Pale gale blows over White Lakes Brewing


Patrons had twisted his arm so much that Sean Symons had to give in.

He needed both hands as the solo operator at White Lakes Brewing, a brewpub off Mandurah Road in Baldivis, and it was best to agree to give the customers what they wanted so he could get back to what he does best.

Symons had opened the 25-hectolitre system late last year and pursued a course of Lagers and Pilsners to test the state of the art brewhouse.

“But a lot of people were coming in at the weekends asking if we had a Pale Ale,” said Symons.

“I was reluctant because there are so many Pale Ales around the place but in the end we decided it was time to give the style a go.

“We’ve got a 5.2% version now with a bit of dry hopping with El Dorado which gives the beer a nice lift.

“I still think it needs just a little more bitterness so we’ll work on that for the next batch.”

White Lakes has not only made a mark in the food and wine trail within the Peel region but has also been a strong feature in pubs in the south of perth.

Part-owner of White Lakes is the Gastev Group Collective which also has premises including the Port Kennedy Tavern, Whistling Kite and Vernon Arms. And Symons’ beers have been well received in the venues.

While The Sip enjoyed the fruitiness of the Pale Ale, our operative’s favourite in the White Lakes range is the Schwarzbier (Dark Lager) made from eight different malts.

Sean Symons takes a tour through the White Lakes operation in Baldivis.

Symons’ mammoth brew kit was put together by a Chinese crew and it is so technical that he can get regular firmware updates from the manufacturer to fine-tune the system.

“We’ve got the brewhouse bedded down now and we’re really happy with the way it is working,” said Symons, who was a former head brewer at Swan Brewery, trained in Sydney under Chuck Hahn and has established breweries in Asia.

“I can get through two brews in a nine-hour day on the steel. We’re getting some new programs and that will be an even bigger improvement on what we can do.”

Symons is hopeful White Lakes beers will soon expand north of the river. But the visit to Baldivis is worth it, not only for the beer, but it provides a great view into a working brewery.

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