Canterbury breweries toast success
Christchurch's earthquake-hit breweries have toasted their success at the beer industry's top awards.
Harrington's, Three Boys and Cassels and Sons were among the trophy winners at the Brewers Guild of New Zealand's BrewNZ Awards held in Wellington this month.
With 465 entries – up from 446 last year, and 348 in 2009 – this year's awards were the largest since the event started 11 years ago.
Harrington's won two gold medals and a trophy for its British ale-style Pig & Whistle; Three Boys won a bronze, silver, two golds and a trophy for its Oyster Stout; while Cassels won a bronze, two silver, a gold, and a trophy for its Milk Stout.
Cassels and Sons co-owner Zak Cassels said the Woolston brewery lost equipment and stock during the February quake.
They not only resumed brewing weeks later, but opened a bar.
Cassels was "surprised and delighted" at the success this year, having won a bronze with its first entry last year.
"We knew all of our beer was pretty good, because we'd had a lot of good feedback about it, but we weren't really expecting to do as well as we did," Cassels said.
"It's a lot of fun to be there as a craft brewery owner, and meet all the other guys doing the same thing."
He was pleased for the other Christchurch craft breweries that picked up awards.
"It's been hard for us [since the quake], but we're hanging in there and doing quite well," he said.