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Published: Sunday March 30, 2014 MYT 12:00:00 AM
Updated: Sunday March 30, 2014 MYT 2:05:17 PM

Step aside, New Zealand winemakers, here comes the beer brewers

The peaty Rex Attitude golden ale won the Morton Coutts Trophy for Innovation at the 2011 Brewers Guild of New Zealand Awards.

The peaty Rex Attitude golden ale won the Morton Coutts Trophy for Innovation at the 2011 Brewers Guild of New Zealand Awards.

Taps Beer Bar goes all the way down to New Zealand to bring back some excellent Kiwi beers for Malaysian drinkers.

Fancy some Kiwi beers? Taps Beer Bar is now stocking an eclectic range of New Zealand ales, IPA and porters to complement their impressive range of craft beers. This specialty bar already carries beers from 8 Wired, Renaissance and Yeastie Boys, on tap and by the bottle.

The Renaissance Brewing Company is based in Blenheim, a town in New Zealand's Marlborough region best known for making wine than brewing beers. But among the beers available here is Renaissance Voyage, an easy-drinking English IPA, and Renaissance Stonecutter Scotch ale, my favourite beer from the brewery. Described as the “big hearty red wine” of their range, it's an excellent 7% ABV ale that's rich in flavour, amazingly balanced and smooth at the same time.

Also from Blenheim is 8 Wired, brewed by “nomadic Danish brewer” Søren Eriksen, who seems to have an affinity for IPA. The brewer’s Super Conductor Double IPA and Semi Conductor Session IPA are excellent expressions of the style. But for something different, try The Big Smoke, a porter that actually has a hint of bacon about it.

Some of the new craft beers from New Zealand at Taps. 

The highlight of the Kiwi range at Taps are the beers from Yeastie Boys, an eclectic brewery in Wellington run by Stu McKinlay and Sam Possenniskie, for whom this is just a part-time business – they both have day jobs in unrelated industries, according to the Yeastie Boys website.

Still, their beers have won multiple awards – their flagship porter Pot Kettle Black won gold at the 2009 BrewNZ Beer Awards, the Gunnamatta spiced beer was voted People’s Choice at the Great Australasian Beer SpecTAPular, and the peaty Rex Attitude golden ale won the Morton Coutts Trophy for Innovation at the 2011 Brewers Guild of New Zealand Awards.

All three are available at Taps, along with the Digital IPA. But the most unique one has to be the hugely popular Gunnamatta, which is infused with Earl Grey tea and tastes like a combination of refreshing iced tea and smooth pale ale.

My absolute favourite of the lot is Rex Attitude, the self-proclaimed “heavily-peated golden ale” that packs a powerful punch at first and then mellows into a wonderfully balanced and refreshing ale, before ending with a long, lingering, smoky finish.

Taps Beer Bar is at One Residency, 1 Jalan Nagasari, KL. For details, call (03) 21101560 or email info@tapsbeerbar.my.

Tags / Keywords: Lifestyle, beer, New Zealand, craft beer, Taps Beer Bar

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