Since starting his brewing career during Covid, Beau Curtis, Founder and Head Brewer of The Social Brewers, has developed a strong and supportive network of brewers and founded a brewery dedicated to supporting its local community.

Though Curtis jokes that he began brewing as it was the next logical step once he already had a beard and a tattoo, he shared that brewing provided a more fulfilling career option than the field in which he was working prior to the pandemic.

“After surviving a sudden cardiac arrest in June 2018, I went back to work in corporate marketing, but felt like I was wasting my time. I wanted to build something, to express my creativity and be in control. I taught myself to brew over about a year, focusing on brewing four or five beers consistently. I absolutely loved the process, and the fusion of art and science,” he said.

Throughout his brewing career, Curtis has been inspired by many industry heavy hitters, including his brother, Wade Curtis, former Head of Marketing at Ballistic Beer Co.

“Wade was a big inspiration. I watched his efforts as one of the Aussie craft beer pioneers from a distance and it looked like a fun industry,” Curtis said.

Curtis developed his brewing skills through the TAFE NSW brewing certification, where he learned from teachers such as Young Henrys’ Richard Adamson and One Drop Brewing Co’s Nick Calder-Scholes. The 2022 cohort has since formed a tight knit group which Curtis still looks to for advice, inspiration, and a laugh. Steve Henderson’s Rockstar Brewer program has been another source of knowledge and advice, as well as fellow small brewers, Yepp Brewing and Rightbank Brewing.

“Anything is possible and there are loads of people who are ready to help with anything. This industry rewards effort for the most part,” Curtis said.

Since opening in 2022, The Social Brewers has netted its fair share of awards, including two gold medals and a silver at the Queensland Royal Beer Awards and a silver medal at the AIBAs. Even with these national awards, The Social Brewers remains focused on its local community in Sydney’s south.

“I want people to feel really proud in what has become a community hub for the St George area in Sydney. Before we opened, this was not only a bit of a craft beer wasteland, but it was seen as somewhere you go through to get to somewhere good. It’s just not true, and I’m trying to get locals to really engage in their own backyards, to be proud of what we have here,” Curtis said.

The brewery is continuing to connect with its locals through a newly launched crowdfunding campaign, which Curtis sees as an evolution of the brewery’s previous membership program. The money raised through the crowdfunding campaign will go towards increasing safety and automation in the brewing process at The Social Brewers, with the goal of growing the brewery’s presence in its local area.

“I want to take what we’ve created in Mortdale and get our beers poured in every pub, club, bar and bistro across St George. Over time I want to level up our hospitality offering both at the tap room and by establishing venues in key locations across the area,” Curtis said.

While Curtis hopes to win more awards, and has a big, shiny trophy in his sights, his real hopes for the next few years are to continue to brew beers that people enjoy. “I want people to drink my beers, enjoy them and come back for more. That’s what this industry is really about, creating an opportunity for people to come together and socialise.”

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