Site Fermentation Project, the barrel-aged alter ego of Hop Nation, announced today that it has completed a major rebranding. As the project continued to evolve, and ongoing lockdowns allowed an overhaul of the Footscray brewery space, it seemed a fitting time to refine the brand to align with the honed product offering.
Site Fermentation Project is a way in which co-owners Duncan Gibson and Sam Hambour can experiment with mixed fermentation brews. They utilise unique ingredients and techniques; embracing the unexpected in pursuit of the extraordinary. Their aim is to express the beauty of both winemaking and beer as they create a broad spectrum of barrel aged beers. The nature of these bold and creatively confident beers was the inspiration behind the rebrand, which entails a new suite of artwork by artist, Steve Leadbeater, a logo update by long-term collaborator, Mark Gamble, and a shift to glass bottles in both smaller format and more grandiose magnums.
“The past year has signalled a huge amount of change across Hop Nation, which allowed a renewed focus on our barrel aged project and Footscray site,” said Gibson. “Site Fermentation Project is an amalgamation of the Hop Nation brand family. It revitalises the original brewery, while utilising wort from our new Mornington site—which is then fermented, aged, blended and bottled in Footscray—and incorporating byproducts from our winemaking business, Site Wine.”
The rebrand seeks to embody this convergence of worlds, through original artwork by artist Steve Leadbeater. Each bottle features a unique, mutated creature to represent the creative spirit and unpredictable nature of each brew.
The new look launches with two beers; a Syrah Sour Red and Oud Bruin Ale. The 2021 Syrah Sour Red is the perfect example of a beer that embodies the brand’s journey, using spent cherries from the 2020 Lapin Cherry Sour Blonde—the last beer to be released under the previous Site FP branding—alongside a ton of Syrah skins from Heathcote. These were added to their foedre with a blend of sour red ale, averaging at two years old, where it aged for four months. The resulting beer pours blood red, with earthy spicy notes. The palate is distinctly sour, with grape tannins showing through.
Site Fermentation Project – Syrah Sour Red 2021
7.6% ABV / 375ML bottles / 2.2 standard drinks
The Oud Bruin Ale was made using a base malt of 50% Munich malt, along with a selection of wheat, oats and base schooner malts. The resulting beer was aged in 225L French oak barrels for two years on house culture. The beer displays earthiness and brown spice on the nose, while the palate is balanced by malt sweetness and a tart, racy acidity.
Site Fermentation Project – Oud Bruin Ale
8.7% ABV / 375ML bottles / 2.6 standard drinks
The rebrand is also aptly timed ahead of the relaunch of Blobfish Beer Festival, which is hosted by Site Fermentation Project, and will return in July 2022 after a two year hiatus. Melbourne’s funkiest, wildest beer festival brings together some of the country’s best and brightest to share an array of barrel aged beers, alongside live music and local food. Previous exhibiting breweries include Wildflower, Dollar Bill, Sailor’s Grave and Forest for the Trees, to name a few!