New Zealand has no shortage of craft breweries. It seems everywhere you look, a new boutique brewery has turned up and is trying to sell you its unique take on old (or new) classics. [And full disclosure, I own shares in one of these so really shouldn’t complain…]
And while many of these brewers are happy [should that be hoppy?] pumping up the ABV to hitherto unexplored heights, what we seem to lack are experimenters at the other end. New Ways Brewery are here to help fill that void – with their Glass of Hops NZ Pale Ale and Manuka Stout (see separate review.)
First things first – this beer is at the high-end of the “non-alcoholic” spectrum. As I noted last week, New Zealand liquor licensing laws mean that drinks with “less than 1.15% alcohol by volume” are not considered as alcoholic drinks (for the purpose of licensing.) Curiously, GlassofHops is labelled as less than 1.15% abv. Which means a can is about 0.3 standard drinks – hard to get drunk on, but not zero alcohol.
GlassofHops is the non/low alcohol beer for people like me. I haven’t minded the odd lager type beer during this journey, but I really prefer pale ales and bold hops.
It pours nicely, with a floral aroma from the hops. On tasting it, it is enjoyable. The hop flavours aren’t quite right. A couple of months ago I had some leftover dried Riwaka hops that I soaked in water – just to see what they were like. The flavour of GlassofHops reminded me of that flavour – like an “undeveloped” hop. It’s not a wrong flavour, just a bit earthy more than fruity.
At about $3 a can, this is a good go-to option and well worth a taste.
Style: Pale Ale
Origin: New Zealand
A hoppy New Zealand Pale Ale – definitely the best of the “non-alcoholic” beers available in the country right now.