Beer #264 - W/C 16th March 2020
BREWERY // As the owners of a successful Christchurch homebrew shop, it seemed a natural progression for Paul & Laura Finney to launch Emporium Brewing in 2015. Initially they contract brewed beers but they soon started the search for a site of their own. They discovered the perfect spot in Kaikoura just metres from the ocean. It had the added bonus of a (rather overgrown) mini golf course on the property which they lovingly renovated as well as setting up escape rooms. And five weeks after they opened their doors the big earthquake hit. Emporium beers can be hard to find outside of Kaikoura so we recommend grabbing them whenever you spot them - especially their seasonal, wild fermented and barrel aged beers. Of course, the best place to find Emporium beers is to pop in and see Finney himself and get a flagon filled at the brewery taproom. And the best time to visit is early March when they host a mini beer festival with fellow local brewers - Kegkoura. We'll see you there next year.
BEER // Beers have always been brewed to celebrate special occasions which is a rather terrific tradition. To celebrate his 40th birthday, brewer Finney wanted to make a very big beer by packing as much malt as possible into his mash tun. The Imperial Red Ale style was created in California as a juiced up Red Ale with boosted alcohol, body and hops. The word 'Imperial' has been used to signify 'strong' in beer since Peter the Great fell in love with boozy London Stouts in 1698 and began importing them to his Imperial Russian court. Reuben The Red is definitely a celebration beer - it's full bodied, packed with flavour and surprisingly smooth and easy-drinking considering it's heavy-hitting abv. The aroma and initial flavour is dominated by the huge malt bill with rounded fruitcake sweetness. The bitterness of the hops stops the beer being too cloying and the delicate spice additions (cinnamon, star anise & coriander) add to the complexity. It's tasting great not but we're stashing a few bottles to age and see how the beer changes with time. For science.
You can stock up on more Reuben the Red from our webshop.
BREWERY // Emporium
BEER // Reuben The Red
STYLE // Spiced Imperial Red Ale
ORIGIN // Kaikoura
ABV // 9.5%
TEMPERATURE // Cupboard Temp. 14-17C
FOOD MATCH // Senegalese Fish Balls. Mushroom Wellington. Washed Rind Cheese with Fig Jam. Crayfish.
VESSEL // Tulip. Wine Glass