Metro NZ


Ten years ago – hell, even five years ago – Auckland was a bit embarrassing on the beer front. In Wellington, you could barely move for hoppy IPAs, rich stouts and tongue-tingling sours, but in Auckland, the odd craft-beer bar aside, a Peroni on tap was about as good as it got.

These days you can fill up a growler at Liquorland, get a ParrotDog Bitterbitch at Prego and buy a six-pack of Liberty’s Yakima Monster at Countdown. Auckland even has its own “beer mile”, running from the top of Symonds St down New North Rd to Morningside, with eight or so breweries or beer-dedicated bars to stop in at.

It’s not just Auckland. We are living, my friends, in a golden age of beer. There’s never been a better time to drink the stuff in New Zealand than right now.

A few years ago, there were murmurings that the craft-beer bubble was set to burst. The industry was getting crowded with new microbreweries, some of whom seemed to prize style over substance. After a couple of independent breweries sold to Big Beer, there was concern more would follow suit, leaving the few little guys unable to compete with the lower prices, higher output and advertising clout of those with stacks of cash behind them.

But it hasn’t played out that way. The sale of Christchurch craft brewer Harrington’s to Lion in 2018 aside, there’s been

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