The Thursday Pint – Tuatara’s New Drop and Ale Tasting

In big brewing news, Tuatara are launching their first new beer in several years at the Malthouse in Wellington tonight. The beer is Tuatara Helles and the details are in the latest Malthouse blog post aptly titled “Fancy a pint of the new Tuatara?“:

The two sweetest words in the English Language, according to Homer J Simpson, philosopher, role model and pneumatic cerevisaphile, are “de fault”. However, I tend to think that Pete Brown, beer writer, global pub crawler and all-round bearded bloke, has it right when he suggests that “fancy a pint” is about the most appealing invitation you can get which involves remaining fully dressed.

Last night the Cellar Vate beer tasting group sampled some of the best ales from around New Zealand (and Tui). The full report and results are up now:

The April session of the Cellar-Vate Beer Club was a search for New Zealand’s best ale. Forty people tasted ales new and old brewed in a mix of contemporary and classic styles. They also tried Tui, a self-proclaimed East India Pale Ale, to see how it stacked up against the real stuff.

September Salient Points

This Salient magazine column casts an Eye Over the Monteith’s Beer and Wild Food Challenge results:

Over at the Southern Cross, their wild boar loin was guarded by a “jelly which will stare you down.” Like a scene from Lord of the Rings, the plate was crowned by a single all-knowing sheep’s eye encased in Pilsner jelly. Suspending the eyeball exactly in the middle of the Pilsner cube is apparently no mean culinary feat. There may well be a thesis in there for a science student with a particular interest in jelly.

Next, an in-depth look at Beer and Politics in the most intelligent electorate in the country:

Politics and beer go together like VUWSA and financial mismanagement. With the general election approaching, it seemed timely to put the genuinely tough questions to the candidates standing for Wellington Central. This column is not distracted by peripheral issues like tax cuts, mysterious trusts or secret agendas. No, the key issue is what beer the candidates like and where they like to drink it.

Lastly, a glimpse of the Beers of Asia:

An unkind critic once claimed that saying that your country’s beers were better than Japanese beer was like saying your country’s food was better than English food. That is a tad unfair. The Japanese do make very drinkable pale lagers and many of them reach our shores (albeit with hefty price tags).

A mixed pack of beer

From the Wellingtonian, the latest column takes a close look at beer festivals and (eventually) previews this weeks Beervana event:

Perhaps the most auspicious story – and it may even be true – is that we played a small part in getting Speight’s Pilsner and Porter made commercially. Apparently, Speight’s had decided if the beers sold out by the end of the day, they would be green-lighted. At the official close, both were still pouring but the good doctor and I managed to place ourselves in such a way we could clandestinely top up our glasses as the clean-up began. I finished the last of the Pilsner, he exhausted the Porter and the beers later appeared on the market.

This is the article I still cannot believe I managed to get paid to write – my combined weaknesses of “Beer and Fondue” from the excellent Beer and Brewer magazine:

The humble fondue is alternatively derided as a laughable 70s throwback and then acclaimed as the next great leap forward in up-market gastronomy. Despite the vagaries of fashion, there has always been something very sociable about sitting around a warm pot eating melted cheese. That is perhaps why virtually every household in Australasia will have owned a fondue set at some time. Personally, I still have six.

At the August Cellar-Vate tasting, the theme was Beers of Asia:

Because of availability issues in New Zealand, the menu tended to focus on the pale lager style but it did include the superb King Cobra and the Official Beer of the Summer Olympics 2008. It also has a beer quote from Confucius. Epic Zen!