Tuatara toasts being named New Zealand's best brewery for the second time

Tuatara head brewer Carl Vasta has plenty to toast after the brewery he founded in his Waikanae backyard 16 years ago ...
CAMERON BURNELL/FAIRFAX NZ

Tuatara head brewer Carl Vasta has plenty to toast after the brewery he founded in his Waikanae backyard 16 years ago was the named the country's best for the second time.

Kapiti's Tuatara Brewing Company can raise a glass to the fact it is now the country's first two-time champion brewery.

The Paraparaumu-based brewery won the supreme award at the Brewers Guild of New Zealand 2016 Beer Awards on Saturday, eight years after is last took out the top gong.

Tuatara dominated the 10th year of the country's most prestigious brewing awards, collecting three of 14 category trophies and a total of five gold, five silver and four bronze medals for its beers.

Carl Vasta pours another cold one for Prime Minister John Key during his visit to the Tuatara Brewery in Paraparaumu  in ...
FAIRFAX NZ

Carl Vasta pours another cold one for Prime Minister John Key during his visit to the Tuatara Brewery in Paraparaumu in 2012.

Brewery founder Carl Vasta​, who started Tuatara in his Waikanae backyard in 2000, said winning the champion brewery award for a second time was a huge honour.

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"I started out brewing just to make good beer that my mates and I enjoyed, so to see how things have grown to this point is pretty remarkable," he said.

Crowds outside the Tuatara Brewery in Paraparaumu on the Kapiti Coast.
KAROLINE TUCKEY/FAIRFAX NZ

Crowds outside the Tuatara Brewery in Paraparaumu on the Kapiti Coast.

"The reason we've been able to achieve the success we have is because we've got a tremendous team of people who are really passionate about beer and brewing."

These days Tuatara produces about two million litres of beer a year and has cracked important export markets in Australia, Britain, Ireland, Scotland, China, Taiwan, Hong Kong, Singapore and Indonesia.

On Saturday, Tuatara also won trophies for its New Zealand lager Mot Eureka, its pale ale Sauvinova and its wheat beer Weiz Guy, which were all named best in category.

Michael Pullin and Kerry Gray, co-owners of Wellington's Choice Bros Brewing, also took home an award for their Reet ...
ROBERT KITCHIN/FAIRFAX NZ

Michael Pullin and Kerry Gray, co-owners of Wellington's Choice Bros Brewing, also took home an award for their Reet Petite red IPA.

Wellington brewery Choice Bros. also featured prominently, taking out the 'flavoured and aged' category with its Reet Petite red IPA.

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This year's Brewers Guild awards featured 946 beers from 98 breweries competing across 14 beer categories. A total of 88 New Zealand breweries were entered, joining 10 breweries from Australia, Germany and the United States.

Brewers Guild president Emma McCashin the 2016 awards capped another stellar year for brewing in this country.

"Our breweries are producing amazing beer with a uniquely Kiwi flavour and vision, and it's being sought out by more drinkers here and overseas."

THE BEST BEERS IN THE COUNTRY

Champion brewery: Tuatara Brewing Company (Paraparaumu)

Champion manufacturer: Steam Brewing (Auckland)

Champion international brewery: Boston Beer Company (United States)

Best international lager: DB Breweries (Auckland) - Heineken Light

Best New Zealand lager: Tuatara Brewing Company (Paraparaumu) - Mot Eureka

Best British ale: Sprig & Fern Brewery (Nelson) - Best Bitter

Best European ale: Moa Brewing Company (Blenheim) - Moa St Josephs

Best United States ale: 8 Wired Brewing (Warkworth) - Tall Poppy

Best pale ale: Tuatara Brewing Company (Paraparaumu) - Sauvinova

Best strong pale ale: Epic Brewing Company (Auckland) - Epic Armageddon

Best stout and porter: Emerson's Brewing Company (Dunedin) - Emerson's Phantom Lord

Best wheat and other grain beer: Tuatara Brewing Company (Paraparaumu) - Weiz Guy

Best flavoured and aged beer: Choice Bros (Wellington) - Reet Petite

Best specialty, experimental, aged, barrel or wood-aged beer: Croucher Brewing (Rotorua) - Lowrider

Best cider or perry: Zeffer Cider Co. (Silverdale) - Cidre Demi-Sec

Best fruit or flavoured cider or perry: Zeffer Cider Co. (Silverdale) - Apple Crumble Cider

Best packaging: Moa Brewing Company (Blenheim) - Moa NZ Gold Ale 375ml

 - Stuff

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