Kaiju – Can Bar

Scott Marshall is selling canned beer from a hole-in-the-wall on Elizabeth Street styled in kitsch.

He calls it Kaiju after the Japanese cult classic ‘strange beast’ invoking the indie, non-conformist, alternative space he has cunningly devised.

When This Girl drinks beer it has always been in a bottle. (Like when I was at Uni, on the two days a year in Hobart it’s really hot, or if the wine’s run out.) I’m a stubby-snob. Glass is the best to drink out of right? Errr wron-gah. Here’s why?

Light and oxygen are the enemies of beer. There’s zero light penetration in cans.

Scott tells me cans actually sell better than bottles. I’ve always liked being the exception to the rule.

There’s no washing up. ‘I don’t like dishes,’ Scott says.

They’re stackable. You can transport more units per load.

Cans weigh less than bottles.

‘I was a DJ in New Zealand for years and I’ve been in a lot of bars in my time. I’ve seen a lot of stupid shit with people using bottles as weapons. The safety and wellbeing of my customers is paramount,’ Scott says.

Advocates also argue that cans are greener. This is probably because they’re easier and more likely to be recycled. This doesn’t really take into account what’s involved in getting the resource out of the ground however. The Two Girls aren’t experts but it might be that cans are good for brewers, publicans and drinkers, but good for the planet? Perhaps not as much as advocates would like.

Scott and colleague, Nick, have an eclectic range of beers. You’ll find the beers (and a few ciders) in two categories – the regulars with the likes of Asahi, Cascade, Boags, Corona etc etc.

Then there are the rotators – a selection of craft beers that changes depending on what tickles their fancy at any particular time. When This Girl stopped by they had local producer Last Rites on the list. The only canneries in Tasmania are Moo Brew (which they also had in stock), who have got a lot of resources behind them, and Last Rites. Scott tells me they like supporting the locals.

I’m not accustomed to scanning beer menus but I do have to shout most Friday nights, the prices looked pretty reasonable to me.

‘It’s like baking a cake. You miss out on one vital ingredient and it’s not going to work.’ Scott said. Now he’s talking my language.

Price is one of them.

‘I try to pass along the best possible price.’

The range available, their price and percentage of alcohol is on display above the counter.

‘It’s part of my RSA. I want people to know the price up front and make an informed decision.’

I tell him I notice that this can bar idea is a bit of a boyz club. He’s a bit sheepish about it but boyz like their beers. As soon as they start selling wine in cans he expects it will attract more ladies to Kaiju.

I’ve only seen it in the afternoons but there’s always dance floor lighting and great music playing. As a DJ since the early nineties, Scott lays claim to a massive private collection, 700 LPs and twice as many CDs. On a Saturday night look up beyond the bar and you’ll see him spinning some sweet tunes while Nick serves up the beers below.

I’d be happy to drink Corona from a can and listen to Blue Monday any day of the week at Kaiju. After that I’d go find a chardy.

Drop in for a cold one. You’ll find them at 120 Elizabeth Street, Hobart.

They’re open 3 pm until 10 pm Mondays to Thursdays and until midnight Fridays and Saturdays.

They’re on Facebook – Kaiju- Can Bar

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