Duckstein Brewery started as a traditional German beer venture in the Swan Valley. In the mid 2000s they teamed up with Saracens Estate Winery to build a $10 million brewhaus on Caves road that is arguably the most spectacular building in Western Australia.
The grand entrance off Caves road (complete with sandstone and golden gates) showcases the lavish attention to detail put into the brewery you're about to enter. Floor to ceiling windows separated by immaculate Jarrah struts that disappear into the huge lake below. A Jarrah balcony peers out over the lake while the interior is adorned with medieval style stone masonry. Every material used complements each other in impeccable style.
The entrance to the building itself is no less impressive. A giant stallion sits perched above Koi ponds with a boardwalk taking you through the water feature to the huge castle-style doors. They even have a whole wall made of Wine Barrels to add to the aura.
Just when you think it can't possibly get any more impressive you can walk out the back... they have an island. Yes, an island in the middle of their man made lake where you can take in the enormity of the venue you're about to gorge yourself in. This island is surely one of the best spots possible for weddings.
But onto what you really come here for - the German cuisine! Duckstein has four permanent tap beers and a single batch. They're all good without being impressive, the traditional German drinking vessels however will please those who love odd glassware.
They do import one German Cider - the aptly named Heil Cider - and offer Saracens Estates full range of wines for the non beer drinkers out there.
What is very much impressive here is the food. I have a fond love of German cuisine. Lots of meat, lots of potato, sauerkraut, bacon and limited salad. It is man heaven. The slabs of Kassler Ham, German sausages, Schnitzel, Potato mash and other menu items all taste like they would in a small Bavarian village (They really do, I've been there). Of course it is all locally sourced as well.
If you want to prove your manhood to the world you can of course order the Schweinshaxe (say: sh-veins-axe-err), which - as the menu says - "is big enough to intimidate oversized barbarians". It is a huge pickled pork knuckle, served with a man-sized portion of mash potato and a man-sized portion of sauerkraut with authentic German Mustard on the side. It is pretty well priced as well at just $39 for a meal big enough for two mere mortals.
Duckstein has a large gift shop if you want a bit extra too. Here you can pick up Saracens wines, Kegs or bottles of Duckstein beers, glassware, oils, chocolates, shirts and plenty of other paraphernalia to remember your time in this modern castle.
Whether it's weddings, tour groups or just a lunch with mates Duckstein brewery not only highlights the best of German cuisine but is a showcase of how to blend building materials and eras into one impossibly stunning piece of architecture.