Dereck Hales passion for craft beer took off when he began creating beers on a homebrew kit, which he now says were "REALLY ordinary".
Looking back almost six years on, he appreciates that was the year his brewing started to take a turn for the better – by the end of 2011 he had collected awards for the first beers he entered into the Vicbrew competition. That success was merely the start, with Dereck going on to take out the Victorian Amateur Brewing champion title two years in a row and, as a result, getting to brew two commercial batches of his beer for the Great Australasian Beer Spectapular in 2013 and 2014.
Now, having left the corporate world behind, along with wife Diti he has opened Bad Shepherd Brewing Co., a brewpub in Cheltenham. The couple has welcomed big crowds from the off, attracted by a mix of Dereck's beers and American-inspired BBQ comfort food.
With a core range of 5 beers and seasonal and limited edition releases, Dereck’s beer can be found on tap at Bad Shepherd and in venues and bottle shops throughout Melbourne.