Monday, 28 September 2015

Stock up your fridge

When is a better time to talk about drinking beer, but on a Monday morning when all you can do is think about it

This year, like every year, the Brewers Guild NZ awards give you a virtual list of beers to try over the next few hours months. Here’s the full list of gold medal and trophy winners to add to your fridge (although I’d advise treading lightly on some of those so-called NZ lagers … )

International Lager
Lion Beck’s
Gold DB Breweries Amstel Light Lager

New Zealand Lager
Panhead Custom Ales Port Road Pilsner
Gold DB Breweries Tui 2.5
Gold Hawkes Bay Brewing Co Pure Lager
Gold Lion Waikato Draught
Gold Sprig & Fern Harvest Pilsner
Gold Wigram Brewing Co Bavarian Pilsner

British Ale
mike’s Organic Ale
Gold Dale’s Brewing Co. Dale’s Extra Special Bitter
Gold Lion Speight’s 5 Malt Old Dark

European Ale
Garage Project Tournesol
Gold Aotearoa Breweries Mata BOP
Gold Concept Brewing Ltd Gratzer
Gold Invercargill Brewery Sa!son
Gold Moa Brewing Company Ltd Moa Sour Blanc
Gold Tuatara Brewery ARDENNES

US Ale
Bach Brewing Co. Duskrider Red IPA
Gold 8 Wired Brewing Hippy Berliner
Gold Fork Brewing Yoghurt & Bruesli
Gold Moa Brewing Company Ltd Moa Festive IPA-Belgian Edition
Gold Panhead Custom Ales Johnny Octane
Gold Tuatara Brewery TU-RYE-AY

Pale Ale
Fork Brewing Godzone Beat
Gold Aotearoa Breweries Mata Wai-iti Waka
Gold Black Sands New Zealand Pale Ale
Gold Good George Brewing Pale Ale
Gold Hot Water Brewing Co Kauri Falls Pale Ale
Gold Liberty Brewing Co Rackets
Gold Panhead Custom Ales Quickchange
Gold Tuatara Brewery SAUVINOVA

Strong Pale Ale
Epic Brewing Company Epic Armageddon IPA
Gold 8 Wired Brewing Hopwired IPA
Gold Bach Brewing Co. Kingtide Pacific IPA
Gold Garage Project Dirty Boots
Gold Liberty Brewing Co Sauvin Bomb
Gold ParrotDog HighTime
Gold Rocky Knob Brewing Company Snapperhead

Stout & Porter
Raindogs Brewing Co Singularity Imperial Stout
Gold Monteith’s Velvet Stout
Gold mike’s Chocolate Milk Stout (CMS)
Gold Sunshine Brewery Czar Bomb

Wheat & Other Grain
Black Dog - Blizzard

Flavoured & Aged
(incl. Fruit/ Spice/ Herb/ Honey/ Smoke)
Trophy Good George Brewing Blueberry Gose
Gold Funk Estate Super Afrodisiac
Gold The Sawmill Brewing Company Sawmill Chocolate Stout
Gold Valkyrie Brewing Co Brick Lane

Specialty, Experimental, Aged, Barrel,
Garage Project Wabi Sabi
Gold Boston Beer Company Samuel Adams Kosmic Mother Funk
Grand Cru
Gold Kereru Brewing Company At-At Imperial Pilsner
Gold Moa Brewing Company Ltd Moa Rum Barrel Sour 2014 Vintage
Gold Moa Brewing Company Ltd Moa Tripel Sauvignon 2015 Vintage
Gold Panhead Custom Ales Hardtail Henry

Yes, there were awards for ciders and other rubbish. But who would care?

The entry guide gives a pretty good guide to what to expect from all the myriad of beer styles achievable from just your four main beer ingredients. New Zealand lagers, for instance, “are very ‘clean’ and aggressively carbonated” … and that’s about all. While with Imperial or Double India Pale Ales “malt character is medium to high … hop aroma is very high … [and] hop flavour is very high…”

Champion Brewery? Lion. Yes, Lion. “It’s not a popularity contest.”

And if you think the judges are in any way biased


  1. "Yes, there were awards for ciders and other rubbish. But who would care?"

    Yes, there were awards for ciders, lagers and other rubbish. But who would care?

    Fixed it for you.

    1. True enough. Create a category carefully enough, and you can give an award for any old rubbish. Like Waikato. And enough "gold medals" to give brewers of caramelised fizzy water an award for champion brewery. Which rather goes against the ethos of brewing awards ...

    2. I disagree. Lion completely deserved the award. The trick with these things is to brew to style and to enter your beer in the style to which it suits (which may not be the style you market it as). Lion make a great number of beers. Many of these beer absolutely NAIL the style they are in. Do I want to drink lots of them? No. Are they the epitome of what they try to be? Yes. Are the brewers there among the best in the world? Also yes. And yet... mine's an Epic "The Observer", thanks. :)


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