The beer gut myth debunked

The beer gut myth debunked

Wednesday, 18 Dec 2019

It’s the most wonderful time of the year. Friends, family, food, beer, festivities and gifts. If you’re someone likely to indulge over the summer holidays, you may worry about looking more like Santa than you’d like by the end of it all. Some might even try to tell you it’s the beer that makes the belly, but don’t be fooled.


It might be famously known as a beer belly, but if that is the case… then why do some teetotallers have one?


“Beer” gut comes from too many calories in general, and not enough burning of those calories. Whether from alcohol, high-fat foods or sugary non-alcoholic beverages, everyone gets to a certain age where metabolism doesn’t compensate for this like it used to. Whilst alcohol has been associated with mid-section weight gain due to the liver having to work harder to burn alcohol rather than fat, abstaining from it completely won’t save you either.


Anytime you ingest more calories than you burn, they’re stored as excess fat. Where your body ends up storing this fat is usually determined by age, gender and hormones. For ageing men, the belly is often where it finds a home. So, regardless of where your calories are coming from, the waistline will often pay the price. Don’t blame the beer


Realistically, most craft beers only contain around 9 – 15 grams of carbohydrates. A medium sized potato has 30g of carbohydrates. There are 12 grams of carbs in a cup of milk and 15grams in one and a half cups of green veggies (like peas and beans). As you can probably gather, responsible consumption of alcohol is probably the least of your dietary worries!


This festive season, indulge sensibly. Enjoy your favourite foods and beverages (which we would hope is craft beer). If your biological clock is on the wrong side of good metabolism, make other lifestyle changes to allow space for the fine things in life, like good food, good beer, fine wine and artisan spirits. If some outspoken family member or friend tries to tell you the beer will make you fat, just remind them that their pavlova will do the same!


For all your Christmas and summer beverage needs, make sure you pay us a visit at Tighes Hill Cellars. We’re all stocked for the festive season and ready to help. If you prefer to shop from the comfort of your own couch, order online here!

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New Gangbusters brew goes GANGBUSTERS

New Gangbusters brew goes GANGBUSTERS

Friday, 15 Nov 2019

Well, Bitter & Twisted is done and dusted for another year! If you didn’t have the privilege of attending in 2019, you may not know that the beer geeks did something a little different this year. We wanted our second year as VIP sponsors to be super memorable, so we partnered with Pioneer Brewing Co. to produce our very own craft beer! Not everyone gets to say they have their own brew, with their picture on the tinny, but Tighes Hill Cellars crew; Rob, Nick and Collin do!


Because we knew it would be hit, and because we were launching on the grounds of Maitland Gaol, a former maximum security prison, we named our beer- Gangbusters. To top it off, it literally went GANGBUSTERS.


Prepared by Pioneer in collaboration with our expert, beer-loving team, Gangbusters is a “Newcastle” IPA. It’s a beer made by beer geeks, for beer geeks everywhere! Ingredients for the concoction were 100% sourced from NSW, so it’s definitely a home town original.


A little about Pioneer… they are a farm-based brewery, who grow their own malting grains on-site and use rain water for the brewing process. It doesn’t get any more natural than that. They’re located near Orange in NSW. While Pioneer already have an impressive repertoire, including some fine craft beers, we think Gangbusters truly tops it all off. We might be a little biased though!


Our farm-fresh masterpiece debuted at Bitter & Twisted on November 2nd and 3rd, and flowed freely from the tap all weekend… until we sold out! The good news for anyone who missed out is… it’s now available in-store (and online) at Tighes Hill Cellars in tin form!


If you didn’t get the chance to try Gangbusters at Bitter & Twisted, make sure you try the beer that honours all beer geeks. You won’t be disappointed. And, if you have tried it, you’ll surely want to come back for more! You can order online or come see us in-store. At Tighes Hill Cellars, you’ll always be spoilt for choice when you enter our world of craft beer, fine wine and artisan spirits.

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When beer was healthier than water

When beer was healthier than water

Thursday, 24 Jan 2019

As beer geeks, the team at Tighes Hill Cellars know and love their craft beer. However, they also understand the need for proper hydration and appreciate that water is currently the healthiest, most essential beverage around. However, did you know that there was a time when beer was healthier than water? Let’s look at some of the history of brewing to find out why!

Whilst the extensive history of beer dates back to BC times, the most interesting part of it all is the fact that water was once unsafe to drink… and beer was not. In fact, there was an excessive rise in the number of beer houses about 300 years ago, which was a direct result of the fact that beer was safer to drink. Surface water was actually quite dirty, and often contaminated with human waste. Beer, on the other hand, was boiled for hours, killing any bacteria.

In addition to dangerous water sources, beer was also seen as a superior alternative due to its various other health properties. You can actually call beer a complete food. Predominately made from boiled water, beer also contains carbohydrates, micronutrients and protein. Because the alcohol content was only modest, it was also said to improve blood circulation and assist in reducing the risk of heart disease. Due to the high water content, beer is also very thirst quenching, so you can see why people would choose to drink it over filthy water.

Drinking water quality has since improved, and we definitely recommend consuming the daily requirements for maintaining good health. In addition to clean water, you can still enjoy a good beer knowing that it’s tasty and satisfying. Beer still has some great nutritional properties in-spite of the bad rap it’s gotten over recent years. Beer actually has just as many antioxidants as wine. It’s higher in protein and Vitamin B. According to the Journal of Agriculture and Food Chemistry, it also contains good amounts of calcium, iron, phosphates, and fibre!

In addition, the New England Journal of Medicine found that moderate beer drinkers are less likely to suffer from hearts attacks, strokes or heart disease than non-drinkers. In fact, moderate consumption of any alcoholic beverage was associated with lower rates of cardiovascular disease. From lowering the risk of kidney stones to lowering cholesterol, to improving bone strength, a lot of different research projects have found some interesting health benefits to the sensible consumption of beer.

Of course, the best reason to drink beer or (even better) craft beer, is that… it’s awesome. It’s relaxing, and enjoyable. There’s a whole world of amazing craft creations out there, waiting for you to explore. At Tighes Hill Cellars, we are a craft beer superstore, home to amazing natural wines and artisan spirits as well. If you’d like to know more about beer, speak with the beer geeks. You can stop by or phone us on 4961 4704. To buy some of the best beverages around from the comfort of your couch, shop here.

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The best alcohol ads of all time

The best alcohol ads of all time

Wednesday, 18 Sep 2019

Whether you prefer wine, beer or spirits, alcoholic beverages of all different varieties are consumed and enjoyed (preferably responsibly) worldwide. For as long as advertising has existed, alcohol producers have been responsible for some of the most entertaining and creative works, in both TV commercials and print media.

Whilst craft beverages from micro-breweries are our passion, we appreciate a great alcohol advert as much as the next person. From international companies to Aussie classics, here’s our list of some of the best alcohol ads of all time:


  1. The VB Beer Bottle Symphony Orchestra

Let’s start with a witty Aussie classic. A nervous conductor takes the stage with his orchestra, made up entirely of beer bottle instruments, and playing the VB theme song. It’s as entertaining as it is genius.


  1. In an Absolut world… Men have the babies

 Likely to have been an absolut (pun intended) winner with the ladies who love their vodka, this print ad truly packs a punch. You can’t walk past a picture of a pregnant man and not stop to have a look! 


  1. Carlton Mid Strength – Sheds ad

Now, for the gents. In this one, Carlton appeals to the Aussie man-cave culture. Who wouldn’t want a set up like this for the odd beer with their mates?


  1. Captain Morgan – We got all night

Captain Morgan, a rum produced by English company Diageo, though originally from Jamaica, has been around since 1944. In this TV commercial, four friends underestimate their ability to fool their significant others… in epic fashion. It’s funny and serves as the perfect reminder that honesty is really the best policy.


  1. Jim Beam – Make History

Nothing beats being able to boast a 200 year history… or having a celebrity endorsement by Mila Kunis. We love seeing bourbon throughout the ages in this one.


  1. Be Cointreau-versial

Another win for print advertising, Cointreau uses a clever pun and creative imagery to make you want to buy a bottle. Everyone likes a bit of Cointreau-versy.


  1. Tooheys – Street Party Commercial

Who doesn’t love a street party attended by real people and giant blow up people too? The music and the choreography are enough to make you want a beer with friends… right now!


  1. Carlton Draught – BIG Ad

It’s a very, very big ad here from Carlton Draught, making fun of very big ads everywhere. This one will make you laugh if you like a good parody. The Big Ad is a massive budget operation, it’s freaking huge and we think it probably did help them sell heaps of bloody beer.


  1. Bundaberg Rum – We wish England were Australia

Last but not least, Bundaberg Rum- our rum since 1888. The ad is funny, and proves that English people do really think Australia is the best. Ok, so it was made in Australia and maybe it doesn’t prove anything, but it’s definitely a good laugh. Bonus points if you know the song and can sing along!


They may be the best alcohol ads out there, but we have lots of great beverages here at Tighes Hill Cellars. Come see us soon to discover a world of craft beer, fine wine and artisan spirits, or shop online from the comfort of your home.

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Tighes Hill Cellars announced as Finalist and Winner in the Hunter Business Awards

Tighes Hill Cellars announced as Finalist and Winner in the Hunter Business Awards

Monday, 26 Aug 2019

This year, Tighes Hill Cellars was once again named as a Finalist in the Hunter Business Awards for two separate categories:

-  Excellence in Micro Business (four staff or less)
-  Excellence in Retail and Hospitality

On Friday August 23rd, 2019, the winners were announced and we are very excited to announce that Tighes Hill Cellars won the award for ‘Excellence in Micro Business.’ Rob accepted the trophy at the black-tie Gala dinner held at NEX.

We are honoured to be recognised again in 2019 for our efforts in business, and the hard work we have invested in pursuing the craft beer niche, of which we are so passionate. We continue to change and adapt our plans and processes to ensure we remain true to our reputation as a craft beer superstore, whilst also introducing our customers to a world of fine wine and artisan spirits.

This year, a record number of finalists were named throughout 17 categories and there was an unprecedented amount of entry submissions. Bob Hawes, Hunter Business Chamber CEO, commented on the high calibre of entrants in all categories, which showcases the strength and diversity of the Hunter Business sector. More than 100 people and businesses were vying for trophies at the Hunter Business Awards 2019, which remains the most prestigious program in the region.

We are extremely honoured for the recognition we received in both areas, and even more grateful for our win in the Micro Business category. We were up against some truly worthy competition, and feel proud to be among the finalist groups.

Thanks to our loyal customers for all their support, and for making our business journey so fun and successful.

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Friday, 23 Aug 2019

The Beer Geeks at Tighes Hill Cellars are super keen to be indulging in a world of artisan spirits on Saturday 24th August, 2019. We will be attending The Dalmore Whisky and Craft Spirit Festival at Babylon. The King Street establishment will provide the perfect location and atmosphere for this inaugural event, featuring a historic interior that is complemented by an extravagant wall of spirits.

 We are the only retailer that has been invited to host a stall, and we will be there for you to try a range of spirits that you can buy on the day. You can even use our handy ‘click and collect’ function to pick all your favourites, knowing they will be ready and waiting for you in-store within the hour.

 While whiskies will be the feature, plenty of amazing craft spirits will showcase at the festival, such as gin, vodka and rum. Whether you’re a connoisseur or a beginner, you’re sure to find something to suit your palette and preferences. There will be more than 40 stall holders total, with a wide range of suppliers and distillers on exhibition.

 Sure to be a fun event, full of food and tastings, other activities include spirits masterclasses and live music entertainment. VIPs (tickets sold out) will enjoy a three course lunch with a VIP masterclass and early entry!!

 If you haven’t grabbed your tickets yet, don’t miss out on your chance to join the fun. Standard tickets are still available, grab them here - and enjoy an awesome day out. We can’t wait to celebrate some of the world’s most wonderful beverages!

 We hope to see you there.

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Whiskey origins explained

Whiskey origins explained

Monday, 24 Jun 2019

Whisky, or whiskey is an extremely popular spirit that is distilled from fermented grain mash. Firstly, you may have seen it spelled both whisky and whiskey, so if you’re confused- here’s the difference. Basically, the Scottish call it ‘whisky’, along with most of the western world, and the Irish spell it ‘whiskey’, with Americans following their lead (due to large groups of Irish immigrants arriving in the US in the 1700s).


The differing whisk(e)y varieties are dependent on the kinds of grains used. Some grains are malted and the options include; barley, corn, rye and wheat. Typically, whisky is aged in wooden casks made from charred oak. Members of the whisky family include; Scotch, Bourbon and Irish Whiskey.


Whisky may now be used in cooking both sweet and savoury, and as a cocktail ingredient, but it started off as a medicinal product used for anaesthetic and externally as an antibiotic ointment. Monks took their distilling techniques to Ireland and Scotland between 1100 and 1300, and due to the difficulty in obtaining wine, barley beer (whisky) became a drink for recreational consumption.


At Tighes Hill Cellars, we’ve spent most of 2019 inciting a Spirit Revolution, as we believe in top-shelf taste. We stock artisan spirits in great abundance and believe that quality is best. If you’re a whisky fan, but would like a cocktail suggestion to try, see below for a great winter warmer from The Spruce Eats.


Original Irish Coffee


Whiskey and coffee are two of the best beverages in the world, so it makes sense to mix them in to one fabulous drink.



4 ounces strong, rich hot coffee

1 1/2 ounce Irish whiskey

2 teaspoons brown sugar

1 ounce lightly whipped heavy cream



  • Have all ingredients ready
  • Pour the sugar into a warm Irish coffee glass, mug, or other heat-proof glass.
  • Add the coffee and stir until dissolved.
  • Add the Irish whiskey and stir again.
  • Float the cream on top by pouring it over the back of a spoon.
  • Do not stir again. Instead, drink the coffee through the cream.


For all your drinking preferences, whether fine wine, craft beer or artisan spirits, make sure you pay us a visit at Tighes Hill Cellars. If you’d rather shop from the convenience of your couch, that’s ok too. Order online here. See you soon!

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Why some mums are craft-y

Why some mums are craft-y

Tuesday, 21 May 2019

While some mums are crafty with drawings, paintings, home decorating, baking, and DIY around the house, our favourite craft-y mums are the ones who love a good craft beer. That’s right, you don’t have to be a man to be a beer geek. At Tighes Hill Cellars, we have some wonderful female customers who visit in search of craft beer sensations all the time. As we have recently celebrated Mother’s Day, we thought May was a great time to explore the history of women and beer brewing.

We are big fans of the beers from Two Birds, the first female owned brewery in Australia. They are trailblazers in a male-dominated industry, however, historical records reveal that women were heavily involved in ancient brewing. That’s right! In the past, women were the ones who would traditionally brew beer for their families and then sell the surplus to help provide. Archaeological studies have shown beer brewing was practically an extension on baking duties, thereby falling on mum to fulfil.

In ancient Egypt, women were the predominant brewers, using ingredients like corn, oats, wheat and honey. Interesting fact, there were many cultures (such as Egyptian) with deities, goddesses and protectors associated with guarding brewers, who were all female and frequently connected with fertility.

In Tanzania, women have always been the primary brewers and remain in that role today. They sell their drinks to supplement their income.

Mayan civilisations also relied on women brewers. Beer brewing records dating back to 1600 BCE show that brewing using cacao beans was common practice. Cacao beans were actually used for beer production before they were used to make cocoa!

Women were also primary producers in German and Roman societies, serving ale made from fermented honey until monasteries took over the manufacture of alcoholic beverages.

Finnish women made a brew called ‘Sahti’ in their villages for a thousand years from hops, juniper twigs, barley and rye grains. The ingredients were malted and then smoked in a sauna.

Even in America, women were still the primary brewers during the colonisation of the United States. It wasn’t until the Industrial Revolution that beer was considered as a lucrative business opportunity, and then men began to dominate the practice.

So, women (and mothers in particular) have a rich history in beer production. We love all mothers, but it’s definitely awesome when you come across a craft-y one. Craft beer, fine wine and artisan spirits make the best gifts, and if you didn’t spoil mum enough over Mother’s Day this year, come and see us in-store, or shop online here. Remember, you’re probably the reason she drinks J.

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All about the Independent Brewers Association

All about the Independent Brewers Association

Tuesday, 16 Apr 2019

At Tighes Hill Cellars, we love craft beer and we support independent brewers locally, and across Australia, by showcasing their amazing brews in our store. We have a great relationship with the Independent Brewers Association (IBA), and for our latest blog, we caught up with Jason Sommers, the Event Manager at IBA. He filled us in on all things IBA. If you don’t know much about who they are, or what they do, read on!

What is the IBA all about?

 On average, a new independent brewery opens in Australia every six days. Over 600 independently-owned breweries span the country, each one with its unique identity and contribution to Australian life. The Independent Brewers Association provides a united voice for all independently-owned brewers across Australia. We work with government agencies, industry, trade and international counterparts to represent the interests of Australian independent brewers. Working alongside our members, we seek to build a strong, sustainable future for our industry and to unify our sector under the vision of Quality Independent Beer Everywhere.

 For more information on what the IBA is all about, check out their website.

 History and background

 For much of the past decade, the term ‘craft beer’ has served its purpose well in Australia, identifying local and independent microbreweries that are passionately committed to brewing a wider variety of beer styles than their corporate counterparts.

 However, in the last few years, corporate breweries have increasingly developed their own craft brands, or acquired other successful independent breweries such as; Feral, Mountain Goat, 4 Pines and Pirate Life.

Independent breweries could previously differentiate themselves from corporate breweries by the fact they brewed fuller flavoured beers, showed more innovation, and didn’t compromise on ingredient quality. However, the corporate acquisition of credible independent breweries meant that this was no longer the case.

 Clearly defining the word ‘craft’ has proven difficult and elusive, as the corporate breweries have successfully co-opted the ‘craft’ term, which has caused plenty of confusion among the growing numbers of consumers that like to support small, independent breweries. The fact that “independence” matters to a lot of beer fans, and that it has become somewhat of a social movement to support small and independent breweries, is a distinct advantage to truly independent craft brewers.

 In order to make the distinction between craft and independent brewers more clear, the Craft Brewers Industry Association changed their name to Independent Brewers Association. This makes it impossible for corporate breweries to use the term.

 In recent years, many other countries have successfully launched their own versions of a seal of independence. For example, the USA had 3,000 of their eligible 6,000 independent breweries licensed to use the seal within the first year of its launch. In 2018, the IBA created an Australian seal of independence to help consumers more easily identify small and independently owned breweries.


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Let us be-GIN the conversation about gin

Let us be-GIN the conversation about gin

Monday, 01 Apr 2019

Let’s be-GIN with some historical information about another classic spirit…gin of course! More than just a main component to the ever popular ‘gin and tonic’ beverage, gin has been around for centuries. It is a distilled alcohol, derived predominantly from juniper berries. Of all the spirits, gin has the broadest range, boasting various backgrounds, styles and flavours.

Originating in the middle ages, gin has evolved from its initial role as a herbal medicine, to a commercially successful alcoholic spirit. The earliest written reference to gin’s predecessor, genever, appears in an encyclopaedic composition from the 13th century. A printed recipe from the 16th century is the first on record. Gin initially became popular in Great Britain during the reign of King William III, due to the government allowing unlicensed production. Today, gin is produced in slightly different ways, though still using herbal and botanical ingredients. Gin is most frequently consumed in the famous gin and tonic concoction, but is also a popular base for liqueurs.  

Not only can gin be used in classic drinking combinations (such as with tonic water), it’s great in cocktails and pairs nicely in cooking with fish, pasta and poultry. Gin can also be a secret ingredient in sweet jams and savoury pickles, as well as added to delicious desserts.

Speaking of cocktails, let’s beGIN to talk about gin-based options. As part of the Spirit Revolution, we’d like to share a recipe with you that’s not your traditional gin and tonic. In honour of gin’s English roots in regards to popularity, we’ve picked the ‘Cucumber and Mint Gimlet’ and this recipe is courtesy of


60 ml Dry Gin (we recommend Never Never Gin, stocked at Tighes Hill Cellars)

15 ml lime juice

10 ml sugar syrup

10 mint leaves

20g cucumber, halved & quartered


Muddle the cucumber, mint and sugar syrup in a cocktail shaker. Fill with ice, pour in the gin and lime. Shake hard. Strain into a martini or coupe glass.

For more information on all things gin, to learn more about top-shelf spirits, or to join us in the Spirit Revolution, pay us a visit at Tighes Hill Cellars soon! If you’d like to stock up on artisan spirits from the comfort of your own home, shop online with us and revel in our convenient home delivery service. Cheers to the Revolution!

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All about RUM

All about RUM

Monday, 18 Mar 2019

The infamous drink choice for the Royal Navy and pirates sailing the Caribbean was rum. The first of the spirits to be branded, rum has a history as rich as its enticing flavour. First distilled in the 1620s by sugar cane plantation slaves, rum was born from their discovery that molasses (a by-product of the sugar refining process) could be fermented into alcohol. Rum can be both light and dark, and this is determined by the ageing process used in production.

Rum is a versatile beverage and can be put in simple mixes, such as rum and coke, complex cocktails, or used to cook food and dessert. In fact, whilst doing a little research on rum recipes, we discovered some great cooking options including; banana and rum loaf, as well as the two festive favourites, rum balls and the old faithful Christmas cake.

Of course, when it comes to drinking, you can always drink rum straight or on the rocks. Alternatively, you can mix it with something classic like coke, or indulge in a cocktail. Rum is an all-star ingredient when it comes to cocktails and is behind popular concoctions such as; the Pina Colado, the Mojito, the Mai Tai and the Strawberry Daiquiri.

As part of our Spirit Revolution, and to encourage everyone to immerse themselves in the wonders of rum, we’d like to share a rum cocktail recipe with you. Because of rum’s Caribbean roots, we wanted to something super tropical. It’s called the Hurricane and the recipe is courtesy of


2 ounces (60ml) light rum

2 ounces (60ml) dark rum

3 ounces (90ml) Passion Fruit juice (or juice blend)

3 ounces (90ml) orange juice

Juice of half a lime

2 tablespoons grenadine syrup

Orange slices and maraschino cherries for garnish, if desired

Ice cubes



  1. Fill cocktail glass(es) with ice. Squeeze the lime over the ice.
  2. Stir remaining ingredients together in a mixing glass.
  3. Pour into cocktail glass.
  4. Garnish with an orange slice and a cherry, if desired.


** Recipe is for one serving


For more information on all things rum, to learn more about top-shelf spirits, or to join us in the Spirit Revolution, come see us at Tighes Hill Cellars real soon! To stock up on artisan spirits from the comfort of your couch at home, shop online with us and enjoy our convenient home delivery service. Here’s to the Revolution!


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The history of the spirits

The history of the spirits

Monday, 11 Mar 2019

Wine, beer and spirits have been some of the world’s most popular beverages since… the dawn of time.  The history of distilled spirits is quite long and intriguing so, we’d like to cover some of the general highlights in this blog.

Exact origins are still unclear as new research and archaeological discoveries are happening all the time, so all the pieces in the puzzle are yet to be filled. A lot of historians speculate the 13th century AD as the beginnings of distilled alcohol. However, there are those who believe it was much earlier.

Distilled alcohol requires much more human involvement than wine making or beer brewing. The procedure requires experience and an understanding of the physical processes involved. Generally distilled alcohol, or spirits, refers to gin, rum, whiskey, vodka and tequila.

There is still much debate over the exact origins of spirits as far as the 13th Century beginnings are concerned. We aren’t sure who was first, but by the 15th Century, we know that the knowledge and practice of distilling alcohol was perpetuated mostly by monks, physicians and alchemists. During the majority of the 16th Century, spirit consumption was fairly limited to medicinal purposes, however general popularity increased. By the 17th Century there were distilleries popping up around the world, some of which are still standing today. In spite of prohibition issues around the globe from the 19th and early 20th Centuries, distilled alcohol continued to be produced and consumed and remains a popular beverage and cocktail ingredient today.


Gin is a classic spirit, with an approximate 40%+ alcohol composition (80 proof). This is achieved through grain distillation and then principally flavoured with juniper berries. Gin is actually named after juniper berries, as the Dutch word for juniper is genever.

Thirteenth Century origins are assumed, as there are literary mentions of spirits flavoured with “genever” from that time period. The Dutch are known to have ramped up their production of gin by the 1600s, with hundreds of distilleries located in Amsterdam alone.

Historically, gin was distributed for the treatment of illnesses like gout and dyspepsia. Today, gin can be enjoyed neat or on the rocks. Some gins are distilled just for cocktails. There are still plenty of distilleries producing the same type of gin they’ve been doing since the 1700s. And, that’s a good thing too, because if it ain’t broke, don’t fix it!


The Caribbean is home to beautiful tropical locations, and it’s the birth place of rum. The very first distillation of rum took place on the sugarcane plantations (rumoured to be on the island of Barbados) around the 17th Century. Slaves discovered that a by-product of the sugar refining process, now known as molasses, could be fermented to alcohol.

From islandic beginnings, rum then grew in popularity in Colonial America, with the first distillery in the colonies set up in 1664. This was on Staten Island, and another distillery was established in Boston, Massachusetts, three years later. The consumption of rum increased to a point where the demand for molasses forced a triangular trade to be set up between Africa, the Caribbean and the American Colonies. Rum became an incredibly profitable commodity.

Following the introduction of American whiskey to the marketplace, and other political obstacles, rum did experience a decline in popularity towards the late 1700s. Today, rum is once again a prevalent spirit. Served straight, as part of a mix (like the tried and true rum and coke), an ingredient to a cocktail or even a feature in a delicious dessert, rum is a great spirit!


Whisky has seemingly been around for eons, with early archaeological evidence placing it on the scene in BC Babylon and Mesopotamia. Whisky is distilled using fermented grain, and was initially used for the manufacture of perfumes, before being adapted and upgraded to awesome beverage.

Historians believe that following Babylonian origins, whisky distillation then migrated to areas such as Ireland and Scotland sometime between the 11th and 13th Centuries. Apparently, during a period of limited access to grapes in parts of Europe, civilisations turned to whisky production instead of the wines they were used to. The first written record of whisky drinking came in 1494 in Scotland, where whisky already appealed to the multitudes.

In the 18th Century, Scottish love for whisky was tested when the English crown began placing higher taxes on any unlicensed alcoholic brewery. The taxes were harsh, so production declined drastically. To combat this, Scottish brewers eventually started distilling illegally at night, resulting in whisky’s affectionate nickname, ‘Moonshine’.

During the American prohibition period, whisky became quite rare, and was sometimes used as currency. This slowly ended following the “Whisky Rebellion” and today, whisky is once again enjoyed by the masses. Otherwise known as ‘the water of life’, whisky is can be served straight or neat, mixed or as part of a cocktail.

We could go on for hours when it comes to the fascinating parts of spirit history, but the gist is that they’ve been around for a long time. The art of distilling them has been continually evolving and improving over hundreds of years. Today, we have a wide range of drinks to choose from. At Tighes Hill Cellars, we know that in order to move forward, you have to look back at history for full appreciation. Join us in the Spirit Revolution, as we fight for top-shelf taste! Come in and see our extensive collection of artisan spirits in store, or order online for convenience.

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What is so special about top-shelf spirits?

What is so special about top-shelf spirits?

Thursday, 28 Feb 2019

You may have heard about our Spirit Revolution already? At Tighes Hill Cellars, we are fighting for top shelf taste because quality is important to us. So, what exactly is a top-shelf spirit? Basically, these spirits are the highest quality spirits available. Traditionally, they’re kept on the top shelf of the bar while the normal stuff is within arm’s reach, so the name is quite literal.

Top-shelf spirits have a higher price tag due to the use of natural, first-class ingredients and an extended, refined distilling and ageing process. The longer the spirit is aged, the higher the price point. They can be separated into two different groups, light and dark. Light spirits include; vodka, tequila and gin, while dark spirits include; brandy, scotch and whiskey. Rum can actually be both.

Last year, the Australian Bureau of Statistics released a report on the ‘Apparent Consumption of Alcohol’ which reflected that not only are Aussies starting to drink more responsibly in general, they are increasingly opting for more premium alcoholic beverages. Alcohol Beverages Australia Executive Director, Fergus Taylor, said “We are also seeing increases in gourmet or experience-related consumption at smaller specialist venues based around specific and often locally made and owned products.” ( verdict, if you’re going to drink, make it a quality beverage and drink in moderation.

So, what are the benefits of drinking top-shelf aside from knowing the quality is better and it’s obviously the popular thing to do? Due to the care taken during distillation, and the use of superior ingredients, top-shelf spirits also have a smoother flavour palette, are less likely to cause headaches and hangovers, and don’t go down with the typical burn sensation invoked by their value/budget counterparts.

If you’d like to know more about top-shelf spirits, or if you’d like to join the spirit revolution, make sure you stop by and speak with us at Tighes Hill Cellars. If you already know what artisan spirits you prefer, you can even order online on our website right here. Here’s to the revolution, because quality is worth fighting for!

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To ale or not to ale, that is the question!

To ale or not to ale, that is the question!

Friday, 25 Jan 2019

Beer, ale, lager- if you’re not a beer geek, you may not know the difference. Essentially, beer is either an ale or a lager, and the types of yeast and the brewing style used during the fermentation process typically determine which type you end up with. Ales are actually the more traditional drink, predating the creation of lagers by thousands of years.  For those of you who don’t know which is which, we can explain the varieties to you, so you sound like the proper aficionado the next time you’re in conversation with fellow beer lovers.


These beers were historically brewed without the addition of hops. Modern ales are brewed using an ale-specific yeast in a warm fermentation process. A short brewing process, warm fermentation results in the yeast gathering at the top of the tank, which produces a sweet, fruity and more intensely flavourful taste. A bittering agent will be included to add balance to the malt, and that will also function as a preservative.

Some examples of different ales that we stock at Tighes Hill Cellars include:

  • Dark Ale – stouts, porters and browns all fall under the dark ale banner, as a result of using darker malts in the brew. They are rich in fruity flavour and sport a strong, enticing aroma.
  • Pale Ale – Like its dark counterpart, pale ale is made from pale malts. They appear golden in colour and as you may have guessed, they have a malty taste palette.
  • IPA (India Pale Ale) – A light coloured, pale malt ale variety. IPAs are known to be quite hoppy in flavour and have a higher than average alcohol content.


In contrast to ales, lager beers are brewed using a cooler fermentation process, and using lager-specific yeast. The cool temperatures used during fermentation and aging decelerate the yeast action, requiring a longer maturation time. It is due to the cold that lagers do not produce the fruity flavours and aromas that ales have. Instead, they yield a cleaner, crisper taste. The longer the beer is lagered (aged), the mellower it becomes. Lagers have a lighter taste, and also tend to be more carbonated.

Some examples of different lagers that we stock at Tighes Hill Cellars include:

  • Pale lager – the most extensively consumed beer worldwide, and the most commercially accessible. They are golden in colour and sport a notable hoppy bitterness. Pilsner is a common variety of pale lager.
  • Dark lager – are darker in colour, ranging from amber to reddish brown, and even black. They are medium-bodied with a malty, almost caramel flavour, and low-to-medium bitterness.

So, next time you’re asked the difference between ale and lager, you’ll know! Now, you just need to decide whether to “ale, or not to ale?” If you’re still confused, come see the beer geeks at Tighes Hill Cellars, we can talk beer with you all day!

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Ways to avoid and cure hangovers

Ways to avoid and cure hangovers

Thursday, 29 Nov 2018

At Tighes Hill Cellars, we have had an exciting few months with some serious celebrating. Between attending an awards night, the introduction of our Super Six Pack (aka the best six pack ever!), and our VIP partnership with Bitter and Twisted, there’s been a few drinks going on. With that in mind, and knowing Christmas and New Years are fast approaching, we’d like to share some of our best tips when it comes to avoiding and curing hangovers.

Of course, prevention is always better than cure, so let’s start with ways to avoid a hangover:

  • Don’t drink alcohol… just kidding. Whilst it will spare you the headache, this is an unnecessary precaution. Don’t do that to yourself.
  • Preparation is key. Be prepared by staying hydrated both before drinking and during your celebration. Make sure you eat a healthy but hearty breakfast the morning prior, and get enough sleep- both before and after the booze.
  • All things in moderation. Craft beer is that good we know you’ll want to keep drinking, but if you don’t want a hangover, just be sensible. If you pace yourself over a few hours, stay hydrated and eat some food as well, you can safely consume a few bevvies without worrying about any negative aftermath. Learn your limits, and we repeat…. Be sensible (even when it’s hard).
  • Drink the good stuff. Natural wines and craft beers are manufactured on a small scale without machine and mass production. Therefore, they are typically free from chemicals and toxins. This should aid the recovery process, as your body doesn’t have to absorb and breakdown the nasties.
  • Congeners need limits. Research has shown that drinks higher in congeners produce the worst hangovers. These include your darker drinks, such as; bourbon, brandy, whiskey and red wine. You don’t need to avoid them altogether, but perhaps don’t binge on the darker drinks!

Ok, so you’re all prepared to avoid a hangover but… you overindulge anyway- never mind. We’ve all been there, and while there’s no scientific cure for hangovers, time and experience have provided us with ideas for mitigating the symptoms. Some “cures” we’ve found include:

  • The Hearty breakfast. Humans have sworn by this remedy since the dawn of time. There’s nothing quite like a hearty breakfast when you’re a bit hungover to get some nutrients and vitamins back into your system and help maintain your blood sugar levels. Some prefer greasy bacon and eggs, whilst nutritionists often advise cereal or toast. Whichever you prefer, just make sure you get something on your stomach when you wake up!
  • Sleep it off. Whilst the alcohol may interfere with a decent REM cycle, it’s important to sleep as much as you can. Being tired and irritable the following day will only exacerbate the symptoms of your hangover.
  • Hydration. Good old H2O features as both prevention and cure. Staying hydrated while drinking can spare you the pain of recovery the following day. However, if you fail to heed that in the prevention phase, make sure you follow it up as part of the cure. Excessive drinking depletes your body of vitamins, minerals and water. You need to replenish them in order to feel better. Dehydration causes headaches, one of the worst consequences associated with hangovers.
  • Supplement! Curing a hangover may not be entirely possible, but there are vitamins and supplements that can help to drastically reduce your symptoms. Some of them include red ginseng (which is known to reduce blood alcohol levels and assist with other hangover symptoms), ginger (widely used for treating nausea, vomiting and gastrointestinal upset), prickly pear and borage oil (both have shown an ability to decrease hangover severity).
  • A virgin Bloody Mary. Traditionally, people will tell you they swear by drinking the real thing, however, doctors and scientists are in agreement that the cure for excessive alcohol intake is not having another alcoholic beverage. Studies actually show this could hurt you more in the long run, so the recommendation is a virgin Bloody Mary. There’s some great recipes out there, including this one which was featured on Dr Oz.

In the end of the day, we will stress again, prevention is better than cure. However, we all know there’s going to be times where overindulgence just happens. Be smart about it, and make sure you drink responsibly. Christmas and New Years are almost here, and if you’re looking for some quality beverages this season, make sure you stop by and have a chat with the Beer Geeks at Tighes Hill Cellars, we can help you make some good choices!!

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Meet the Super 6

Meet the Super 6

Friday, 26 Oct 2018

At Tighes Hill Cellars, we understand that variety is the spice of life, and that everyone has different tastes and levels of experience when it comes to beer. So, the Beer Geeks have come up with a solution- the SUPER 6.

The SUPER 6 has been designed and hand selected as the ultimate six pack for both Beer Geeks and Beer-ginners, with something included to suit the varied tastes of the masses. Each of our extraordinary Tighes Hill Cellars Beer Geeks has selected an individual favourite, all from completely independent breweries, to place in the pack, keeping variety in mind. This is your chance to try a bit of everything for just $29.99!!

Included in the SUPER 6 is:

  • Kaiju Krush Tropical Ale – Boasts a super clean malt profile with a heavy palate of tropical fruit flavours.
  • Rover Henty Street Ale by Hawkers – A sharp ale with big character and tropical lime aromas that are balanced out by the caramel sweetness of the hops, and finished off by a mildly viscous bitterness.
  • West City Brewing, Oaty Session Stout– An oatmeal stout brewed traditional style that makes for easy drinking. It has a drying finish with hints of cacao and chicory.
  • Green Beacon Brewing Co, Windjammer – This pale ale comes completely jam packed with juicy citrus and pine goodness, and a firm hoppy bitterness.
  • Fox Hat, Red Pelt – A deep and luscious malty burst of red velvet complimented by “raging” hops.
  • South West Sour – Light bodied pale, wheat and Munich malts blending with a hint of sweetness and fruitiness. The aroma is vibrant and tropical, and bitterness is kept low to allow the sour, refreshing tone to shine.

We think this is literally, the best six pack ever! On top of being perfect for personal indulgence, Super 6 would also make a great birthday or Christmas gift to spoil the beer lover in your life. Come in to Tighes Hill Cellars and have a chat with the Beer Geeks. We’re happy to talk you through our choices and explain why these six beers make the best combo. Take advantage of the Super 6 Pack today, you’ll be in beer heaven.

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The truth about low-carb beers... are they really better for you?

The truth about low-carb beers... are they really better for you?

Monday, 15 Oct 2018

So, you love beer but you’re a little worried about your waistline? According to a survey conducted by VicHealth in 2010, 71% of respondents said they believed low-carb beers were the healthier option. But, is that true? Short answer - no, it’s actually not.

Studies have found that there is very little difference between the carbohydrate and alcohol content of low-carb beers to that of their full strength counterparts. The reality is that a low carb beer contains one quarter to one third of the carbohydrates that a full strength beer has. This typically amounts to around seven grams, which is the equivalent of 175 millilitres of milk. It’s really not that much.

Chief Executive of VicHealth, Todd Harper, said of their 2010 findings, “Beer doesn’t contain a lot of carbs to begin with. For example, a can of soft drink contains four times more carbohydrates than a stubby of full strength beer. It’s the alcohol that contributes most to weight gain from drinking beer, not the carbohydrate.”

So, if the main danger to your weight loss and dieting is not even the carbohydrate, then why go low carb? Both low carb, full strength and even craft beer contain similar alcohol content. It would seem, that to be super health conscious, you’d need to skip the alcohol completely. However, as passionate beer geeks, we don’t advise that. Just like chocolate, pizza and fish and chips, alcohol should be consumed responsibly. Moderation in all things is key and there’s nothing wrong with treating yourself. The good news is, when you do indulge in an alcoholic beverage, you don’t have to worry about the weak stuff, and you can safely indulge in quality.

Summer is fast approaching, and if you’re truly wanting to get fit and healthy, don’t skip the beer or compromise on excellence. Focus on food consumption and exercise. The average adult male requires 2,500 calories (or 10,500 kilojoules) per day to maintain energy levels and a healthy weight. Women require 2,000 calories (or 8,400 kilojoules). A single low carb beer will consume about 3.5% of a man’s daily intake while full strength and craft range from 6 – 8%. Over the space of a day, it’s not that much and if you’re going to have multiple beers in one sitting, you’re not going to see much of a difference anyway. Remember, it’s the alcohol content that’s the biggest contributor to weight gain, and the alcohol content isn’t that dissimilar. Just skip the burger and drink the beer.

If you’d like to know more about the difference between low carb and full strength beer, and why it’s of little benefit to restrict yourself to “healthy” beer, feel free to drop in and have a chat with our knowledgeable beer geeks at Tighes Hill Cellars.

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We are proud VIP Event Partners for Bitter and Twisted

We are proud VIP Event Partners for Bitter and Twisted

Wednesday, 19 Sep 2018

Bitter and Twisted is a celebration of music, food and craft beer, held at Maitland Gaol, a former maximum security prison. It’s runs annually on the first weekend in November and draws massive crowds each year. There will be over 80 craft beers on offer, from ales, IPA’s and stouts to porters, you’re guaranteed to find one you’ll love. Enjoy your favourite beverage with your friends while listening to some great tunes, and indulge with some gourmet prison food including German sausages and a Mexican fiesta.

If you’re not much in to beer (such a shame), don’t despair- there’s going to be plenty for the wine lovers too. Tamburlaine Organic Wines will feature some of their range and we can’t wait!

Saturday VIP tickets for November 3rd are already sold out, but tickets are still on sale for Sunday 4th, so if you’re interested, get your tickets here:

If you’ve absolutely got your heart set on Saturday, check out our Facebook Page, as we are in possession of the only remaining double passes left. We will be running a competition to give away these three double passes, so make sure you check it out!

See you at Bitter & Twisted!

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Some hops for pops

Some hops for pops

Tuesday, 28 Aug 2018

            It’s almost Father’s Day, and most dads love their beer. Before you get some hops for pops this Father’s Day, you may be wondering exactly what hops are? Unless you’re a beer geek, you probably don’t know too much about hops, other than it being a major ingredient in beer. You may have heard connoisseurs tell you they like “hoppy” beers, but find yourself wondering, what does all that actually mean?

Hops are cone-shaped flowers from the hop plant containing an essential oil with a very bitter taste. The hop plant is part of the hemp family. While hops weren’t always used in beer production, they are used in most today. Along with other key ingredients such as yeast, grain and water, hops is boiled in the brewing process. The bitterness achieved by the inclusion of hops helps to balance the overall flavour of the beer, by counteracting the sweetness created from the malt. Hops also serves as a natural preservative.

The “hoppiness” of the beer is achieved through adjusting the ratio of malted sweetness to bitter hops. The more hops/bitter, the “hoppier” the beer. See, it actually makes plenty of sense. The type of hops used, as well as the boiling times, will also influence a beer’s “hoppiness.”

Hops has many varieties, and each produces different characteristics and flavours within beer production. Hops plants, scientifically known as Humulus Lupulus, grow as tall vines reaching heights up to 5.49 metres. The leaves are a deep green, with flowers that bloom in the summer months. Once harvested, they are dried. The process of growing, harvesting and cultivating the hops plant has become of more interest over the years as the popularity of craft beers and micro-breweries has risen. Consumers are more and more interested in the quality of the beer product, and hops definitely have a major impact on the end result of brewing.

Do hops have any purpose outside of beer making? Not that it’s relevant, because beer is everything, but yes- they actually do. Historically, hops have been used medicinally as a remedy for insomnia, by being placed inside pillows. Well, how about that?

So, next time someone comments on the “hoppiness’ level of the beverage they’re drinking, you’ll have more to say in the conversation! For more information on hops, and beer in general, stop by and see the beer geeks at Tighes Hill Cellars, your local craft beer superstore, sometime really soon!

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Hunter Business Award Finalists

Hunter Business Award Finalists

Friday, 13 Jul 2018

We are excited to announce that we have been selected as a finalist for the 2018 Hunter Business Awards, for Excellence in Small Business. It is an honour to be recognised for our efforts and hard work in building a strong business. We have spent the last few years adapting our business model to withstand market competitiveness and positioning ourselves as industry leaders in our craft beer niche. The hard work has paid off!

            The Hunter Business Awards are “Australia’s most prestigious regional business awards”, resulting from the partnership between the Business Chamber and leading businesses in our region. Sponsored by the University of Newcastle, the awards were originally established in 1978 to promote diversity in local business and recognise innovators in industry. In 2018, there are 15 categories with multiple worthy finalists in each.

The winners of each category will be announced at the Awards Night, which will be held at NEX on Friday, August 10, 2018. We will be in attendance and crossing our fingers for the win in our section, which is comprised of successful, deserving competition. Regardless of the outcome, we know it’s an achievement just to have come this far, and we are proud to have been named a finalist in such prestigious awards.

            Watch this space (and our social media) for more details after the awards night!

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Natural Wine Masterclass

Natural Wine Masterclass

Friday, 13 Jul 2018


At Tighes Hill Cellars, one of the exciting features on offer to our members is the opportunity to attend our Exclusive VIP Wine Tastings. On Thursday May 31st, we celebrated the last day of Autumn 2018 with Tim Ward, test tasting his exquisite natural wines from the I’ll Fly Away range.


Tim Ward is a talented winemaker who specialises in small batch artisan wines that have been site selected and hand harvested. Tim’s wines are treated with care and experience minimal interference in the cellar, resulting in natural wine with only the slightest trace of sulfur dioxide. He grew up in Brisbane and describes it as a “beer loving big pub town far from any enlightened wine making or drinking region.” This meant his opportunities were once limited, and a little travel was required in order to make his viticultural dreams a reality. Now based right here in Newcastle, Tim’s following his passion of creating amazing wines without the highly mechanised approach employed in mass wine production.


Tim put on a fantastic show for the Tighes Hill Cellars group on Thursday night, and our guests enjoyed the tastings immensely. In addition to sampling fine wine, VIP Tastings come inclusive of delicious nibbles including meat and cheese platters, and of course, fabulous company.


If you’d like a night out like this every now and again, we encourage you to subscribe as a member, so you can be notified in advance of all events (including craft beer and natural wine tastings), member’s specials and exclusive offers. Join the Tighes Hill Cellars family today.

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Organic, Natural, preservative free wine. whats the difference?

Organic, Natural, preservative free wine. whats the difference?

Wednesday, 30 May 2018

So, you like a glass of wine here and there but you’ve heard all about the nasty ingredients in commercially mass produced wines and you’d like to try something better for you? If this is a new concept for you, arriving at the liquor to discover the options are quite extensive and include organic, preservative free and natural wines, you might be feeling overwhelmed. Don’t be! The Beer Geeks at Tighes Hills Cellars have you covered and below, and we’ve made a list for you, explaining what each option is, and how it differs from the other kinds.


Organic Wines


Producing wine takes two stages. First, the grapes are grown in the vineyard, and the second phase occurs in the winery and involves the fermentation process and bottling the wine. The basic definition of organic wine is, “wine made with grapes farmed organically.” What this means is, that during the first phase, or farming of the grapes, no artificial products are used. However, preservatives such as sulphur dioxide may still be used during the fermentation process.


Preservative Free Wines


Preservative free wine is produced without the use of excess preservatives, including sulphur dioxide. While preservative free wines offer respite from some of the unhealthy additives found in commercial wines, they can still contain a substantial amount of sulphites. Sulphites are naturally occurring preservatives/antioxidants that prevent unwelcome bacteria from spoiling the wine. However, many people do have a natural sensitivity to sulphites, and they are known to be particularly detrimental to those suffering from asthma, hay fever, sinusitis or those who regularly have migraines.


Natural Wines

Unlike the two options above, natural wines are both farmed organically and produced naturally to minimise and sometimes even eliminate sulphites. Natural wines do not undertake the commercial filtration process, and not only does this reduce the sulphites, it increases the flavour and makes the wine taste even better. How good is that? Natural wines are naturally protected by the alcohol content and boast a wholesome beverage filled with spontaneously occurring microbiology. This makes natural wines the best option for those who are sensitive to sulphites.


Obviously, all of the above are healthier, tastier options when compared to wine that is commercially produced for the masses. However, natural wines have that added benefit of minimising additives in both phases of wine production. If you’re looking to make the switch to a cleaner, healthier and tastier wine for your next wine o’clock, we recommend coming to see us at Tighes Hill Cellars for a guided tour of our extensive range.

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Why buy craft beer?

Why buy craft beer?

Thursday, 19 Apr 2018

There’s no doubt that craft beer is a “thing” and we think it’s here to stay. You may be wondering, what, exactly, is craft beer? The dictionary defines it as “a beer made in a traditional or non-mechanized way by a small brewery.” This traditional style brew, which is non-mechanically produced, has a number of advantages over its mass produced counterparts, some of them include:

TASTE – First and most importantly, craft beer tastes better. Craft beer is made with love and the focus is on quality, not quantity. Craft brewers use quality ingredients, specialised recipes and they don’t cut corners, because they’re not producing for the masses. This emphasis on quality creates a tastier, more enjoyable beer.

ALCOHOL CONTENT – While craft beers have their own individual tastes and styles, one thing generally remains the same. Craft beer has a higher alcohol content. This means that you can drink less and feel more content. Again, quality is always better than quantity. While the calorie count in craft beer tends to be a little higher, you’ll usually consume less calories in a single sitting, as you need less bevvies to quench your thirst.

HEALTHIER – That’s right, there’s health benefits to drinking craft beer. Some research has even indicated it may be healthier than a trusty glass of red wine. Of course, when drinking anything alcoholic, moderation is key. Some of the benefits of responsible consumption include:

  • Decreased risk of weight gain among moderate female drinkers (compared to non-drinkers), reduced risk of hypertension, cardiovascular disease, arthritic disease, diabetes, Alzheimer’s (particularly in females), osteoporosis and lowered cholesterol.
  • The major health benefit of craft beer over mass produced beer, is that it’s less pasteurised. Craft beer is also high in niacin (vitamin B3), and brewer’s yeast, both known to lower cholesterol. Craft beer is also a rich source of silicon which can improve bone density and help reduce the risk of osteoporosis.
  • Craft beer can also help the body increase the ability absorb dietary fibre and antioxidants.
  • Hops contain xanthohumol, which is said to have substantial anti-cancer effects in liver cancer cells and in colon mucosa.

While the abundance of modern research is indicating the above health benefits when drinking alcohol in moderation, we do want to acknowledge there are dangers to over indulgence. These consequences include; alcoholism, certain cancers, gout, hangover, pancreatitis, and although moderate consumption reduces the risks associated with diabetes and coronary issues, alcohol abuse will increase those risks significantly. We recommend always drinking responsibly and enjoying the health benefits of craft beer.

Craft beer is becoming a popular choice when purchasing Australia’s most iconic beverage. It is no longer a market segment reserved for the health conscious hipster, folks from all walks of life are recognising the advantages and loving the better flavour.


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A history of Tighes Hill Cellars

A history of Tighes Hill Cellars

Friday, 13 Jul 2018

Tighes Hill Cellars has been selling quality alcoholic beverages to the community for years and historically, they are among some of the longest standing liquor stores around. The building itself has managed to stand proud throughout the decades, even as earthquakes and other natural disasters have rocked the region.

While there’s history dating back to days long past, Tighes Hill Cellars is currently under the same steadfast, innovative leadership that has been building the business since 1999. Rob Richards took ownership of the bottle shop in May of that year, beginning with a rather blank, and somewhat bleak, canvas. With a vision, and some creative planning, Rob was able to steer the business successfully through the September 1999 closure of BHP. As an extremely new owner, the timing couldn’t have been worse for such a large percentage of loyal clientele to leave the area. Not only did Tighes Hill Cellars survive this potential crisis, it thrived. As Newcastle’s biggest employer bowed out of the Hunter, Tighes Hill Cellars grew by 10%.

In addition to the events of September 1999, Tighes Hill Cellars has continued to triumph various obstacles, including; the introduction of new competitors to the market such as Dan Murphy’s and Aldi (through the proliferation of liquor licenses), the global financial crisis of 2007-2008, and the superstorms of 2007 (the year of the Pasha Bulker) and 2015.

The store itself has undergone major renovations over the years to reflect a modern vibe that is in line with the contemporary product range. Owner, Rob Richards, describes his adaptability to external market factors as part of his formula for success. He also credits his willingness to be different and focus on his own range and products as major factors.

Three years ago Rob and the Tighes Hill Cellars staff made the decision to shift emphasis to craft beer and healthier drinking alternatives. Over the last 6-12 months, they’ve also started to embrace organic, preservative-free and natural wines. The entire Tighes Hill team are self-confessed “Beer Geeks” and know their products well. They’ve found that craft beers and natural wines are as diverse as the people who appreciate them. One might think only the super health- conscious would be interested in such specialty beverages, however, they are rising in popularity with consumers from all walks of life, due to the amazing flavour and health benefits.

Tighes Hill Cellars is a longstanding, iconic bottle shop with a difference. If you’d like to check out our extensive product range for yourself, or learn more about some amazing craft beers from the experts, we encourage you to stop by and visit us real soon!

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