bach brewing Zero IPA

Bach Brewing is the first New Zealand craft brewery to get out a zero per cent beer in six-pack and it’s absolutely worth the wait. I’ve tried a lot of zero ABV beers this year, nearly all international lagers or wheat beers, and not a single one comes close to this in terms of quality. Stacked with great hop aroma courtesy of Citra, Mosaic and Nectaron the aroma punches out of the glass like a typical IPA and it stays right to the finish. The body, of course, is as light as water but that’s to be expected and there’s enough there to keep you interested. With a flavour that just keeps giving all the way to the finish it’s like drinking hop-juice. There’s none of that awful un-fermented character that a lot of zero beers have. They say you can best judge a brewer by their low alcohol beers. If that’s the case then Bach and the team at Steam Brewing where it was made are world-class.       

Sawmill Bare Beer

Sawmill are the second Kiwi craft brewery to come to market with a zero ABV beer, after Bach Brewing's All Day Non-Alcoholic IPA. Sawmill's Bare Beer is a completely different beast (and yes, it is possible to have great variation in these products ... they don't have...

Rhyme X Reason’s Can-do attitude

When Rhyme x Reason rolled up its big doors for the first time on an industrial street in Wānaka in June 2017, it was the first brew pub in town. Now, it might be one of a few — but it remains one of a kind. The brainchild of head brewer Jess Wolfgang and her partner...

Chouffe Houblon Belgian IPA

When I think of Belgian beer, IPA does not typically come to mind.  But such beers do occasionally emerge from the region, and this one of the few readily available in New Zealand.  The hop bill looks pretty modern with Amarillo and Tomahawk along with the more...

Brothers Beer Pop Art Cryo-Hopped IPA

This IPA from Brothers Beer (5.9 per cent ABV) utilises the new Cryo Pop pellets from Yakima Chief. They are extracted from a blend of American hops and designed as a fire-and-forget solution to aroma in an IPA.  Are they any good?  Let’s see… The nose is clean and...

A Mixed Six with Craftwork

For our second edition of the Mixed Six, we chat to Lee-Ann Scotti and Michael O’Brien of Craftwork, Oamaru’s masters of esoteric Belgian styles.  Six questions on their favourite beers:  three about their brews, three about other people’s. Favourite beer in your core...

Urbanaut Imperial Saison

Since it began with that outrageous 15% Hazy IPA, these seasonal mini-imperials in 250ml cans from Urbanaut have become one of my favorite series of beers.  Saison is a style that scales up comfortably, getting up around the 8% mark in the strongest examples, but a...