Auckland does have beer!

I am a little behind in my posts, for which I apologize. I need to tell about our fabulous beer-themed trip around the North Island, Beer Tasting at Hallertau, and the NZ beer fest too.

Lets start off with the most recent first, since my memory is all fresh. Partner and I arrived within the first hour of the doors opening. Headed towards the back for no other reason except I wanted to be sure I got some of the very rare Epic Hop Zombie. I was not to be denied. Epic had only brought one case of their popular, and rare beers: Epic Portamarillo, Thornbridge Stout, and Hop Zombie. There was also secret squirrel tastings of the new beer, Zythos. I managed to get a taste of each.

Now, Zombie is probably not the best beer to start off with but since it is a favorite of mine, and it will not be made again until the hops can be obtained from the US (this may take several years, alas) I wanted to be sure to have some. I stuck to half glasses for all the beers I tried since I know I am a light-weight when it comes to alcohol. What follows is a list, as best as I can remember, what I tried and what I thought of each. I tried to stick to beers I was not familiar with so that I wasn’t filling up on beers I already have good access to.

Epic Hop Zombie – Still tasting nice, less aroma than when fresh but still a very nicely balanced drop

Mike’s Organic “Just another Pale Ale” – very malt driven beer with a nice subtle aroma. This is a nice beer of which I would happily have more.

Epic Zythos – light on malt, this beer is all about the new hop variety Zythos. Beautiful aroma and flavour.

Epic Thornbridge Stout – solid coffee flavours with a finish of dark chocolate fruit. Yum

West Coast Pale Ale – A very nice pale ale highlighting the hops from NZ. Riwaka is dominant in the nose with citrus grapefruit and mandarin flavours. A good beer

Emerson’s Bird Dog – This is a  beautiful beer. Well balanced in malt, bittering hops and aroma hops. Unusual in that the hop character in this beer is not all citrus like many are these days. Earthy and malty, this is a great, well made beer.

Yeastie Boys Digital IPA. I love the sweetness of the malt that comes off this beer. So caramel with lovely hop bitterness balance. I can only hope that my homebrew clone is close to this nice.

The cloud was a very nice venue to hold the event. Much better than the race course which hosted the previous events. My only complaint was the lack of seating or tables around which to gather with friends. But overall, a great event and so nice to see excellent representation from the Craft beers.



About beeriq

I am formally from San Francisco Bay Area in California where I lived for 17 years before moving to New Zealand. I now have my NZ citizenship. I am a huge fan of craft beer and wish everyone would pay attention to what they eat and drink.
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7 Responses to Auckland does have beer!

  1. Dave Kurth says:

    Glad you liked the pale ale, hopefully you should see more of it around up there soon. Just thought I would let you know that there is actually no Riwaka in there.

    Dave Kurth
    Wizard of wort
    Westcoast Brewery

    • beeriq says:

      Thanks for the feed back. I was actually told Riwaka by the guy who served it to me (and I thought I could smell it too). Just goes to show I am no Kelly Ryan when it comes to palate!
      Loved the beer regardless. Is it available in bottles anywhere or just kegs? And if it’s just kegs, send more to Auckland!

      • Dave Kurth says:

        Bottles and fill your own at hopscotch. Hugh could probably tell you where else to get it while you’re there.

  2. beeriq says:

    I was just there today. He is basically out. Send more, please!

  3. Paora says:

    Is there anywhere out West where I can fill a flagon with decent beer? (read Craft beer)

    • Paora says:

      After my last post I read the “Trust comes on Board” post. Yay for the West Side! Everbody is a winner with quality beer.

      • beeriq says:

        Not only are the re-vamped West Liquor stores offering fill-your-own, but the newly remodelled Blanc does as well. In fact, I find my self in Blanc frequently these days. When Ballast Point Victory at Sea went on tap, I practically ran there to fill up. I recommend following them on twitter (of facebook, if you must).

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