Pumpyard Bar and Brewery
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This Ipswich micro-brewery is winning hearts with beer lovers, foodies and historians alike
In 1862, Ipswich City residents would walk up a limestone track to meet at the ‘pumpyard’ – a natural spring that supplied fresh water to the fledgling city. Here, they were allowed four pails a day, for no charge. More than 150 years on, the Limestone Street location still proves worthy of a daily visit. Housed in a heritage listed building basement, Pumpyard Bar and Brewery still suggests four pales a day – ales, that is.
Local brewer Wade Curtis is the man behind the 1,200-litre brew house that just 12 months ago underwent a sympathetic renovation. Hefty wooden beams of indeterminable age support exposed brickwork. Archways that grace lofty spaces bow to casual chairs, lounges and tables that lead back to a courtyard flanked with giant figs. Under soaring ceilings illuminated by the soft glow of industrial lighting, shiny stainless steel uni-tanks ferment seasonal brews.
The row of frosty taps that jut from solid slabs of the old Toogoolawah bridge change regularly. There might be thick, rich, dark-as-a-lump-of-coal stout; a malty Summer Wheat (a German wheat ale); any number of IPAs; or a jolly good Coffee Cream (a blend of Toby’s Estate with an American Cream ale that drinks like a flat white). Cider more your thing? There’s a dedicated cider tap with your name on it. Bottled? More than 45 guest brews that range from 4.2% right up to a head-spinning 12.12%.
The kitchen pumps out damn fine tucker too. Amid the usual (but excellent) spicy wings, crisp-based pizzas, and a generous three-cheese charcuterie board are the stand-out fri(ed pi)ckles – they’d have to be up there with the best – and the meltingly soft slow-cooked ribs in stout. A sky-high burger and a beer flight (six x 80ml of the daily best) is the perfect way to spend a lazy lunchtime. Round it off with beer ice cream, or maybe ale-dough doughnuts stuffed with stout chocolate sauce.
Supported by fab floor staff that pull the whole shebang together, Pumpyard aims for a standard and well and truly delivers.
88 Limestone St
|Opening hours:||Wed-Thu: noon-10pm; Fri, Sat noon-11pm; Sun noon-6pm|