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  • Desert Island Beers #60: Marcus Muller, Australia

    October 5th, 2012DavidMayhallBeer Reviews

    Welcome to the latest episode of Desert Island Beers which this week features Marcus Muller, Head Brewer at Matso’s Broome Brewery/Restaurant in Broome, Western Australia.

    Matso’s is the Kimberley’s award wining microbrewery. The owners are Martin & Kim Peirson-Jones. Matsos Store started life as the Union Bank of Australia Ltd and was built in 1910. At some part in its history the building was transformed into a general store by the Matsumoto family and renamed Matso’s Store a name which endures today.

    Marcus was born in 1970, growing up opposite a reasonable sized regional brewery in Cologne, Northrhine Westphalia, Germany. He took an apprenticeship as Brewer & Maltster in 1991, after his HSC and compulsory Military service and completed his apprenticeship in 1994, followed by ‘Beer’ studies ( drinking and talking ) in Munich / Weihenstephan, Bavaria until they finally farewelled him with a Brewing Degree in 1998.

    Marcus Muller Matso Brewery Australia

    Marcus of Matso

    He says that after enjoying enough of his regained freedom, he decided to travel abroad and landed in Australia in December 2000. Employed there by Geoff Scharer, the brewpub pioneer in Scharer’s Little Brewpub in Picton, NSW, Marcus was gently eased there into the concept of a Brewpub by David Edney, who he still regards as his mentor and one of the best Brewers in OZ.

    Walking out from there in January 2005, he subsequently took a position at the ‘Macquarie Hotel’, Surrey Hills, Sydney, which is today known as the ‘Schwartz Brewery’. After part timing for five months, while trying to feed a family of three, he moved on to ‘Bluetongue’, under the reign of Bruce Peachey; only for 12 months later, after identifying his need for professional freedom, mental creativity and accepting the fact, that he is not an ‘assembly line’ brewer, deciding to accept the offer of the new owners of ‘Scharer’s Little Brewery’ and to move back to Picton.

    Marcus then spent another two years in this little village with big characters, increasing the number of family members to four, before pulling stumps once again in September 2008. After clearing his head for 15 months, Marcus says he was drawn back into brewing, like a Tweety magnetized Sylvester. He applied for the Head Brewer post at Matso’s in January 2010 and started two months later.

    Of Matso’s he says it is an interesting little Brewpub in a heritage protected building with lots of tourists for eight months and plenty of locals for the other four months each year. And winter in Broome, well c’mon, Google it, he says …and there are no excuses for not wanting to be there (or here, depending on one’s location).

    Marcus says he has stirred up a lot of stuff in his career and ruffled a lot of feathers. He has he says taught manners to persons, who didn’t know the meaning of the words ‘thank you’ and ‘please’, reorganized security measures in companies and made enemies galore along the way, and very few, but selected friends. But is very proud of his career and on how much the Australian Brewing Scene has come forward in the last five to ten years.

    At the age of 42, he says he thinks it is finally time to quit traveling and to start to appreciate, how far his little family has come in regards to coming from nothing as migrants and ending up in one of the culturally most significant locations in OZ. And being paid to brew…..”and please, guys and gals, you know, it doesn’t get much better than this, right???”

    The Beers

    Hi Marcus and welcome to our Desert Island! Which beers are you bringing with you to the island, and why?

    1. Coopers Brewery – Coopers Sparkling Ale (Regency Park, South Australia, Australia 5.8%)
      “Why? Because it is a clean beer, defying the trend of less and less alcohol. But it doesn’t taste strong or offensive, just…. clean.”
    2. Brouwerij Hoegaarden (InBev) – Hoegaarden – (Hoegaarden, Belgium -5.0%)
      “Why? Just in case, I catch some fish during my stay on the Island.”
    3. MOettinger Bier Gruppe – Oettinger Pils – ( 500ml cans !! ) – (Oettingen, Germany – 4.7%)
      “Why? Because it is a clean beer, free of additives, preservatives and other chemicals, which do have no business in beer. It is an inexpensive alternative for someone, that doesn’t muck around. And it doesn’t carry the bad pasteurization flavors of its 330ml bottled cousin (not brother).”
    4. Swan Brewery (Lion Nathan Co.) – Emu Draft ( 375ml cans ) – (Canning Vale, Australia – 3.7%)
      “Why? Just in case, I get indigenous visitors.”
    5. My very own Matso’s Broome Brewery – Matso’s Pearlers Pale Ale – (Broome, Australia – 4.5%)
      “Why? Because it is my creation, my baby, and I am very proud of it. Or maybe, because there are no cops with breathalyzers on my Island… lol.”

    And which beer of those five would you rescue from the waves if a beer hungry tsunami hit?

    “Coopers Sparkling Ale. It is simply one of the best Aussie beers available, apart from a very few selected Craft beers, and I mean the ones from Brew-pubs, not Mega-Brewery creations with a big price-tags.”

    The Meal

    You can also take one meal to go with your beers, what would it be?
    “No arguing here. Pizza. Equally as ‘Last Supper’ and perfect partner for any beer.”

    The Books

    You might be waiting a long time on your lonesome on the desert island, so we will automatically allow you a few books to keep your mind busy. You can pick between two beer books and two tomes: ‘The Brewmaster’s Table: Discovering the Pleasures of Real Beer with Real Food’ by Garrett Oliver, or ‘Beer’ by Michael Jackson; plus The Bible, or another appropriate religious or philosophical work.

    “1 ‘Beer’ by MJ

    2.‘Das Kapital’ by Karl Marx.”

    And a non-beery book?

    “‘Rebound’ by Denis ‘The Worm’ Rodman ( his first book ).”

    The record

    You have a CD/mp3/long player but you can only take one album. Choose wisely!

    “Rammstein ‘Herzeleid’”

    The Luxury Item

    And finally, what luxury item would help make your stay on the island bearable?

    “A fridge with Ice cube maker, to keep my beer cold.”

    For more information on Matso’s Broome Brewery see their website or look at their blog here .

    This article is a collaboration with All Gates Brewery as part of our Desert Island Beers series.


    After gaining a qualification in micro brewing David Mayhall founded All Gates Brewery with local licensee Ian Thorpe in 2006 and its first pub was the multi award winning The Anvil in Dorning Street, Wigan. All Gates re-established brewing in Wigan town centre after a near forty year absence. They run a five barrel brew kit, employ seven people and have seven pubs across the North West. David and Mark run the Desert Island Beers project and publish the interviews at Real Ale Reviews and the All Gates Brewery blog.

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