From homebrew to capital bars
New beer company brewed from degreeJAZIAL CROSSLEY
Massey University Brewing Society founder Simon Cooke built a beer company around a limited run brew created for his honours degree. The public can taste the pale ale Half Tanked that he produced as a study project at bars around town.
Cooke had been home brewing beer for about three years. As part of his design degree and business studies, the fourth year honours student created the branding for 1000 litres of Half Tanked beer made by the Brewing Society he started.
''That involved dressing the beer right from branding and naming it to creating the labels and tap badges because essentially the beer was just a naked product produced by the club. It also linked in quite well with my business paper, crunching the numbers on beer sales.''
Cooke described the New Zealand India Pale Ale beer as having an amber colour and clean malt body, topped with a good nudge of Rakau and Nelson Sauvin hops to give ''a refreshing fruity bite'' with 5.4 per cent alcohol.
It will be launched tonight at Wellington CBD craft beer bar Little Beer Quarter, where Cooke worked part time to support himself while studying. It will also be on sale at Hashigo Zake and The Malt House on Courtenay Place and potentially other bars Cooke, who has been volunteering at craft beer festivals in his spare time for several years, is still in talks with.
''My university has bought a keg for a private function with a visiting graphic designer from the United Kingdom. I have just been approaching bars directly face to face and the fact that it's a fundraiser project and it's supporting Wellington's future brewers seems to encourage them to take a punt.''
Wellington has an active craft beer industry. Cooke said companies who were technically competitors were very welcoming, describing it as an ''open door'' industry.
''I've found myself there has been fantastic support from other brewers with advice, hook-ups with ingredients and things.''
Boutique brewer Liberty Brewing Company owner Joseph Wood talked to him about how to craft recipes, achieving the right colour. Chris Mills from Silverstream's Kereru Brewing Company had been open with giving him advice and even selling him ingredients he had trouble sourcing. The society scored sponsorship from homebrew equipment company imake which provided some of the gear needed for the beer it brewed at Mata Brewery in Kawerau and some ingredients came from BrewHouse in Newtown.
Cooke will soon be travelling to Germany, where he plans to gain experience working in breweries before returning to Wellington next year with hopes of continuing to work with beer.
Half Tanked launches tonight at Little Beer Quarter in Wellington CBD from 6pm.
- © Fairfax NZ News
Can inner city residents reasonably expect a bit of peace and quiet?Related story: Quest for quieter city life 'frustrating'