Beer of the Year

Each year we choose a beer to try to clone. The professional brewer gives us some hints about the recipe and the rest is down to club members’ trial and error. Some serious judging takes place to find out who has brewed the closest clone.

2021’s Beer of the Year

Bach Brewing Kingtide Pacific IPA

Kingtide is described as a ‘Pacific IPA’ as it “is brewed with a caravan full of five character hops from the NZ and US coasts of the Pacific Ocean”.

Craig has shared this much about the recipe – now it is up to you to determine the hop additions and try to brew it ready for judging at September’s meeting:

Kingtide IPA
67 IBU
6.9% ABV
7.5 EBC

Gladfields malts:
40% Lager light
45% American ale and (standard) ale blend.
5% Munich
5% Light crystal
5% Torrified wheat

60 mins – Chinook
10 mins – Rakau and Motueka
Whirlpool – Chinook, Rakau, Amarillo, Mosaic, Citra (two thirds of the hops overall are in the whirlpool)
Dry hop at 15g per litre with the same hops that are in the whirlpool (Amarillo and Citra make up 50% of the dry hop bill)

70C mash

18-22C ferment with WY1272 yeast

Water based on a standard IPA profile

2019’s Beer of the Year

The Duke Rye Pale Ale —  Laughing Bones Brewing

This award winning beer is an Imperial Pale Ale, as style that is heftier than a Pale Ale and in lineage to but not quite claiming IPA status. The Duke is a wry guy, brewed with a good dose of rye to give it a spicy, dry finish that mingles well with the resinous, piney and citrusy overtones from the Chinook, Simcoe and Centennial hops. Raise your glass with a toast to The Duke and his ‘rye’ sense of beer appreciation.

2018’s Beer of the Year

Lotus New Zealand Pale Ale — Deep Creek Brewing

The lotus has captivated ancient and contemporary cultures the world over for millennia.  It displays an innate ability to rise above the watery chaos and present itself at dawn to worship the sun throughout the day. Subtle pale malt notes produce a clear golden hue with subtle honey brioche flavours, and provide the perfect backdrop for the hops to showcase their floral and citrus characters.


  • Style: Pale Ale
  • Alcohol By Volume: 4.5%
  • Colour: Golden
  • Approximately 20-25 IBU
Grain Bill
  • Gladfield Ale Malt – 94%
  • Gladfield Light Crystal – 3%
  • Sour Grapes Malt – 3%
  • Bitter with Pacific Jade at 60 min
  • Wai-iti hop addition at 10 min
  • Whirlpool addition of Taiheke and Wai-iti (similar quantities to the dry hop addition)
  • Dry hop of Taiheke and Wai-iti – approximately 5g per litre.
  • Aim for a mash pH of 5.2
  • Similar levels of SO4 to Cl ratio (1:1)
  • WLP001 (or US05 if dry)
  • Ferment at 18 degrees C
  • Ramp up to 21 or so for a diacetyl rest

2017’s Beer of the Year

The Doctor — Sawmill

Toasty aromas, rich malts, light caramel and chocolate flavours. Dark brown in colour with ruby highlights. Reserved hop presence, just enough bitterness to carry the malt. Residual sweetness, lingering mouthfeel.


  • 6.5% ABV
  • FG 1.016
  • Mid 20s IBU
  • Like a Bock/Schwarzbier
  • No astringency or alcohol taste
Grain Bill
  • ⅓ Gladfield Pilsner Malt
  • ⅓ Gladfield Munich Malt
  • ⅓ Gladfield Vienna Malt
  • Weyermann Caramunich Type 1
  • Weyermann Carafa Special Type 2 (Dehusked)
  • A touch of Gladfield Light Chocolate
  • Mash for a dry beer
  • Pacific Jade for bittering
  • Pacific Jade and Pacifica in whirlpool
  • More Chloride than sulphide. Ratio: 1:0.75
  • 50ppm Ca
  • White Labs German Lager WLP830
  • Ferment at 12C
  • Free rise to 16/17C
  • Diacetyl rest at 20C
  • Lager 1 to 2 weeks

2016’s Beer of the Year

Oh Lordy Pale Ale — Funk Estate

The 2016 September clone beer of the year is Funk Estate’s Oh Lordy Pale Ale. You can read about it here:

ABV: 5.5%

Oh Lordy is our contribution to the oh-so-popular pale ale style. We think the balance is pretty bangin’.

The munich malt provides a wee bit of biscuity pleasure, combined with a generous amount of kiwi hops, carefully selected to summon some sexual citrus, passion fruit and grape notes.
We challenge you to drink it and not scream out… Oh Lordy!
Tasting Notes: Gooseberries, grape and tropical fruit aroma with a medium malt body.

2015’s Beer of the Year

Ardennes – Tuatara

Ardennes is Tuatara’s strong, Belgian-style blonde ale. Ardennes is named after the yeast that gives it all those spicy orange notes and there is no mistaking the strong bit! Here’s some information on this beer:

  • Taste: Citrus characters, spicy orange notes
  • Look: Golden yellow
  • Aroma: Orange, spicy & Belgium esters and phenolics
  • Try With: Cheese platter
  • Hops: Pacific Jade, Citra, Amarillo
  • Malt: NZ Pilsner
  • Alcohol (ABV): 6.5%
  • Bitterness (IBU): 24

Carl Vasta from Tuatara will be judging.