New Zealand

A fabulous trip to New Zealand by our vice chairman Paul and his wife Bev.

We started on Harvey’s brewery IPA at the Hilton Heathrow Terminal 2 with some great runway views. Singapore airlines took us to Auckland via a lengthy stop at Singapore due to cyclone Gabrielle but time for a few beers including Archipelago brewery’s Summer IPA.

Auckland was very blowy but our 1 night stay allowed samplings of Emerson’s Hazed and Confused IPA and an excellent Black Duck dark ale from Hawkes bay together with Tuatara hazy pale ale and Speights gold medal ale.

We moved onto Mount Manganui for a 6 night stay for the first test. A lovely sunny and hot seaside resort. Canned beers included Puha road IPA and the Island’s Dawn Daze IPA.

We enjoyed hospitality at the cricket, met England legends Mike Gatting and Gladstone Small. It meant all our drinks were included with the beer offering being Boundary Road brewery’s Haze of our Lives Hazy IPA. An England win in 4 days allowed time for a spectacular wild life boat trip.

We then flew to Wellington after a short visit to a Maori thermal village for a Haka ceremony. Wellington was different again being very hilly and windy. Trips to see the Pinnacles famous for the Lord of the Rings film trilogy and wine tasting at Martinborough a great little town set up by an English settler with streets in a Union Jack flag orientation. Many beers were sampled including Fortune Favours brewery Optimist and a bean to beer double chocolate stout.

A Wellington craft breweries tour started at Garage Project brewery for Pernicious weed (8% IPA) and Garagista (5.8% bitter). Next stop was Baylands brewery taproom for a taster flight of Esplanade, Woodrow Vero, Rail Slider and Hop Enforcer. Highlight was then a visit to Brewtown in Upper Hutt. This was a craft brewery Mecca in an old Dunlop tyre factory with numerous breweries including Panhead and Boneface . More taster flights followed with a favourite being Unf*ck the world 8% double IPA.

The second test match was very exciting but England lost by just 1 run. We drowned our sorrows in a great little dive bar sampling Wired Wireless brewery’s Black IPA, Garage Projects Leeds street rye ale and a Birdseye hazy IPA from Parrot Dog brewery.

A super trip for the beer and cricket with many fabulous memories.

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