Wonderful, weird and wacky beers to tempt your palate
A few strange- tasting beers will be poured at the upcoming Great Australasian Beer SpecTAPular — with drops featuring ingredients as diverse as cognac, tobacco, double smoked bone marrow, raspberries, chillies, salted caramel and kina.
The festival i s coming to Auckland’s ASB Showgrounds for its second year on June 16 and 17.
It made headlines last year with a bellybutton- fluff beer. Three Australian brewers harvested their bellybutton fluff, cultivated yeast from it and then chose the best one to go with, GABS founder Steve Jaffares explained.
“It wasn’t a terrible beer but it kinda went viral,” Jaffares told the Weekend Herald. “There are a handful who get super creative. But the vast majority are much more palatable.”
Jaffares said more common ingredients included citrus or stone fruit, chilli, chocolate and coffee.
More than 50 breweries and 300 beers will be represented at the festival. There will be 80 festival beers and ciders — drops that have never been brewed before — as well as food stalls, entertainment, and a “Craft College” beer school.
Wellington brewery Funk Estate founder Jordan Evison will be showing eight beers at the festival, including a pink IPA.
“We just thought it’d be something a bit out there.
“It’s about innovating, keep it exciting . . . Keep inventing pretty much.”
The festival started in 2011 in Aus- Chestnuts, chillies and plenty of caramel flavours to blend it all together. The result is sweet and nutty with a bit of heat. A Belgian style white sweet stout tralia as a way to promote brewers’ creativity and Jaffares brought it to Auckland last year.
“We work hard to provide an en- made from goat’s cheese whey, coffee, roasted chocolate nibs and vanilla. The lactose- rich whey adds body to the beer. A light IPA with tropical/ citrus hoppy goodness. They’ve used hibiscus, rosehips, pink peppercorn and pink grapefruit to get a deliciously pink drink. vironment for people to try new things. They find new flavours, brewers and beers they haven’t contemplated before.”
Beer fanatics can taste a tipple with beer samples served on paddles. Each 85ml glass costs around $ 2.20 or $ 11 for five.
“By trying small samples people are more open to taking risks.”
Jaffares said they don’t encourage people to try every beer but some still attempt it. With beers that can range up to 22 per cent alcohol some pints pack a mighty punch.
“It’s never a good idea to try every beer.”
Saturday evening may be the most popular session with a screening of the Maori All Blacks vs the Lions on giant screens throughout the festival hall.
Tickets start at $ 40 for a single session or $ 120 for a festival pass.