Rockhampton’s famous Mac’s beer
The Fitzroy Brewery was the longest running brewery in country Queensland, spanning a period of 96 years.
The brewery was established by Frederick E. Russell in 1880 in partnership with A. L. Bourcicault in Quay Street about midway between Fitzroy and Denham Streets, overlooking the Fitzroy River.
The first brew was released at the official opening in October 1880 and the beer was described as ‘a nice light drink possessing a rich hop flavour with none of the hardness of other colonial beers on the market”.
In 1961 Carlton United Breweries Ltd. Melbourne bought the Fitzroy Brewery and continued the popular Mac’s beer. A new brewery was built in Richardson Street in 1970, and the name was changed to Carlton United Breweries (Rockhampton) Pty Ltd.
The brewery was closed in March 1976, almost a century after Fred Russell brewed his “nice light drink possessing a rich hop flavour”.
* Adapted from The Breweries of Australia, A History, by Keith M. Deatsher.
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