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Welcome to BorderPost, Issue 13

December 12, 2014

Welcome to the final issue* of BorderPost for 2014.

* we may be compelled to put out BorderPost Issue 13 ½ before Christmas!

US Invasion 

It’s confession time – we’re willing collaborators with a kind of invading force. But they’ve promised that this time there will be no enhanced interrogations, no stress positions and no renditions, extraordinary or plain. And this invading force comes strictly from peace loving, progressive states like Oregon and California.

A fortnight ago we announced the impending arrival of beer from the remarkable new San Diego brewery Modern Times. We can confirm that cans of their four year round beers and bottles of their Red Rye IPA will reach a handful of outlets in January. And there will be a New Year’s Eve launch of the core beers at Brothers Beer in Auckland and Hashigo Zake in Wellington.

We can now announce that hot on the heels of this first shipment of Modern Times will come beer from two Oregon breweries. These breweries won’t be completely new to anyone who attended Beervana this year. And we are grateful to the organisers of Beervana for giving us the chance to meet these trailblazing Oregon brewers.

So in early 2015 we’ll be taking delivery of beer from Commons Brewery and from Gigantic. They’re on the way with a fresh shipment of beer from another great Oregon brewery – Pelican. We've just heard that these are expected in New Zealand a day or two into the new year, so they should start finding their way to willing retailers around January the 7th.

- DK

Word of the Year

A few days ago we heard that Public Address’s Word of the Year contest needed what they called a “prize sponsor”. As a business staffed by more than a couple of – ahem - open-minded progressives, we saw this as a great opportunity to reach the kind of adventurous yet discerning people who would appreciate the arrival of Modern Times beer.

Unfortunately there is a body of opinion that says that it would be a breach of the 2012 Sale and Supply of Alcohol Act if we were to provide a case or two of beer as a prize to whoever comes up with the Word of the Year. Which is really annoying and upsetting for a couple of reasons. One is that it isn’t 100% clear that the Sale of Alcohol Act does outlaw what we were planning, but they seem to have everyone convinced that it's verboten. The other is the fact that competitions such as
this and this are, apparently, no problem at all.

But never mind. We’re sponsoring in another way and certain lucky Public Address staff will be refreshed while they work on Word of the Year. We also encourage readers of BorderPost to head on over to Public Address and vote.

Meanwhile… having been riled by one of the many effects of the 2012 Sale and Supply of Alcohol Act, we’d like to do something positive, defiant and entertaining to exorcise our disappointment. So we now announce the 2014 Beer Word of the Year contest. We’d like to invite BorderPost readers to propose a word that sums up 2014 with respect to the New Zealand brewing industry, or a word whose new-found use reflects some significant change in the industry this year. Or it might simply be a brewery or beer name. We might allow a little latitude with short phrases, so, for instance “stupid new liquor law” might be acceptable. But ideally we’re talking about single words. We’ll accept nominations for a while, then run a survey to see which gets the most votes.

Whoever is the first to nominate the word that eventually wins will be awarded our winning prize. Rather than test the law by offering a prize of beer, we can offer a pair of Rastal Teku glasses. These will be the full size Teku (the small one was used at the Pacific Beer Expo) and will be decorated with the logos of Beer Without Borders and our sister company Hashigo Zake, and will come in a limited edition case. We will encourage the winners to put the glass to good, responsible and frequent use. (And we invite any lawyers out there to comment on whether it’s legal for us to encourage frequent use of a vessel designed to contain beer.)

Want to nominate a Beer Word of the Year? We will accept nominations via email, facebook and twitter from 5pm today. We’ll start a thread on facebook at 5pm that replies can be posted to. We’ll look for nominations on twitter from 5pm today using the hashtag #BeerWOTY2014. And we’ll accept nominations emailed to Where the same word is nominated more than once, we’ll take note of the timestamp on the email, facebook comment or tweet.

Then we’ll pick the good ones and launch a proper survey in about a week.

- DK
The First Ever Beer Without Borders Xmas Beer Market
The 2012 Sale and Supply of Liquor Act :– did we ever say how much we love and admire this seminal piece of legislation? You see, this week we received the temporary licence that enables our first ever Christmas Beer Market. Before it was issued we had a few calls from the powers that be about this… “what kinds of discounts will there be?”… “will there be free samples?”. (On reflection, maybe they had ulterior motives for asking these questions.)

So we have had to satisfy certain powerful people that we aren’t running a cheap booze, rock ‘n roll, hookers and blow, drink yourself stupid sample-fest. A pity, but never mind.

To be clear to everyone interested, here is a little FAQ about what will go on on the 20th.
  • What’s it all about? This is an experiment in beer retailing, based on our observation that we get a lot of requests to sell people good beer by the case in the run-up to Christmas.
  • Will there be samples? No.
  • Will there be spectacular discounts? Hmm... depends on your point of view. We’re in a position to find some middle ground between wholesale and retail pricing. Given that most liquor retailers aren’t making the kinds of margins that you might think, these differences may or may not get you excited.
  • What will be for sale? Potentially anything in our rather large portfolio. But we’ll present a short list that we think will interest people the most.
  • Will it be cases only? No, we’ll offer half cases, with the condition that you buy two half cases of products that come in the same format… so imagine your two favourite IPAs just there, together in the same carton looking up at you, asking you to take them home for Christmas….
  • When and where? At our Wellington warehouse at 24 Abel Smith St, Wellington, from 1pm to 5pm. We have quite a large forecourt, so you can drive up, park and walk on up to our desk, where we’ll take your order then duck into the cool store to collect it.
  • Will we tidy the forecourt first? Probably.
  • Will there be eftpos? Yes.
  • Will there be anything else for sale? Yes, a little… some fantastic glassware, reusable 20L pubkeg outer shells (hundreds of potential uses) and one or two other goodies that will make perfect Christmas gifts for the beer geek in your life. And if they're back from the printer we'll have copies of the 2015 Craft Beer Calendar for sale.

- DK

 Modern Times Launch

Our first shipment of Modern Times beer is somewhere in the middle of the Pacific right now. There have been some awful disruptions to see freight over this route in the last few months, but we remain optimistic that our kegs, cans and bottles will get here before the new year.

To celebrate, and as mentioned above, we're planning simultaneous launch events at Brothers Beer in Auckland and Hashigo Zake in 
Wellington. On tap will be:
  • Blazing World - hoppy amber
  • Fortunate Islands - hoppy wheat
  • Black House - coffee stout
  • Lomaland - saison
Look out too for a formal tasting of all our Modern Times beers, complete with a live video link to the brewery, on or around January 21. more details next year!

Speaking of New Year's Eve

We're chatting to Basque in Wellington about something of a combined US breweries Tap Takeover on New Year's Eve. If we get the chance we'll announce more details closer to the time through social media.


As mentioned in BorderPost #12, we're hoping to get out of the pen at the back corner of our Wellington cool store and out into real New Zealand a lot more in 2015. We've got enough different beers at our disposal to bombard you all with more different kinds of beer tasting than you can shake a stick at.

So when we conduct the Beer Word of the Year survey we'll also invite you to propose the names of breweries, beer styles or any other concepts for tastings that we might make happen. We'll also invite suggestions for towns and venues that might welcome our 2015 Beer Tasting Roadshow.

- DK

Beer Reviews
Rogue Double Chocolate Stout

The regular Chocolate Stout is Shakespeare Stout with chocolate syrup. This Double version is packed full of bitter dark chocolate goodness.

Packaged in a distinctive bright red 750ml bottle this stands out from the green and brown bottles on any shelf.

Made with 12 ingredients including real chocolate and honey this decadent dessert of a beer will blow you away.

A big black body with a dark bubbly head at 8.7% the big chocolate and subtle vanilla aroma hides the alcohol well. Bittersweet cocoa and dark fruits with a big warming mouthfeel, a big rich monster of a self saucing chocolate cake in a bottle. When it reaches room temperature sweet honey appears as you savour every mouthful. A great gift for chocolate and dark beer lovers alike.

Serve lightly chilled and drink slowly allowing to warm.

Food match: Vanilla Ice Cream Float, Chocolate Self Saucing Pudding or Beef Cheek.
Music match: Opeth - Face of Melinda
Available at: The Hour Glass, Super Liquor Poenamo, Moore Wilsons, Liquorland Forrest Hill, Meenan’s Wine and Spirits, Fresh Choice Nelson and Brothers Beer.

Ratebeer Untappd

- SW
Baird Brewing Japan Tale Ale

Baird’s yearly release of their Japan Tale Ale has landed on our shores, and offers up a curious blend of brewing sensibilities mixed with some fun Japanese ingredients.

“The idea for this brew came while enjoying a nice ume sour at a local yakitori pub several years back.”, says brewer Bryan Baird, “Why not craft a beer-version of this wonderfully tart and fruity libation.”

The use of Ume plums certainly delivers the required dose of “fruity libation” to the beer, with additional notes of apricot and tangy lime pith complementing a fresh, tart finish.  Japanese Korizato sugar also makes an appearance in the brew, which helps flesh out the palate a touch, yet still leaves the beer with a clean, fresh finish with balanced hoppiness and length.

Food Match: Barbequed chicken skewers.

Music Match: Mono - The Flames Beyond the Cold Mountain
Untappd RateBeer

Auckland - Masu, Brothers (next week)
Wellington - Hashigo Zake (bottle pour Saturday, tomorrow!)

- BA
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