Friday, January 21, 2011

The Hop Garden

James Henderson deserves a pile of congratulations for creating the Hop Garden, in a neglected former Greek restaurant in Mt Vic. It looks fantastic, is well equipped and they've had the good sense to stock fresh Racer 5 and West Coast IPA. It's going to be fascinating to see how people patronise it - whether they stay to dine, what time of day they come, what kind of clientele it attracts. But it's instantly my preferred place to drink outside HZ.

It's opening a matter of weeks after the Bruhaus. You could almost get the impression that free houses are taking over Wellington. Wishful thinking I'm sure, or maybe not...

But if I was an exec at DB right now, with their humiliation over Radler a matter of months away, I'd be brushing up the CV.

Wednesday, January 12, 2011

Black, White and Grey

I think everyone's tired of hearing about the rights and wrongs of official and unofficial importing. So here's a change of tack: pricing.

Of course I'm not remotely neutral here, but I have to say I'm surprised by how stark the differences are. Here are some comparative prices gleaned from the internet and a trip to Thorndon New World. And if it isn't clear, the prices on the right are for the "official" imports:

Thorndon New World

The Beer Store

Regional Wines and Spirits

The Cult Beer Store

Green Flash Imperial IPA 650ml

$21.95

$19.44

$14.00

Green Flash Le Freak 650ml

$23.75

$16.00

Green Flash West Coast IPA 355ml

$7.97

$6.00

Ballast Point Big Eye IPA 650ml

$13.79

$12.00

Bear Republic Hop Rod Rye 650ml

$16.42

$13.00