Just a ten minute drive from the Perth CBD, the Seasonal Brewing Co has brought beer appeal to a vibrant neighbourhood that had previously been somewhat barren on the good booze front. Their Maylands home was once named one of Australia’s coolest suburbs by Lonely Planet, yet there was scant opportunity to enjoy a locally crafted beer.
This had long played on the minds of its owners, Nick Southwell and partner Emily ten Raa, especially during the four-year process they went through to bring Seasonal to life. The long-time homebrewer and Maylands locals wanted to create somewhere they would want to go within walking distance of their home. So they teamed up with Michael Cheang, owner of the gin-focused Northbridge bar Frisk and subterranean crafty CBD pizza bar Alfred’s, with the renovations alone taking the best part of a year to complete.
Now, after opening in spring 2019, the hundred-year-old former mechanics building fills with light through its two rooms, the second of which is designed to host functions and even weddings of up to 120 people. There’s off street parking behind the venue, multiple bus stops immediately in front and Maylands train station just a two-minute walk way; all of which means getting to and from Seasonal couldn’t be easier.
Local artwork features strongly throughout, some of which is available for purchase. This approach is in part due to the high density of artists in the area but also thanks to Emily’s career in that field, one that now finds her curating the walls and spaces of the brewery venue. The artworks range from installations to framed pieces; the intention is that patrons can enjoy professional artwork in a more relaxed environment, thus allowing artists to connect strongly with the natural environment and cultural heritage of the local area. One of the pieces commissioned for the launch is by Kyle Hughes-Odgers, no stranger to the WA beer world thanks to his work on numerous beer labels, and overlooks the shaded, grassed courtyard, which also features a children’s sandpit.
The main bar, clad in stunningly nuanced, high feature WA wood, delivers the goods from 18 taps with scope for more to be added. At time of writing, a dozen featured the Seasonal range with guest taps turned over to a local cider and craft cocktails. These are complemented by a full bar including natural wine, Australian wine varietals and craft spirits – more than enough to satisfy thirsty locals and those visiting from further afield.
Leading beer production is Brody Watts, whose CV prior to assuming the head brewer role includes Homestead, Indian Ocean, the Dutch Trading Co, Bright Tank and Blasta. His beers are crafted on a 15 hectolitre Spark system with three 15 hectolitre fermenters and two 30 hectolitre fermenters. While initially available as draught only, takeaway growlers fills are available on Seasonal beers and a small barrel program was part of early discussions among the brewery team.
Seasonal’s name refers to the rotating flow of beer and food options; however, these aren’t exclusively linked to a traditional Gregorian alignment, more reflective of change throughout the year. With more than a dozen taps to play with, punters should expect a flavour arc from crisp lagers – there’s more than one – to NEIPAs, saisons or a Baltic porter, with plenty of room for a sessionable pale ale along the way.
While the debutants were playfully dubbed “commissioning strength” for their exuberant booze levels, the intention with Seasonal’s range is, for the most part, to create beers that can be enjoyed over a few glasses.
In the kitchen, the menu fits the “feasting venue” brief, roaming from generous share plates to “Tuck Shop” items, including house made pies that use Seasonal wort, and from rib eye to a very popular Sunday roast. However, as the name suggests, there are weekly rotating dishes that draw from local and sustainable produce as well as a considered kids menu.
For now, Seasonal’s concise trading hours may warrant checking before heading to the brewery, but these are likely to evolve as council approvals become more progressive, much like the rest of the brewery’s mantra for change.