Beers of Auckland Advent Calendar 2014
DAY 11 – Endless Summer Pilsner by Shakespeare Tavern
TAP: Endless Summer Pilsner
BREWED: On Site – Shakespeare Tavern
Today it was my intention to try Baroona from Waiheke Brewery, but it wasn’t on tap when I got to No 1 Queen Street (saving this for next week now). Next venue the Shakespeare.
I haven’t been to the Shakespeare since previous brewer Barry Newman passed away a few years ago. No one really talks about the Shakespeare anymore, so it has kind of been forgotten in my mind.
I had a quick small sample of the three beers brewed on site. I decided to get a glass of the Pilsner. It did remind me a lot of the beer that Barry use to brew. The quality of it seemed pretty good, but the hops aren’t as intense as I remember. It was bright, and looked good in the glass. The aroma was low. The beer has a slight grainy sweetness and good balance and cleanness. The lingering hop flavour though slight is pleasant. I’d happily drink another glass of this beer if I happened to be in the Shakespeare.
Barry’s passing was a loss to the local Auckland and greater NZ craft brewing industry. I think of him like our Richard Watkins, when he was at the Wig & Pen in Canberra. He always had something secret, fun, strong and interesting tucked down in the cellar. He won many awards, and made many inspiring beers.
Since it was lunch time I thought I better get a quick bite. I thought compare apples with apples, so I had the burger. OMG. This burger was $11.95 compared to the Galbraith burger the day before at $18.90. I can tell you I got more than twice the joy from eating the Galbraith burger. The Shakespeare burger – had the bun previously been frozen, or was it just old, as it was dried out and crumbly. There was extra lettuce, but the tomato looked like it had been precision cut with a laser it was so thin. Patty was not good. Amount of chips wasn’t very generous, then again it was a $11.95 meal in the CBD. The chips also tasted like they had been cooked in dirty oil. The only reason I thought about that was because yesterday a comment was made about how the Galbraith chips tasted amazing and must have been cooked in clean oil. The tomato sauce may not have ever been in contact with a tomato, it seemed just like red sugar sauce and flavourless
The over all feel of the place seemed tired and distant from its craft brewing roots. As I was sitting at the bar a guy came out of the pokies and asked for another glass of chardonnay.
DB has always had a connection with this brewpub as they helped set it up originally. Now you have to ask the question why does this place even have a brewery anymore. I am sure it is cheaper to buy beer in from DB than to make it. The beers on offer aren’t really that interesting, and not markedly different from the DB beers.
Based on this experience, where the beer wasn’t bad or interesting, I can’t come up with any compelling reason why you should visit, unless you are walking past and just curious to check it out. There is some great history in the building, but unfortunately the walls can’t talk.
They do have Tanqueray 10, which makes a lovely martini or G&T.
#craftbeer, #auckland, #newzealand, #shakespeare #adventcalendar
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