Shark Island Brewing

Shark Island Brewing Co is proud to be part of the Sutherland Shire.

From the fact the brewery itself is named after a reef break just off Cronulla, to the naming of some of its beers – you can hunt down the surf spots that inspired Voodoo IPA, The Point Dark Ale, and Shiprock Hazy Pale Ale – this is a brewery that never stops boasting about the place it calls home.

Back when the founders worked in booze retail in the area, they realised the Shire was itching for a local brewery with its finger on the pulse. A brewery that’d make beers for the coastal lifestyle, but would also tinker with classic and modern styles to challenge people’s tastes. A brewery where people had fun making beer, and invited others to have fun drinking and talking about it.

So in 2015, they started Shark Island Brewing. And when this little brewery opened its roller door, the locals recognised right away that this was what they’d been waiting for; not a big shiny corporation, but a couple of knockabout blokes who loved nothing more than a day at the beach, some rockin’ tunes, and a cold beer in hand.

Right from the start, the founders threw themselves headlong into their community, looking to local businesses for everything from the labels on their beers to the treatment of their waste water, and even donating the spent grain to Menai High School. (Don’t worry – it’s for the animals, not the kids.) And, right from the start, the punters were fiercely loyal to their very own watering hole.

Shark Island Brewing is now the longest running independent brewery in the Sutherland Shire. And when the crew look out at the landscape of good beer in the local area, and the kindred spirits who have opened nearby in the meantime, they can’t help but beam with pride at the way they’ve helped shape the beer culture in the Shire.

“Proud to be the original – the grandfathers!”

But while the journey may have given the gang a few grey hairs between them, Shark Island remains a place brimming with energy. When you rock up to the cellar door in Kirrawee you immediately feel part of the in-crowd as you step into an eclectic mix of second-hand furniture, an atmosphere of industrial grunge, and a sea of smiles greeting you from behind the bar.

With the whole brewing operation stretched out before your eyes, what you see is what you get. The larger stainless tanks house the high volume beers like their clean lager and the Australian Ale, which is Shark Island’s gateway to big flavour, while the smaller tanks allow space for co-founder and head brewer James (the one in the slideshow with the hearty beard) to play around with pet projects and one-offs.

In some ways, this is a brewery bursting at the seams, and the team is always thinking of what the next stage looks like. But the intimacy of Shark Island Brewing is part of its charm.

If you like down to earth people who are passionate about what they do; if you like food trucks and acoustic tunes on the weekends; if you like layers of decor that have built up organically over years; if you like filling your fridge with tinnies of your favourites, and filling growlers with whatever adventurous nano batch is going at the moment; if you like suggesting what the next small batch beer should be, and keeping an eye out to see if it makes the cut… then you’ll love Shark Island.

Mick Wust

Name
Shark Island Brewing
Address

Unit 8, 29-33 Waratah Street
Kirrawee
NSW 2232

Phone
(02) 9545 1914
Open Hours

Thursday: 2pm to 7.30pm
Friday: 2pm to 9pm
Saturday: midday to 8pm
Sunday: midday to 7pm


This is a directory listing. To find out more, head here

Shark Island Brewing Regulars

Shark Island Brewing Lager

Shark Island offer plenty of beers for those looking to expand their repertoire with big flavours. This isn’t one of them. While this lager has a hint of fruitiness to the aroma, it just takes one sip to realise this is a traditional lager through and through. (Not that anyone’s going to take just one sip.) This is the beach beer. The summer’s day beer. The beer for the purist, for the old school drinker, for the appreciator of brewing technique, for those drinkers not won over by craft beer,… Read more
Style
Lager
ABV
4.6%
Bitterness
17 IBU

Shark Island Brewing Shiprock Hazy Pale

If you want to experience a vast array of marine life, try scuba diving at Shiprock in Port Hacking - there are tropical fish, vibrant corals, and on a good day you may even spot an angler fish or some of the biggest moray eels in Sydney. If you want to experience a vast array of tropical flavours, try drinking Shiprock Hazy Pale Ale. Thanks to the vibrancy of Amarillo, Mosaic, Galaxy, Citra and Simcoe hops, you’ll get mango and stonefruit galore, with a dash of pineapple juice and citrus acidity… Read more
Style
Hazy Pale Ale
ABV
5.2%
Bitterness
34 IBU

Shark Island Brewing Australian Ale

Maybe it’s just the power of suggestion, but I reckon when you’re choosing a beer for a classic Aussie BBQ, you can’t go past a style that features Aussie hops. This Australian Ale has surprising amount of aroma and flavour for its sessionability. A fluffy white head subsides to a layer of sea foam, releasing zingy citrus notes into the air. Tingly bubbles bring a bright citrus and pineapple character that’s good for cutting through the grease of anything you’d deemed fit to cook up on… Read more
Style
Australian Ale
ABV
4.3%
Bitterness
20 IBU

Shark Island Brewing Voodoo IPA

The crew at Shark Island pride themselves on making a number of sessionable, approachable beers to suit everyone’s taste. They also sport the slogan "Beer with bite". Voodoo IPA is more aligned with the latter. If you’re after a low bitterness hazy, this isn’t the IPA for you. This is a dank number oozing with resin and bitter citrus peel; there are some tropical notes here, but they’re hiding from the other flavours. Toffee malt from Gladfield brings enough sweetness to balance… Read more
Style
IPA
ABV
6.5%
Bitterness
60 IBU

Shark Island Brewing The Point Dark Ale

A dark ale, done right, is a thing of beauty. It can capture the richness and flavour of dark beer, but without crying out for a winter’s night as some heavier dark beers do. With a dense tan head, The Point is easy to drink while still holding a smooth body. It smells like a cup of hot cocoa (but, you know, cold), tastes like a mix of chocolate milk and cola (which sounds like a strange combo, but you’ll have to trust me when I say it works in this beer), and leaves an aftertaste of rich chocolate… Read more
Style
Dark Ale
ABV
4.6%
Bitterness
27 IBU

Shark Island Brewing Specials

Shark Island Brewing Nano Batch & Three Pence Pale Ales

Shark Island have a couple of pale ales in their core range, but that’s doesn’t stop them from playing around with pale ale recipes. Their Nano Batch Pale Ale brings together the malt-rich body of an English style pale ale with the hoppy bitter bite of an American pale ale. Rocking an all-star US lineup of Cascade, Amarillo, Mosaic and Simcoe hops, this pale hits you upfront with grapefruit peel and caramel aromas, which level out in the mouth with an earthy bitterness. Meanwhile, their Three… Read more
Style
American Pale Ale & Coffee Pale Ale
ABV
5.4% & 5.8%
Bitterness
35 & 29 IBU

Shark Island Brewing Bock, Black IPA & Imperial Stout

Even though it’s not a hugely popular style in Australia, Shark Island head brewer James had wanted to brew a bock for a long time. The difficulty was that he wanted to lager it for a minimum of eight weeks, and tank space is a valuable commodity for a brewery. So he kept an eye out for a window in the brewing schedule, and finally saw the opportunity – and actually managed to lager it for 12 weeks in the end. It only takes one sip for you to be glad he waited to do it properly. This Bock beauty… Read more
Style
Bock, Black IPA & Imperial Stout
ABV
6.5% & 6.8% & 10.0%
Bitterness
25 & 80 & 26 IBU