Turn your passion for beer into a career - Brendan Ashe’s brewery story

Kangan Institute Blog How to turn your passion for beer into a career - Brendan Ashe’s brewery story

Date: 23rd Feb 2022

Brendan Ashe is a trainee brewer, currently employed with Brick Lane Brewing and undertaking a Certificate III in Food Processing (AKA Micro Brewing) at the Kangan Institute Broadmeadows campus. He also works part time at Brownstone Micro Brewery.

Like many, Brendan has always been a beer enthusiast, but after spending a few years’ working in the industry as a mechanical fitter whilst working on his own brew at home, Brendan decided he wanted to become a professional brewer.

How to turn your passion for beer into a career - Brendan Ashe’s brewery story

“I’ve always enjoyed beer – I couldn’t really afford to buy the beers that I liked to drink which is why I started brewing. But after having a job that I didn’t find rewarding, and after seeing what could be accomplished, I knew it was what I wanted to do as a job,” he said.

However, as Brendan attempted to move into brewing professional, he recognised a huge gap in the training courses offered in Victoria for the craft. He applied for several trainee positions, even making it through to the final round with a highly sort after Victorian company, whilst he continued to search for training courses he could undertake.

“Before Kangan Institute’s course, there wasn’t really anything like it around,” he said. “Having undertaken an apprenticeship for my former job, I knew this model of training really worked for me so as soon as I saw it, I enrolled – I didn’t even have a job yet, but I figured I could work it out and at the very least I’d have my qualification.”

And work it out he did, finding employment part-time with Brownstone Micro Brewery and as a trainee Brewer at Brick Lane Brewing.

“I really wanted to give myself the best grounding, learning as much as I can and getting experience firsthand rather than ticking along in a job that I'm not really finding satisfying when I can be,” he said.

Certificate III in Food Processing at Kangan Institute introduces students to the practical aspects of micro-brewing with underpinning knowledge to produce a great brew. Through this course, students develop core food processing skills such as food safety, food quality, sustainability and OHS together with specific micro brewing skills such as wort production, fermentation, beer maturation, filtration, packaging and product testing.

“It feels like the more you learn, the more you realise that you know nothing or very little. There's just so much scope to it, which is exactly what I was looking for to just see how it's done on at a professional level,” Brendan said.

The delivery of this course is a mix of online learning, on-campus practical work, and work placement.

“Immersing myself in the work whilst applying what I'm learning, I can directly relate that to parts of the brewing job that I'm already doing now,” Brendan said.

“With the practical aspect to the course and knowing that you are going to be getting hands on experience mean that at the end of the certificate you've got enough boxes of competency to be able to confidently undertake tasks,” Brendan said.

If you’re interested in finding out more about undertaking a Certificate III in Food Processing with Kangan Institute, head to their website here.