Thursday, December 20, 2018

December 20, 2018

The Alternative Sensory Deprivation Tank

According to Wikipedia, sensory deprivation is “the deliberate reduction or removal of stimuli from one or more of the senses.” In the days after Christmas we know that many of you will be wishing for some sensory deprivation – maybe the removal of daylight, traffic noise or certain family members.

We have an alternative to shelling out hundreds of dollars to lie in warm goo with a blindfold on. We offer a dimly lit, windowless, underground space, with the only stimulus being intoxicating beverages and, perhaps, the mesmeric sights and sounds of televised cricket.

What’s more we offer our Alternative Sensory Deprivation Therapy on the dot of midday on Boxing Day.

Sadly the law prohibits the offering of our therapy on Christmas Day itself. But we look forward to seeing a queue form outside the front door in the minutes leading up to 12pm on Dec 26.

Christmas Cinema

This Sunday we screen Rare Exports: A Christmas Tale. Following last week’s Black Christmas, this is another alternative to the usual saccharin Christmas movie, being a Finnish hybrid of a horror flick and a Christmas movie parody.

At 7pm in the Cult Film Basement

On Tap Now

  • Deep Creek Aloha
  • Invercargill B.Man IPA
  • Kereru Black Ruby Choc Imperial Stout
  • Isthmus No Man's Land XPA
  • Isthmus Peak Haze IPA
  • Laughing Bones The Duke Rye Pale Ale
  • Invercargill B.Man Pilsner
  • Peckham's Moutere Cider
  • Invercargill Pitch Black Stout

Belated Release

It finally happened – a new release was delivered so late by the carrier that we didn’t get it in time to go on tap on Tuesday evening. It was dropped off yesterday, so Isthmus brewing’s No Man’s Land XPA went on tap yesterday.

There won’t be a new release next Tuesday because we won’t be open!

Thunder. All Through The Night.

Experience tells us that from around about today, the Wellington CBD gradually descends into a kind of hibernation (or more correctly aestivation), from which it groggily emerges some time in January. Nevertheless we know that there are those of you who want to defy this urge and keep using the CBD as your workplace and/or playground. So this Saturday we do have a band in our usual Saturday night slot. Chocolate Thunder play at 10pm, bringing not just funk, but “funk groove fusion”.

We are passing on having live music on Saturday week (the 29th), and instead have the Vanguards playing two nights later on New Years Eve.



A few years ago, when providers started rolling out eftpos terminals capable of performing contactless transactions (i.e. “Pay Wave”, “Tap and Go” etc), we were alerted to the fact that performing these transactions imposed a fresh set of charges on merchants and so resisted getting them in.

Since then they have got wide - but definitely not universal - acceptance, and we frequently watch customers wave cards (and occasionally phones) at our eftpos terminals, expecting a payment to happen. And we explain that pay wave won’t work, while trying to resist the instinct to say “sorry”, because, in reality, we aren’t sorry that we don’t offer it.

Saying “paywave doesn’t work here“ fifty times a day gets a little tiring, so one day last week we tried pre-alerting customers to this fact, by announcing it on the sign outside. And because this policy is something we see no shame in and are happy to own, we wrote “proudly paywave free”.

Not long after, we got a review on a certain site that collects crowdsourced reviews saying “Boasting about not having eftpos, not cool. How about it’s 2018 and getting with the times.” Yes, someone really wrote that.

We take this as a sign that the subject of the fairness and expense of contactless payments isn’t as well understood as it needs to be.

From our point of view as a merchant, we have traditionally taken three kinds of payment – cash, eftpos (where money comes from a cheque or savings account) and credit. Cash and eftpos were effectively free (except for the cost of renting an eftpos terminal), while credit card transactions came with charges of between 2.5% and 3%. We have always tolerated those credit card charges for a few reasons:– customers such as travellers rely on being able to pay by credit card and payments by credit card were always a small minority of the total payments we took in. But the overriding concern was that customers simply expect to have the option of paying by credit card.

Then along came contactless, and a new charge. Suddenly those eftpos payments wouldn’t be free, if they were paid by a wave of the card instead of the traditional process. They would come with a charge of around 1.5% - not as much as credit card charges, but a totally new cost where there hadn’t been one before. When times are good a merchant might laugh at a fresh charge of 1.5% of some or all their income. But the rest of the time and for most merchants, this is a cost that has to be paid for by putting up prices. Maybe not immediately, but the day when an operator looks at their books and decides it’s time to put prices up might be brought forward.

So we resisted and have continued to resist. We scoffed when the bank called and offered to waive transaction charges for a month – as if that somehow makes a difference to the charges that would be imposed for the rest of time.

We know that we are far from the only hold-outs. In fact those anti-establishment rebels known as Burger King made the news by ditching pay wave a few months ago.

Now there is a problem with this explanation that is easy to make and difficult to refute, and that is the fact that we continue to tolerate the higher cost of doing credit card transactions. To be brutally honest, if we thought we could pass those ~2.5% credit card charges on to our customers and get away with it, we almost certainly would. Especially since the proportion of payments being made by credit cards is steadily creeping up. But this is the brutal reality – consumers have been persuaded that they (you) can not only switch seamlessly between credit card and eftpos, but loyalty schemes give you an incentive to take the credit option, while merchants silently pick up the tab.

Meanwhile the venerable payment system of eftpos, which has served New Zealand magnificently and economically for 30-odd years, is being undermined and replaced by stealth with a system that lets the world’s most profitable banks take ticket-clipping to another level.

Anyone want to debate this issue or suggest what a retailer like us should be doing? This email gets copied to a blog, where comments will be welcome.


Thursday, December 13, 2018

December 13, 2018

Secret Source

It has been our nine-year long (and continuing) mission to find the best possible beer-friendly snack foods. To that end we have found what might be the best yet. For some portion of the population at least. While no doubt some much smaller portion of the populace will screw their faces up.

We introduce Nam Pla Nuts. These may or may not have been sourced at great trouble and expense from a producer in another part of the world. Either way, we have a limited, experimental supply available for sale right now at a mere $5 for a bowl.

Get Ready To..

The Rumble is one of several musical combos wrangled by local guitarist Chris Armour. Normally the lineup simply consists of Chris and drummer Miles Calder, playing what is officially labelled “raw Proto-Rock'n'Roll, Blues and Rockabilly”.

This week though they’ve enlisted keyboardist Dayle Jellyman, of Darren Watson’s band The Dangerous Experts. Dayle has been known to bring a full, working, upright piano down our stairs for gigs, which is always a bit hair-raising but thoroughly worth it. So we anticipate an even richer and more adventurous musical experience than is typical this Saturday.

As usual, kick-off time is 10pm and the cover charge is a smile.

And speaking of Darren Watson's Dangerous Experts, we're reliably informed that after a spell staying away from regular old gigging, Darren's batteries are recharged and we'll see him and the band back in early 2019.

On Tap Now

  • Deep Creek Aloha
  • Invercargill B.Man APA
  • Invercargill B.Man IPA
  • Kereru Black Ruby Choc Imperial Stout
  • Cassels & Sons Cassels Witbier
  • Choice Bros Disco King IPA
  • Deep Creek Double IPA
  • Te Aro Brewing Dubh
  • Mean Doses Mean Juice IPA
  • Kereru Silverstream Pale Ale (hand pump)
  • Deep Creek Undercurrent Pilsner

The sharp eyed will notice two beers whose names vary from each other by a single letter. It isn't a typo. We rolled back the clock by placing an order with the venerable Invercargill Brewery. (In fact they're apparently in the process of rebranding as the Bloody Good Brew Co - does anyone think that's a good idea?)
For years Invercargill had a famous hoppy lager called Biman, then B.Man, then B.Man Pilsner. That beer still exists but it has spawned no fewer than two other hoppy pale beers - an APA and an IPA. We have both on tap right now, with the original to join them in the near future. Plus as an extra treat we grabbed a keg of the legendary Pitch Black Stout.

Look out too for something from Silverdale's Laughing Bones and some fresh cider on tap courtesy of Peckhams.

But right now, anyone looking for a Christmas treat is encouraged to look no further than Kereru Black Ruby Imperial Stout.

Black Christmas

The place of Die Hard as an action classic and a slightly unlikely/ironic Christmas movie seems to get more and more entrenched every year. But as this article lays out, we can do better in the form of the 1974 Canadian Horror Black Christmas - a highly regarded early example of a slasher film set in a sorority house at Christmas. Does it get any better than that?

As usual our cult movie screens at 7pm on Sunday in our multi-purpose art and performance studio.

Little Rocket Plan

Anyone else still get a kick out of watching rockets take off from the Mahia Peninsula? If nothing goes wrong with the weather or the technology there may be one some time after 5pm today. We’ll keep the projector and screen on standby just in case.

Thursday, December 6, 2018

December 6, 2018

Rock Dots

Earlier this week Hashigo Zake was delighted to learn that our booker hadn’t actually made a typo on, and this Saturday’s music comes from someone with an umlaut in his name. We don’t care that Baron Oscar Lavën’s music is some distance from rock ‘n roll and that the performer in question was born with said umlaut. All that matters is that our act this Saturday has rock dots.

This isn’t completely unprecedented. A couple of years ago we hosted a secret gig by rock royalty in the form of Hüsker Dü’s late Grant Hart. Grant explained that Hüsker Dü’s umlauts were inserted to avoid being sued by the makers of the Hūsker Dū board game. Not particularly rock ‘n roll either.

And as if having an authentic umlaut in his name didn’t endear Lavën to us sufficiently, he has promised to play no Christmas tunes. Instead we're looking forward to a "deep-digging, boots-and-all Soul Funk organ trio".

The Oscar Lavën Organ Trio play at 10pm on Saturday in our Lounge. No cover charge.

If there is any reader who considers a lack of Christmas music to be a failing, we have two comments. It would be undiplomatic to actually express the first. The other is: please see the section below on Monday’s Rock The Cash Bar Christmas Edition.

Rock The Cash Bar VIII

Popular culture guru and quizmaster Hadyn Green has done a magnificent job of making Rock The Cash Bar an established and well-attended fixture in our calendar. Take a victory lap, Hadyn.

We thought it would be fitting to sneak in one last instalment of Rock The Cash Bar before the end of the year. And Hadyn isn’t going to pass up the opportunity of adding a Christmassy element, even if it means tolerating it being called Rock The Kitsch Bar.

So Monday night’s quiztravaganza should be an even better form of Monday night entertainment than usual. To be assured that you and your team can walk in on Monday evening and find a table with your team name on it, go to the event’s very own facebook page and leave a message.

On Tap Now

  • Renaissance Black Hole Fusion
  • Golden Bear Body Czech Pils
  • South Cider Boysenberry Cider
  • Te Aro Double Dragon IIPA
  • Deep Creek Double IPA
  • Deep Creek Lagerita
  • Kereru Moonless Stout (Hand pump)
  • Kereru Pohutukawa Golden Ale
  • Sawmill American Brown Ale
  • Sawmill Old English Ale
  • Kereru Yellowhead IPA

I Saw The Devil

You might have noticed that we’re big fans of South Korean cinema. Especially of the Crime & Thriller films of the first decade of this century.

Following screenings of Memories of Murder and The Chaser we’re returning to South Korea with Kim Jee-woon’s (The Good, The Bad, The Weird) shockingly intense Special Agent vs Serial Killer Cat & Mouse thriller from 2010.

Byung-Hun Lee (A BIttersweet Life) stars as a Government special agent who unleashes brutal vengeance on the serial killer (Choi Min-sik - Oldboy) who murdered his pregnant fiancé.

What follows is one of the most incredible pieces of revenge cinema put to screen.

An unflinching gaze into the heart of pure evil and a perverse genre entertainment par excellence.” (Rob Nelson, Variety)

I Saw The Devil screens in our multi-function arts and entertainment complex (i.e. the Lounge) on Sunday at 7pm.

Santa Session Debrief

From our vantage point, Tuesday’s Santa Session looked like a lot of fun for all concerned. As well as generously pouring lots and lots of beer that had outstayed its welcome, we threw in a few beers that definitely did not deserve to be in that category. In other words, these were beers still at or near their peak condition and that are still available for purchase. And there were some definite highlights.
  • Modern Times Funky Universal Friend – with Pinot Noir. Three years ago Modern Times took their Universal Friend saison, added grape must and bottled the result with Brettanomyces. (We’re told that they underestimated just how much carbonation the brett would add, leading to some feisty drinking.) The result is tasting as good as ever – complex, bright and a little, well, winey.
  • Almanac Saison de Brettaville. More evidence – if it was even needed - that brett beers can keep getting better. This barrel-aged and brett-ified saison is riotously pineapply and vibrant, belying its several years of patiently waiting on a shelf.
  • Moon Dog Bock Naked. This one is really causing some head-scratching. We wrote off our leftover supplies of this years ago and designated it cooking beer. (Because a strong chipotle-spiced bock is a great marinade!) But one day one of us sipped a little and it was surprisingly good. So we chucked a few bottles into the Santa Session and got great feedback. We’re still dithering about whether we can legitimately offer them for sale. Feedback welcome.

More on Christmas and New Year Trading

Time for yet another gentle reminder that we are open from midday every day that we’re allowed, which means every day except Christmas Day. Here are our closing times:

Sunday & Monday: No earlier than 9:30pm.

Tuesday, Wednesday & Thursday: No earlier than 11pm.

Friday, Saturday: No earlier than 1am.

Remember that we can, and often do, stay open later than those closing times. It depends just how busy we are around closing time. We know that many of you like to do your socialising later in summer.

Thursday, November 29, 2018

November 29, 2018

December Entertainment

Part 1 - Music

It seems that December is as close as two days away. As in the day after tomorrow. Which is frightening for those of us still getting over 2017. The arrival of December portends much in the way of end of year rituals and seasonal celebrations. But for us a lot of the excitement has to do with the prospect of another month’s worth of bands and cult movies.

Our December schedule of bands has a notable kink in it. We won’t have a live band on Saturday Dec the 29th. The simple fact is that day of the week counts for nought on dates such as the 29th of December. It might as well be a Monday or a Sunday as far as the late night, central Wellington, music scene is concerned.

But New Year’s Eve is different again. To see out 2018 we’ll be having live music and not just any old live music. The Vanguards play horn-driven funk and soul and came up with a superb set here back in June for the Jazz Festival. They feature saxophonist Josh Simon, whom you may recognise from other fine musical combos such as Mozel Tov Cocktail and the Hashigo Zake bar staff. (No, conflicts of interest don’t concern us.) Josh will be flying back from a whistle-stop tour of the UK to be with us on New Year’s Eve. That’s how important this show is. We’re looking forward to it a lot.

Between now and New Year’s Eve we will feature, in reverse order:
  • December 22: Chocolate Thunder
  • December 15: The Rumble – this time playing as a Trio for 50% more proto-rockability.
  • December 8: The Oscar Laven Organ Trio
  • December 1: Carlos Navae – yes, this Saturday the Latin singer/guitarist and all-round funkster brings his polished act back to our lounge. Carlos has a long CV, but here’s a performance by him that’s about as far as you can get from what we expect on Saturday.

Part 2 - Movies

Meanwhile December brings no fewer than five Sundays for our Curator of Moving Images to source cult entertainment for. Here’s what he came up with:
And here are his spoiler-free-to-a-fault notes on the Director’s Cut of Dark City:
20th Anniversary of Alex Proyas' Noir/Sci-fi mindbender that Roger Ebert named the best film of 1998).

We're going to screen the Director's Cut of the film but the less said about this film the better because if you haven't seen either cut of this film then... well.. you are in quite the envious position.

Yay you!

Santa Session!

There are a few places left for Tuesday’s festive session. Get in quick at the Cult Beer Store or simply by buying a place at the bar.

On Tap Now

  • Renaissance Black Hole Fusion
  • South Cider Boysenberry Cider
  • Golden Bear Brut IPA
  • Deep Creek Double IPA
  • Deep Creek Lagerita
  • Deep Creek Lotus Pale Ale
  • Golden Bear Nelson Easy
  • Te Aro Rooster Red IPA
  • Sawmill American Brown Ale
  • Sawmill Old English Ale


Golden Weather Sport

There remains a third and deciding instalment in the titanic struggle that is the series of cricket tests between New Zealand and Pakistan taking place on the desert planet of Arrakis. New Zealand crushed Pakistan by no fewer than four runs in the first test, but Pakistan rebounded and snuck home by just a single innings in the second.

The decider starts on Monday at 7pm. Tell your spouse that you’re working late. Tell your work that if your spouse rings to say you’re in the bathroom. And come and join our vigil of prime-time evening cricket watching. We promise to maybe, possibly, stay open until stumps for anyone that is watching (and buying the odd drink).


Rock The Cash Bar VIII

Wellingtons favourite music quiz will be back for one final 2018 edition on December 10th, be sure to book a table over the bar, It might even be Christmas themed.

Thursday, November 22, 2018

November 22, 2018

How to Crash Nick Granville's Birthday

Nick Granville is one of Wellington’s most respected and in-demand musicians. He doesn’t do a lot of pub gigs, but often tells us that he likes playing in our lounge so much that he not only makes an exception by playing here, he entices high profile guests to come here and play alongside him.

This Saturday Nick and his band are our guests in the lounge. But it also happens to be Nick’s 40th birthday, meaning the odds of him bringing some particularly special guests are high. If truth be told though, Nick’s consummate guitar playing and improvisation skills should really be enticement enough.

The Nick Granville Trio play at 10pm on Saturday evening, with no cover charge.


It has taken quite a while, but the Cult Movie Basement seems to have developed true cult status, with a virtually full house - which isn’t actually that many people - taking in Tremors last Sunday.

(And on that note, we do take table bookings for these evenings. So feel free to reply to this email if you want to bring a group along on Sunday.)

This week it’s one of the best known works of a legendary director of action and western movies. Take it away Cult Film Basement curator, Krispin Dank:

If that’s not one of the greatest film titles in history then my name is Alfredo.

The last and most exceptional film of Peckinpah's truly extraordinary creative run of the late 60’s and early 70's that started with The Wild Bunch (1969) and was followed by The Ballad of Cable Hogue (1970), Straw Dogs (1971), Junior Bonner (1972), The Getaway (1972) and Pat Garrett & Billy the Kid (1973)

Notorious for his manic behaviour and legendary struggles with drugs and alcohol, Peckinpah’s most personal and human film was almost universally dismissed upon release. 40 years later and his story about an American piano player in a Mexican brothel is now considered the work of an artist at the very top of his powers.

The booze ended up killing Peckinpah in '84 at 59 years of age.

"At a film festival, after Pat Garrett had become the latest of his films to be emasculated by a studio, he was asked if he would ever make a 'pure Peckinpah' and he replied, 'I did Alfredo Garcia and I did it exactly the way I wanted to. Good or bad, like it or not, that was my film'"

Screening on Sunday night at 7pm in the lounge on the HASHIGOZCOPE screen,


Santa Session!

Tickets have been on sale for this year’s Santa Session since this time last week, and they are already half gone. Hurry along to the Cult Beer Store to secure your place to this year’s exercise in clearing our supplies of overstaying beer.

The Santa Session happens in its usual slot of the first Tuesday in December, which happens to be the 4th, at 6:30pm. The generous hand-pouring will continue until 9pm.

On Tap Now

Last week we promised fresh beer from Mapua’s Golden Bear. We didn’t mislead anyone BUT the beer took an inexplicable detour through Christchurch, so none of it made it onto our taps until just a couple of days ago. Right now their Brut IPA and Fortress Pale Ale are on. Nelson Easy Lager and Body Czech Pils are still to come.

We’ve found that when Te Aro’s Rooster Red IPA is on tap (or almost any good red IPA for that matter) it goes extremely quickly. Rooster just made it on, so now would be a very good time for lovers of decadent Red IPAs to take advantage.
  • Golden Bear Brut IPA
  • Kereru Feijoa Weisse
  • Kereru For Great Justice Porter
  • Golden Bear Fortress Pale Ale
  • Kereru Imperial Nibs
  • Deep Creek Pontoon in a Monsoon
  • Te Aro Razzle Dazzle Pilsner
  • Te Aro Rooster Red IPA
  • Kereru Velvet Boot
  • Yeastie Boys White Noise
Coming on tap soon, in the "crikey that ought to be interesting" category, is Black Hole Fusion - a barrel-aged milk stout from Renaissance. (Not to be confused with the Black Hole beers that we once had courtesy of Mikkeller.)
For those of you unaware we can now download our custom designed app from the WindowsGoogle Play and  App store

Golden Weather Sport

As predicted, last week’s first cricket test between New Zealand and Pakistan turned out to be gripping entertainment, enjoyed by a select few with the foresight to settle in front of a telly with a beer and an appreciation of the world’s most mesmerising spectator sport.

The second instalment of this series kicks off on Saturday evening, giving another opportunity to savour the magnificent sport and drink match that is cricket and beer.

Rock The Cash Bar VIII

Wellingtons favourite music quiz will be back for one final 2018 edition on December 10th, be sure to book a table over the bar, It might even be Christmas themed.

Christmas and New Year Trading

Our Christmas shutdown lasts one day – December 25th. We’re open again at noon on Boxing Day.

We won’t have a band on Saturday December 29. Instead we’ll have The Vanguards coming in to play on New Year’s Eve.

And we have no plans to join those outlets that charge you extra for wanting food or drink on a public holiday!

Thursday, November 15, 2018

November 15, 2018

Start of the Golden Weather

A whole nine years ago, shortly after Hashigo Zake first opened, we purchased a keg of a pale ale by a little known brewery based in Mapua, near Nelson, called Golden Bear. Everyone on our side of the bar thought it was quite tasty and the longer it remained on tap, the faster it seemed to sell.

We didn’t know much about Golden Bear except for whispers that their brew kit was about the nicest anywhere in the country.

One day a customer who spoke with what might be described as a Californian drawl, stayed in our bar for a while and asked quite a few questions about our operation, before finally letting on, as he left, that he was Jim Matranga of Golden Bear.

We went on to regularly buy Golden Bear beer and have got to know Jim better since then, although not always for the best reasons. We’ve publicly debated him over his practice of paying for exclusive rights to sell beer into several bars in the Nelson region. He seems oblivious to the connection between what he does and the practices of the brewing giants doing their best to eliminate competition.

That’s one of the reasons that it’s been quite a long time since we’ve served one of their beers.

One of our favourite beers made by Golden Bear was his Patriot Pale Ale. A few years after we first got to know that beer, Croucher in Rotorua started calling their Black IPA Patriot. No-one got litigious and there was never any danger of confusion. So no-one seemed particularly worried.

Enter DB, the local vassal brewery of Heineken. To the best of our knowledge neither DB nor any of their subsidiaries have ever made a beer called Patriot, but in September they applied for a trademark on Patriot as a beer name. And IPONZ have accepted their application, which probably means that it will go on to be registered unless someone ponies up $300 + GST to oppose it. We spoke to Jim at Golden Bear who says that he doesn’t happen to have made a beer called Patriot for a while, but he definitely expects to be able to revive the recipe and the name in future. And shortly after that, presumably, Jim will hear from DB’s lawyers.

Since the only thing that we hate more than a brewery that buys taps is a brewery that buys taps and trademarks other people’s beer names, this seems an opportune time to reacquaint ourselves with Golden Bear beer.

So over the next few days, look out for an injection of pale, hoppy beers from Mapua’s finest, including a hoppy pale ale called Fortress, a hoppy lager called Nelson Easy and their Czech Pils.

Best of all, their Brut IPA will be in our new release slot on Tuesday.

Dated Beer Scandal!

We’ve talked recently about the Norwegian brewery Kinn and the tasting that we held way back on Tuesday of last week. There were a couple of quite striking things about the Kinn range. The most obvious was their immunity to most of the current fashions in beer styles. That’s not to say they can’t or don’t make a mean IPA, just that the beers that we were tasting were generally traditional and/or malt and fermentation driven, rather than being hop-bombs.

The other was how well the beers have kept. One stand-out was their Brown Stout called Prestesonen. This is a sub-6% beer that the brewery held on to for three years before releasing. It’s now four years old and hasn’t turned into an oxidised/autolysed/solventy mess.

Several beers were officially past their best before dates. The fact that they were tasting so much better than we would expect for "dated" beer from a small, independent brewery probably reveals how modest our expectations are for the shelf life of beer from small breweries. (The reasons for saying this would take up a bit too much space right now.) It’s also a good example of the benefits of bottle conditioning.

It also betrays how unfortunate it is that supermarkets and regulatory bodies insist on arbitrary dates that aren't necessarily fair for the particular product, leading many retailers and consumers to turn their nose up at beer that may not have anything wrong with it.

Another good example was Kinn’s witbier called Jubileum. This is officially dated, but the beer can hold its own as a solid, or even very good, example of the witbier style, that we’re happy to offer to customers. But because of the date problem, the importer has sold it to us at a discount (that we’re naturally passing on).

All of this is a round-about way of announcing that we now have stock of a carefully chosen selection of the Kinn range:
  • Bærtur – a raspberry tripel – not something that we were particularly looking forward to, until it turned out to be delicious and the most popular beer in the tasting.
  • Jubileum – fine example of a Belgian wit.
  • Bresjnev - Imperial Stout
  • Prestesonen – Brown stout brewed in 2014. Big bready malt characters and in great condition.
These are available at the bar (and for takeaway) and are making their way onto the Cult Beer Store.

Santa Session!

It’s mid-November, which means that our traditional Christmas event – the Santa Session – is looming. For those who don’t know, the Santa Session is an opportunity for us to clear some inventory that we have too much of, or that has hung around too long, and at the same time give our regular customers a night drinking some random and often extravagant beer at a bargain price.

Once again we’re holding it on the first Tuesday of December, and once again we’re giving a discount to members of SOBA.

Looking at the candidate beers from our current inventory, this year’s event will probably be heavy on Barley Wines, which is fun and dangerous and also potentially very expensive for us. Consequently we’ll be limiting numbers slightly more than usual.

Tickets are available here.

On Tap Now

  • Deep Creek Aloha
  • Urbanaut Brixton Pale Ale - hand pump
  • Kereru For Great Justice Porter
  • Deep Creek Redwood APA
  • Hallertau Resurgence IPA
  • La Sirene Saison Tropique
  • Hallertau Stuntman IIPA
  • Hallertau Tangelo Witbier
  • Te Aro The Beast
  • Kereru Velvet Boot
For those of you unaware we can now download our custom designed app from the WindowsGoogle Play and  App store

Cult Film Basement


Earl Bassett: I vote for outer space. No way these are local boys.
This Kevin Bacon- and Fred Ward-starring 50s monster movie throwback from 1990 was one of those classic late night TV finds. And while it’s spawned SIX sequels (including one this year), a one season TV series and another recently aborted TV series, the original still remains the absolute best.

The excellently paired Misters Bacon and Ward star as two fed up repair/handymen who have decided to ditch their small Nevada town of Perfection for the big city lights only to be cut off at the pass by some very hungry and very large subterranean worm beasts.

Our heroes are joined by a surprisingly stacked cast of Whatshisfaces and Iknowhers including Michael Gross (Steven Keaton in Family Ties), Reba McEntire (Country Music Queen!) and Victor Wong (VICTOR WONG!! Big Trouble In Little China) all chewing through a wonderfully funny and sharp script .

But a monster film lives and dies by its monsters and Tremors has some beautifully designed and gloriously disgusting multi tongued beasties ready to drag out pour graboid fodder to their sandy doom

And then there’s the pole vaulting!

Earl Bassett: Hey, Rhonda you ever seen anything like this before?
Valentine McKee: Oh, sure Earl. Everyone knows about them we just didn't tell you.

Sunday 7pm. Free, just like the popcorn.



JB3 return to our lounge on Saturday, bringing soul and funk. They've been one of our most popular and reliable acts, having first played in our atmospheric underground music den more than four years ago.

They're made up of:
  • Jake Baxendale - sax
  • Daniel Hayles - organ
  • Shaun Anderson - drums
10pm Saturday. $0 Cover.

Golden Weather Sport

The world’s second most popular spectator sport becomes prime time viewing again tomorrow evening after being absent from our everyday lives for far too long. We’re talking of course about cricket, and, in particular, test cricket. The team formerly known as the New Zealand Cricket Team are in the Middle East, playing Pakistan, because it isn’t safe to play international cricket in Pakistan.

Don’t be fooled by what will probably be sparsely populated stands at these games. This is a contest that will generate huge interest in corners of the world that we barely know about.

Best of all though, play starts every evening for five days at the wonderfully convenient time of 7pm, New Zealand Summer Time.

We will probably throw it onto one of our screens each evening, depending which staff member appropriates the remote, although that could stretch to two if there’s enough interest. If none of our staff remember to put it on one evening, don’t be afraid to come up to the bar and ask.

Rock The Cash Bar VIII

Wellingtons favourite music quiz will be back for one final 2018 edition on December 10th, be sure to book a table over the bar, It might even be Christmas themed.

Thursday, September 27, 2018

September 27, 2018

Misty Miyagi

"In Okinawa, all Miyagi know three things: fish, Karate and Hazy IPAs"

A wise man once said that.

Clearly the crew up at Deep Creek have been bingeing on the teachings of Mr. Miyagi, Daniel LaRusso, Takahama Kyoshi and others to draw inspiration for their new series of Hazy IPAs, for the uninitiated these beers are designed to be drunk as fresh as possible to show case the literally absurd amount of late hop additions, contributing to the trade mark pungent fruity aroma of the style. Follow this link for some in depth geekery about the style.

We have teamed up with Deep Creek to launch the first in this new series of seasonal releases, Misty Miyagi, Which we will be tapping TONIGHT at 5pm. You too can channel your inner Mitsuhashi Takajo, and try your hand at writing a Haiku.

To complement the Haze and the focus on seasonality we also welcome Plant Blazed to Hashigo tonight, they will be cooking up a storm of plant based deliciousness in the kitchen from 5pm

Eagle vs Shark Pies

No, it's not that film that everybody you know claims to have been in. It's the Australian Football League Grand Final. West Coast Eagles will be facing off against Collingwood Magpies. Nobody really knows the rules, it's just some guys wearing tank tops and questionable facial hair peacocking around a cricket oval as a few men in fluorescent green throw the ball back  into play in the most elaborate fashion imaginable, apparently there are actual rules which can be found here and a more simple over view can be found here. 

It's bound to be a highly entertaining game, even for non fans. 100,024 'strayans can't be wrong, can they?

Kick-off is 4:30 pm NZ time, we will be screening it in the Red Room, with sound, and as usual we will be serving Aussie Mince Stadium pies (with or without needles).

Rock The Cash Bar VII

It's just been, but we have already locked in a date for Wellingtons favourite music quiz, October 29th, be sure to book a table over the bar, It will be frightfully good fun. Costumes are always encouraged. 

An Update From The Woods

Brought to you from the same team behind The Pacific Beer Expo, this one off festival is designed to showcase beers that have spent some time in contact with wood.

The team has cast the net far and wide, beyond the usual reach of the Pacific rim to bring you some truly spectacular Barrel Aged beers from foreign shores.

The curating of the beer list has begun and we are about ready to launch ticket sales. Check here from Saturday morning, when sales go live.

This is one festival you DO NOT want to miss.

On Tap Now

  • SouthCider  - Crisp Apple - Apple Cider
  • Brewaucracy - Tax Evasion  - Table Beer
  • Hallertau - Porter Noir 2018 - Pinot Noir Barrel Aged Porter
  • Brew Moon- Czech Please - Pilsner
  • Fitzpatricks - American Brown Ale  - American Brown Ale
  • Brewaucracy  - Smoko - Bamberg Style Rauchbier
  • Hallertau  - Lemon Curd - Lemon Sour Ale w/Lactose *NITRO*
  • Kereru - For Great Justice - Coconut Porter
  • Fitpatricks - Pale Ale - NZ Pale Ale
  • Hallertau - Maximus - IPA
  • Kereru - Moonless - Dry Stout  (handpull)
For those of you unaware we can now download our custom designed app from the WindowsGoogle Play and  App store

New Release Tuesday

Something of a double whammy this week, not only is it a new beer, but it's also the first time this brewery has been on tap here at Hashigo Zake.
Based in Karori, Bassline Brewing is about combining a love & passion for music with a love & passion for beer.

After deciding that their core range APA, Banned in DC, didn't have enough of a punch to live up to the album it's named after they have remixed it - adding a delicious amount of Calypso Hop Oil to the brite tank. Calypso has a crazy-cool unique flavour & aroma that adds a massive punch of stone fruit and pear, backed with a touch of tropical fruit


Like a Goth Mumford and Sons

Fortunately not, we wouldn't do that to you, this weeks musical offering comes in the form of dark-country-infused indie rockers Muscle Man

Muscle Man plays slacker-rock to goth-hearted indie kids, Muscle Man writes songs about violent tenderness, Muscle Man sleeps in empty bedrooms, listening to Beefheart, The Fall, The Replacements and The Wedding Present.

Good dudes, even better tunes. 10pm Free Entry, what could be better?

Pumas Vs All Blacks

If you happen to find yourself up and about on Sunday morning, we will be opening from 11:30am in time to screen the Argentina vs All Blacks game, which, if the test in Nelson is anything to go by, should be decent game. With Argentina hoping to build on a over Australia and the All Blacks hoping to get back to winning ways after a narrow defeat to South Africa.

Cult Film Basement

1972, '73 and ;'74 were great years for William Friedkin, Bagging himself an Oscar for Best Director an one more nomination (The French Connection and The Exorcist) an Outstanding Directorial Achievement award from the Directors Guild Of America and a BAFTA nomination too.

The '80's rolled around and his form took a wee dip, earning himself 2 Razzie Nominations for 1980's Cruising. So old William was due a comeback, and comeback he did.

1985's To Live and Die In L.A. was that comeback, garnering a Festival du Film Policier de Cognac Audience award and wide praise.

"The movie is also first-rate. The direction is the key. Friedkin has made some good movies ... and some bad ones. This is his comeback, showing the depth and skill of the early pictures".

The Digital Fix called the film "A sun-bleached study in corruption and soul-destroying brutality, this film by the notoriously erratic but sometimes brilliant William Friedkin is nasty, cynical and incredibly good."

The film was voted as the 19th best film set in Los Angeles in the last 25 years by a group of Los Angeles Times writers and editors with two criteria: "The movie had to communicate some inherent truth about the L.A. experience, and only one film per director was allowed on the list"

Pretty good come back I'd say, the only slightly troubling thing is that last review "some inherent truth about the L.A. experience".... A handy Synopsis describes the movie as

"Two cops in Los Angeles try to track down the vicious criminal Eric Masters . Then, one of them is killed by Masters and the other one swears revenge no matter what the cost. After that, the hunt becomes an obsession and the law he once swore to uphold becomes meaningless to him."

If that's the inherent truth about the L.A. experience I'm staying in Wellington. Unless the L.A. Experience is meeting Willem Defoe, That would be rad.

Come and find out if Wellington is better than L.A.

There will be the usual free Hop Salted Popcorn, just to lighten the mood a bit. See you at 7pm.

Thursday, September 6, 2018

September 6, 2018

Tax Evasion

Hamilton’s Brewaucracy continue to come up with on-brand beer names. And we think that the beer lives up to the hype too, which is just as well given how outspoken Greig and Phil have  been as beer judges and critics over  the years.

Tax Evasion is their new 2.5% table beer. It goes on tap at 5pm on Tuesday.


On Sunday our the Cult Movie Basement screens a classic of the movement that has become known as Ozploitation. (Apparently Quentin Tarantino is a big Ozploitation fan.)

The film is 1986’s Fortress. It features Rachel Ward, who has had her share of notable roles, but may be best remembered for adjusting Steve Martin’s willy in Dead Men Don’t Wear Plaid.

Fortress is described here as “a strange and sometimes sinister antidote to US thrillers of the same period.”

Be warned that if you go searching for an Australian movie called Fortress you might end up with a US/Australian action/sci-fi flick of the same name. Don’t settle for imitation Ozploitation.

Fortress screens at the customary time of 7pm on Sunday.

On Tap Now

  • Abandoned IIPA
  • Kereru Big Pigeon Pilsner
  • Deep Creek Black Doris Berliner
  • Deep Creek Double IPA
  • Kereru Imperial Nibs
  • Iwate Kura Japanese Herb Ale Sansho
  • Far Yeast Brewing Company Kagua Citrus Saison
  • Kereru Moonless Stout (handpump)
  • Graphic My City is on Fire
  • Boneface Shake Your Blood
We acquired a few kegs that were brought over from Japan for the recent Beervana festival. Two are on tap now and highly recommended. There’s a delicate, yuzu-infused Saison by Far Yeast, called Kagua Citrus Saison.

Another is, or was, something of a mystery beer. It certainly isn’t the Nasu Kohgen Scottish Ale that we were expecting and seeing “Sansho” written in kanji on the keg cap (plus the spicy character) has convinced us that it’s Iwate Kura’s Japanese Herb Ale Sansho.

Still to come from these festival overstayers are a couple of IPAs by the new rock stars of Japanese brewing – TDM 1874 - and another from Iwate Kura that is called Takata No Yume. Apparently the name refers to a variety of rice that is used in the beer, but there are strong hints out there that it has yuzu and ume in it.


By some accident, there's a quartet of beers on tap right now that have (or should have) Imperial in their names. Specifically:
  • Abandoned IIPA (this week’s new release)
  • Deep Creek IIPA
  • Kereru Imperial Nibs
  • Boneface Shake Your Blood Red IPA
Averaging a touch over 8% ABV, a flight of these four would make a fantastic antidote to today’s weather. However 300mls, or even 200mls, of each would lead to customers being classified binge drinkers and we couldn't have that, so this evening we’ll offer a flight of 100mls of each for $16. At least one of these four kegs should run out tonight, so this is a while-stocks-last offer.

Live Music and a Mutually Beneficial Proposition

We have live music every Saturday this month and the full schedule is below.

This Saturday Chocolate Thunder return. When Chocolate Thunder first played here it was a bit weird, as they had somehow settled on a name that was also a nickname of a very popular member of our staff. But we’ve got over that and been won over by their sensuous jazz, funk, soul and fusion maelstrom. Their words, not ours. They play from 10pm.

Now many of the subscribers to this email probably signed up because you care about beer as much as we do, or perhaps because you toil at one of the prestigious workplaces in our neighbourhood. No doubt a few of you have some interest in our live music programme. But here at Hashigo Zake HQ it worries us that the readers of this email and those looking for great live music on a Saturday night might only be slightly intersecting groups. So we have a cunning plan to reach other potential fans of our gigs.

We invite readers of this email to look around your workplaces for communal areas with places where you’re free to put up notices. If you see such a location and have an employer that doesn’t mind, we invite you to print the gig guide below, pin it up at your place of work, bring in a photo of it in situ and have a beer on us!

To make things easier, we will have a stash of printed copies here, but a late change to the lineup means they aren't ready yet.

As this is something of an experiment and we can’t give away all the beer, this offer is open to the first ten willing collaborators.

Speaking of Saturday Entertainment...

The team known as the All Blacks have two more home games this year, over the next two Saturdays. Which means we have two more opportunities to put our luxurious screening room to good use.

This Saturday the All Blacks are attempting to inject some tension into the contest with Argentina by resting a disconcerting number of first choice players. Plus it's in Nelson where the All Blacks have never beaten the Pumas.

We deliver an immersive viewing experience from 7:30. First in gets the sofa.

Rock The Cash Bar VII

It's just been, but we have already locked in a date for Wellingtons favourite music quiz, October 29th, be sure to book a table over the bar or at Rock The Cash Bar's very own facebook page, It will be frightfully good fun. Costumes are always encouraged. 

Saturday, July 21, 2018

July 19, 2018

Smash 'n' GABS III

As is now tradition we smuggled a couple of operatives in to various editions of the Great Australasian Beer Spectapular. They diligently tasted their way through a lot of the beers, and managed to remember some of them. They reported back with various drunken ramblings and snapchats of a brass band playing Sweet Caroline. 

Upon their return they were debriefed and the necessary information extracted from Untappd and sent off to a code breaking unit for deciphering. The 8 top beers were found and procured for your drinking pleasure, we will be tapping them all from midday TOMORROW. Oh, yes we WILL be doing flights $48 for 200ml of each beer.

Hot off the press, Newtowns favourite sons Good Boy Sammies will be taking over our kitchen and firing out their delicious sandwiches from 5pm  
Meat Option:
Roast Chicken
Morrocan BBQ Relish
Preserved Lemon Mayo


Vegetarian Option

Charred Broccoli 
Morrocan BBQ Relish
Preserved Lemon Mayo

Winner winner Chicken sandwich dinner.

Tasting! Rescheduled

Those of you who made it to last nights tasting no doubt left with a little rosy glow in your cheeks, and a brief glimpse of the calibre of beers in store for next week's tasting (hint there are THREE Almanac sours). Tickets are still available online and over the bar. 

Ales From the Crypt - July 25th **NEW DATE**

"You may have noticed a couple of recent developments here at Hashigo Zake including the big new fridge and shelving in the Red Room. 

This is the new physical home of the Cult Beer Store and houses what might be the craziest range of high end beers in town."

Breakfast Is The Most Important Meal Of Beervana

We are thrilled to once again be part of Road to Beervana. This year we are hosting a Brewers Breakfast...

We have decided to combine the elements of beer with elements of breakfast.

We present the Brewers breakfast.

  • Spent Grain Granola
  • Beer cured, house smoked bacon
  • Ale Yeast Leavened Waffles
  • Bogota Espresso Scotch Ale - Urbanaut
  • Kopi Loewak Stout 2013 Vintage - Brouwerij De Molen
  • A new exclusive beer launch
  • Breakfast inspired Tap list
  • Unlimited Coffee/Hot wort/Hopped Tea
  • Saturday morning cartoons
  • Good Times.

Tickets are available here. There are only 12 seats per session so get in quick.

Pacific Beer Expo

After last weeks bombshell news, we have begun planning something of a mini festival to replace PBE this year, we are still firming up the details but we will have an official announcement ready by this time next week. So we ask you to bear with us just a little while longer. 



On Tap Now

  • Liberty x Hallertau - Matakana Oyster Stout - Imperial Oyster Stout
  • Altitude x Renaissance - Geen Hops Nodig - Gruit
  • Sawmill - XPA - Extra Pale Ale
  • Beer Baroness - Lady Danger - Red IPA
  • Brothers Beer - Peach - Peach Golden Ale
  • Beer Baroness - Rye-ot Grrl - Rye IPA
  • Renaissance - Craftsman - Chocolate Oatmeal Stout
  • Renaissance - Paradox - Pilsner
  • Eddies - Boysenberry - Cider
  • Sawmill - Farmhouse - Kviek with Juniper + Mandarin
  • Beer Baroness - Lady Danger - Red IPA (handpull)


New Release Tuesday 

We unfortunately don't have a new release this Tuesday, We don't want you getting too spoiled. We will, however, have a stellar (as usual) tap line up for to come down and enjoy, and if you are lucky, there might even be some GABS beers left over. 

To tide you over in the mean time here is some beer related absurdity from Back Channel Brewing in Minnesota 


Saturday Sports & All That Jazz

This Saturday we welcome Ol' King Cole to the Hashigo Stage 

Ol’ King Cole” brings you the hits of the great Nat ‘King’ Cole, & his trio. Performing the sounds of many other great tunes & artists of his era & more!

Ol’ King Cole are a Wellington based Jazz trio lead by Piano/Vocalist, Louis Thompson-Munn. The drumless trio perform music inspired by the great Nat ‘King’ Cole and other artists of his era, specifically with a focus on Nat’s early trio which ran from 1943 – 1950.  The trio includes Tom Botting (Tom Botting Quintet) on double bass, and Callum Allardice (The Jac) on guitar. A brilliant, lively performance is always a guarantee with the spirit of the old house band alive, before TVs in bars and when people would dance the night away! 

Here's a brief sample

As ever our live entertainment is free, the band starts at 10:30pm. 

Prior to that we will be screening Crusaders vs Sharks at 7:35pm in the Super Rugby Quarter Finals. (we will also be screening the Hurricanes vs the Chiefs on Friday)

Hashigo Zake Cult Film Basement

You can probably already guess that this weeks film was a commercial flop....It's a cult film that's just what they do. But guess what? It also won a bunch awards at Indie Film Festivals all over the place. Solidifying it's Cult status. If that wasn't enough, It also suffered a remake in 2008 (0% on rotten tomatoes, so.....future cult film right there, you heard it here first)

Long Weekend is an Aussie horror focussing on a married couple and their dog disrespecting nature, until nature has enough...

"My premise was that Mother Earth has her own auto-immune system, so when humans start behaving like cancer cells, She attacks. I also wanted to avoid a JAWS like critter film. I wanted the Long Weekend beasties to all be benign-looking and not overtly aggressive"

So, horror movie for hippies? possibly, A huge a mount of fun for free on a Sunday night? definitely.

Grab a beer, some hop salted popcorn and relax in front of our newish Hashigozcope™ screen.

July 12, 2018

Smash 'n' GABS III

As is now tradition we smuggled a couple of operatives in to various editions of the Great Australasian Beer Spectapular. They diligently tasted their way through a lot of the beers, and managed to remember some of them. They reported back with various drunken ramblings and snapchats of a brass band playing Sweet Caroline. 

Upon their return they were debriefed and the necessary information extracted from Untappd and sent off to a code breaking unit for deciphering. The 8 top beers were found and procured for your drinking pleasure, we will be tapping them all from midday on Friday 20th July. 

Tastings! Back With A Bang Bang

Clear your diary.

Beer Without Borders is coming back atcha, like Celopatra, from the crypt....with ales.

Ales From the Crypt - July 25th **NEW DATE**

"You may have noticed a couple of recent developments here at Hashigo Zake including the big new fridge and shelving in the Red Room. 

This is the new physical home of the Cult Beer Store and houses what might be the craziest range of high end beers in town." The Mother Of All Tastings - July 18th 

Yep. Not one but TWO tastings of EPIC proportions. The beer lists are insane, most of which will be your last chance to try some of these beers in New Zealand, or any where else for that matter. The sensible among you are best heading STRAIGHT here, and saving yourself $10 which you can spend probably. 

This is definitley one of the most exciting and wide ranging tastings we have ever hosted. Get in quick. 

Tickets are flying out the door so don't spend your time umm-ing and ahh-ing. There are Limited seats available. tickets are available HERE

Breakfast Is The Most Important Meal Of Beervana

We are thrilled to once again be part of Road to Beervana. This year we are hosting a Brewers Breakfast...

We have decided to combine the elements of beer with elements of breakfast.

We present the Brewers breakfast.

Spent Grain Granola

Beer cured, house smoked bacon

Ale Yeast Leavened Waffles

Bogota Espresso Scotch Ale - Urbanaut

Kopi Loewak Stout 2013 Vintage - Brouwerij De Molen

A new exclusive beer launch

Breakfast inspired Tap list

Unlimited Coffee/Hot wort/Hopped Tea

Saturday morning cartoons

Good Times.

Tickets are available here. There are only 12 seats per session so get in quick.

Pacific Beer Expo

The next Pacific Beer Expo will take place on October 26 and 27, 2019. No that isn’t a typo and you didn’t read it wrong. 2019.

Since the 2017 Pacific Beer Expo we’ve been grappling with the bombshell that holding an event at the same venue on the same weekend in 2011, 2012, 2014, 2015, 2016 and 2017 somehow didn’t get us first right of refusal for a 2018 booking.
We’re dedicated to sticking to Labour weekend for this event and we can’t imagine holding it anywhere other than the Boatshed and Wellington Rowing Club. (Actually we did hold it somewhere else once and the event was fine, but just not what we wanted it to be.

So this Labour Weekend we’ll do something a little different. It won't be the Pacific Beer Expo and it won't be at Wellington's best events venue. We’ll say more about that next week.

In the meantime, we ask that anyone who has put PBE in their diary for Labour Weekend this year, puts a line through that and instead writes in an entry for October 26 and 27 (the Saturday and Sunday of Labour Weekend) 2019.

On Tap Now

  • Hallertau - Heart Beet Kraut Gose - Beetroot Kraut Gose
  • Kereru - Imperial Nibs - Cacao, Vanilla and Coconut Imperial Stout
  • Deep Creek - Pineapple Express - Single Hopped IPA (El Dorado)
  • Hallertau - Stuntman - Imperial IPA
  • Brother Beer -Pale - Pale Ale
  • Deep Creek - Coromandel Gold - Single Hop IPA (Azacca)
  • Graphic Brewing - My City Is On Fire - Smoked Porter
  • Eddies - Boysenberry - Cider
  • Tiamana - The HIps - Rosehip Saison
  • The Laboratory - First Crack - Coffee Vanilla Porter (handpull)
For those of you unaware we can now download our custom designed app from the WindowsGoogle Play and  App store

New Release Tuesday 

OK, we really are spoiling you guys now....

This weeks new release is a very rare occurrence. A double release of 'Farmhouse' inspired beers and even more of an opportunity to geek out than usual, because of the unusual nature of the two beers we will be tapping. 

The first comes to us from Sawmill by way of Norway, specifically Voss, a remote mountainous region in the countries south west. It was here that beer blogger and general nerd Lars Marius Garshol discovered a brewing scene that had been untouched by modern brewing and practically unchanged in hundreds of years, central to it all was the yeast or Kveik, which was handed down from generation to generation. These yeast strains behave in a way that is WILDLY different to standard yeasts. Regular ale yeasts will ferment happiest in the 18c-28c range and take a couple of weeks to ferment. Kveik Is happiest at around 33c and can ferment a beer in a couple of days. More about this can be read here.

So Sawmill have created what appears to be a fairly tradition Norweigan Farmhouse ale, starting with a juniper infusion and fermenting with a traditional yeast strain, they then decided to compliment the spicy Orange character of the Kveik by adding mandarin. 

This is sure to be an interesting beer.

Our second new release is a collaboration between Altitude Brewing and Renaissance. They decided that world needs more Gruit.  So they created Geen Hops Nodig. or No Hops Needed.

Gruit is another ancient ale style that was popular before hops really took hold, Originating in and around an area that is today covered by the Netherlands, Belgium and northern Germany, it commonly used herbs and spices such as Bog Mrtyle, Yarrow, Sweet Gale and Horehound to bitter and flavour the beer. 

Altitude and Renaissance have decided on using Juniper and Lavender, but they didn't stop there to keep an air of (possible) authenticity about it, the brewed a Strong Belgian Golden Ale, soured a portion and then blended them together before ageing it in a chardonnay barrel with peaches and nectarines for four months.

Yeah. For a little more info on the history of hops check out Martyn Cornells blog the Zythophile

So there we have it. Two Kiwi breweries putting modern spins on the oldest beer styles. 

See you at 5pm on Tuesday

Downtown Funk & Fireworks

Was a name ever settled upon for the whale? What ever he was called he's apparently departed the harbour which means that the annual Matariki Firework display will likely be this Saturday evening. 

Post outdoor fireworks we will have the NIck Granville Trio bringing musical fireworks to the HZ stage. Expect funky sweaty dance grooves combined with highly charged re-imaginings of work by James Brown, Michael Jackson, Santana, and Stevie Wonder.

As ever our live entertainment is free, the band starts at 10:30pm. 

Hashigo Zake Cult Film Basement

"I had five pupils..." "it's up there with "Wax on.....Wax Off..." when it comes to Martial arts film quotes. Except only one of these movies ranked number 11 on Entertainment Weeklys top 50 Cult Films list. 

This weeks movie is Five Deadly Venoms. If you know what it is you know you will be at Hashigo Zake at 7pm this Sunday, If you don't know what it is do your self a HUGE favour and come down to Hashigo Zake at 7pm this Sunday. Seriously... Toad style Kung Fu, need I say more?

Grab a beer, some hop salted popcorn and relax in front of our new Hashigozcope™ screen.

For those who attended last weeks interrupted screening of The American Astronaut, we'd like to once again extend our apologies. To make up for it we will be re-screening the film on MONDAY night at 7pm.

Last News Item...Promise

Still with us? good.

It is our pleasure to announce our fourth collaboration with New Zealand’s pre-eminent photographer of the brewing industry, Jed Soane. We hosted exhibitions of Jed’s work at Hashigo Zake during what was known as “Choice Beer Week” in 2012 and 2013. The 2013 edition focussed on the explosion of Wellington breweries that were appearing at the time. Then in 2016 we featured Jed’s work at the Pacific Beer Expo.

With so much growth in the number and scale of Wellington’s breweries since his 2013 exhibition, Jed has been setting out to make a visual record of that growth.

We’re looking forward to providing a venue to showcase the results of that work.
This news is so fresh that we haven’t finalised exact dates yet, but they will more or less coincide with next month’s Road To Beervana.

Jed's work can be seen at


Thursday, January 11, 2018

January 11, 2018

Chur, Bro. Sis.

It's been a fairly tumultuous week in the brewing world, mainly centering around social media with the furore centering around Dystopian State Brewery and Bryan Roths article and subsequent reaction article from Sarah Rybicki, it was a timely reminder that this industry is far from perfect but is always willing to hold a mirror up and examine itself and try to improve, Almost unnoticed was another, less controversial article from the team at GBH from Matthew Curtis who provided an excellent over view of the state of New Zealand beer which can be read here.

In honour of Wellingtons 178th birthday we will be hosting something of a birthday party in the guise of a Fresh As F*ck tap take over, with all beer on tap being made within walking distance of Hashigo. The line up is starting to take shape, check back next week or follow our social media for a final taplist,  there may or may not be cake. Just sayin'.

The Sunday of Anniversary weekend brings a loosely themed return of the bi weekly cult  films at Hashigo Zake, curated by our in house film expert with films chosen from his expansive personal library, he has promised an extra special film to mark Cult Film Basments triumphant return. As usual there will be hop salted popcorn.

Brilliant Owl LII

February heralds the return of the 'GREATEST SHOW ON EARTH' and this year it rolls in the home of the small drink, Minnesota. As tradition dictates we will be screening the big game complete with half time show, which features Justin Timberlake this year, and if his performance at Superbowl XXXVIII is anything to go by it should be as controversial as it is good. But if nothing else it might be worth heading down just to see a repeat of this....

NRT - Now Returns to Tuesday

This first new release of 2018 features a new beer from Sawmill, packed into a somewhat sessionable 5% they have unleashed an American Wheat Ale

"Using a clean ale fermentation with our house yeast and a large dry hop transforms this American Wheat Ale into a dry, hoppy, but medium bodied beer.

This beer showcases a piney, tropical hop character and low bitterness."

It'll be tapped as usual on Tueday at 5PM


Reasons To Be Cheerful Part 2018

"The party don't stop just because it ain't midnight no mo'"

        -James Brown

"Quotes in weekly E-mails are easily made up, nobody reads them anyway"
     - Abraham Lincoln

Just like James Brown said, Hashigo will continue to bring the party on a Bi-weekly basis in 2018, here are some dates for those shiny new diaries Santa brought you :

Jan 13th   The Jazz Robots - Groove-based jazz inspired by all sorts of styles and greats like The Head Hunters, Jeff Beck, John Coltrane, Steve Coleman, Jimi Hendrix and The Miles Davis Quintet.
Jan 15th Rock the Ca$h bar returns, our quarterly music quiz with MC Haydyn Green plotting your upset and down fall though s series of musical questions.
Jan 21st  To coincide with everybody getting the following day off because some people arrived on a boat 179 years ago, we are bringing back Hashigo Zake Cult Film Bar
Jan 27th   DOUBLE WHAMMY we will be playing the Triple J's annual hottest 100 countdown during the day as well as a live fee of GABS hottest 100 Aussie beers (Kiwi version takes place on 3rd Feb)  then later Darren Watson & The Dangerous Experts - Internationally renowned Rhythm & Blues guitar legend Darren Watson returns with his new band
Feb 10th  Chocolate Thunder - A sensuous jazz, funk, soul and fusion maelstrom that strikes without mercy where you least expect it. Sheer groove manship to make your body move and your flowers blossom. Gird your loins, people!


On Tap Now

  • Garage Project  - White Mischief
  • To Øl - Shameless Santa
  • Ballast Point - Habanero Sculpin IPA
  • 8 Wired  - Farmhouse Pale
  • Kakariki - Dank Bank West Coast IPA
  • Kakariki - Juicy Loot
  • Pasteur Street  - Coffee Porter
  • Renaissance - Paradox Pils
  • Eddies  - Apple Cider
  • North End- Rhum Boss
  • 8 Wired - Flat White (Nitro)
  • Horse Box. - Black Stallion Milk Stout (Handpull)
  • North End - Yellow Eye Anglo IPA (Handpull)
For those of you unaware we can now download our custom designed app from the WindowsGoogle Play and  App store

January Dryanuary   Tryanuary

To help maintain the positivity and energy around the "New year, New Me"  thing a lot of people adopt at this time of year we feel this is as good a time as any to highlight our beer of the month, and some of the often over looked beers in our fridges, each week through out Tryanuary (it's a thing, look it up) we will be showcasing some of our favourite beers that we reccomend trying.

Also needing some love and perfect for sharing is our INCREDIBLY LIMITED stock of Australian weirdos Moondogs Nordic Saddle Buffer Barrelly Wine.

Brewed in a warehouse described by Mikkel Borg Bjergsø as the weirdest brewery he's ever seen, under the watchful eyes of a portrait of John Candy, with a man described by Shaun Hill as his mentor.
So, to clarify, world renowned brewer meets a pair of violin playing brothers and their mate at their brewery named after a blind homeless composer with a penchant  for horned helmets, situated between a brothel and Carlton Untied Brewery.

Obviously they're going to make a Barley Wine.

Moondog handily put all their ingredients on their packaging, and as with a lot of their beers it's a surprise that they didn't add the kitchen sink, a list of fermentables as long as your arm, Warrior, Horizon, Cascade and Amarillo hops, two different yeast strains and a long maturation in ex shiraz and ex pinot noir barrels indicates that this will be a crazy complex beer.

Clocking in at a uprisingly well hidden 14.6% this beer has been ageing gracefully with us for around 4 years giving the extraordinary amount of flavours to harmonise and gel into this remarkably drinkable beer.

$28 drink in $22.40 take away


Q. Guess What? A. Rock The Cash Bar Is Back!

Hashigo Zake's Music Quiz is BACK!

From Blondie to Bach; Dusty to Daft Punk; Chris Knox to Chris de Burgh; Rock the Cash Bar is a quiz that'll stretch your musical knowledge to the limit.

There'll be loads of questions on the usual stuff like lyrics, albums, artists but also about music's wider place in the world. Who starred in the movie that featured this song on the soundtrack? Why was this album cover banned? The river mentioned in this song stretches between which two countries?

Hosted by beer writer, trivia nerd, macdaddy & Daddymac Hadyn Greensmith

He'll make you jump (jump)

Monday 15 January 2018 6:30pm – 9:00pm. pop and Tone Lōc it in people