OPINION: Those who keep an eye on the beer aisle at their supermarket or liquor store should have noticed the recent addition of a trio of beers by a guy called Spike. Well, that's his nickname. His real name is Brian Buckowski and he's a Yank who Boundary Road Brewery brought over to make up a batch of craft beers.
It's a good move . . . getting a new guy in that is. It brings in new methods, new ideas, different beer philosophies and probably plenty of opportunity to discuss American policy on drone strikes, universal health care and gun control. Or maybe not.
Whatever was talked about while Spike was here he hasn't let it get in the way of his craft. He's produced three solid performers and at a recent informal gathering of beer drinkers (sometimes called a party) they were collectively given the thumbs up.
Let's go through them starting with the Red Rye Ale. I cracked one open pre-party to go with a burger and chips I had spent most of my day making from scratch. It was a perfect accompaniment. A bit rugged, smoky and bitter. It made me feel like a man. Which was nice because I was wearing a frilly apron.
An hour later I turned my attention to his hoppy IPA (Indian Pale Ale), which was another easy drinking treat. I went back to the fridge for a few more to hand out and this was quite naturally followed by Spike's Pilsener, which at 5.2 per cent is the least strong of the range.
Like the others it had confident and comfortable flavours. Which might be a problem for some. You see the Spike's range is just good and simple beer. It tastes great but is not terribly challenging to your tastebuds, if that's what you are looking for.
And though you risk incurring the wrath of the thin- skinned craft beer harpies by admitting cost motivates your beer purchase, the price tag of $16.99 for a six- pack makes this a solid deal worth taking. Matt Rilkoff
- © Fairfax NZ News
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