The Beginning

Peter Degraves, accompanied by his wife Sophia and their eight children, as well as Hugh Macintosh and other settlers, embarked for Van Dieman's Land. Their arrival in Hobart Town on April 10, 1824, marked the beginning of a new chapter. Prior to their journey, Peter had arranged for 500 acres to be surveyed in anticipation of their settlement. Following their arrival, construction of a sawmill swiftly commenced, signaling the start of their enterprise.


Time to think

Degraves faces legal action from English creditors for outstanding debts, leading to his imprisonment for a period of five years. The debts amount to nearly 150,000 pounds, equivalent to approximately AU $45 million in today's currency. During Degraves' absence, Hugh McIntosh takes charge of managing the sawmill operations from 1826 to 1832.


Brewing Begins

While in prison, Peter devises the concept of a brewery, inspired by the polluted water in the rivulet, caused by companies and individuals dumping waste into it. Recognizing that the sawmill, as the initial water user, would have access to the purest water, he sees an opportunity to capitalize on it. Hugh Macintosh takes the lead in implementing the brewery on-site while Peter is incarcerated. Upon his release in 1832, Peter takes over and manages the brewery.


Peter Degraves Passes

In 1852, Peter Degraves passes away due to old age. His eldest son, Henry, assumes control of the business but sadly passes away just two years later. Following this, Peter's sons Charles and John take the reins, and the business is rebranded as C & J Degraves - Cascade.


John Syme

Following the passing of the last of the Degraves sons in 1880, with no heirs to inherit, Cascade was put on the market. In December of 1881, a lawyer named John Wemyss Syme purchases the Cascade Estate. Relocating from Melbourne to Hobart, Syme assumes control of operations. Syme, along with partners, acquires three rival Hobart Breweries. In 1883, they consolidate these establishments into the Cascade Brewery Company Limited. Under Syme's leadership, the company experiences significant expansion, leasing multiple breweries and gaining control of 90 different hotels throughout Tasmania between 1883 and 1911. Despite John Syme's passing in 1896, his legacy continued to propel the company forward for the years following.


Gustavius Beckley

In 1919, Gustavius Beckley assumes the role of manager at the Cascade Brewery Estate. During his tenure from 1919 to 1933, he undertakes extensive renovations of both the main house and the brewery, renaming the estate 'Woodstock'.


Growing business

During Gustavius's management, the brewery undergoes significant modifications to incorporate Nathan Brewing machinery. Four extra stories are constructed, enhancing the building's stature against the backdrop of kunanyi (Mount Wellington).


Francis Xavier de Bavay

Francis Xavier de Bavay takes over as the new manager and Head Brewer. Under his leadership, significant alterations are made to the gardens, transitioning from the traditional dark Victorian style to a more contemporary and open design. After de Bavay's retirement, HJ Gray assumes the managerial position, remaining in this role until the 1980s. During his tenure, Gray oversees further modifications to the Woodstock house, including extensions.



On February 7th, 1967, devastating bushfires sweep through the south Hobart region, resulting in the destruction of thousands of homes, claiming the lives of 62 individuals, and causing damage to 75% of properties. Amidst this destruction, the Woodstock house, the gardens, and the external sandstone shell of the buildings at the front of the Brewery endure. However, only a handful of equipment remains functional, with a few barrels of beer surviving in the cellars.


Open to the Public

In 1989, Woodstock is transformed into a function venue under the management of David Theo Ripper. This marks the first time that the Woodstock gardens are opened to the public.


Carlton and United Breweries

In 1993, Carlton and United Breweries (CUB) acquires the entirety of Cascade Brewery's estate, a significant move that includes the historic Woodstock House. This acquisition marks a pivotal moment in the brewery's history, as it signifies the integration of Cascade into a larger brewing conglomerate. With CUB's resources and expertise, the future of the Cascade brand is poised for further growth and development. The Woodstock House, with its rich heritage and scenic surroundings, remains an integral part of the estate under the new ownership, promising continued preservation and appreciation for its historical significance.


Asahi Beverages

In June 2020, Asahi Group Holdings acquired Carlton and United Breweries (CUB), marking a strategic step to bolster CUB's position in the Australian market. The acquisition grants CUB resources for innovation, improved manufacturing, and market exploration. Asahi's global distribution network presents new avenues for CUB's products, while the shared expertise enhances its competitive edge. This partnership sets both companies on a path for sustained growth within the brewing industry.


Cascade Brewery Bar

After COVID-19 closures, the hospitality segment of Cascade undergoes a transformation. Rebranded as the Cascade Brewery Bar, this overhaul encompasses a tour space, functions area, bar, and restaurant. Additionally, it boasts what could arguably be considered the finest beer garden in Australia.


200th Anniversary

In 2024, Cascade marks a historic milestone as it celebrates its 200th anniversary. This momentous occasion commemorates its brewing excellence, innovation, and enduring heritage. Over the years, Cascade has become an iconic institution, deeply ingrained in the cultural fabric of Tasmania and beyond. Its legacy extends far beyond its brewing prowess, encompassing contributions to the local community, preservation of historical traditions, and commitment to environmental sustainability. As Cascade Brewery celebrates this remarkable milestone, we reflect not only on our rich past but also look forward to a future filled with continued growth, innovation, and dedication to crafting exceptional brews for generations to come.