Boatrocker merging with Hippocampus Distillery

Matt Houghton and Lex Poulsen

On July 1, Hippocampus Metropolitan Distillery will merge with Boatrocker Brewing with the new title Boatrocker “Brewers & Distillers”

The craft beer and spirits products will remain under their respective brands of Hippocampus and Boatrocker. Only the company name is altered to reflect the merger.

The move will allow two highly reputable teams to work together under the one roof to produce traditional craft styles and increasingly inventive products as seasonal and limited releases.

Alex Poulsen, the Hippocampus head distiller, will relocate the copper still and himself to Melbourne from Perth, and is very excited for the opportunity to work under Matt Houghton and with the highly regarded Boatrocker team. Alex comes from a craft brewing background earning his stripes at Little Creatures, then in Norway where he was brewing and distilling.

“I am really looking forward to having Lex on our team bringing his knowledge of craft beer and craft spirits…once we settle production of what we are both doing now we have plenty of ideas for collaboration between kettle and still” said Boatrocker founder Matt Houghton.

Boatrocker can lay claim already to having one of the country’s leading barrel aged beer programs and imaginative styles…a distillery in house will provide an exciting platform to take the adventure further. The distillery is expected to be located at the existing beer barrel room from September in Braeside which opens to the public as a bar Friday to Sunday.

Sales and Marketing for both beer and spirits brands will be managed by the Boatrocker team nationally from Braeside.

The Made by Hand group were the primary backers of Hippocampus and also invested in Boatrocker a few years ago.

Howard Cearns from Made by Hand says “ Conversations between the two craft producers about ideas for collaboration led to the thought of combining the two under one roof…and that makes sense to be a Melbourne roof being closer to the majority of our customers and where the beer ferments can be useful to some spirit production…particularly our vodka which is made from the ground up…essentially taking quality wheat and embarking on the initial stages of beer production to create our own distinctive base”.

“Our intention is to maintain a base for Hippocampus and Boatrocker in Western Australia however we are yet to determine how that might look. Our focus is to first get the operation in Melbourne established.” says Cearns.

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