Cascade Brewery Co, Australia’s oldest operating brewery will say a fond farewell to local legend Max Burslem after an incredible 42 years of employment at the brewery. A Tasmanian icon and the former head brewer at Cascade, Max will finish up his extraordinary tenure at the end of this month.
For Max, his career spanning four decades has not just been a job – it’s been a lifelong passion and, despite a revolution in beer over that time both in terms of style and drinking trends, Cascade Draught is still his favourite.
“Cascade beers are among some of the best in the world because we use the best Tasmanian hops, the best local barley and the purest Tasmanian water. Even after all this time I’m still a Cascade Draught man,” says Max.
Max has been at the forefront of quality production and innovation at the brewery, most notably being involved in brewing Cascade’s innovative and renowned vintage brew, First Harvest ale. As the name suggests, the beer relies exclusively on the first harvest of Tasmanian barley and hops. Always using three new and experimental hop varieties to produce a limited release ale, First Harvest is highly anticipated by beer lovers every year because of its remarkable intensity, balance and unmistakable fresh hop character. Max’s final involvement in the 10th anniversary 2011 First Harvest brew was a fitting tribute to his inspiring time at the brewery.
Proud to have been a part of the talented and passionate Cascade team for such a long time having first started at the brewery in 1969, Max could never imagine doing anything else. Since that time the local brewing industry, so ingrained in Australian culture, has seen many changes and Max has been there every step of the way.
“A lot has changed, things have come and gone, but my affection for this brewery and the beer it produces remains unchanged,” Max said.
Stepping down from the position of head brewer in February of this year, Max assumed the role of transformation manager at Cascade. Through a smooth transition process Max was able to share his significant experience and knowledge of the brewery’s operations with new head brewer and general manager, Mike Unsworth in the months leading up to his retirement.
Max plans to enjoy retirement at his weekend shack at Bruny Island, enjoying the fishing and sharing some tall tales over a Cascade beer or two with friends. His incredible service to Cascade was officially celebrated with a party where he was joined by family, friends and the team at Cascade in late October.