The Garage Project's Chateau Aro
How on earth can I pick a single wine of the week from my two week trip to New Zealand? The answer is I can’t so I’m chickening out and going for a beer
That’s not such as cop-out as it might sound as a) New Zealand has an incredible craft beer scene and b) the beer - Wellington-based Garage Project’s Chateau Aro - also has a wine connection.
It’s a lager brewed with the juice and skins from Larry McKenna’s 2014 Escarpment pinot noir so not surprisingly it’s deeply vinous but there’s also a rich dark lager character. If you come across it (and I suspect that’s only likely to be in New Zealand*) watch out - it’s strong at 8.5% ABV - a bit reminiscent of a barley wine only drier (think a pumped up Rodenbach).
It was very good on its own when I drank it with Larry and his winemaker Huw at the end of our tasting but I reckon I’d enjoy it with venison or pigeon - or a cheeseboard. It would be spot on with Stilton.
(Incidentally if you find yourself in Wellington check out Hashigo Sake, an amazing underground beer bar with over 300 beers. Perversely I ended up drinking a beer from San Francisco - the Almanac Dolores Saison.)
* If you fancy a similar beer closer to home try the Wild Beer Co’s Modus Operandi though it’s not quite as winey.
If you found this post useful and were happy to get the advice for free perhaps you'd think about donating towards the running costs of the site? You can find out how to do it here or to subscribe to our regular newsletter click here.