In a region fuelled by premium booze, it’s hard to stand out. Here in The Margaret River Region, new producers are competing for the spotlight with established labels and it can often seem like a David vs Goliath scenario, but small-batch operations are going against the grain and have been making big waves here in the south west over the past few years.
Despite sharing this fine region, there is often an invisible fence between the beer and wine industries. Like kids stood by opposing walls at the school disco, we rarely mingle, let alone work together to get the party started. Three years ago we decided it was time to change that, smash the boundaries and create something new for wine and beer drinkers alike. Shirrazzaweiss V1.0 was created, a marriage of hop, grain and grape. It was like nothing we’d tasted before…we love when that happens and we are now into its third vintage.
So How Does it Taste?
When sweet meets sour, Our traditional Berliner weisse has been blended with local shiraz grapes handpicked by our team alongside LS Merchants from their Spring Ridge Vineyard in Margaret River. The grapes were added at the end of fermentation to kick start secondary fermentation and balance out the acidity. Devilishly red in colour, mildly sour and finishing with a dry musked flavour from the shiraz.
Another variation of creativity in collaboration with our friends at L.S Merchants. Our Berliner Weisse Stacked with Sauvignon Blanc grapes from Margaret River. The Berlinion (An amalgamation of Berliner and Sauvignon) is a white grape sour that respects the quality of the fruit in this great wine region. Passionfruit and lime flavours are sharpened to enhance the clean acidity into a formidable thirst cleansing weapon.
LS Merchants and Beerfarm go way back, not only producing premium booze but also collaborating to throw countless parties and events around WA. Since 2015, Dylan (Mr LS Merchants) and his partner in crime Taryn (Mrs LS) have been pushing the boundaries of the south west wine region. With the aim of ‘having fun making interesting styles of wine’ Dylan brings an enthusiasm and passion for winemaking that’s just infectious. His minimal intervention wines are excitingly different and hold a permanent place on the Beerfarm wine list.
Unlike the beer industry, winemaking is frustratingly tied to the seasons. ‘Vintage’ is an explosion of activity in the Margaret River region and means we can only make this wine/beer love child once a year. That’s fine with us as we like to get experimental at Beerfarm – so much so that this year we’ve decided to create a sister brew to the Shirrazzaweiss: Introducing the Berlinion Blanc (Berliner Weisse meets Sauvignon Blanc).
Good things come in pairs but grape things come in threes!
Because collaborations don’t have to be only between just 2 groups, we decided to make this a 3 party project last year when we asked Silly Pear (aka Charlie Nivison) to create some of his funky artwork, prominently featured around Sydney, for the can label. It was colourful, on style and gained national notoriety for both Charlie and the beer itself…
In Charlie’s words:
“The main idea behind the can designs for both the Shirazzaweiss’19 and the Berlinion Blanc’19 was to firstly reflect the taste and flavours of the beers by using bold and bright imagery but also having many subtle textures and clean crisp lines and of course the grapes!
As well I’ve tried to tie the two artworks together through the cards and shared graphic elements but still give each can a unique feel.
The other imagery itself can be looked at however you like but my main thought was connecting future references in a subtle way weather it be through the fortune teller predicting the future or the pixel/glitch on the Berlinion Blanc. “
So, this year, in 2019, on the back of last year’s success we thought we’d challenge the man again. This time though we’d up the anti and task him to design 2 labels. One for the Shirazzaweiss ’19 and one for the newly appointed Berlinion Blanc ’19. Like the champion he is Charlie didn’t disappoint and we are super proud to have his artwork fronting our cans again this year.
Cheers Charlie! Cheers Dylan! and to the rest of you as well – Clink Clink, Bottoms up!