To celebrate their third birthday, Shenanigans brewed and released Grisette Supérieur. It’s a grown up version of their very first release, Grisette.
Drinking it on tap is one thing but for a real celebratory experience, a bottle is the way to go. The large format, 750ml champagne bottle is the most fitting package for this type of beer. Both as a celebratory beer and for the traditional French farmhouse-style which lends itself to sharing.
There’s subtle variance between the bottle and keg versions of this beer. On flipping the cap of the bottle, you’re immediately hit with the familiar Galaxy hop characteristics that aren’t quite as evident when poured from a tap.
The bottle also carries a more prominent herbal character that develops as the temperature of the beer rises a few degrees.
Single Origin Malts
As part of producing this third birthday beer, Shenanigans worked with Voyager Craft Malt to create a bill using only single origin malts. Voyager are based in Riverina, New South Wales and are working closely with some of Sydney’s craft breweries to develop high quality malts that support local producers and capture a sense of provenance.
The use of the term “terroir” is up for debate when it comes to beer but Voyager are going some way toward justifying it with their focus on malting barley that’s unique to a particular region.
New World Meets Old World
Grisette Supérieur features Barbe Rouge, Topaz and Galaxy hops, combining French tradition with the best of modern Australian hops.
Calling back to the French origins of this farmhouse-style beer, Shenanigans have used Belle Saison, a French strain of brewer’s yeast, and a blend of Brettanomyces strains.
The Brett adds a touch of funk which accentuates the fresh citrus fruit character in the beer but also dries out the finish.
Throughout every stage of this beer, there’s a light carpet-like funk from the yeast that provides a delightful aromatic base that keeps the senses entertained. It lends a woody, herbaceous quality to the beer.
It culminates in a beer that’s both complex and wonderfully refreshing. It also drinks well under its 7.1% ABV making it enjoyable over a longer period of time. This is rare for celebration beers which are often so boozy and inaccessible, produced to make a statement rather than to be enjoyed.
Pair With Cheese Or Cellar For A Celebration
The 750ml bottle makes it perfect for sharing, just as a celebration beer should be.
Shared among a group of friends, a platter of artisanal French and Australian cheeses would be a fine match. Hard nutty cheeses will contrast with the lemon and passionfruit hop flavours, while soft funky cheeses will complement the subtle spice of the Brett in this beer.
Grisette Supérieur can be drunk fresh or squirrelled away to see how it develops over time. It’s a good one to have in the cellar for when a celebratory occasion should arise.
As far as celebration beers goes it’s a lovely example, executed with real flair to produce an elegant beer unlike many others currently around the Sydney beer scene.
Here’s to many happy returns for Shenanigans Brewing Co. particularly if future birthdays bring us more beers like Grisette Supérieur.
From: Inner West Sydney, NSW
Beer style: Grisette
Malt: Voyager Atlas, Voyager Veloria, Voyager Red Winter Wheat
Hops: Topaz, Galaxy, Barbe Rouge
Yeast: Belle Saison and a blend of Brettanomyces strains
Pair with: A cheese platter featuring hard and soft cheeses from France and Australia
Have you tried Shenanigans Grisette Supérieur? Were you at their third birthday party at Bitter Phew? Leave a comment below and share your thoughts.