2012 was another eventful year at Croucher Brewing... why do we do it to ourselves??
April saw Paul on TV recreating the beer Captain James Cook brewed when he arrived in NZ. the program was called The New Old, and was a great snapshot of the local beer scene. the beer, however, was not so great - how the Captain Cook and his crew stomached that beer is a mystery that perhaps only shear desperation explains. The use of molases as the malt substitute made for a fowl concoction, surely even by the standards of that era.
In May Croucher Pilsner won CHAMPION PILSNER at the Australian International Beer Awards - the largest annual beer awards competition in the world. Needless to say we were rather pleased.
The middle of the year saw the creation of 'Today's Morning Tea' on our Facebook pafge, where we would promote and rate various beers that we get to try at the brewery.
In August we joined the pilgrimage to Beervana and BrewNZ. It was a fabulous 3 days in Wellington trying some great beer, and catching up with all the top people who populate our industry. Beervana should be on your to-do list for 2013!
We introduced a few new beers throughout the year, including; Ethiopean Pale Ale (a coffees stout brewed using Ethiopian Yirgicheffe beans roasted on our own commercial coffee roaster), Low Rider (a 2.7% hoppy session ale) and Galaxy IPA.
September saw the brewery that we had been borrowing taken out and shipped to Australia, that started our search for a replacement kit. We found a big kit sitting dormant on a farm in rural Morrinsville (the ex-Kiwi Breweries kit). We temporarily set up our original plant while we worked through getting the new equipment. So over November/December we shifted the plant to Rotorua - set up a small proportion of it while we find new premises that can handle the size of the new tanks/chillers, etc.
So it was a pretty manic end to the year, but it has been a huge amount of fun learning about new equipment, and having a chance to re-design the flow throughout our brewery... and we will get to do it again in 2013 with a new premises.
Thanks to all our supporters for sticking with us for another year - we some exciting plans for 2013, so stay tuned!