Tooheys Brewery

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Tooheys Brand
Production output
3 million hectolitres (2,600,000 US bbl)[1]
OwnerMitsubishi keiretsu (through Kirin Holdings)
Lidcombe Site
LocationNyrang Street, Lidcombe, NSW, Australia
Coordinates33°51′00″S 151°02′41″E / 33.8501223°S 151.0447917°E / -33.8501223; 151.0447917
WebsiteTooheys Beer Heritage

Tooheys is a brewery in the suburb of Lidcombe, in Sydney, New South Wales, Australia. It produces beers and ciders under the Tooheys and Hahn Brewery trademarks, and is part of the Lion beverages group which was acquired by the Japanese Kirin Company in 2009.[2]


Tooheys dates from 1869, when John Thomas Toohey (an Irish immigrant to Melbourne) obtained his brewing licence. Toohey and his brother James Matthew ran pubs in Melbourne (The Limerick Arms and The Great Britain) before moving to Sydney in the 1860s. They commenced brewing Tooheys Black Old Ale in a brewery in the area of present-day Darling Harbour. By 1875, demand for their beer had soared and they established The Standard Brewery in inner-city Surry Hills. In 1902, the company went public as Tooheys Limited, and commenced brewing lager (the present-day Tooheys New) in 1930. In 1955, the brewery moved west to Lidcombe.[3] In 1967, Tooheys bought competitor Miller's Brewers located in Taverner's Hill, closing that brewery in 1975.[4]

In 1980, NSW-based Tooheys merged with Queensland's Castlemaine Perkins to form Castlemaine Tooheys.[5] Bond Corporation purchased Castlemaine Tooheys in 1985.[5]

Castlemaine Tooheys were represented as the appellants in the landmark 1990 case of Castlemaine Tooheys Ltd v South Australia, heard by the High Court of Australia. Since the brewery operated outside South Australia, but sold its products there, a South Australian Act Amendment, imposing a substantial refund value for non-refillable bottles produced in other states, was ruled to be inconsistent with section 92 of the Constitution of Australia. Due to the significant discriminatory and protectionist financial impacts that they faced, Castlemaine Tooheys successfully invalidated the law.[6]

Lion Nathan acquired a 50% stake in Bond's Natbrew Holdings in 1990, and took total ownership in 1992.[5] Production of Hahn-branded beers was moved from the Camperdown Hahn Brewery to Tooheys, some time between 1993 (Lion's acquisition of Hahn) and 1999[7] (when Hahn Brewery was renamed Malt Shovel Brewery).

Products sold under the Tooheys trademark are brewed at Tooheys Brewery. Home-brew kits are distributed by Lion and produced at Canterbury Brewery. As of 2015, the Tooheys brand was the major sponsor of rugby union in New South Wales and Queensland, and sponsored the Melbourne Cup in 2002 and 2003.

Current beers[edit]

  • Tooheys New is a pale lager, first brewed in 1930.
  • Tooheys Old is a dark ale, supposedly similar to the Toohey brothers' original brew.
  • Tooheys Extra Dry is a dry style lager, available on tap and in bottles.
  • Red Bitter [8] was formerly known as Tooheys Red, 4.0 to 4.2% ABV
  • Gold Bitter [9] was formerly Tooheys Gold, mid-strength, 3.0% ABV
  • Blue Bitter [10] was formerly Tooheys Blue, a low-alcohol "lite" version, 2.3% ABV
  • Hahn Premium Light was launched in 1998.
  • Hahn Super Dry was launched in October 2006.

Discontinued beers[edit]


  • Tooheys 5 Seeds Cider
  • Tooheys 5 Seeds Cloudy Apple Cider
  • Tooheys 5 Seeds Sour Apple Cider
  • Tooheys 5 Seeds Crisp Apple Cider

See also[edit]



  1. ^ "Cognex Vision Systems Inspect Tooheys Bottle crown and cap inspection :Vision Systems". Retrieved 25 August 2009.
  2. ^ "Beer acquisition creates Australia's biggest supermarket supplier" ABC News, 17 September 2009
  3. ^ Tooheys Breweries at official website, 11 June 2015
  4. ^ Deutsher, Keith. The Breweries of Australia: A History. Lothian Books 1999.
  5. ^ a b c Lion Nathan History
  6. ^ Castlemaine Tooheys Ltd v South Australia [1990] HCA 1, (1990) 169 CLR 436 (7 February 1990), High Court.
  7. ^ 1998, according to A Quiet Beer with Chuck Hahn; 1999 according to Lion Nathan History
  8. ^ Red Bitter[permanent dead link]
  9. ^ Gold Bitter
  10. ^ Blue Bitter
  11. ^ Tooheys taps into Pale Ale trend. Media release at Australian Brews News, 18 June 2015. Retrieved 12 June 2016


  • Deutsher, Keith M. (2012). The Breweries of Australia (2nd ed.). Glebe, NSW: Beer & Brewer Media. ISBN 9780987395214.

Other references[edit]