I mashed-up 100 Hop Zombies

Last Friday night I created my own Hop Zombie army.

Regional Wines ran an Apocalypse-themed beer tasting and I was the popular guy who gave away all the beer. The range was Epic’s collaboration brew Mash Up, Epic Mayhem, Epic Armageddon and Epic Hop Zombie.

Yes, it was a hoppy bunch, and with more than one hundred people served on two hours, it was clearly a popular bunch too. Or maybe people just like free beer.

Since most of the guests had tried Mayhem and Armageddon before, it was Mash Up and Hop Zombie that created the most interest.

Last summer Epic’s Luke Nicholas and Kelly Ryan made a road trip visiting 44 brewers around the country – search Youtube for nzcraftbeertv to see their holiday snaps.

The other result was Mash Up: “Coupled with the video production was the idea that all of the passion and concepts of the craft brewers be captured in a special collaboration brew that was to act as a summary of what was happening in New Zealand beer in 2011”, says the Mash Up news release.

Mash Up is a New Zealand pale ale using Gladfield Ale and Maris Otter malts with NZ Cascade, Southern Cross and Riwaka hops, and a US yeast. The guests at Regional were taken with the obvious hop presence and pale colour. The NZ hops were also commented on, with a few using words like “sauvignon blanc”, “cat’s”, “onions” and “sweaty”. Mash Up is astringently hoppy in a way that encourages you to take another sip.

While Mash Up is an overtly hoppy beer, Hop Zombie takes everything a big step further. The hops used are a secret at this stage, and all we know is it uses two NZ hops and two US hops in a combination that is promised to raise eyebrows. At 80 IBUs, this has about four or five times the hop content of your typical green bottle premium lager. It is powerfully aromatic and although it has plenty of bitterness, this is matched by rich hop and malt flavours. Perhaps the most frequent comment about Hop Zombie was that it is deceptively smooth and drinkable for a beer with 8.5% alcohol and 80 IBUs. It has great mouthfeel and the flavours are impressively balanced.

I can personally vouch for its drinkability, having happily had two pints when it was on tap at The Malthouse without guessing how much alcohol was in there. It has masses of flavour and certainly isn’t dominated by the alcohol. Have one and you’ll be a hop zombie for life.

Brews News
Wellington is getting two new brewpubs, scheduled to be up and pumping well before the Rugby World Cup. One will be run by the Malthouse team on Bond Street. This site was once occupied by the Loaded Hog, which had its own range of beers that may or may not have been brewed on site. No name has been announced yet but the number of taps has – 40.

The other brewpub has had less publicity but is rumoured to belong to the Bruhaus crew and to be in the former Curry Club site on the corner of Victoria and Ghuznee Streets. The rumour says we can look for 50 beer taps here.

Two pubs with 90 beer taps – that’s more than some towns! Bring it on!

© Martin Craig, May 2011
martin@nzbeerblog.com
Follow us on Twitter @nzbeerblog



3 Responses to “I mashed-up 100 Hop Zombies”

  1. Glad you had a good time. sorry I missed you,

    I wasnt aware that the curry Club venture was going to actually brew its own beer?

    Reply

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