This wee new release from Urbanaut is a true lite beer at only 2.5% ABV; well past the dubiously broad ‘session’ bracket.  As such, it has the incredibly hard task of bringing the absolute minimum amount of malt to bear without the flavour falling into an insipid fizzy abyss.  So can this one pull it off? The aroma absolutely does, bringing sweet orange citrus, peach and white grape with an impact you’d expect in something at least twice the strength.  But the nose is the easy part, it’s the palate where the balancing act so often topples for these lite beers, but Juno, I’m pleased to say, lands it confidently.  Rather than presenting any huge upfront fruit, the flavour starts off mild and stays mild, which allows those hop driven aspects to sustain through to the finish, avoiding the trap of collapsing the mid-palate by trying to balance too many hops on top of it. This is a lite beer that really nails it, and it’s also not athe first really good low ABV hazy I’ve encountered this year.  As much as I’m not a fan of the hazy application in big double IPAs, I think hazy really has something going for it on the other end of the spectrum.

Orval Trappist Ale

Trappist beers are typically sweet and gentle, but not this one.  Orval (named for the abbey where it’s produced) is from the wilder side of Belgian brewing, undergoing a conventional primary fermentation before being re-fermented with wild yeast.  There’s still...

Moa Sultana Single Hop IPA

This is part of Moa’s ongoing series of single hopped IPAs.  The hop this time around is a recent American variety that started life as the experimental X06277 before being commercially released as Sultana towards the end of 2019.  As hops go it’s a new one for me, so...

Baylands The Hops Awaken IPA

I was lucky enough to join the judging panel for the 2019 edition of The Malthouse WCIPA challenge so I know first-hand how revered a win is at one of New Zealand’s most prestigious beer events.  Epic and Parrotdog have dominated top spot for many years so I was...

Bach All Day Non-alcoholic IPA

Bach Brewing have just released a non-alcoholic IPA in six-pack format and it’s one of the best zero ABV beers I’ve tasted

Bread to Brew: the rise and rise of Derelict Brewing

Derelict Brewing has recently opened an online store, giving national reach to their hugely popular beers. Michael Donaldson talks to the No 1-rated brewery in New Zealand.

Cassels APA wins World Beer Awards trophy

Christchurch brewery Cassels has continued its success at the annual World Beer Awards, taking out the trophy for the best America-style pale with their APA. The success with the APA comes after they won the best Milk Stout two years running, with the Milk Stout also...