Saturday, December 17, 2016

December 15th, 2016

Kaibosh Kegs

This Saturday is Garage Project's annual Christmas fundraiser for local food-rescue charity Kaibosh.
Every year Garage Project donates twelve kegs of GP beer to twelve beery Wellington venues. The venues then donate every cent of each pint to Kaibosh, so essentially you get a beer for donating to Kaibosh.

We've been involved every year, and are proud to support Kaibosh once again. Kaibosh were forced from their premises due to the recent earthquake, so need help more than ever.

We drew the delightful Red Rocks Reserve as our Kegs for Christmas keg, which we'll be tapping at midday Saturday.

Many people plan a 'charity crawl' during Kegs for Christmas - this year Craft Beer College have made it easy to join in.
You can join the Craft Beer College Kegs For Christmas Walking Tour from midday Saturday for just $65.
100% of the $65 is donated to Kaibosh, and you'll visit nine venues with beers and snack included:
- Garage Project (for Pernicious Weed)
- Rogue and Vagabond (for Rhubarb, Rhubarb, Rhubard)
- Goldings Free Dive (for Party and Bullshit - seriously!)
- Little Beer Quarter (for VPA)
- Fork and Brewer (for Death From Above)
- Bin 44 (for Nectarivore)
- Hashigo Zake (for Red Rocks Reserve)
- Basque (for La Calvera Catrina)
- Malthouse (for Dirty Boots)

Portland in Saison

Thanks to a shipping delay and a shipping mix-up we have kegs of saison from two renowned Portland brewers.
Commons Brewery was one of the brewers I was most impressed with when I visited Portland. They absolutely nail Belgian farmhouse-style ales. Their flagship easy dinking Urban Farmhouse Ale (5.3%) has an amazing yeast character but remains simple and refreshing, something that was very much appreciated in the 30°C+ summer heat.
We were supposed to feature Commons Urban Farmhouse in PBE this year, however the Oregon shipment was delayed and didn't quite make it in time. So we get to enjoy it this Tuesday!

The same Oregon shipment held a saisony surprise for us - in the form of Gigantic Hearts & Stars Saison (5.5%). Due to a loading mix-up BwB received kegs of Hearts & Stars supposed to go the Scandinavia, meaning we get a double saison NRT.
With a mascot like Tolly Peppercorn the Battle Raccoon, we're expecting great things from Gigantic Hearts & Stars.

Both Portlandian Saisons will be tapped at 5pm this Tuesday.

Borderstop 2016

Beer Without Borders are turning their coolstore into a pop-up beer shop this Saturday, with this year's Borderstop.

Borderstop opens up everything in the wholesale warehouse for sale to the public, in whatever quantities required. There will also be mix-pack specials (IPA 24 Pack, Summer Session 24 Pack, Modern Times 12 Pack), bottle specials, closeout cases of ending lines, 6 pack specials and even a 'cooking beer' bargain bin.

Borderstop runs from 11:00–15:00 this Saturday at 24 Abel Smith St.
If you can't make it this Saturday, Borderstop will be running again next week on December 23rd for last minute xmas beer purchases!

Last Minute Calendars

Last night we held a pool party in the bar, for our NZ Beer Calendar photo shoot. We even managed to empty the pool without causing another flood!
As you can tell, it's going to be the best photo of the calendar, so to see it in all its glory head to Pledgeme now and lock it in.

There's just one day left to pledge so don't delay in supporting this great cause.

Complicated Holiday Hours

It's heading in to that time of year when businesses change up their operating hours over the holiday period. 
So you know when Hashigo is open, here are our hours over the Christmas/New Year period:

Dec 25 Christmas Day: Closed

Every other day: Midday to late

Easy. We're open from Midday every single day this holiday period, except Christmas (as we're not allowed to be open). Of course this includes off licence sales too, so see you in the beer bunker for some festive beers and relaxation.

Thursday, December 8, 2016

December 8th, 2016

Green Flash Returns

Well, kind of.

Back in 2014 we stopped receiving Green Flash beers due to a change in their export policy. This meant no more West Coast IPA, Double Stout or Palate Wrecker but did open up space for exciting new brewers like Modern Times.
In our final shipment we acquired a 50L keg of their 8.8% American Stout, the afore mentioned Double Stout.
Double Stout is fairly hoppy (for a stout), and also has a huge roasty malt profile. I thought it would be interesting to age a hoppy stout such as this, so the keg has been hanging out up at the BwB coolstore for a couple of years.
With our Old Beer tasting coming up next Wednesday, it's time to crack open the keg and see what's happened to it.
My guess is that it's probably dropped some body and hop character over the years, and picked up aged characters that should work well with the roast. However we won't know until we tap the keg at 5pm this Tuesday.

Is Fresh Best?

Contrary to last week's confusing November date (thanks to everyone that pointed that out...), our Old Beer Tasting is actually happening this Wednesday the 14th.

It's only $35, and kicks off at 6pm. We'll be tasting nine aged beers, some of which you'd expect to age well, others to see how they've aged.
The full list is:
  • Green Flash Rayon Vert 2012
  • Moon Dog Dashers Envy 2014
  • Mikkeller Mielcke & Hurtigkarl 2014
  • Green Flash Double Stout 2013
  • Iron Fist Imperial Rebellion 2013
  • Rogue XS Old Crustacean Barley Wine 2008
  • Green Flash Barley Wine 2012
  • Renaissance Tribute Barley Wine 2011
  • Moon Dog Jumping the Shark 2013
There'll be plenty of vintage cheddar to match with your vintage beers, and there'll even be a special 2004 vintage beer from Dominic's personal cellar.

Book your spot in our last tasting of 2016 over the bar or at .

VV3 @ HZ

It's surf rock Saturday at HZ, with the Vincent Vega Trio playing the lounge.
According to the band: "We have sensed a great disturbance in the force, since a certain person become president-elect.
We have deliberated... and come to the unified decision that the only way to combat this is through the power of loud, fast surf rock."

From 9pm Saturday you can hear Chris Armour, Nick Lissette and Greg Crayford loud and personal in the lounge or just chill and chat in the red room. Either way, there will be excellent live music and beer.

Freshly Canned & Kegged

We've been very impressed with the Pirate Life beers we've had on tap so far, so we've grabbed a few of the Adelaide brewer's cans to grace the fridge.
Their Throwback IPA is an excellent option for taking it easy, at just 3.5%. It's got the bitterness and aroma you expect from an IPA, and plenty of specialty malts to back it up with body.
Pirate Life Pale Ale is a classic APA, featuring Mosaic and Cascade aroma hops. While their IPA (6.8%) features a more eclectic mix of Centennial, Riwaka and Simcoe.

Excitingly for cider drinkers, Peckhams have also got on the canning bandwagon and have released a new off-dry canned cider: Alex's Apple Cider.
It's less challenging than Peckham's other traditional ciders, but still has that real cider apple kick.
We're now stocking it as our house cider, and will be keeping an eye out for other can releases from Peckhams.

I was incredibly impressed by North End's new Blackcurrant sour La Mure on a recent trip to Salt & Wood.
So much so that we've got cans in our fridge right now.
Also, Salt & Wood's American BBQ and extensive North End beer range is well worth the train trip out to Waikanae.

We've also got quite a few exciting things coming very soon (probably tonight) in the big 50L cans.
Graphic Brewing's inaugural release origin story Citrus IPA is coming on, I'm looking forward to having Dale and Nolen's beers in the future.
North End's collaboration brew with UK beer writer Melissa Cole is on tap any second and should be interesting. It's a Grisette-style Farmhouse Ale with odd adjuncts: kawakawa leaves & pods, lemon leaf, bay & citrus peel.
La Sirene are back on the sour tap soon with the soured version of their Farmhouse Red, aptly named Sour Red.
They found a pre-sale keg of Ballast Point Indra Kunindra up at the warehouse, so you'll get on last chance to try this incredibly bizarre curry stout on tap. Seriously, curry powder in a stout? It's super weird but somehow it works.

Thursday, December 1, 2016

December 1st, 2016

Modern Times Discovers Pilsner

The thing about NZ beer I missed the most during my time in the USA was the lack of anything resembling a NZ style pilsner.

The light and thirst quenching yet still hoppy and interesting style has no real equivalent outside of NZ. When I asked US beer people why not, they usually replied 'lagering takes too long'. Which is no excuse - the majority of NZ pilsners are actually ales...

The Pilsners I did find in the US tended to resemble European style pils. Clean and earthy/grassy with a light dry finish. Great on  a hot West Coast day, but get boring pretty quickly.

Perhaps Modern Times' head brewer Matt Walsh's visits to NZ have inspired him, with the release of their first ever pilsner: Modern Times Ice Pilsner.
It's the first pilsner to come out of Modern Times, and by the looks of it they've taken a more 'new world' approach:

"The flavor: cold. The crushability: maximum. Ice is our very first pils, and it brings the noise.
Hopped with Czech Saaz and Australian Summer hops, before, like, so many weeks of lagering, Ice packs the flavor of the mighty San Diego mountains into a compact 4.8% ABV package."

We're tapping Modern Times Ice at 5pm - leaving you an hour and a half to enjoy it before Santa Session kicks off.
Speaking of which, Santa Session is now sold out. If you missed out on a spot and want to be put on the wait list, just reply to this email and I'll stick your name on.

Coffee Beer Three Ways

This Saturday's bottle pour flight looks at  how coffee can be used in various styles of beer.

Coffee has been shown to work well in dark beers, so Mout & Mocca Imperial Porter from De Molen is a safe (albeit 11.6%) bet.
Brown ales are more subtle so Modern Times' new Sleepless City will be interesting.
But a coffee IPA? Sounds weird. Rogue's new Cold Brew IPA apparently integrates coffee and hops... but you be the judge.

We'll be pouring 150ml flights of each of these three styles for $15 from midday Saturday.

Bare Beer Calendar 2017

This year's Craft Beer Calendar pledge campaign is almost over, so it's time to jump on board!
Offering a standard and NSFW calendar was quite a bit of work for the organisers last year, so this year the calendar photos will be a mix of clothed and less-than-clothed beery people.

However all of the more revealing photos are done very tastefully, as you can see with Van and I on the right.

The photo ideas I've heard so far sounds like a lot of fun and involve your favourite brewers, bar staff and bar regulars.

The calendar again supports the Sexual Abuse Prevention Network (SAPN), an amazing group that is making a big difference in Wellington. I've personally attended their 'It's Our Business' sexual violence prevention programme for people in the hospitality and came away feeling empowered to intervene when appropriate.

More details on SAPN, the calendar and the pledge rewards are available over on the pledgeme page, where you should pledge now!

Old Beer 2: Another Evening of Aged Beer

Last year's 'old beer' tasting went so well, we've decided to hold it again!
We'll be seeing how a few of the beers are tasting a year on, and a whole lot of new old beers.
Traditionally beers that age well are strong and malty, but recently this wisdom has been challenged by a few members of the beer community who claim other styles age just as well.
At this tasting we'll be trying aged examples of both, in a quest to answer the age old question: "is fresh best?"
Beer Without Borders has a back catalogue of beers ranging from a few years to almost a decade old, and spanning styles from spiced ale and saison to imperial stout and barley wine.
We'll be seeing what happens to a bretted pale ale after four years, how a barley wine evolves over time and learn about how things like oxidation, autolysis affect the flavour of beer.
We're only charging $35 for this tasting, which takes place at 6pm on Wednesday the 14th of December at Hashigo Zake.
We'll also provide plenty of aged cheddar to match with these massive beers:
  • Green Flash Rayon Vert 2012
  • Moon Dog Dashers Envy 2014
  • Mikkeller Mielcke & Hurtigkarl 2014
  • Green Flash Double Stout 2013
  • Iron Fist Imperial Rebellion 2013
  • Rogue XS Old Crustacean Barley Wine 2008
  • Green Flash Barley Wine 2012
  • Renaissance Tribute Barley Wine 2011
  • Moon Dog Jumping the Shark 2013
PLUS a very old beer out the boss's personal cellar, from a legendary but now defunct NZ brewer.

Book you spot for just $35 over the bar or on now.