You don’t necessarily think of beer as a winter drink, but a trip to Mountain Goat’s rather lovely brewery in Richmond might change your mind. It’s only open on Wednesdays and Fridays, and for mine Wednesday is the night to go (it’s much quieter). It’s in a gorgeous old building tucked down a residential street near the Yarra. The beer hall takes up maybe a third of the space, the rest is the brewery itself (I think they do tours if you get there early enough). Although cavernous, the place feels cosy; there are heaters and couches and just a general sense of care that makes it a nice place to be.

On this particular visit we were hoping to sample an advertised double IPA, but for whatever reason it wasn’t available. We consoled ourselves with pints of the regular IPA (RIP the six packs, those were the days) and a couple of pizzas from their short but pretty good menu. Here’s mine, with haloumi, lemon, olives and rosemary:


It’s so easy to become a hermit in winter, heading in to the office with the sun barely up, scuttling home in the dark and holing up in front of the heater; I was really cheered by this mid-week outing. And anyway, if you go on a Wednesday you can expect to be home tucked up in bed at a decent hour. As the place wasn’t that busy we found ourselves being packed up just after nine.