91 Aro

Tue - Fri 4.00pm - 10.00pm; Sat - Sun 2.00pm - 10.00pm

Aro Valley

04 802 5324

Welcome to hop-head heaven. Garage Project's new taproom is a slick little hole in the wall, set just a few houses down from their eponymous Aro Valley brewery. Jos Ruffel and the Gillespie brothers have made a name for themselves by thinking different, and while they aren't the first craft brewery in town to have opened a licensed premises, their latest project is something of an altar to the craft beer movement.

Inclusivity, or at least the idea that beer can appeal to more than those who enjoy a glass of watery yeast, has always been an integral part of said movement. GP 91 Aro Street is exactly the kind of place to find out what happens when you add horopito, toasted coconut or the juice from pressed Pinot Noir grape skins. Menu-wise, local caterers Ti Kouka have stepped up with the perfect food matches for bespoke beer-drinking with mouth-watering cheese melts, chicarron pork crackling, and platters of cheese, bread, and pickles for your taste buds to snack along with.

Influences from Garage Project's iconic labeling are writ-large through the swirling, muralled interior, which runs from a doorstep embossed with 'Try Something New' in golden lettering, to a long bar flanked by small tables and bar stools. On top of a humble line-up of no fewer than twenty taps is a long list of some of their most famous releases in cans or bottles, plus a cellar range specialising in some truly special barrel aged beer styles like the Triple Day of the Dead, a chilli chocolate black lager with the benefit of a year's ageing in Tequila barrels. On the price spectrum these definitely sit closer towards the celebratory end, but we think champagne is overrated anyway.

Words by Matt Paterson & Photography by Anna Briggs

Aro Valley

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