Nick Pang's MINI Cooper S

Out with peas and carrots, in with food and beer…and MINI.

Certain things in life just go together. Take good food and good beer, for example. For the man behind Melbourne’s Temple Brewery, Nick Pang, striving to combine the two in a perfect gastronomic fusion is what life’s all about. Practically. It must be said that Nick’s love of masterful pairings certainly extends to his choice of chariot, the MINI Cooper S 5-Door Hatch.

Zipping between his home, the brewery in Brunswick East and client meetings, Nick reflects on the craft beer industry and where it’s headed, as well as his own rollicking ride along the way. “What we’re trying to do at Temple is promote a lifestyle of matching good food with good beer, while creating a craft beer industry,” Nick says. “The craft beer industry in Australia is in its infancy, so we actively promote other Australian craft beers as it’s imperative that breweries support each other to showcase the best of Australian beer.” And Nick says the way of life is unquestionably catching on. “There’s so much you can do with beer; people are really understanding what it can deliver with food. It’s now grown into something very unique, but so easily acceptable.”

When developing a beer, Nick looks at the unique qualities of a specific product and taps into his own imaginative reserves. The time he feels most creative, he says, is when he’s out on the road, “talking to bars and bottle shops about Temple beers and listening to their stories.” He says his MINI is not only essential to his daily peregrinations, but it also contributes a substantial amount of fun to his life. “My wife and I have always loved the look of the MINI and consider it one of the most iconic cars. I’m also a bit of a car fanatic and consider the drivability and handling of the MINI as one of the best cars in its category – in fact, my favourite thing about my MINI is the way it drives. It just gets better and better!"

Temple is also going from strength to strength, and its endeavour to create serious waves in the international beer market is indeed paying off. Nick says his hometown should feel justifiably proud. “The world is starting to pay attention to Australian craft beer, and a lot of it is coming out of Melbourne.”