Praline is an ale that has never quite fit with the rest of our artisan ales. Some would say it is the ‘blacksheep’ of our family of Wild & Farmhouse Ales. It’s not wild, it’s not farmhouse, it’s in a league of it’s own. The Praline for those that do not know about it, is a chocolate, vanilla & hazelnut Stout fermented cleanly. This beer edged out 130+ other beers back in 2014 to win the GABS (Great Australian Beer Spectapular – yes you read right) event and has won accolades every year since.
After making Praline as a classic chocolate stout in a textbook way for many years, we started to wonder how it would taste with a more natural fermentation profile and started experimenting (as we are inspired to do here at LS) with fermenting our Praline in an open tank – like we do the rest of our Wild & Farmhouse Ales. This was somewhat risky considering we had a proven formula and proven recipe however we like to push the boundaries of things in the spirit of discovery and evolution.
The current batch of Praline in bottle has been open fermented in our famed open tank and the results we feel are spectacular. The open fermentation has allowed our native airborne bacteria to partake in the party and has delivered a welcomed acidity to the classic Praline recipe. We feel this has added an additional dimension to the rich and chocolatey Praline that gives it a welcomed element of drinkability and refreshment!
This is not for everyone, however we truly believe this new way of fermenting our Praline transforms it and evolves it into a sour-ish version of the Praline and takes it in a direction that better suits the way that we make our artisan ales here at LS, working with nature and aiming to control it less… the sourness being a familiar and expected component of our ales in general.
We hope you enjoy the evolution of Praline as much as we do and we look forward to sharing more with you over time.
Yours In Beer
Costa – Chief Artisan
As our first blog entry, we wish to welcome you to our world, a world where creativity, inspiration & integrity is echoed through our walls and a world where supporting one another in the spirit of creation is our natural compass. Through this blog, we will provide a glimpse of who we are as people, the way we roll and why we do the things we do.
Firstly we wish to welcome you to the pillars of our team.
Costa found his way into creating Artisan Ales from the wine world. After studying Winemaking & Viticulture in South Australia and numerous vintages for one of Australia’s most respected pinot producers in the Gippsland region, he gravitated to the wonderful world of Farmhouse & Wild Ales. His vision and drive in the creation of La Sirene back in 2010 and earlier has been a journey not carved out by business plans, spreadsheets or ‘market drivers’ but a more humble approach to just believing in yourself to become a modern-day craftsman. He is our chief who steers the La Sirene ship on her voyage and doubles as maintenance engineer, chief brewer, debt collector, delivery driver, hand bottler & occasionally La Sirene tour guide.
Costa’s partner & oracle for all here at La Sirene. Eva has a background in business and finance across diverse industries such as television, advertising and fashion. Eva works closely with Costa to drive the La Sirene ship (ships best mate perhaps) and ensures our culture is authentic, vibrant & progressive.
Will Mac is our point man out in the trade and has spent years understanding and showcasing the flavour profiles of our character-filled ales. He is a certified beer sommelier, is an avid cook, has a witty sense of humour and loves all things food & beverage.
Liam, an Alphington native works the brewery floor along with Francis, Jimmy, Sam & Lewis (last 3 all genuine Alphingtoners & Costa (Genuine Adelaidean). He combines a cheeky quintessential Australian humour with his love of art-house films and art in general. He is responsible for driving our production on a day to day basis and doubles as a film critic on most days.
Francis comes to us from DuDu Ciel in Quebec Canada and with him comes some great stories about brewing in Canada. a proud Quebecer and brewer, Francis delivers his dry sense of humour with a strong technical ability and is our most recent addition to the team.
Jed is currently completing his honours thesis in Industrial Design and is our resident cool kat/word on the street guy! he is responsible for ensuring all of our beers are delivered to our customers in prime condition.
Jon is our fellow logistics guy who ensures we are able to get our beer super-fresh to all our peeps when needed. He has the most witty & dry sense of humour, is in 2 bands, is an avid animal lover and loves films (him & Liam could speak for hours about film)
2018 Good Beer Week is just around the corner and this year like every year we are so excited to be presenting and participating in 3 wonderfully diverse and curated events. So grab your friends and your tickets and join us at one of these memorable to be events below.
Party at Paradise Alley with La Sirène and a Seafood Cevechiria… Join us for a seasonal seafood canape feast lovingly prepared by Renee from Little Latin Lucy matched with some very special & limited La Sirène beers pouring both on tap & from the bottle and complete with an oyster bar. Book your tickets to this event here
Delicious and as diverse as Farmhouse Ales we love our vegetables at La Sirène so when we spoke to the creative folk at Henry Sugar about a degustation for this year’s Good Beer Week we were very excited about pairing our ales with their delicious vegetarian creations! A 6 course vegetarian safari including some fermented veggies and incorporating some of our ingredients and house yeast… this is going to be a tantalising event. More deets here
That’s right, you are seeing double! This event was so exciting last year, we had to do it again, but this time we are extending the food and La Sirène degustation with a canapes and La Sirène limited ales session at Rupert on Rupert’s newly opened bar section to start the evening, before we are led into the restaurant to dine on a 3 course degustation. Dramatic and daring, incorporating locally foraged and made produce, we present a wild evening of ales and gourmet sensations.
— Costa Nikias, Founder Owner La Sirene Brewing
The Age Newspaper – Good Food March 20th 2018 by Will Hawkes
Our CITRAY SOUR is a Farmhouse Style Sour Ale made with real oranges, soured naturally and of course made with our La Sirène signature house yeast.
Join us at the participating venues below to get your hands on the CITRAY SOUR cans, with free tastings also available:
Friday 16th March
@audacious_monk_cellars – from 4pm – 128-130 Regent Street, PRESTON
@blackheartswine – 5:30 to 7:30pm – 123 Smith St FITZROY
@blackheartswine – 5:30 to 7:30pm – 131 Lygon St EAST BRUNSWICK
@bottlehouse – 5 – 7pm – 3c/199 Toorak Rd, South Yarra
@carwyncellars – 5 – 7pm – 877 High St, THORNBURY
@grapeandgrain – 5 – 7pm – 14/16 Station Street, MOORABIN
@harvest_wine – 5 – 7pm – 207 High Street, NORTHCOTE
@mccoppinsabbotsford – 5 – 7pm – 501-509 Victoria Street, ABBOTSFORD
@mrwestbar – 6 – 8pm – 106 Nicholson St, FOOTSCRAY
@pennyyoung_liquor – 5 – 7pm – 22 Young St, MOONEE PONDS
We are incredibly proud to announce the release of our flagship wild cherry ale, the Bière de Cerise blended from various farmhouse ales that have matured in French Oak barriques. These wild ales sat on luscious whole European cherries for 18-36 months naturally allowing the wild flora found in our brewery to slowly ferment and /or sour the remaining sugars left in this wild ale.
“A Wild Ale that was a long time coming for us here at La Sirène. After we selected the best 9 x barrels to blend with a fresh wild ale, this ‘Bière de Coupage’ was allowed to further develop through a tertiary fermentation in the bottle for 13 months with its own microflora which has very much rounded out the tangy sourness and provided an avenue for the wild flora to take control & dare I say shine. This bottle will age gracefully over time and develop a more complex flora-driven palate as the cherries slowly drop away. Cellaring potential store at 15c – 17c for 9 – 18 months”. Chief Artisan – Costa Nikias
Funk scale: 4/6
Sour Scale: 5/6
Fruity Scale: 5/6
REMIÈRE MOSAIC: Our 1st 2018 Avant Garde Collection release & we are celebrating with a pre-release launch @audacious_monk_cellars this Friday 23RD FEB from 4pm join Will our brewery ambassador & the ace ♠️ team at Audacious to get your hands on this before wider release in stores from the 28th. (click here for stockists)
Première Mosaic showcases lovely fresh Mosaic hop characters with our trademark wild yeast. Expect tropical and apricot notes enveloped in creamy lactic acid sourness. A modern amalgamation of local indigenous souring with an abundance of hops.
View SUMMER SEASONAL SAISONETTE on Instragram
A “little” Saison, our Saisonette (ABV 3.8%) is light, with soft citrus characters, is super refreshing & has the perfect amount of bubbles
View SUMMER SEASONAL FLEUR FOLIE on Instragram
Our FLEUR FOLIE is back! This blossoming 🌼 madness is a Honey 🍯 Saison. Blended with raw honey on a soft malt backbone this Saison finishes dry & slightly tart. Perfect delightful farmhouse refreshment
We are excited to announce that our Cuvée de Bois is now available in 375ml bottles (12 bottles per Case) as an exclusive limited run.
Cuvée De Bois started life out as our Cuvée which began as an open fermented Farmhouse Ale made in our house style, that was co-fermented with Victorian “free run” Chardonnay and left to naturally sour for an extended period. Cuvée evolved to become Cuvée De Bois when we felt the finished beer needed some oude (old) Saison and French oak characters to mellow out the vibrancy of the chardonnay free run and give this ale some length. So to the young fermented beer, we blended 2 x selected barriques of 2013 & 2014 Saison that had been barrel fermented and aged on chardonnay lees a modern day ‘Bière De Coupage’ technique where young and old beer is blended. Cuvée De Bois was laid on it’s side to mature and naturally carbonate using indigenous flora for the last 8 months.
We refer to the Solera Method as we did not completely empty the barrels of oude Saison. we blended 30% 2013 Saison in French oak barrique & 45% of 2014 Saison in French Oak barrique to taste, with the barrels being topped up to see another day…
“A distinctly sour yet layered wine hybrid ale, the Cuvée de Bois’ reminds me how expressive Australian Chardonnay can be when allowed to shine. The naturally building acidity cuts through the green pineapple & papaya skin which is the star of the show in this hybrid ale coupled with the unripe chardonnay top notes. The Oude Saison contribution very much tempers the fruit vibrancy with a kiss of french oak toastiness to round the matter out. For me this hybrid ale resembles the melding of what I love and adore in drinking, delicate & unique farmhouse ales and classic old world chardonnay. Sante!”
– Costa Nikias, Founder & Chief Artisan La Sirène Brewing.
We are very excited to share that our Jester King Brewery Collab was released at their brewery this weekend. Costa travelled there in April this year and worked together with the esteemed JK crew to create Song of Binding. We are not sure how much of this will make it to Australia & we will certainly keep you posted. We would like to thank everyone at JK for their hospitality, Costa had a blast getting to know & work with you all – happy to see this released.
Images Courtesy of Jester King