The Story Behind La Sirène's Recent Closure

December 6, 2022, by James Smith

The Story Behind La Sirène's Recent Closure

Last Friday afternoon, as many people – my family and I included – were preparing to head to La Sirène's newly-opened bar in Alphington, the brewery team put out a statement on social media announcing they'd been forced to close the bar indefinitely "due to circumstances beyond our control".

Owners Costa and Eva Nikias said they were "shell shocked and devastated on a personal as well as a business level", adding: "We hope we can come out the other side."

Today, more information has come to light around the closure, confirming Bar La Sirène is closed indefinitely as a directive from their landlord, Melbourne Innovation Centre (MIC), which had in turn been directed by the City of Darebin after traces of asbestos were found in buildings on the site. Darebin City Council is now undertaking environmental monitoring and will commence a deep clean and remediation program; further testing and works are expected to take several weeks.

As a result, La Sirène have been locked out of their production brewery and are unable to brew, process or package any beer.

In a statement released today, Costa and Eva said: "The overwhelming support and appreciation from the public has been humbling."

They added: "Council and MIC have been helpful, and we can only rely on their assistance and goodwill.

"We sincerely hope that appropriate remediation happens swiftly so that we can keep on doing what we have always done here since 2010 in the amazing community-driven suburb of Alphington. Questions regarding the longevity of the building, our brewery, bar and of the future of our business, livelihood and brand are for the future. Our path at the moment is very unclear.

"We thank you, ALL our customers, supporters, believers, friends, collaborators and family far and wide so much for being the reason our dreams have come true over the last 12 years and for appreciating our locally made wild ales.

"We are so grateful for your continued support and wish to extend thanks to all who have reached out."

 

 

You can read more about the circumstances surrounding the temporary closure here. In that release, Darebin City Council CEO Peter Smith said that the health and safety of tenants, visitors, contractors and staff located at MIC was Council’s number one priority.

“We are working closely with the MIC and its tenants, and we have temporarily closed the two buildings to allow for further environmental testing and remediation work to be undertaken,” he said.

“We understand this is inconvenient for impacted tenants, particularly at this time of the year. Council, together with the MIC are looking at options to minimise the impact and assist those businesses. This may include finding alternative venues and locations in the area that would enable these businesses to continue trading.

“We have also informed, and are proactively working with, relevant regulatory authorities including the EPA and WorkSafe.

“I want to reiterate that the health and safety of people working at that site is our number one priority.”

There is no impact on surrounding sites or community, with testing and cleaning arrangements set to continue into 2023.

Costa and Eva have told The Crafty Pint they won't be conducting any media interviews at this time. We'll keep readers updated on their situation and hope to be able to enjoy another wild ale at their bar in the not-too-distant future.


Their Statement In Full

We have had the weekend to assimilate the events since our announcement on Friday 2nd December that our Bar, Bar La Sirene will be closed indefinitely as a directive from our landlord Melbourne Innovation Centre (MIC) which was directed by its landlord, City of Darebin. The overwhelming support and appreciation from the public has been humbling.

Out of an abundance of caution and overnight, Darebin City Council closed two buildings that affect the access and operations of La Sirene Brewing, Bar La Sirene and 13 other businesses on site. Their media release can be accessed here: https://www.darebin.vic.gov.au/about-council/news-and-media/news/2022/12/temporary-closure-of-two-buildings-at-melbourne-innovation-centre-alphington

As of Friday afternoon, we were locked out of our production brewery.

We are unable to brew, process or package any beer. Multiple tanks of beer awaiting processing and packaging cannot be accessed.

Council and MIC have been helpful, and we can only rely on their assistance and goodwill.

We sincerely hope that appropriate remediation happens swiftly so that we can keep on doing what we have always done here since 2010 in the amazing community- driven suburb of Alphington. Questions regarding the longevity of the building, our brewery, bar and of the future of our business, livelihood and brand are for the future. Our path at the moment is very unclear.

We thank you, ALL our customers, supporters, believers, friends, collaborators and family far and wide so much for being the reason our dreams have come true over the last 12 years and for appreciating our locally made wild ales.

We are so grateful for your continued support and wish to extend thanks to all who have reached out.

Yours sincerely

Costa and Eva Nikias La Sirene Brewing 

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