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

Beer history and the future of beer

From the Wellingtonian, the debate over the country’s oldest pub rages on and a retracing of a historic pub crawl reveals how much Wellington has changed. The full column is titled”Historic Thistle Inn claimes challenged“:

It was never likely that a single column would determine once and for all whether the Thistle Inn or the Upper Moutere Inn was the country’s oldest pub. In fact, last month’s column seems to have stirred up even more debate with a number of other contenders also claiming that honour.

Over at the Malthouse blog, the latest post discusses the relative merits of Oktoberfest and the new Octoberbest festivals. The post is called “Move over Oktoberfest, here comes Octoberbest“:

If proof was ever needed that Oktoberfest is actually a pretty classy event, look no further than the organiser’s decision in 2007 to ban serial oxygen-thief Paris Hilton. The official reason was that Paris “cheapened” the festival in 2006 with her attendance but the real reason was perhaps that she had used her time at the festival to run an advertising campaign for canned wine.

Glass Tips – The Wellingtonian and Malthouse Blog

The oldest pub in the nation and the beer of the people

From the Wellingtonian, my article on the “trouble brewing over the oldest pub claim“:

It is an article of faith for Wellingtonians that the Thistle Inn on Mulgrave Street is the oldest pub in the country. After all, it was built way back in 1840 and, until the harbour was reclaimed in 1876, sat right on the shoreline. The Thistle has poured pints for parched sailors, sundry Governor-Generals and, according to legend, Te Rauparaha himself.

Over at the Malthouse blog, in the spirit of true blogging we throw the floor open to real people (and accountants) for their take on the best beers in the fridge. Welcome to the first “People’s Blog“:

A conveniently unknown author once wrote that “a blog is merely a tool that lets you do anything from change the world to share your shopping list.” Blogs can polarise readers perhaps more than any other medium. John Jay Hooker, veteran political gadfly, is on record as saying “I sincerely believe blogging can save America.” National Business Review publisher Barry Coleman does not believe it will even save New Zealand.

Finally, I love this sign spotted recently outside Hope Bros in Wellington: “Urgent! Customers needed. No experience needed. Apply within.”

Glass Tip for the sign – Peter McCaffery

Beerly Blogging – Toasting Great Beer and Great Pubs

Over at the Malthouse blog, my latest post looks at Maurice Bennett, Bennetts Beers, toast art, Beervana and alpine-dwelling, hollow-horned ruminants of the genus Capra from the family Bovidae. It is called “A toast to great beer“:

On his websites Maurice has been listed variously as the Toastman, the Toast Master, the T-Man and “New Zealand’s most renowned artist”. That last claim may be somewhat contested by Goldie, Colin McCahon and perhaps the Right Honourable Helen Clark.

Legendary beer writer Pete Brown blogs an insightful review of the Pub du Vin concluding:

So there you go – great food, great beer, pretty good surroundings, and moronic, ill-informed conversation conducted with great conviction. Everything you could want from a pub.

Beerly Writing: Ruffling Some Feathers

In my first Wellingtonian column of the year, I have a look back at my locals over the years and in particular the recently refurbished Featherston Tavern. The column is called “Ruffling Some Feathers“:

It is apparently compulsory for all marketing and communications professionals to spend a lot of time in bars and our regular was The Feathers on, unsurprisingly, Featherston Street. This was a friendly place but a bit threadbare round the edges. The decor would not have been out of place in an old episode of Emmerdale Farm.

Glass Tip – The Wellingtonian

Pub of the Year

According to the NZ Herald, the Dux de Lux in Christchurch has just walked off with the pub of the year award.

Well done! Great to see a winner who supports craft beer.

That said, if I had been judging, I’d have given the prize to the Twisted Hop, as real ale trumps keg beer every time. That and they support SOBA.


The above looks to be completely wrong.

I’m not sure what is going on at the Herald, but the original article seems to have vanished, and has been replaced by one declaring that Galbraiths is the Pub of the Year. That’s all well and good, but I’m not sure where the original article is!

Apologies patient readers.

Boo Sucks to the NZ Herald.


Stu points out this isn’t the first time that the Herald has let beer lovers down with useless reporting.

Some detail would be nice, NZ Herald people. I love Galbraiths to bits, but who chose it as the pub of the year? Who sponsors this contest? Does it run every year? Who judges it?