Wednesday, 9 September 2009

Tasting Calendar

We've been planning a calendar of regular tastings at Hashigo Zake and now's the time to make some noise about them and start accepting bookings.

First up will be a journey through the beers of Norway's celebrated, maverick brewery Nøgne Ø.

Nøgne Ø was founded in 2002 by two home brewers. One of them (Kjetil Jikiun) also happens to be an airline pilot who has used his time travelling and his affability to forge links with renowned breweries in Japan (Shiga Kogen), Denmark (Mikkeller) and the US (Stone & Jolly Pumpkin). Luckily the beer is also uncannily good, so for a small brewery their reputation has spread disproportionately.

I was lucky enough to meet Kjetil in Tokyo late last year and this set in motion a sequence of events that led to us becoming Nøgne Ø's first outlet in New Zealand.

At the moment we have seven of Nøgne Ø's beers and this includes some of their best - the intense Imperial Stout, the IIPA/Barley Wine called #100, the puzzling Sahti and (don't tell DB) their Saison. Try it before they set their lawyers on us.

We are now taking bookings for this tasting.

A week later we will host something a little different - a Sake tasting with live (televised) Sumo thrown in. Our cocktail and sake expert, Shigeo Takagi, will guide us through a sampling of our sake range, plus a few special extras, climaxing in live coverage from Tokyo of the September Grand Sumo Tournament. The tasting will be oriented to beer drinkers - experience with sake will not be a pre-requisite.

To book for either of these, call the bar at (04) 384-7300 or send us an email at The price for both events is $30.

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