Friday, 15 August 2008

Beer O'Clock: The new and improved Moa

34423 A friend dropped round the other night to consume a few martinis, and paid me back with a few delightful beers from the Moa range, bought at the local New World: a bottle each of Moa Original, Moa Wheat Beer, Moa Harvest, Moa 5 Hops Winter Ale, and a Moa Belgian Style Tripel.

Now that's a deal where both sides win. They were delicious, even better than when I'd last tracked one down. My own favourites were the Winter Ale, which stood up to the competition provided by an Epic Pale Ale from the depths of the fridge, and the Harvest, made with locally caught cherries!

I'm looking forward to consuming the last of the bottles tonight, the St Joseph's Tripel. Geoff Griggs from the Marlborough Express lets me know what to expect:

Made in the style of a Belgian abbey style tripel and weighing in at a hefty 9.5 percent, Moa St Joseph's is exactly the sort of beer [brewer Dave Nicholls would] never have had the opportunity to create at a larger brewery.
Fermented with an imported ale yeast reputedly the same strain used by the Trappist brothers at the Westmalle Abbey in Belgium and refermented in Moa's distinctive 375ml champagne bottles, St Joseph's requires careful decanting.
I recommend serving it only lightly chilled, at about eight degrees, and preferably in a tulip-shaped stemmed glass. A large red wine glass is ideal.
St Joseph's pours a bright golden hue beneath an attractive pillowy white head. The aroma is sweet, spicy and very "Belgian", with suggestions of raw sugar, white pepper, bubble gum, vanilla and clove.
Given the potency, it is notably well balanced in the palate, with sweet malt cushioning the alcohol and hops right through into the long, sappy finish.
For the brewery's first attempt at a revered Belgian style, Moa has produced a very smart beer indeed.

I'm looking forward to it.

What's on your beer menu tonight?


  1. Moa has been one of my favourite beers for while: I always drink it up in the Sounds. If you get a chance, make sure you call into the (open to the public) brewery on the outskirts of Blenheim if you're in the area, and you're not with a bunch of wine snobs dragging you around all the wineries.

    Elephant beer from the same area is similarly good.

    (By the way Luke, I've still not sent 'that' application. I will, I will ... pity the Libz sub can't be paid online by credit card.)

  2. Overrated overpriced pap! there's plenty of other craft beer around that is extraordinarily better!

  3. Well anonymous has fallen down on the wrong side of the ale tonight.

    Right now I'm drinking 'Brew Moon', Amberly Pale Ale: a micro brewery in Amberly, just north of Christchurch. Not a bad drop, but pretty expensive.

  4. Just ripped down to the bottler over lunch to pick up some afterwork tipples for the office - one of the bonuses of drinking beer in Sweden is even despite the crippling taxes on booze, beer somehow comes off way cheaper than NZ. Thus I scored some Westmalle Tripel, Orval Trappist Ale, and a number of easy-drinking Budvars. Really missing Epic Pale Ale though...


  5. I was drinking an advanced sample of Yeastie Boys 'Pot Kettle Black'.

    Tonight it was La Trappe Quadruple. An upmarket bus stop beer.

    The Moa beers are a mixed bag. I love the original, and really liked the Harvest Ale, but have found the rest to lack anything exciting enough to warrant the price. I wasn't all that surprised to hear that 80% of it is exported. It's a nice bottle, I suppose.

    Look forward to trying the Tripel. This is more the style of beer that I'd expect to be packaged in an expensive, small bottle.

  6. Yeah, but re La Trappe, those corks are a pain in the arse: they don't come out.


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