When Temple's founders, Ron and Renata Feruglio, first started dropping hints about their plans for a brewery, bar and brasserie to The Crafty Pint they claimed they would be creating a venue unlike any seen in Australia before. And with its contemporary industrial chic - concrete walls adorned with bold graphics, walls of glass that reveal the brewery, exposed foam ceilings and, above all else, dramatic stone bars embossed with bold concrete "TEMPLE" lettering and framed by metallic rays overhead - the East Brunswick brewery does just that.
Getting it up and running was a labour of love: the launch in December 2011 came almost 18 months later than they originally intended. The founders weren't the only ones desperate for it to open, either. For three years before setting out on their mission to build their temple to beer, they had established an excellent reputation for their beers in the Victorian craft beer market. Ron used to travel to other breweries around Victoria, ingredients and equipment in tow, to brew gypsy-style, with his beers regarded as among the best in Australia.
Back then, the staples were a Pale, Saison and Special Bitter. The first two were reintroduced at launch, along with a Japanese Soba Ale made with buckwheat, the Temple Brunswick Draught, and a Bicycle Beer, a relatively low alcohol affair with a refreshing touch of tartness designed for those heading home under their own steam. The Midnight IPA first piloted at an industry event in 2010 followed soon afterwards, with the Special Bitter making a return in autumn 2012.
The business closed temporarily in early 2013 to introduce a new management structure, before returning to brewing in October and setting about redesigning the venue and planning significant expansion across Australia and beyond. New head brewer Glenn Harrison joined early in 2014 and began building on a newly streamlined range of beers based around the Bicycle Beer and Anytime IPA with his first beers the Rye Hard IPA and an American Stout. With a great reputation for their beers and new staples and limited releases added to the roster since the relaunch, it's easy to conclude Temple's lengthy path to opening was well worth the wait.