Beer #214 - Abbey / Kolsch

Beer #214 - W/C 1 April 2019

BREWERY // Fermenting is a family business for the Haworths who founded Abbey Estate Winery almost 20 years ago in Hawkes Bay. Abbey Brewery started out in 2012 under the name Fat Monk selling beer at Abbey's cellar door. Dermot Haworth took inspiration from the great beers he discovered while travelling the world and, after perfecting recipes on a small pilot brew kit, decided to start contract brewing with Mata. Those initial beers went down well and Dermot built a brewery on site at the Hastings winery and dropped the Fat Monk moniker. As you might expect, Abbey take inspiration from Belgian Trappist styles and you'll always find a couple of those in the range. Not one to be pigeonholed, he has also taken inspiration from milkshakes and slushies for recent releases. The best place to drink Abbey beers is at the brewery where they have a dozen beers and a dozen wines pouring as well as a packed live music schedule throughout the warmer months.

BEER // The name Kölsch was first coined 100 years ago to describe the bright, light Cologne (Köln) beer style. More than forty breweries operated in the city at the outbreak of World War II but only three remained after the devastation wreaked by Allied bombing campaigns. In 1986 local brewers came together to sign the Kölsch Konvention stating that the name is regionally protected with all signatories agreeing to exclusively serve the beer in 200ml Stange glasses. Kölsch is a demanding style to brew and is also very overlooked by craft beer fans. To the uninitiated, it is reminiscent of a lager. While the style is lagered (finished at a cold temperature), it is made with a top fermenting ale yeast making it fruitier but still as gleamingly fresh as it's bottom fermented cousin. It's a subtle and delicate difference and takes us back to a time before hop bombs and mouth-puckering sours. Abbey's take on the style is more flavoursome than traditional Kölsches. Motueka & Yakima Gold hops were used liberally late in the brew and for dry hopping, which gives lime flavours and aromas of lemon and grapefruit.

BREWERY // Abbey 
BEER // Kolsch
STYLE // Kölsch
ORIGIN // Hastings
ABV // 5.2%
FOOD MATCH // Boiled Pork Knuckle. Bratwurst. Black Pudding, Fried Onions & Mashed Potato. Pizza.
GLASS // Stange