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Brewer Profile: Joshua Allen of Merchant Brewing Company

Our newest Brewer Profile is on Joshua Allen, of gypsy brewers Merchant Brewing Company based in Sydney.

Merchant Brewing Co - Joshua Allen

Merchant Brewing Company are three friends; Josh, Dan and Glenn, who have converted their love of beer to the next level.

Named after the street where the idea of setting up a brewing company started in a suburban kitchen, Merchant Brewing are brewing out of Hopdog Beerworks in Nowra.  Current plans are to continue contract brewing this year whilst plans are put in place for their own brewery.

The current beer line up is Three Toe Ale (5.5%), a dry hopped American Pale Ale loaded with Aussie hops, and Smooth Sailor (5.6%), an English Brown Porter.

Joshua kindly answered our ten questions;

Joshua Allen – Merchant Brewing Company, Sydney, NSW

What was your first brew?
A Coopers Pale Ale extract kit, fermented next to my toilet in the shoebox sized flat I was living in at the time. Tasted awful but the sight of seeing bubble’s escape the airlock for the first time was amazing!

2. How did you get this job?
Merchant Brewing Company is my first brewing position. It’s a new business venture formed by myself and two best mates who have the same passion for beer as me.

3. What’s your favourite beer that you have brewed?
We currently have 2 beers released and my favourite of the two is Smooth Sailor Coconut Vanilla Porter. Will be dropping some more exciting stuff throughout the course of the year.

4. What’s your favourite beer brewed by others?
So many great beers out there. Off the top of my head:

Some local Sydney region beers:

  • Dennis: Madhatter IPA
  • EKIM: HEL Black IPA
  • Wayward: Keller Instinct
  • HopDog: All Hallowed Ale.


  • Russian River: Pliny the Elder
  • Dogfishhead: Bitch’s Brew
  • Brewdog: Dogma Scottish Ale
  • Brouwerij De Ranke: Kriek De Ranke
  • Brouwerij Het Anker: Gouden Carolus Tripel

5. Which beer would you like to brew?
I love Belgian beers. Every beer we create, I am always telling the guys how cool it would be if we add a Belgian influence. It’s only a matter of time!

6. What name would you really like to give to a beer, and what type of beer would it be?
There is something really enjoyable about calling a beer a weird, fun name. We have some amusing names for some beers we plan to release later on in the year. Hope you like them!

7. What’s your favourite beer style?
Belgian Tripel.

8. What’s your favourite hop variety?
I love the Australian/NZ hop varieties. Vic Secret is a favourite at the moment.

9. What’s your favourite malt variety?
Love Maris Otter as a base malt. I have different favourites depending on the beer style.

10. Which do you prefer – draught, bottle or cans?
Depends on the occasion/location.

Technical Details of Brewery plant

Gypsy brewer using Hopdog Beerworks in Nowra at the moment.

Merchant Brewing brewery