Saturday, October 25, 2008

Booky in the Bottle

Emerson’s Bookbinder is an important New Zealand Beer. Not only is it the beer I most regularly order across the bar but it has also served as a ‘gateway beer’ for many people giving them the first glimpse that there might be more to beer than brown adjunct full lager. The beer has gone through many changes through the years and suffered for awhile when Emersons swapped to NZ pale malt from maris otter, thankfully it is currently back in great nic. The beer has always been available on draught only with riggers being the only take away format, that is until now. Emersons have finally decided to bottle Bookbinder, a risky decision as much of what makes a Booky fantastic on the tap is its fresh hop character and at 3.7% its not a beer designed to stand up to the rigours of bottled life. As I bought my first bottle I confided in the boys that it would probably be crap, thankfully I was very wrong!

Emersons Bookbinder 3.7%abv

From the bottle

Pours a sexy copper with a fluffy white head which stays right to the bottom of the glass. Aroma features melonfruit, a hint of lemony citrus and grainy whole grain malt. On the palate there is ripe melon, tangy grassy hops, a citrus note, a berry fruit/vinous character, sweet nutty malt, a minerally mouthfell leading to an assertive bitter finish. Great beer!

6 comments:

Greig McGill said...

Do you know if they will continue it in the riggers? It's a great party beer in that format.

Kieran Haslett-Moore said...

I doubt it, we only really have it in rigger from the keg here in Welly, I imagine they will move to the glass bottles for everywhere else.

Greig McGill said...

Sure, but it's traditionally been available in 1.25L plastic labelled riggers bottled from the brewery. Seems to last amazingly well on shelves.

yalnikim said...

I thought it was only in bottle for the summer...


Definitely a "gateway" beer for me back in the late 90's (or early 00's?) at Tupelo. I'd been searching before then but this was the real thing. Then came "Forty Winks", and I was an addict.

Looking forward to a taste. I've found Bookie a little one dimensionally over-hopped recently. No malt character in behind.

Kieran Haslett-Moore said...

You may be right Stu, but if that's the case its a very strange business move. All sorts of customers who don't have draft facilities will pounce on it, and then be denied it when they stop bottling it.

Sam Possenniskie said...

There is the odd bottle store up here in Dorkland that had the pre-filled 1.25L riggers, so will be interesting to see if these are replaced by the 500ml bottles. Hopefully not, as 500ml would never be enough and I don't like the idea of having all those bottles.

It was certainly the Tupelo Bookbinder that converted me too (though I should be careful declaring this, or I risk being accused of letting "my personal preferences" get in the way). Though I do remember the first taste not being so much to my liking. Though I am sure that was more to do with the hour of the night (or more likely "morning") and the quantities of Export Gold - or some other foul concontion - I would have been drinking the rest of the night.