Brewing Maestro: Ken Wolf Marks Over 40 Years at XXXX Brewery in Milton

Ken Wolf Milton Brewery
Photo Credit: XXXXBrewery

Ken Wolf has become synonymous with the historic XXXX Brewery in Milton, where he has spent more than four decades perfecting the craft of beer brewing and now leads hundreds of enthusiasts on tours, sharing the myths and magic of one of Brisbane’s most iconic brewing houses.

Ken’s relationship with beer began over 40 years ago when he first joined the Castlemaine Perkins team, a staple of Brisbane’s brewing industry. Initially starting as a brewer, Ken’s deep-seated passion for beer and brewing is evident from his long-standing tenure, culminating in his role today as a tour guide, affectionately known as the “Willy Wonka of Brewing.” 

His role transitioned when he returned to the brewery after a brief retirement, spurred on by his wife’s encouragement and his enduring love for the craft. As a guide, Ken breathes life into the storied corridors of the XXXX Brewery, illuminating its rich history for visitors. 

His storytelling educates and entertains, as he unveils the brewery’s technical evolution and cultural impact, making every tour a memorable journey through time.

Ken Wolf
Photo Credit: XXXX Milton/TripAdvisor

Today, Ken’s dedication to sharing the brewery’s history is as strong as ever. He sees his role as not just a job but as a crucial part of preserving and celebrating the brewing heritage that XXX represents. His tours not only cover the historical aspects but also delve into the brewery’s social and economic impacts on Queensland and Australia.

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Ken Wolf remains a vital figure at XXXX Brewery, embodying the spirit of brewing tradition and the community ties of Milton. His efforts ensure that every visitor leaves with a deeper appreciation of the craft and history of brewing, making the XXXX Brewery a landmark not just in Brisbane but in the world of beer enthusiasts everywhere.

Castlemaine Perkins: A Chronicle of Brewing Excellence

The Castlemaine Perkins Brewery, located at 185 Milton Road, Milton, Brisbane, was established in 1878 on the site of a former rum distillery. Founded by brothers Nicholas and Edward Fitzgerald, the brewery has become a significant landmark in Brisbane. It continues to produce beer to this day under the flagship of the XXXX beer brand. The brewery’s origins are traced back to an earlier enterprise by the Fitzgeralds in Victoria, which gives its name to the current establishment. 

Castlemaine Perkins in Milton
Photo Credit: Wikimedia Commons

Over the years, Castlemaine Perkins has seen extensive technological changes that have streamlined brewing processes and reduced its workforce from over 800 employees in the 1980s to about 160 today.

Photo Credit: State Library of Queensland

Ken’s tours provide insights into these changes, highlighting the evolution from a labour-intensive operation to a more automated facility while retaining the craft’s traditional essence.

The brewery has played a pivotal role in the local culture, evidenced by the enduring popularity of the ‘Fourex Man’ in Queensland’s advertising history. Ken often shares stories illustrating the brewery’s deep connections with the community, such as reactions to past ownership changes and the brewery’s role in local traditions and celebrations.

The Fourex Man
Photo Credit: Wikimedia Commons

XXXX Brewery Tour

The 90-minute tour of XXXX offers a comprehensive view of its history and brewing techniques, from its inception to its leadership in the industry.

On the brewery tour, guests will learn about the intricate brewing processes and the secrets of pouring the perfect pint of XXXX. The tour is educational and interactive, showcasing the flavors and brewing science that make XXXX a household name in Queensland.

After the tour, relax in the Alehouse with a beer tasting session. Try various XXXX brews and get a complimentary gift.

Practical Information and Booking

  • Pricing: The tour is priced at $37 per adult, which includes the guided tour, beer tasting session, and a free gift.
  • Age Restriction: Guests must be 18 years or older to participate in the tour.
  • Tour Schedule: Tours are available from Wednesday to Saturday. Private group tours can be arranged for groups of 15 or more upon request via email.
  • Safety and Accessibility: Guests are required to wear fully enclosed flat shoes and must not consume alcohol before the tour. A government-issued ID is needed for verification. For safety reasons, all bags and cameras must be stored in lockers provided at the brewery, as no loose items are allowed on the tour. Please note, the tour involves many steps and is not accessible to guests with mobility aids such as crutches or wheelchairs.

Bookings are essential for all tours. Interested visitors can check available dates and book their tour through the XXXX Brewery’s website.