Founders Range

In 1946, with grandfather Sholto Duncan running the brewery in Nelson, communists took over the Czech Republic's original Pilsen brewery. Fortunately, the Free West had another weapon up its sleeve: the bikini. Invented by Louis Réard, an engineer and bare skin enthusiast, it was said it wasn't a genuine bikini "unless it could be pulled through a wedding ring", preferably without the girl attached. Our pilsner has orchard fruit and herbal pine aromas. Like the bikini, it provides a great addition to a day at the beach.

During Uncle Nick's tenure, the craft beer movement in the U.S. revolutionised the pale ale. A great reward for the hardworking folk of Silicon Valley, who in 1981 developed the first portable computer that didn't require a house extension. This NZ interpretation of a pale ale greets the drinker with a copper hue, aromas of citrus, and a strong, slightly biscuity malt character. Shut your laptop and enjoy.

By 2009, craft beer in New Zealand, particularly hoppy beers like the I.P.A., had taken off. At the same time, so did intergalactic weekends away. While we set to work on our beer, jaunts to space became available for Russian billionaires, famous popstars, or anyone else who simply didn't know what to do with the $200,000 gran gave them for Christmas. Our I.P.A. has aromas of citrus and pine, malty sweetness, and a lingering dry finish. It's out of this world.

Historic Range

In 2014, after a lengthy hiatus, Grandad’s old suitcase turned up at the brewery. Expecting to find nothing more than a pair of dusty britches and a copy of Gentleman Monthly, we were pleasantly surprised. Along with some old brewing instruments, it contained his legendary ‘Brewer’s Book’. So to celebrate 160 years of keeping family secrets, we’ve created a tribute beer based on his notes. Unlike us, you can be sure of the contents of your suitcase, a smooth golden lager with delicate grassy hops and a restrained hint of citrus. Dust one off now.

It was in September of 1854 that great-great-great-granddad J.R. Dodson arrived in Nelson aboard the Marchioness, a 176 ton brigantine. After several months at sea avoiding pirates, singing sea shanties, and listening to the same stories about giant squid, J.R. Dodson needed one thing: a beer. After getting over his severe ship-lag, he set to work on his first brew, a porter. Like the original, ours is a rich, dark ale brewed from roasted barley, balanced by ale and Munich malts.

By 1903, 5 years into great grandfather Henry Duncan's stewardship, the widespread availability of refrigeration meant your ale could now be enjoyed at any temperature, not just "room". To celebrate this advance in beer innovation, 23-yearold Richard Pearse of Temuka flew and landed a powered, heavier-than-air machine before anybody in history. Or so every proud New Zealander will claim. Our red ale is just as pioneering. It has perfectly-rounded toasted malt flavours with a hint of nuttiness. Just like Pearse.

Stouts grew in popularity in the years following WWI, when 1st cousin thrice removed Harry Dodson was running the Nelson brewery. Further innovation of the day produced the skiing car, no doubt to deliver fine stout to wealthy skier types and yetis. Our modern take is worth the effort. A dark, full-bodied beer made with rich ale, crystal and chocolate malts, with a touch of oatmeal for smoothness. Do not drink and ski-drive.

Midway through the 20th century, colour television was invented. This meant classic movies (then just referred to as “movies”) looked better than ever, and televised snooker finally made sense. To mark this occasion, Richard Duncan in Nelson put down the clicker and picked up his Mid Way Pale Ale. It’s a mid-strength ale with smooth malts and low hop bitterness. Everyone should have one in their living room.