Since Nelson proclaims itself to be the craft brewing capital of NZ (we saw fields of hops being grown as we drove in so it could be true!), it seemed that a pub crawl was in order.
Lonely Planet recommended Harrys Bar so that was our first stop but a bit disappointing – not the right vibe for a pub crawl as it’s an Asian fusion restaurant and didn’t have much on tap. We still imbibed though: a Stoke Lager and an ale from Golden Bay called Captain Cooker – that was actually a nice surprise find, tasty.
Across the street we got back on track at the Vic, aka home of Macs, which we had sampled a bot already in other towns. I got the Great White (their wheat beer) while BK enjoyed a darker ale called Motueka Mystery.
Down the street from Macs is another large brewery option, Sprig & Fern – here we got a tasting flight of six, from a choice of 18! I was most excited by the Ginger Lager while BK was happy to see a Doppelback and a Scotch Egg on the menu.
Last stop of the evening was another LP recommendation, the Free House – this place definitely had the most interesting beer collection on tap. BK got a Townshend amber while I got an intriguing beer, a Grisette from Renaissance brewery. Aged in Pinot Noir barrels, it was pink like a rose – and then when you tasted it, a heavy smoky flavor. Good, but bizarre.