Southwark Bitter ‘I’ve been faking it for years’ Poster


By the turn of the century lager beer was becoming the most popular beer in the eastern states, and in 1902 the South Australian Brewery set up a new department specially designed for the production of lager beer.

The Adelaide Brewery of Syme & Sison was taken over in 1902, and the Walkerville Co-operative Brewing Co., one of the main competitors was acquired in 1938. Walkerville had previously purchased the Torrenside Brewery in 1898, and had relocated to that site in Winwood Street, Southwark. At the time of takeover the Winwood Street premises were renamed the Nathan Brewery, to be changed again in 1949 to the Southwark Brewery. When the West End Brewery premises in Hindley Street were closed in1980 and demolished in 1983, all brewing operations were then carried out at Winwood Street Southwark.

Southwark Bitter was originally an ale. When Australia like the rest of the world took to lagers in a big way, this beer went along for the ride. But it isn’t like every other adjunct lager in two important respects. It kept a darker malt and it has a lot more bittering hops than you will see in a typical lager. The malt character is a legacy of its origins as an ale. The bitterness is a result of how SA Brewing marketed their beers. Simply, their West End beer was their draught beer. Southwark was the beer you bought at the bottle shop to take home. Not being refrigerated thru the supply chain, Southwark upped the bittering hops as a preservative.  Australian beer drinkers from outside of South Australia have always understood Southwark to be different, and often not in a good way.

As for the beer itself it’s a very well made beer. It has a fair amount of malt and caramel sweetness and the bitterness is a good thing in a hot climate. It pours a good clean head and leaves ample lacing.

LionCo shut its South Australian operations of West End Brewery in June 2021 due to falling sales. QUOTE:

“West End has been operating well below its full production capacity for some time now and unfortunately this is no longer viable,” LionCo said in a statement. “We have come to this proposal as the best way to ensure we have a sustainable brewing network for the future. “The Australian beer market has been in long-term decline for the past decade as Australian drinkers choose other beverages, like wine, over beer. Per capita beer consumption has dropped around 20 per cent in this time.” LionCo, which is a subsidiary of Japan’s Kirin, says Covid-19 exacerbated the situation. “Our input costs have continued to rise against this backdrop of declining volume, and a further drop in draught beer sales as a result of the pandemic.’’

Lion’s South Australia-brewed  beers are no longer made in South Australia.


This is a fantastic Australian brewery poster to compliment any wall. These prints
are highly collectable and a refreshing way to bring colour and verve onto any wall.
Our high quality art prints come professionally printed on art paper stock which
allows for a vivid image with exceptional colour vibrance and print quality. You will
not be disappointed with the quality and workmanship. We have an extensive
collection of brewery photographic and poster art and if you require something not
displayed on our site do not hesitate to contact us to see if we have it, you may be
pleasantly surprised.

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multiple sizes for your convenience.

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