New taphouse Brightstar Brewing is bringing lager & pilsner to Thebarton

Thebarton is set to gain another brewing gem, with new brewery and taphouse, Brightstar Brewing, opening its doors to SA beer lovers this summer.

Thebarton is set to gain another brewing gem, with new brewery and taphouse, Brightstar Brewing, opening its doors to South Australian beer lovers this summer.

Revitalising the former Faulding factory site in the backstreets of West Adelaide, Brightstar Brewing owners Gareth and Megan Parker are helping take neighbourhood drinking to the next level.

“We love what’s happening in Thebarton,” Gareth says.

A stone’s throw from other popular cafes and pubs like Bloom and The Wheaty, the new taphouse is set to cement itself as another local watering hole this March.

Harnessing a strong focus on varieties of beer loved in Europe, both Gareth and Megan hope to make their mark on the craft brewing scene in their own unique way. Steering away from the usual fruity, flavourful froths synonymous with Adelaide’s craft scene Brightstar will be slinging pints of lager, pilsner and more to punters in the coming weeks.

“Craft is really the independent angle of the brewery instead of what they’re making,” Megan says.

“For us, it’s more about independence from other big multinationals. So in that sense, we’re very much craft-based.”

When we met with Brightstar, the team were still busy getting underway with last-minute details ahead of the March launch. While drills whirred and tradies bustled around, you could see the vision both Megan and Gareth pictured coming together.

Families will be able to sprawl out on the large lawn outside of Brightstar Brewing, soaking in the last of the summer sun as the kids blow off steam. There’ll be a large deck to drink pints’ outside, and a modern take on a drinking hall you may find in Munich.

The former industrial fit-out still lingers at Brightstar, with the cool blue colour palette designed by studio-gram juxtaposing with the eight tapped beers and several silver brew kettles. Letting plenty of natural light through the large windows, the place is instantly calming.

“We’re very much a family venue… we want to sustain throughout the day and have people that come for drinks on a Saturday and Sunday to be able to relax with their family,” says Megan.

“We’re trying to create that environment where you come and have good conversations and connect with people that you’re meeting.”

Both from a corporate background, both Megan and Gareth recognised that to make their vision a success, they’d need some outside assistance. The pair met and formed a friendship with beer maker Steve Brockman, who has previously worked with Mismatch Brewing and other US-based beer sites. The brewing guru is helping Brightstar launch its pipedream into reality.

“We’ve been very fortunate,” Gareth says. “We wanted to make sure we put the right people in place, and that they’ll have their autonomy to do their own thing.”

Gareth spent time during his corporate career heyday travelling to both Germany and the US, studying the way some of the world’s best beer companies develop products on the side. The duo says this inspiration has fed into their vision of Brightstar.

“We don’t want the misconception that because we’re a brewery, we’re only targeting a certain demographic. We want it to be quite broad in that appeal,” Megan says.

“So it all comes down to pure atmosphere and exciting people who come in.”

“When you start to drill down into different flavour profiles and different styles, there’s such a variety of things that you can actually. We want to start breaking down some perceptions [around beer].”

The Thebarton taphouse wants to build a connection with their customer base, helping them circumnavigate the world of beer while helping people fall in love with lager. And if the friendly attitude, gentle education and great beers aren’t enough to entice you for a pint or two; Brightstar has even developed a cucumber G+T with a brewing twist.

“It’s doing a few things a little bit differently,” Megan says. “In our climate, having that refreshment is really important for us in summer.”

Alongside their Berliners, lager and pilsners pints, Brightstar Brewing will also have paddles for punters to sip away on a myriad of froths and discover their favourite.

Perhaps what we’re most excited about here at Glam Adelaide is the mention of a beer and cheese paddle – which sounds like a true brewery trip delight to us.

Both Megan and Gareth say beer and cheese are a match made in heaven, with the froths acting as an almost palette cleanser to allow guests to taste the full flavours of sharp cheddars and creamy brie.

The paddles also act as an extension to the education side of Brightstar that the duo wants to nurture, hoping to upskill their staff to know the ins and out of their pints brewed on site.

“So we want to educate some of our staff to be Cicerone certified,” Gareth says.

“There’ll be servers that can have an in-depth conversation about why our beers are different and the different flavour profiles.”

A cicerone is the sommelier equivalent in the beer world, helping to elevate the experience of drinkers visiting the Thebarton taphouse.

“I think the education and the excitement come hand in hand,” Megan says. “If you’re inspired by the staff working in a venue because you can see the passion they have for what they’re doing; it helps create a vibe.”

And as for the meaning behind Brightstar? The name derives from the brightness derived when re-establishing your equilibrium.

“It’s about re-balancing and having a positive outlook on life, starting something new and all the bright feelings that evolve,” Megan says.

We’ll cheers to that.

Brightstar Brewing is slated to open March 2022. You can keep up to date with them online and on Instagram.

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