Thursday, August 12, 2010

August 12, 2010

Immediately below...
  • Beervana Passport
  • Beer and Chefs
  • MPA Launch
  • New and Returning Beers

Beervana Passport

We are now up, running and thoroughly participating in the Beervana Passport promotion. This is where you are invited to roam around Wellington's bars and collect evidence of your travels to earn the right to go into a draw for a trip to Melbourne.

Each participating bar is showcasing one beer, which is the one you need to buy to earn the passport stamp. In our case this is Mike's Organic Imperial IPA - surely the biggest, hoppiest, richest organic beer ever made in New Zealand (and possibly anywhere, for that matter). This beer is usually in short supply but as part of the Beervana Passport promotion the brewery is obliged to keep us stocked.

To join in you need a copy of the passport booklet itself, which we can supply.

Beer and Chefs

Another event organised under the Beervana umbrella is Beer and Chefs. Restaurants and bars are invited to offer a special meal, where the food is matched to a particular beer. Since we keep getting compliments on our pies this seemed like something we should be involved in. At the same time we're not going to make things too hard for ourselves, so we've paired our own favourite, the Venison Vindaloo Pie, with the same Mike's Imperial IPA that we are serving as part of the Beervana Passport. We actually think the match is superb, even if a little less chef school theory went into it than most of the other competitors.

MPA Launch

MPA is the Imperial IPA from Renaissance Brewery. It has been a consistent favourite since we opened last year and the latest batch of it will be launched here, at Hashigo Zake, at 5pm on August 24. The brewers themselves will be here to hold the hands of anyone daunted by an 8.5% IIPA, and explain what needs to be explained. And there will be plenty of complimentary servings to win everyone over.

Even better for some of you - this coincides with the Beervana Volunteers briefing. You'll never feel so appreciated.

New and Returning Beers

It's a week for experimentation. We are giving two smaller breweries a turn on our taps for the first time. Masterton's Peak Brewery specialise in English style beers and have produced Monkey Point IPA, which is on one of our hand pumps right now.

And Christchurch's Wigram Brewery have sent us a keg of their Kortegast Spakling Ale. It uses hops that were found growing wild on the South Island's West Coast. This will come on tap some time over the next few days.

Renaissance Brewery (see MPA, above) have ventured into new territory for them, by making a beer specifically intended for a hand pump. It's Voyager IPA, and it must be arriving here soon because the brewery have been telling people we have it. And on the same shipment from Blenheim will be our last installment of their much loved Craftsman Chocolate Oatmeal Stout.

Note that a number of breweries that supply us, especially those whose products we are serving for the first time, get in touch now and then to ask for feedback. If you've got strong feelings or constructive criticism of the beers we serve, feel free to pass them on.

A couple of old favourites are returning this week. Mata Brown Boy is back, and Jaysen insists that every time they make this they double the volume of hops going in. There's only one way to tell what effect it's having.

And another Canterbury brewery is back - Brew Moon's Hop Head IPA will be on tap this weekend.

And just when you thought it was safe to go back to the bar... Yeastie Boys have a new release. It's Her Majesty - a strong Belgian dark ale. Or to use the name on the press release, it's "Her Majesty 2010". Available now by the bottle.


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