Wellington brewmasters Panhead Custom Ales are bringing their impressive range to the waterfront this summer with a pop-up bound to generate excitement amongst Auckland beer lovers.
Formerly a nightclub, the space has been stripped back and customised. There’s now a pool table, games and a 14-strong tap system fashioned with a supercharged V8 as a centrepiece. The art of Wellington tattoo artist and illustrator Simon Morse will also feature prominently.
Based in Maidstone, Upper Hutt at the old Dunlop tyre factory, Panhead is the brainchild of brewer Mike Neilsen. More recently he’s been joined by long-time mate, and now general manager, Josh Drake.
Many of Panhead’s more exciting one-offs haven’t made it this far north until now, said Neilsen.
“Wellington’s been a great place for us to grow but Panhead is more proudly boutique bogan than anything, and that’s a nationwide phenomenon. Although our tasting room will be up and running at the brewery soon, Aucklanders haven’t had the chance to see what we’re about up close. Until now our tap beer availability up here has been pretty limited.”
Newly opened, those 14 taps will soon be pouring Panhead classics along with an ever-evolving range of limited release specials, many of which will only be available at the Viaduct pop-up and Panhead’s own on-site brewery bar.
These include Busted Knuckle, a massive Russian Imperial Stout aged in bourbon barrels for a vinous tang; Bug Crusher, aged in chardonnay barrels and fermented with a proprietary yeast from Crux Fermentation Project in the U.S.; Batch 003, a Milk IPA sweetened with lactose from actual cows; and Snake Oil, a soured IPA.
“We’ve also got about five or six one-off beers that no-one’s tried yet that’ll be available at opening. There’ll be a big range with a bunch of different styles so you’ll just have to turn up to see what we bring,” said Drake.
The Panhead Viaduct Custom Bar will be open until.