Who the firkin hell is…Gill Letham?


July 18, 2014 by 250 Beers

“What the firkin hell is this?” I hear you ask. Well, let me explain…

‘Who the firkin hell is…?’ is a weekly glimpse into the lives of individuals that work (some tirelessly) to bring the Brisbane public the very best in good beer. Some are brewers, some own/work in your favourite bar, some are retailers and some are brewery reps.

If you don’t know what a firkin is then the whole beer-related, play-on-words title will be lost on you right?! Fear not – click here for more information on firkins.

In the hot seat this week is Gill Letham from The Mill on Constance in Fortitude Valley. Serving quality draught and bottled beer in a great venue since late last year, The Mill on Constance is embraced by everybody that sets foot inside. You know exactly what I mean if you’ve visited, right?

Here’s Gill…from The Mill…on the hill…well, it’s more of a bridge but that wouldn’t have rhymed and neither would overpass:

Gill Letham

What is your day job?

Co-owner and General Manager of The Mill on Constance.

How long have you been doing that for?

Since we opened in December last year so just past the six month mark now.

What were you up to before that?

Before that I was working for Lorna Jane Activewear company managing the stock. So pretty similar to counting the kegs and hoping I have enough for the weekend!

What is the best part about your job?

Seriously the best part of my job so far has been getting to know everyone in the Brisbane craft beer scene. They have been so friendly and helpful! Also, being a part of the first Brewsvegas was a great.

What was your ‘epiphany beer’? The beer that made you ‘turn your back on cack’?

I was a committed cider drinker until relatively late on in life having experienced some nasty beers in my early years so I’d say Stone & Wood’s Pacific Ale was the introduction into good Australian beer.

Have you ever had a beer that has totally blown you away? If so, what was it?

It’s been happening on a weekly basis since I’ve been at the Mill. The amount of great beers you get to taste as a job is ridiculous! But recently I tasted Kaiju Double India black ale and was actually blown away.

What is your preferred style of beer and why?

Currently lovely red ales, particularly Mountain Goat’s IRA – perfect for those cold winter nights (I’m from Scotland originally so a little embarrassed to say it’s cold at night here but I don’t think my Dad will read this so it’s safe to write!).

If I gave you $100 in cash right now with the only proviso being that you had to spend it on beer, what would you indulge in?

I would have myself a little inner city pub crawl starting at Green beacon, then Tippler’s Tap, Newstead Brewing and finally Kerbside – getting to The Mill in time for someone to drive me home!

I have a large hoard of empty beer bottles and another of beer glassware. Do you have any beer-related vices?

Having a bar is a pretty big vice but it would seem one isn’t enough so we’re making room for a second bar with more taps out the back of The Mill. Like tattoos and piercing one is never enough – its addictive!

In your opinion, where’s the best place to grab a decent beer in Brisbane?

Depends on my mood and my company but locally around where I live and work I would say for:

Just beer – Tippler’s Tap

Beer and food with classy friends – Newstead Brewing

Beer and food with not-so-classy friends – Yard Bird Ale House

Day-time drinking – Green Beacon

Best after work drinking – The Mill

There are so many good places in Brisbane we really are lucky.

What is so good about it there?

There’s always a great selection and atmosphere with all of the above. 

Bottles or cans?

Bottles. I just don’t get cans…unless it’s for a picnic but not in bars. NOT IN BARS!

What are your hopes for the future of Brisbane’s craft beer industry?

I think the future for craft beer in Brisbane is looking great. There is an awesome community spirit amongst the bars, brewers, drinkers and lovers of good beer. I think that’s gold.

This isn’t a job interview but where do you see yourself in five years time?

In five years I would like to see myself still involved in craft beer in Brisbane. Hopefully with a great little bar on Constance Street and maybe another little venue in the ‘burbs where I can bring my puppies to work.

What would your response be if somebody stopped you in the street and asked you what your favourite beer blog is?

I’d say 250 Beers but then they probably wouldn’t understand my accent and I’d have to say it a few times.

I love the fact that Gill has different favourite venues for her different classes of friends! Brilliant! Thanks to Gill for appearing this week. It’s certainly an exciting time for her and partner, Gerard Hartnett, as they will more than double the amount of taps at The Mill when the back bar is complete. I can’t wait!

Previous ‘Who the firkin hell is…?’ appearances can be found by clicking here.


One thought on “Who the firkin hell is…Gill Letham?

  1. Valley Chick says:

    She’s lovely!

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