Garage Project Tiny But Mighty

Light IPAs have made great strides in the past few years, but a truly alcohol-free example that still drinks well has always seemed like an impossible target.  But this year some brewers have finally begun to make the breakthrough.  The aroma in this sub-0.5 per cent offering is superb, with a Mosaic-led assembly of zesty lemon lime citrus overlaying more pungent tropical and gooseberry notes.  The flavour kicks off with more punchy citrus and a slight (but undeniably present) clean malt.  The flavours move along at a pace too, which is important.  The high velocity of the mouthfeel, allows it to skip over the mid-palate void where these beers usually collapse, and skip straight into the pleasantly full tropical finish. It then levels out and wraps up nice and clean.  It can’t 100 per cent emulate an IPA with a conventional malt base, but it’s a huge step forward from many past examples.

Volstead Lupulin Block West Coast IPA

A new release from Christchurch’s IPA specialists, the Volstead Trading Company this 6.5 per cent IPA is fueled by American Sultana and Chinook hops. The aroma brings bright grapefruit citrus, zesty orange peel and spice over an expressive malt richness.  The palate...

Garage Project 10 Triple Hazy IPA

A big birthday requires a big beer and in this case Garage Project have delivered a monster! Fresh off their win at the 2021 NZ Beer Guild Awards, New Zealand’s Champion Large Brewery of the year has produced a triple hazy IPA celebrating 10 years in the brew...

Spaten Oktoberfestbier

Oktoberfest suffered its second cancellation due to Covid-19 in as many years, and while this must be a crushing disappointment for the Bavarians, there’s actually a silver lining in it for us.  With so much of the Oktoberfest beer going un-drunk in Germany, more...

ChinChiller Touch My Wenis Pilsner

From ChinChiller, the production arm of Christchurch’s Brew Academy, this curiously-named pilsner refers to the Covid-19 elbow-handshake that was ubiquitous around the time it was first being brewed.  A battery of New Zealand hops (Wai-iti, Motueka, Pacifica, Riwaka)...

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...

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...