Beer Haiku Friday and Diddly Dee (Potatoes) – The Saint Patricks Day Post

Today’s Beer Haiku is for those who perhaps “over-drowned the shamrocks” on Saint Patrick’s Day. It is called “Ouch“:

Can someone please stop
All the frickin’ leprechauns
Dancing in my skull

Unsurprisingly, Paddy’s Day is also the theme over at the Malthouse blog where I examine invented Irish connections, why nobody pretends to be Australian, share Pete Brown’s take on our love affair with the Emerald Isle and finish with a quick look at Murphy’s Stout. The title “Diddly Dee (Potatoes)” is explained in the article:

It is perhaps ironic that the English celebrate Saint Patrick’s Day more than they do Saint George’s Day. Certainly, here in New Zealand, Paddy’s Day parties tend to be better attended and more fun than the corresponding Waitangi Day shindigs. People will happily invent a mythical great-aunt from County Cork for March 17 but no-one seem to make up a great-uncle from Wagga Wagga as an excuse to celebrate Australia Day.

Glass Tips – Those excellent imbibers at Beer Haiku Daily and the most excellent peeps at Malthouse

Beer Haiku Friday and Awards That Actually Matter

Today’s beer haiku will outrage the purists but I like it. It is called “Because I Can“:

A bucket of wings
And some expensive cheap beer
Just because I can

Over at the Malthouse blog, my latest post discusses bar service, Evelyn Waugh’s seven requirements of a good inn-keeper, assesses Malthouse’s Colin Mallon against those seven criteria, looks at the Capital Awards and highlights three coming events. In a unsubtle dig at the Oscars, it is called “Awards That Actually Matter“:

Many would have expected Malthouse to also do well in the ‘best beer list’ category – except there wasn’t one. There was a ‘best wine list’ and ‘best drinks list’ but beer was a glaring omission. Fortunately, the flame-haired perpetrator has been quickly identified and given a stern talking to over a Tuatara Ardennes. Hopefully, it will be a proper category next year.

Glass Tips – Those determined tipplers at Beer Haiku Daily and the multi-award nomination folks at Malthouse

Beer Haiku Friday and The Beer of Revenge

Today’s Beer Haiku Friday proves that President Obama has a hard side. Obama loses his bet with the Canadian leader over the Ice Hockey so he has to buy a pack of beer. Look which beer he picks in “The President Pays Up“:

The president pays
Up on his Olympic bet.
A case of Molson


The latest Malthouse blog looks at beer legends, Louis Pasteur, his love of yeast and hatred of Prussians, Croucher Cherry Bock and some big up-coming events. It is called “The Beer of Revenge“:

“Pasteur is one of the greatest names in science, but this doesn’t mean he was necessarily a very nice person. What particularly got Pasteur hot under the collar was Prussia and all things German… His abhorrence of all things Prussian took two visible forms. First, he insisted that every paper he published would contain the statement “Hatred towards Prussia! Revenge! Revenge!” which must have proved difficult for peer reviewers, but had little real impact. But the second form changed beer as we know it.”

Glass Tips – Those excellent fellows at Beer Haiku Daily and Malthouse

Marchfest and Beer Tourism Map

Notification of another fantastic beer festival from Dead Good Beer Events:

April 17th 2010
Founders Park, Nelson

All local beers, 11 new beers, 2 new ciders, Don McGlashan, music, food, pony rides, bicycle-powered amplifiers and more…

The two new ciders are from Redwood Cellars and McCashins, the 11 new beers are:

Founders: God Knows Best ..bitter. “Our take on a ESB”, 5%.
Lighthouse: April Fuel, an amber ale, 5.5%.
McCashins: Ale-iana (A gift from the Gods), type and abv tbc.
Moa: Blanc Resurrection, a Belgian Wit (wheat beer), 5%.
Monkey Wizard: Golgotha Porter, a porter brewed with NZ botanicals, 5.5%.
Renaissance: Funkelryesen (rhymes with Dunkelweizen), spiced rye beer, 5%.
Sprig and Fern: De-Vine Inspiration, Pilsner, 5%.
The Golden Bear: Liquifaction, a hoppy ale, 6%.
The Mussel Inn: Missing Lynx, Marzenbier (lager), 5.2%.
Totara: Ninkasi Green, an ale which will use green hops at harvest time, 5%.
Townshend’s: Roger Parks IPA, a well hopped traditional IPA, 6%.

Full details on the website.

And before anyone comments, they are perfectly aware that Marchfest is now in April. It’s just how they roll down that way!

Speaking of down that way, those clever chaps at the Moutere Inn have put together the Top of the South Craft Beer and Brewing Trail resource. It is a map marked with all the breweries and craft-friendly bars in the region as well as their details and websites. It can be downloaded as a PDF if you are travelling off-line. It’s a great resource – every region of New Zealand needs something as good as this.

IPA Project 2010 and Beerfest comes to Welly

Arrow Brewing Company have announced their “IPA Project 2010.” Teasers have been sent out but I have received the synopsis of this awesome sounding project which involves Arrow brewing

“an authentic IPA by traditional methods and cask conditioning the resulting beer in a wooden barrel. On March 1, this IPA will be given its “sea journey” when the barrel ventures out into the notorious Foveaux Strait on board one of the first oyster boats to set sail for the season. Upon the boats return to Bluff, the barrel will be transported back to Arrowtown where the celebrations begin and the IPA will be “cracked” and served with fresh oysters. This project is a world first and a unique way to celebrate two great traditions.”

Major media coverage is expected tonight and tomorrow.

On Saturday 6 March 2010,Beer Festival 2010 comes to Wellington. This event gets bigger and better every year, was a huge success in Auckland recently and returns to the Capital this year with more breweries and a weather proof venue.

The event runs from midday to 9pm at the Westpac Stadium (please don’t call it the ‘Cake Tin’). 25 breweries will be pouring over 70 different beers, there will be food, there will be music, there will be seminars and there will be the opportunity to talk to the people who made the beers. Full details (including tickets) are on the Beer Festival website.

Beer Haiku Friday and Barrels of Beer

Today’s much-anticipated Beer Haiku Friday describes a beer drinkers paradise. It is called “Variety“:

Dreaming of a place
Where they serve an endless stream
Of various beers

Speaking of beer drinkers paradises*, the latest Malthouse blog looks at the development of barrel-aged beers, talks to three New Zealand brewers who are doing it and profiles the new Moa Barrel Reserve range. The blog is called “Barrels of Beer“:

Epic Journey, two 20-litre barrels of Epic Armageddon which spent six weeks on the Interisland Ferry, were a big hit at Beervana 2009. Their Impish Brewer Luke Nicholas predicts we will see a lot more barrels in use at Beervana 2010. He is a bit of a convert to barrel-aging saying it was “fun and really changed the beer in a way I didn’t expect. It was interesting but also a bit scary and creepy leaving it to the wood. You don’t have that control and there are a lot of unknowns.”

* See what I did there?

Glass Tips – Beer Haiku Daily and the Malthouse blog

Beer Haiku Friday and What’s in a Name – Sprig and Fern

Today’s Beer Haiku sums up the joy of fishing. It is called “Gone Fishin’“:

the fish ain’t biting
but that’s not really the point
as long as there’s beer

The latest Malthouse blog has a look at the history of pub signs, the development of pub names, some great names and some terrible names, the Sprig and Fern, Pale Ale and Cider. The title is “What’s in a Name – Sprig and Fern“:

Clearly, it is very common for a pub name to be called “The [something] and [something else].” Those two words might be related (The Bull and Bear), random (The Parrot and Jigger) or complete opposites (The Jolly Taxpayer). Today’s featured brewery has used this age old technique.

Glass Tip – Beer Haiku Daily and Malthouse Blog

A Touch of Kiwi in Thornbridge Ales and Last Call for Mac’s in Wellington

The latest Malthouse blog looks at how far New Zealand brewing has come in ten years, unveils two Kiwi connections with the ground breaking Thornbridge Brewery in England, details the brewing of a strawberry and pink peppercorn stout and provides a visitor’s opinions on our local beer. It is called “A Touch of Kiwi in Thornbridge“:

Thornbridge Hall Country House Brewery (to use its full name) is an innovative, award-winning and passionate English brewery set up in 2004. One of the original brewers was a young brewing graduate called Martin Dickie. When Martin left to start up BrewDog in his native Scotland, Kiwi Kelly Ryan joined the team in his place. The first brewery Kelly had worked in was Tui and to this day he retains a bit of a soft spot for that ‘East India Pale Ale’. Fellow New Zealander and well known beer lover James Kemp has also joined the team at Thornbridge (though he has a quite different take on Tui.)

From The Wellingtonian, my validictory for the Wellington Mac’s Brewery which will be closing its doors next month. It is headlined “Last call for Mac’s Brewery“:

I have many fond memories, too: my first sip of Wicked Blonde; tasting sessions on the viewing platform when brewing was underway, the air filled with an aroma like fresh bread; watching people try Sassy Red with the chef’s rustic French terrine or Black Mac matched with blue cheese, gingernut biscuit and chocolate covered apricot. That was when people began to understand craft beer and the art of beer and food matching.

Beer Haiku Friday, Belgian Beers and Tintin (or is it Asterix?)

I could not resist adding in what I consider to be the best beer-themed Haiku about the recent State of the Union address. For local readers, a tall boy is a large container of beer. The poem is called “Dashing my hops“:

State of the Union
Flung my tallboy at the screen
Hops spring eternal

The latest Malthouse blog is about Belgian beers and Tintin. It replaces the earlier version which utilised Asterix who unfortunately is and always has been French. It is (re-) titled “Belgium’s biggest resurgance since Tintin: Destination Moon“:

The tiny kingdom of Belgium has for centuries produced many memorable, distinctive and often unique beer styles. One of the very last nations to succumb to the ubiquitous allure of lagers, Belgian beer has always been a bit special. Their artisan brewers feel free to use ancient techniques long abandoned by other producers, never hesitate to throw in ingredients which would petrify mainstream brewers and think nothing of lifting the strength of their beers by a couple of percent.

Glass Tips – Beer Haiku Daily and Malthouse Blog

Big Beer News – Belgium’s biggest resurgence since Asterix and the Big Fight and the New Biggest Beer in the World

The latest Malthouse blog features a range of wonderful, magical characters including Orval, Westmalle, Asterix, Maredsous, Obelix and the Playful Chouffes of the Ardennes. It is titled “Belgium’s Biggest Resurgance since Asterix and the Big Fight“:

As a young beer neophyte, I would read books – surprisingly common activity in those pre-easy internet days – in which various great and good beer writers described Orval has having a distinct aroma of “sweaty horse blanket.” The concept seemed ludicrous. Surely even the most ostentatious wine scribe would hesitate to use such a descriptor, particularly if they wanted readers to actually try the beverage.

One exploratory sniff of my first Orval demonstrated that not only did it smell exactly like a heavy cloth which had been extensively worn by a perspiring example of the genus equine, but that it was absolutely delicious in doing so.

In startling beer news, Tactical Nuclear Penguin’s tenure as the strongest beer in the world (32%) might be short-lived with Schorschbock claiming an unbelieveable 40% ABV. It is a lager from German craft brewer Schorschbrau. Schorschbock is produced through Schorschbrau’s own proprietary fermentation process. It includes a rarely-used method for producing ice bock, supplemented by extended cold-lagering for a minimum of six months.

Glass Tip – Malthouse Blog and the Morning Advertiser.