Milkshake-inspired stouts clean up at Wellington beer festival

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Wellington brewers Choice Bros learned to “go with their gut instincts” with the success of their milkshake-inspired stouts. Photo / Supplied

It was the milkshakes that brought everyone to the yard at a Wellington beer festival, with creamy milkshake-inspired stouts claiming the top three spots at Beervana over the weekend.

Wellington brewery Choice Bros took out first, second and third place with their milkshake stout range.

Head brewer Brayden Rawlinson said they had been playing around with the base beer – a stout – since it performed well at Brew Day in Upper Hutt earlier in the year.

“We didn’t know how it would go pouring because stout’s a very seasonal beer … but it was the biggest seller on the day.”

They experimented with ingredients, additives and flavour combinations to see how they could enhance their “Shake-it” Stout.

“We came up with four beers from the same base beer … one was strawberry, one was caramel, one was banana and one was cherry and coconut.”

The beers were created from a milk chocolate stout base, which used lactose and nitro for the thick, creamy effect.

Rawlinson said it was important to stand out at a beer festival, as people often came to see something different.

“Beervana comes around only once a year and in order to do well at beer festivals you need something that stands out.”

Wellington brewers Choice Bros took out the top three spots at beer festival Beervana. Photo / Supplied
Wellington brewers Choice Bros took out the top three spots at beer festival Beervana. Photo / Supplied

“There’s no point going to a beer festival with your core range of beers or something people can access every day.”

The success of the milkshake range “snowballed” throughout the day, Rawlinson said, with flavours Caramello, Pinky (strawberry) and Perky Nana (banana) taking out the top three spots.

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By the time Saturday rolled around Choice Bros had already taken out two of the three top spots, and Rawlinson said they were “hammered”, selling out of the Perky Nana in two and a half hours.

Milkshake-inspired beers were a crowd favourite at Beervana. Photo / 123rf
Milkshake-inspired beers were a crowd favourite at Beervana. Photo / 123rf

A beer festival “veteran”, Rawlinson said it was the best result he had ever had at an event. After the success of the weekend, they were looking forward to experimenting further.

“We just learned to go with our gut instincts.

“We came up with a concept and executed it, and it obviously worked really well.

“You ain’t seen nothing yet, this is the start of very innovative days in terms of what we want to start doing.”

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