Thus Let Us Drink Beer – La Sirène
Every now and then, just when you thought you’ve got the terrain covered, you come across a brewery that stands out with a philosophy and recommitment to philosophies that honour traditional brewing methods and deliberately refrain from entering novelty territory in the ever expanding cosmos of craft beers.
Enter La Sirène.
Having started in 2010 and with a dedication to Farmhouse brewing, i.e. a focus on sourcing local ingredients, open vat and bottle (re)fermentation as well as the alignment with the seasons, La Sirène established itself firmly on the firmament of the local scene by making brews that ripened in carefully curated oak barrels and redefined what could be achieved in terms of complexity in wild ales.
It all started with the creation of Saison-style beers, a sophisticated style that originally emanated in Southern Belgium, where beer served more as a sustaining snack than a beverage, and was than further refined to create La Sirène’s artisanal DNA, which not just in terms of provenance is not dissimilar to regional wine making with site specific air-borne yeasts and bacteria infusing the liquid emissions with idiosyncratic flavours.
Needless to say, that La Sirène approach to craft and artisanal ethos does not merely culminate in its ales but also extends to the elegant belle époque art on the hand-bottled Champagne bottles and is does not lack a conscience as sustainability plays a major role in all facets of their operations.
Cracking open a chilled bottle of La Sirène’s brews is a bit of an event and something that should be savoured and dedicated time to, especially when you indulge in expressions like the Praline: A decadent Belgian stout comprised of a mélange of cocoa, vanilla. It does not come as a surprise that it became an accolade decorated crowd favourite at beer festivals.
Their core line started with La Sirène Saison, a refreshing, well-carbonated textured hay coloured classic saison style with a savoury, malty and peppery yeasty body, with crispy tart-citrus nuances.
However, my favourite of the range must be the collaboration with Jester King, i.e. Beer with Jeff.
Clocking in at 7.2 % ABV, the joint venture with Jester King Brewery from the Texas Hill Country is one of two beers that is the best of both worlds – beer brewing excellence and refined artisanal crafting of Farmhouse style wild ales.
I recently paired it as part of a Boilermaker with Bakery Hill’s Sovereign Smoke and the combination was divine as the wonderfully calibrated oaky and citrussy character of Beer with Jeff is accentuated with a subtle tardiness that culminates in marzipan highlights.
Given that the expertise and passion that has gone into the refinement of La Sirène’s liquid emissions is not merely about process but materializes in exquisite ways on the palate, the brewery from Melbourne, Victoria should find itself on the bucket list of brews to try no matter if you are a cognoscenti or not.