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August 8, 2011 | by  | in Opinion | [ssba]

Beer Will Be Beer – A Tale of Three Matts and a ParrotDog

Once upon a time, two Victoria University students had a dream—to sell their homebrew commercially in New Zealand.
And that dream has recently come true—despite the fact they’re still studying.

A few months after starting home brewing myself, I met Matt Warner and Matt Kristovski, who lived down the road from me. They came over one day to check out my equipment, because they were planning to build their own brew kit for their home brewery, dubbed ParrotDog.

After much trial and error, Matt and Matt hammered out a few solid recipes and the urge to share their successes with the public grew and grew. Eventually they approached their mate Matt Stevens (who is conveniently a chartered accountant), and went thirds in creating a real-life company: ParrotDog Brewing Limited.

They followed the growing trend of contract brewing and brewed their first beer, BitterBitch, at Mike’s Brewery in Taranaki. The brew went well, and the resulting beer was recently launched at a record-setting night at Hashigo Zake.

The launch night packed out the bar, and after the Matts poured the first ever pints of ParrotDog BitterBitch, kegs emptied as fast as they could be changed, with all 120 litres of the launch beer being drained in one hour and 26 minutes—a new Hashigo Zake record.

I managed to get a taste of the ParrotDog Bitterbitch (5.8%) before it seemingly evaporated, and what I experienced was just as good as their homebrew. The Matts went against the Mike’s brewer’s advice, and added more than 10kg of dry hops. This “add more hops” approach did wonders for the beer, with an intense passionfruit aroma and grass characteristics coming through from the Motueka and Nelson Sauvin hops used. The beer lives up to its name with an intense bitterness, but this is offset well by the rich Maris Otter malt and a perceived sweetness from the fruity hops.

It’s been a pleasure watching ParrotDog go from a twinkle in the Matts’ eyes to a resounding success, which I’m sure will continue. The next ParrotDog offering is on its way with ParrotDog IPA being brewed just two weekends ago. Check this one out in late August.

[ssba]

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  1. Stu as "Stu" says:

    “They came over one day to check out my equipment”

    *chuckles and reads on*

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