A massive grey shed with the Swell logo, a surfer with board under arm, is what greets you when you arrive at this small brewery and taphouse in South Australia’s McLaren Vale. The region is known mostly for its red wines, gourmet food, interesting historical towns, but it’s also only 10 to 15 minutes from the beautiful Fleurieu coast and surf beaches.
Dan Wright is the brewer and founder of Swell Brewing Co. and as you could guess he is an avid surfer and craft beer brewer, the latter of which started from small beginnings in a back shed. The Swell label began in 2010 and now there is a core range of 5 beers and an apple cider. At the brewery you can also try other craft beers on tap as well as local wines and soft drinks. If you’re new to the beers the best way to go is to buy a tasting paddle made up of 4, 100ml glasses of your choice. Price of the paddles depends on your choices but with most tasters costing only $3 per glass it can be as little as $12. From there you can buy beers by the glass in three sizes, tasters (mostly $3), schooners (around $7) or pints (around $10).
The menu is full of perfectly matched food to go with the brews from snacks, share plates and mains under $30. There are even choices for the ‘Grommets’ who are more than welcome with high chairs available.
Swell Brewing Co. has only been opened since the 21st of February 2019 and is already proving to be a popular spot but once you’ve been there you’ll see why this is no surprise. This is a really comfortable, laid back venue for relaxing with cold beers and tasty locally sourced food in a friendly atmosphere. Inside the shed there is space to sit comfortably and dine in the tiled surroundings under big ass fans, as you watch the huge TV streaming surf comps from around the world.
Outside are more tables and stools and a large grassed area for kids to run around on. There is also an incredible underwater mural created by Melbourne based artist Jimmy Dvate which covers an old shed and has to be seen to be appreciated.