In this special election Beer O'Clock post, Stu from the Society of Beer Advocates tells you what your beer fridge might tell you about your political preferences.
It’s election day tomorrow and the only way to numb the pain of whichever mainstream party ends up in the best position to do you over is to enjoy a couple of decent beers with friends. Here’s what those beers might tell you about who you're drinking with.
Labour: I’d like to say that it’s time for a strong and proven beer (Emerson’s Old 95?) but it seems that Labour have moved strongly towards a presence on the web (some think this’ll be about their only significant presence post-election) so you’ll be likely to be sharing an E-pint or two with your learned friends. It offers much but tastes like nothing.
National: National party members have always struck me as having a bit of money but not a lot of taste. So the ideal beer for you is either Heineken or Stella Artois. A fancy façade and some slick marketing, but very little substance and very much middle-of-the-road. Can't be trusted for a good night out.
ACT: Rodney Hide has lost a lot of weight in recent times. I suspect that he’s possibly drinking Spring Tide, Mac’s low carbohydrate ‘thing’ (you can’t really call it ‘beer’). You too should lose some kilograms, don a yellow sports coat, and drink up. The beer is as insipid, watery and empty as ACT party policy.
Maori Party: It goes without saying, you’ll be drinking Taakawa Indigenous Ale (unless you’re drinking Lion Red).
Greens: It’d have to be organic and Kiwi-made. Either Founder’s from Nelson or Mike’s Mild Ale from Taranaki. Pick the closest one to you to cut down on ‘food miles’ and then cycle to the brewery to pick it up. You don’t need to wear a helmet - it won’t fit over your dreads and is against your religion anyway.
United Future: Worshipping your esteemed leader and his lovely locks (which seem to get bigger around election time) and an insatiable appetite for a billion-dollar boondoggle called Transmission Guly, you’re probably all drinking wine anyway. Communion wine.
Progressive: Until there’s a state-owned brewery your best bet is a cup of PG Tips. Perhaps a little sugar to sweeten that acrid flavour in your mouth. Do you know 'the piano’s on my foot'?
NZ First: You might need something a little stronger than beer tomorrow night. Get a friendly billionaire to buy you a winebox of The Grange and have it helicoptered in for the night.
Libertarianz: Do like the young Libz at Pacific Empire and brew your own beer. It won’t be ready to drink on the night (unless you prepared one earlier) but it’ll be excise-free and go completely undetected by anyone creating statistics that Nanny is sure to use to change your drinking habits.
And what will I be drinking? I’ll be drinking a few beers from the Renaissance Brewing Company in Blenheim. These guys started a few years ago with a risky approach: an aggressive bunch of highly-flavoured ales, relatively high in alcohol, that are based on traditional styles but with a distinctive New Zealand twist. Their beers have taken a little while to hit their stride but in the last six months they’ve been tasting as good as anything else in the country. Actually, they’re tasting better than anything else -- and they'll be getting my vote tomorrow.
Have a good evening, and may the election result go the way you hope it does.
Slainte mhath, Stu