for a suitable site to launch the mircrobrewing business into the Perth market.

The group recently bought East Perth’s Royal Bar and Brasserie but do not plan to convert the pub into a brewery operation because of its size.

Instead, the business is operating a two-prong approach to the pub game by buying up profitable pubs and running them while at the same time finding suitable sites to roll out its Colonial Brewing Co business.

Empire managing director Phil Gallagher says he’s scouring the Perth market for potential acquisitions and would like to buy four to five venues “fairly quickly”.

“We want to buy profitable pubs and vertically integrate our beers,” Mr Gallagher said. “They won’t be Colonial branded venues but they will sell Colonial’s beer.”

Mr Gallagher said Empire was also negotiating on a few sites to house its first Perth Colonial Brewing, but it was taking its time because it was being “fussy”.

• • •

The Margaret River Wine Show has secured a new naming rights sponsor and appointed Sydney Morning Herald wine writer Houn Hooke as chairman of judges. Mr Hooke is a Roseworthy wine marketing graduate and has more than 20 years experience in the industry.

The show’s organisers are increasing the number of judging panels from two to three to cope with the increasing number of entries the show is attracting.

The judging panels will be led by Mr Hooke, Yalumba senior winemaker Louisa Rose and Chris Pfeiffer, owner of Victorian-based Pfeiffer Wines.

This year’s event will be known as the Macquarie 2007 Margaret River Wine Show, reflecting a new sponsorship agreement struck with Macquarie Bank.

Judging for the event will take place between November 28 and 29 and the winners will be revealed at a special dinner at Xanadu Wines on November 29.

• • •

The Wine Industry Association of WA has launched its 2007 awards, which are sponsored by ANZ. The awards are open to all involved in the wine industry and there are some new categories this year including best estate grown wines. Entries close on August 24 and winners will be announced at a gala dinner on November 16.


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