Local Heart, Global Soul

September 22, 2012

Lunch For the First Time in A Brew Moon…

Last time we were at Brew Moon it was either closed or we were on our way to a family appointment and didn’t have time to stop: https://kiwidutch.wordpress.com/2010/05/24/new-post-83/. This time is different, we are heading out to Amberly for the express purpose of going there for lunch.

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

The weather, in contrast to the high winds and rain still lingering in the North Island, is bight and sunny, clear and exceedingly warm.

We go inside and find that there are three sitting areas, first in the main part of the building, by the café and bar area: cool and in deep shade the regular sitting area, which would also be cosy in winter because there’s a long burner in the corner.

Secondly, inside and to the right of the cafe is a partly covered sitting area… today it’s filling up fast with customers looking for a quiet place to have a coffee or dine and Himself and I judge that neither of our kids are doing particularly well in the “best behaviour” department  today so we decide to take ourselves as far away from the other patrons as possible, and sit in the third sitting area:  tables outside under the verrandar at the front of the building.

It’s one thing for the kids to inflict their ill humour on us, it’s a completely different thing if  complete strangers have to endure it too.

It turns out that our self imposed exile probably ends up being the best seat in the house…the kids wander off in an unrestrained moment and walk though the semi covered area… they return saying that it’s really hot there because there’s no breeze, where as we have the shade, a nice view of the coming and goings, stuff of the kids to play on out the front and a few puffs of wind on occasion to take the edge of the shimmering heat.

The food in the cabinet looks great so after we order lunch, we  take a look around and then head for a leisurely sit at our table in the shade.

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

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(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

August 7, 2012

Mike’s Beer…. Organic, Whisky,Coffee, Imperial or Pale Ale Brew?

Filed under: Beer,PHOTOGRAPHY,Reviews,Travel — kiwidutch @ 1:00 am
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Beer, glorious beer! Of course we are looking at the main product of Mike’s Brewery… There are Porters, Pale Ales, specialist beers like Whisky, Coffee  or Imperial Porters, which are limited editions in individually numbered bottled and all organic! I’m no beer drinker but we bought some to take with us for Himself to enjoy and review later and Himself said he was very pleased with his selection because everything he bought tasted very good.

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

August 6, 2012

Beer, Pies, Coffee and the Longest Chip We’ve Ever Seen…

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

We are just north of Urenui, on the east coast of  New Zealand’s North Island and visiting the White Cliff Estate organic brewery, a.k.a. Brewery Mike’s.

Lunch has just arrived and whilst fries are not healthy, they and the pies are welcome on a hot day after our car journey.

Himself washes his food down with a beer and pronounces it very favourable indeed but the one for the road is definitely a coffee.

Kiwi Daughter scores the longest French fry we have ever seen, she holds it up to her face and it reaches from her forehead to just past her chin.

I then get a series of photographs where she tips her head back and tries to swallow it whole like she’s eating a Dutch pickled herring. I’ve deleted her face from one of the photos to give you and idea of  how long it was, the top is by her forehead and the bottom reaches past her chin. That must have been one massive potato!

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

August 5, 2012

A Comfortable Look Inside…

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

It was a hot Taranaki day when we stopped in at Brewery Mike’s for lunch.

I can’t remember now if the old hall used to be a schoolhouse or if it was an RSA  (Returned Serviceman’s Association) Hall but either way it’s been well decorated for it’s present use, there are relaxing seating areas inside as well as out.

There  is a small display of local art (Kiwi Daughter spent some pocket money buying one of the paintings  in the photo) and some interesting old photos of local brewing, but since our food was arriving at the table outside I forget to check if  these were photos taken of this brewing family or not.

The place is cool in the summer heat and by the looks of the log burner in the corner surrounded by sofas, it’s probably pretty comfortable  in the winter too.

I like that not only is the beer organic but they stock a few organic snacks too, for example organic chocolate. Let’s take a look around.

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

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(photograph © Kiwidutch)

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(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

August 4, 2012

Stopping in at Mike’s for a Brew….

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

An easy drive down the coast near the small town of  Urenui,  Himself suddenly spies a large sign on the roof of a building that says “brewery” and as the beer drinker in the family he’s suddenly finding himself very interested in a break from the road, a hearty lunch accompanied… possibly, very strangely coincidently…. by a beer.

We have stumbled upon Brewery Mike’s White Cliff Estate organic brewery…

We pull in to find an old hall that”s been converted into a  beer shop and café, a massive deck has been built out the front and it’s been covered with a sail-like canopy so there is ample shade, excellent for a scorching day like today.

The kids want to run round on the large lawn at the front but after a few circuits and a quick investigation of the outer edges they decide it’s just too hot and come and flop at the table with a cold drink and waiting for the food to arrive.

We place our orders and take a look around…

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

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(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

August 11, 2011

A Taste of China: Tsingtao

Filed under: Beer,Reviews — kiwidutch @ 1:00 am
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(photograph © Kiwidutch)

This beer tasting session took place a while back and the review has been made but I’m just a little behind in getting the results posted.

As usual, as the non-beer drinking member of the group, I am in charge of making the notes and taking the photographs.

Per the rules of the Club, one member takes turns each meeting to do the buying and knows what everyone is drinking, the rest get a blind tasting as not to influence their reviews.

Tsingtao – China Beer

330ml   /   Vol.Alc. 4.7%  /   Cat;

Label: Since 1903/  Tsingtao – / BIERE, BEER, CERVEZA  / Brewed and bottled by Tsingtao Brewery Co.,Ltd in China / Content 330ml

Ingrediënten:Water, gerstemout, rijst, hop Zutaten: Wasser, Weizenmalz, Gerstenmalz, Reis, Hopfen

Ingrédients: Eau, maly d’orge, riz, houblon.

Herkunftsland / Herkomstland: China / Chine / Importeur:ASIA EXPRESS FOOD / Spoorstraat 56 / 8271 RH / IJsselmuiden (NL) / Tel: +31 (0)38-3329082 / Fax: +31 (0)38-3329045 / Info@asiaexpressfood.nl / http://www.asiaexpressfood.nl

The Taste Test:

Himself:  “ good for when you are thirsty on a summers day, it gets what it deserves and nothing more, an average rating (Rating=5)”

Andrew:  on a summers day throw it over your head to cool down (Rating =3)”

Friedel: ” for a larger I like it, easy drinking, little citris , summer beer, not exciting not offensive either   (Rating = 5 )”

Evan: “ German or Chzch ? I have a strong suspicion I could drink too many of these as it seems quite light. (Rating = 4 )”

Alicia: “ too light for me, tasty but.. I want it in the summer as something refreshing , I’m guessing it’s German (Rating = 5 )”

Frank: “great starter, thirst quencher, larger, all year round refreshing” (Rating = 3)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

July 22, 2011

Now Here’s A German Spezial for You to Sample …

Filed under: Beer,Reviews — kiwidutch @ 1:00 am
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(photograph © Kiwidutch)

I’ve gotten behind as the official writer-upper of the beer tasting reviews.

I can’t even say I couldn’t do it because I’d had a few too many as  A) I don’t drink beer and B) I drink so little alcohol in general that everyone who actually knows me would know that I was lying though my teeth if I ever said that.

I’ve been putting this post together over a period of weeks and finally got it finished.

As usual, one of the group picks the beer, (no, they would never trust me to do that part)  and the others get a blind tasting so that they can’t be influenced by anything on the label at all.

For better or for worse, all they have to go by is the colour and their taste buds…

Spezial Rauchbier

1pt.9 Fl. oz / 0,5 l

Vol. Alc: 6.7%

Cat:–

Bottle Cap: Brauerei Spezial / Bierspezialitäten aus Bamberg

Neck Label: Brauerei Spezial / Bamberger / Rauchbier / 1536 / Christian Merz / Bock Bier/ Bebraut nach dem / Reinheitsgebot von 1516 / bayerischen / alc. 6,7% vol.

Label: Spezial Rauchbier / Brauerei . Spezial .  Bamberg  / Kühl und dunkel lagern / Zutaten: Wasser, Gerstenmalz, Hopfen.  / 1pt.9 Fl. oz / 0,5 l / beer, birra, bière, öl.

Taste Test:

(photograph © Kiwidutch)


Himself:  “I really like it, wonderful flavour, very full, (Rating=8)”

Andrew:  long aftertaste, nice smooth all the way though, nice colour you can almost see all the way though it,  no idea the country  though (Rating = 8.5)”

Friedel:I’m not as poetic as everyone else but I really like it, taste stays a long time  in your mouth and that’s quite nice, colour is nice too   (Rating = 8 )”

Evan: “ Is this a Belgium style beer?  It’s really delicious. Good beer for a ski lodge. (Rating = 8 )”

Alicia: “ This beer is really good, better than some of  the others we have tasted (Rating = 9 )”

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

May 12, 2011

Liquid Danish Chocolate, from the little village of Svaneke…

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

We are back on the beer tasting trail. This beer caused a bit of a commotion as our tasters either loved or hated it, but that in turn generated interesting comments  as glasses were raised and taste-buds put to work,  as well as a lot of  positive and negative face-pulling and merriment..

As usual as the non-beer drinking member of the group I’m doing the write ups of the reviews and everyone is being very accommodating as meetings are being held at our place whilst I am less mobile.

The bad news is that all the information of the bottle was in Danish (no great shock since this beer is also Danish) and our linguistic skills did not reach far enough to decipher what was on the bottle.

The good news is that I have some Danish work colleagues  and one was exceeding kind to do a translation of the text (Thanks S!) that I wrote out from the bottle (which I have included below, just in case (a) you happen to speak Danish or ( b) you would like to amuse yourself by trying to try and pronounce any of it).

Apologies for any inadvertent spelling errors I may have made in the Danish text, as spell checking was  step too far (writing it out was hard enough). The English translation is below the Danish text.

“BryghuSet Svaneke ‘ Choco Stout’

ufiltreret , 50 cl
Vol.Alc. 5.7%
Cat.–
Information on the bottle:

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

På Bornholm – Østersøens perle 0-ligger den lille købstad Svaneke med sit bryghus. Atmosfæren af klipper, bindingsværk og det  åbne hav
sætter sit præg  på livet-og på  øllet. Vi giver tid, vi holder a f de små   nuancer og tænker en kende længere. Det kan smages…
Choko Stout: Kraftig chokolade duft spredes når  øllet skækes op og d et nøddebrune skum stå r smukt I glasset. Den sorte farve tillader røde nuancer foran en lyskilde, medens den  første tå  afslører en moderat fyldig Stout, der mætter knapt så meget. Fire forskellige slags malt, der I blandt chokolade malt og karamel malt, sætter sit præg og humlen er fint afstemt dertil. Drikkes snildt til desserter eller en sød
eftermiddagsstund. Undergæret. Øllet er ufiltreret og kan indeholde bundfald af gær. Lagres oprejst og skæ nkes næ nsomt.
Brygget og tappet på  Bornholm.
http://www.svanekebryghus.dk  Ingredienser: Vand, bygmalt, aroma essens, humle og g ær.

Translation:

On Bornholm – called the ‘Pearl of the Östersöen’ – situated in the little village called Svaneke  its’ little brew house. The atmosphere with rocks, timbered houses and the open sea influences the life ,and the beer. We give it time, we care for the small details and think further. You can taste that…
Choko Stout: A strong chocolate scent spreads out when the beer is poured up and the nut brown foam stands beautifully in the glass.

The black colour allows red shades in front of a light source, while the first sip reveals a moderate, plump Stout, which saturates less. Four different malts, of which chocolate malt and caramel malt put their stamp on the beer and the (I missed a word here, sorry)…… is made for it. Can be enjoyed with desserts or a sweet afternoon moment. Under yeasted. The beer is unfiltered and can contain precipitate of yeast. Is to be stored upright and should be poured gently. Brewed and tapped on Bornholm.
Ingredients: water, barley malt, aroma essence, ….. and yeast.

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

www.svanekebryghus.dk

Taste Test:

Himself:  “recognise the quality …but it’s not me, (Rating=5)”

Andrew:  I do like it because I like nice sweet things, whilst I’ve not met a chocolate stout that I don’t like, I would say that “Fuller’s” chocolate stout (UK ) is even better (Rating = 8)”

Friedel:I love the chocolaty taste , but it smells more chocolaty than it tastes  (Rating = 9)”

Evan: “ I really like it ,  I like chocolate beers,  this one smells great, not overpowering at all (Rating = 9)”

Tamara: “Smells like liquid nutshell, but the taste is like a coffee flavoured syrup that has gone bad (Rating = 1)”

Li:Tastes like coffee, … yum…filthy, put this next to chocolate cake or liquid chocolate pudding or any chocolate dessert and  I would be very happy (Rating =8)

Erik:  “Chocolaty, it smells delicious  and I like it, …the moon is waxing ,solid . (Rating = 7.3)”

Alicia: ”  The chocolate  is really good,  you wouldn’t want more than one glass, a great beer to finish off an evening …(Rating = 8 )”

.. and in case you are wondering, the shape of the label is indeed the shape of the  Danish Island of Bornholm and the dot in the far right corner marks where the village of Svaneke is. A very cunning  idea to leave directions to your brewery!




April 6, 2011

Beer …Travels from The Netherlands to Paramaribo and Back!

Filed under: Beer,Reviews — kiwidutch @ 1:00 am
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(photograph © Kiwidutch)

For today’s Beer tasting we have temporarily lost a few members of our usual  group and temporarily gained a new one.

As usual as the non-beer drinking member of the group I’m doing the write ups of the reviews and everyone is being very accommodating as meetings are being held at our place whilst I am less mobile.

“Trio Brouwerij”,  Extra Stout

33cl/330ml

Vol.Alc. 7.2%

Cat.S.

Imported by- Geïmporteered Door: Pacific Trading Co.Ltd. P.O.Box 1009 Paramaribo, Suriname. Phone+597-487777

Brewed and bottled in the E.U. Under licence of and distributed by: Gebrouwen en afgevuld in de E.U. onder licentie van en gedistribueerd door: Trio Brouwerij, Ceresstraat 1 – 4811CA – Breda, Holland.

Ingredients: water, barley malt, maize. hops. /Ingrediënten: water, gerstemout, maïs, hop.

There is a quirky history that goes with this beer. Now, you know I like Quirky.

The “Trio Brouwerij” used to be a very well known and established brewery in The Netherlands,  and it did so well that it eventually exported it’s beer to Suriname  (Dutch Colony in South America).

In Suriname it grew so popular that it ended up being made under license in Paramaribo.

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

Meanwhile  beer drinking fashion in the Netherlands changed, resulting in a change of fortunes for the parent Dutch company, which did not survive the dip and went bust.

Now the pendulum of time has swung back and things have come full circle as the Suriname brewery is currently exporting  this beer back into The Netherlands.

In the laid back Suriname style, the bottle is not the least bit fancy, in fact it’s so undistinguished that Himself mistook it for a cheap supermarket beer that would surely be of no decent quality at all,  so this purchase was a bit of a gamble. So, was he right?

Reviews:

Himself:  “I really like this beer, I was very surprised to find it and didn’t have high expectations when I chose it because bottle looks like cheap supermarket, but don’t judge a book or a beer by it’s cover!” ( he also notes) ” This beer is  only available at the ABC Brewery beer shop  in The Hague.(Rating=8.5)”

Andrew: It’s really tasty, has a lovely colour:  pitch black , I like different textures and beer is all the same texture so colour for me is important. Lot of burnt notes on the  smell but not in the taste , very full body. (Rating = 8)”

Friedel:I liked it, not as much as some of the other beers we have tasted because it’s not as full bodied, still liked it (Rating = 7)”

Evan: “ I would have more than one glass of this, it’s fantastic, good smell, really good after-taste so you don’t have to drink it very fast. (Rating = 9)”

Alicia: “Tasty,  it seems stronger than some of the other ones we have tried, but not overpowering,  I wouldn’t  want more than one glass (Rating = 8)”

Frank: ” Does this beer come from Belgium? this beer is getting better and better all the time. (Rating = 8)”

(Note: the  second photo shows the detail of the label better, but  the light wasn’t good, and it isn’t the actual colour of the real label. The following photo shows better how the label looks).

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

March 31, 2011

Just Stopping In for a Quick One (to take Home)

Filed under: Beer,THE NETHERLANDS — kiwidutch @ 1:00 am
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(photograph © Kiwidutch)

One of our last stops on our Amsterdam  adventure last summer was a place that Himself has had his heart set on going to for a while now.

Actually it’s the main reason we bought the car and didn’t take the train here.

It’s a specialist Beer shop called “de bierkoning” (The Beer King).

http://bierkoning.nl/

Noooo,  Himself wasn’t drinking any beer here, but he was selecting some unusual Stout Beers for one of our Beer tasting evenings.

The lighting in the shop (and in some parts lack of it) made it hard to get any photos in focus, but at least you get the idea.

What’s brilliant about this place is the knowledge of the staff and the massive, nay, humongous number of beers on offer. Name a beer producing nation and I’m sure there are some bottles  from there somewhere!

They have Stouts, Lagers and since that’s where my personal beer knowledge ends, many many many more that I’ve never heard of.

Himself drooled  and grinned as he picked out our bottled candidates for upcoming tastings.  His eyes sparkled and his grin got even bigger when I said ” Well, since we are here, and have the car to get them home with, might as well pick out a few more, do this properly…

(Yes, he’s well worth spoiling)  Therefore we returned to the car heavily laden and for Himself, starting the day in Amsterdam with a Guinness and ending it by bringing home some unusual Stouts to try was the icing on the cake of a brilliant day out, weather issues or not.

De Bierkoning  /  Paleisstraat 125   /  1012 ZL Amsterdam   / Tel: 020 6252336

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

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