The Bridge Hotel in Castlemaine serves up great grub and bands well worth making a jaunt to the country for
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When Kat Hamilton, formerly the manager of Fitzroy's Old Bar, and Brendan Noonan, who previously managed the Northcote Social Club, took over the Bridge Hotel in Castlemaine, they managed to both keep it a favourite with locals (some old-school Castlemainians might argue it's the only pub left for locals) and a venue with bands so swell that many make the trek up from Melbourne to see them.
It's played host to the likes of Mick Harvey, Sal Kimber, the Toot Toot Toots, Mojo JuJu, Dick Diver, Dave Graney, Mikelangelo and the Tin Star... and a swag of local bands.
It also puts on a very decent spread six days of the week (Tue-Thu 6pm-8.30pm; Fri-Sun noon-8.30pm, and hosts Hospitality Mondays and Trivia Tuesdays. The Bridge is guaranteed to become one of those venues talked about by misty-eyed music fans for decades to come. It already is, in fact.