Five Hop-Filled Picks for Auckland Beer Week 2019
Featuring beer-fuelled karaoke, tap takeovers and a festival to discover new and interesting concoctions.
Every year, the Society of Beer Advocates (SOBA) rolls out its red carpet for a week-long celebration of all things craft beer. It's appropriately called Auckland Beer Week, and this year it's taking place across the city's finest hop-forward establishments from 21–30 June in the lead up to epic beer festival The Great Australasian Beer SpecTAPular (GABS). The festivities officially kick off with the #ABW19 Launch Party at Vultures Lane which promises a rambunctious night and new, limited and cellar release beers. Elsewhere, there's craft beer-fuelled karaoke, a festival to discover new and interesting concoctions and an opportunity to get some new ink. Cheers to that.
FOOD AND BEER PAIRINGS
There's nothing like hoeing into a bowl of salty chips with a pint of lager, and you'll get do exactly that at Kingsland's 605 with brews from around the country and different varieties of fried potato. Elsewhere, the food and beer pairings at Auckland Beer Week kicks things up a notch. Newmarket's The Lumsden will prove how well fresh oysters go down with a pint of dark beer, Hallertau is hosting an evening of fermented food and sour beer, and Garage Project is teaming up with sourdough pizza joint Umu for a week-long collaboration. For some pre-GABS sustenance, Vultures Lane is offering free wings to ticket holders. And to soak up the previous night's wrongdoings, beer personality BrewJesus will pair a Sunday roast with hair of the dog beers, while free bacon sandwiches will be flowing at Beer Jerk.
INTERACTIVE BEER SIPPING
For those who are looking for more than just a glass of suds, there are plenty of interactive events to get involved in. Eighties-inspired Grafton venue Save Ferris will open its barcade for an evening of IPA and karaoke featuring all the best rock, ballads and synth pop; Newmarket's The Lumsden is hosting a boozy drink and draw event; Grey Lynn's Bottlestop will team up with tattooist Braden McMahon for a flash tattoo event where six lucky punters will walk away with some new beer-inspired ink; plus there's a bus to Hamilton for a look around the Brewaucracy brewery and taproom.
A big trend at Beer Week 2019 is tap takeovers where bars leave their beloved dispensers in the hands of the brewers themselves. This year, The Brewers Co-Operative will be handing over its taps to Welsh brewery Tiny Rebel for a tasting session, Jason Bathgate of McLeod's will head to Galbraith's Alehouse for one-off collaborative cask brew and a tap takeover, Piha Beer is unveiling its new lager at Brothers Beer in the city, and Beer Jerk is hosting Wellington's Double Vision to release a new collaboration.
THE MAIN EVENT
Annual beer and cider festival GABS is the event on everyone's lips. Happening on 29 June at ASB Showgrounds, the festival is a breeding ground for interesting new brews — previous events have seen brewers experiment with everything from marshmallows to cold brew coffee and snails. This year is set to be no different with more than 90 unique beers and ciders being brewed especially for the event and a further 300 concoctions up for the tasting. Also on offer: a delectable street food lineup, a beer-themed mini golf course, silent disco and masterclasses.
A POP-UP SPEAKEASY
For one night only, Wellington's Garage Project is opening a pop-up backroom bar at its Kingsland taproom. The free table-service speakeasy will see the brewery pouring some GP classics alongside gems from the Wild Workshop and beer cocktails. There will also be a range of wild wines, available by the glass and by the bottle. To match will be snacks from the regular bar menu and freshly shucked oysters. The event is not ticketed, but if you would like to reserve a table send an email to [email protected].
Auckland Beer Week 2019 will be held from. For more information, visit the festival website.
Published on June 20, 2019 by Stephen Heard