No matter what style, a drinkable and balanced beer is only ever the result of properly developed, highly refined process. Quality and enjoyment of consumer’s drinking experience is critical as more small breweries enter the market with an ever widening range of product. As respect for beer grows, the reputation and growth of the independent sector relies on consistency and quality of small batch brewing.
To bring precision within the hands of all scales of operation, Spark brewing systems are built around simple digital control systems that provide overview and control of both brewhouse and fermentation and serving tank cellar. This allows small adjustments to each process to be made batch to batch to incrementally develop and improve beers. Record keeping is easy and remote overview reporting allows a brewer to check in on the system from anywhere via mobile device.
Here are six successful new Australian brewing companies, each very different but with one thing in common – they prioritise beer quality;
Athletics Club Brewery, Ballarat, VIC
“Spark provided us with the total package – finance, pre-delivery planning and support was great, then timely and efficient delivery. The quality of the product is exceptional – the experienced stainless steel fabricators in the local food industry agree. As a new entrant, I feel like I’m not alone, the boys are always only a phone call away.”
On their comfortable central Ballarat location, Peter Parry and his team have built a lovely community brewery with a plan to grow local interest in the many different styles that they brew. With a soft spot for dark beers, the team have dialled in a delicious subtly hopped brown as the cornerstone of their launch range. Anyone interested in hopping their own brew from a fresh wort kit or learning about all grain brewing can use The Athletic Club’s four small batch kettles or their 50L pilot system which has an identical digital control system to their 15hL system. This allows the team to perfect recipes before scaling them for the production brewhouse.
Brouhaha Brewing, Malaney, QLD
“Spark’s value for money is unprecedented, they gave us a quick turnaround and excellent customer service. Having a local warranty gives me peace of mind.”
Matt Jancauskas, head brewer, Brouhaha Brewing
With a background running operations at Beavertown Brewery in the UK, head brewer Matt Jancauskas brings a whirlwind of energy and experience to the lovely town of Maleny in the Sunshine Coast hinterland. The first beer off his gas fired Spark brewhouse was a saison batch split half on raspberries and half for dry hopping, followed up by multiple other drinkable and interesting brews. Using an iPad for control in addition to their brewhouse touch screen panel allows Matt to easily operate the facility solo – he has a remote overview of every brewing process and can alter temperatures and run pumps from anywhere. With a full service kitchen and a beer deck with a view, all within the shadow of the tanks, keen interest is building for Brouhaha’s imminent opening launch.
Balter Brewing Company Currumbin, Gold Coast, QLD
“My Spark 5hL pilot system is exactly what I wanted – the beers I develop on it are well received in the taproom here and then graduate to the production system, like the Brown Ale – people were raving about it, stopping us in the street to ask about it. We blew through the 10 keg pilot batch at the taproom in 2 days which is almost a problem – we had to disappoint people the following weekend. At the moment I’ve got a hoppy red in the Spark fermenter, I just hope that one lasts longer than one weekend.”
Scott Hargrave, head brewer, Balter Brewing Co.
When 4 pro surfers and one of the nation’s best loved and most experienced brewers decided to found a brewery, Spark were thrilled to be asked to build a 5hL digital pilot system for Balter’s taproom, seasonal, competition and development beers.
Public Brewery, Melbourne, VIC
“I find my brewing system easy to use and highly adaptable. Spark have been helpful and super responsive to feedback. The system allows me the control that I need – it is all about balance – two examples are our Red Falcon with rich caramel and citrusy hopping and our Aussie Pale that uses unique local hops to weigh against toasty grainy Gladfields malts”
Brendan Guild, head brewer, The Public Brewery.
After the roaring success of their original Croydon venue, the team at The Public Brewery have built a Cellar Door venue as part of the large scale Ringwood Shopping Centre redevelopment. To keep up with beer demand, they have installed a Spark 15hL brewhouse with a 180hL fermentation cellar at Rob Dolan’s winery where they are in the process of fitting out an event space for celebrations that has a clear view of the brewery. Head Brewer Brendan Guild’s exacting standards and attention to detail have made good use of the Spark system’s digital control systems. His consistently balanced, drinkable and interesting beers often showcase Australian hops, putting a spin on traditional styles.
Catchment Brewing Company, West End Brisbane, QLD
“Quality and consistency is our goal – even though our system is small, in the middle of our venue, we needed a brewing system that can ensure the beer quality that we need. As the first brewery that Spark built, we are proud to have embarked on this journey together with them, they’ve been great in working throughout the project to get some really good results and their support has been there for us before, during and after construction.
“Everyone who walks in the door at Catchment has their own favorite beer and it has been good to see people start with our Colonial Ale and then move on to try more adventurous, fuller flavoured beers. Across our range, with more specials and seasonals in future, it is great to be able to lead people on a journey with fresh beer that they can drink right here in the brewery.”
Andrew Sydes, general manager, Catchment Brewing Company
When designing their West End venue, the team at Catchment wanted not only a wine bar, function space and very solid back bar whisky collection, but a glorious beer deck with a compact brewery in the centre. Their 5hL Spark system with double batch fermenters allows the to brew, ferment and serve directly from brite tank, all within a space less than 15 square meters.
MacLeod Brewing Company, Sunshine Coast, QLD
“Neil and Julian have provided a great brewing system with well thought out options.
The process has been beyond smooth with delivery of the equipment ahead of schedule.
Spark’s equipment financing option has made the process very simple and has allowed me to focus completely on the success of my business.”
As former Nant Distillery operations manager, Ryan MacLeod know a thing or two about putting a project together. When it came time to step out on his own, he chose a stunning Sunshine Coast site on a ridge with a view of the Mary Valley. He brings his broad industry knowledge to the brewing industry with a 15hL Spark production system and a 50L pilot brewery. By installing several brite tanks for serving direct across the bar, he only needs to keg what he’ll distribute to the local thirsty area.
For details on our product range or a copy of our Guide to Pro Brewing, get in contact or drop in to visit us;
Spark Brew Engineering
40 Crown St
Richmond Victoria 3121
0468 363 405