A good craft beer bar and bottleshop can be many things in its community. First and foremost, it needs to be a place to drink and buy delicious beer. More than that, however, to really cut through it should feel like a home away from home, the sort of place you want to hang, one that combines those delicious offerings with warm, welcoming service and good vibes.
The Dizzy Rooster does all the above and, better yet, it acts as something of a crafty oasis for the eastern Melbourne suburb of Scoresby and its surrounds. Launched by a group of mates – Ryan Bird, Jordan Barry, Michael O’Dea and Mason Gardiner – and opening midway through 2023, if there was any doubt the area needed The Dizzy Rooster that was quickly dispelled on the busy opening weekend. Indeed, the weeks that followed suggested the venue’s only failing was that its arrival was long overdue.
Prior to opening, there was a lack of such places to drink in Scoresby and the neighbouring ‘burbs – long the home of large pubs with pokies. In recent years, as small, family-owned and family-friendly breweries have started popping up in the area, it’s a situation that’s changed for the better. And, despite the name and rolling barrel in the logo, The Dizzy Rooster stands firm and tall as it brings something different to the local community.
The modern, sleek space offers the kind of drinking experience that for too long you could only enjoy closer to the inner city. During the day, light pours onto the polished tables and tiled bar, while the array of large tables, window and bar seats make it equally suited to dropping in for a quick beer on your own, taking a date, or settling in with a large group of friends. Upstairs, there’s more room for enjoying a drink, as well as a function space, while the kerbside beer garden soaks up the sun’s finest rays (well, in summer anyway: there are some things bar owners can’t control).
While warm hospitality is at the heart of everything The Dizzy Rooster does, so too is craft beer. Eight taps pour the good stuff downstairs, with a further four in the upstairs bar. Meanwhile, the five fridges are fully loaded too, whether you’re after something to take home or looking to crack it at the bar for a small corkage fee.
Alongside the beer, equal care is taken when it comes to selecting whiskies, other spirits and wine. If you’re peckish, the food menu features cheese and charcuterie boards, wine and beer-minded snacks, toasties, and larger meals courtesy of their neighbours at Stanley Burgers.
As many have tried and discovered in the past, you can’t just build a bar, put craft beer on tap and trust locals will instantly become regulars. And that’s where the daily specials come in: there’s Locals’ Night on a Wednesday at which Australia’s traditional chook raffle has been traded for a Rooster Raffle. Live music is also a regular fixture, as is sport on the big screen, both waiting to be enjoyed with a hazy IPA in hand.
As for the name, the founders couldn’t quite come to an agreement, so sent their shortlist of ideas off to be designed to see if they could at least agree on a logo. When The Dizzy Rooster came back, they knew they’d found the one – even if some in Scoresby wondered if they were getting a new charcoal chicken takeaway.
Fortunately, nobody seemed too disappointed when instead of chicken wings they got craft beer, and ever since that opening weekend the good times have kept rolling on at The Dizzy Rooster.