It’s Choice Beer Week here in Wellington and last night The Sutton Group Brewers Guild of New Zealand Awards took place at the Michael Fowler Centre. Harrington’s Breweries of Christchurch took out the top honours and were named Champion Brewery in New Zealand for 2012.

Wellington, being the self-claimed and now generally accepted Craft Beer Capital of New Zealand, was not to be out shone with the ever popular Tuatara taking out awards for their Pilsner, Hefe and for their fancy packaging.

The two breweries Wellington can be ultra-proud of are the new kids on the brewing block Garage Project and ParrotDog who walked away with the awards for Festive Brew (Ziggy’s Carrot Cake) and International Ale Styles (BitterBitch) respectively. Full details of awards are below.

Of course you can get a taste of these breweries’ beers on the regular at Hashigo Zake but today and tomorrow you can taste their wares at the Beer geek’s mecca: Beervana.

Beervana is where you can live and breathe and drink and learn beer for four hour stints. Not only can you imbibe the nectar of the gods but you can attend seminars given by brewers, drinkers, chefs, judges and writers. There’s something for everyone and I know I’ll certainly be attending Yvonne Lorkin’s Beer & Food 101 seminar on Saturday.

I say get yourselves to Beervana and wallow* in the greatness that our brewers have to offer.

*do not try to literally wallow in the beer. Though I have heard it is good for your skin and hair.

The Sutton Group Brewers Guild of New Zealand Awards

New Zealand Champion Brewery Harrington’s Breweries

Champion International Brewery Boston Beer Co

European Lager Styles Wigram Brewing Company: Munchner Dunkel

International Lager Styles Tuatara Brewing Company: Tuatara Pilsner

British Ale Styles Emerson’s Brewery: Regional Best Bitter

Other European Ale Styles Golden Bear Brewing: Pirate Peach Saison

US Ale Styles Liberty Brewing Co: Yakima Monster

International Ale Styles ParrotDog: BitterBitch

Stout & Porter Styles Wigram Brewing Company: The Czar

Wheat & Other Grain Styles Tuatara Brewing Co Ltd: Tuatara Hefe

Flavoured & Aged Styles (incl. Fruit/Spice/Herb/ Honey/Smoke) Garage Project: Dark Arts

New Zealand Specific Styles Boundary Road Brewery: NZ Pure

Specialty, Experimental, Aged, Barrel & Wood-Aged Styles 8 Wired Brewing: Grand Cru 2011

Cider & Perry Styles Bulmer Harvest: Harvest Pear Cider

Cask Conditioned Townshend Brewery: HM’s Black Strap Porter

Packaging Tuatara Brewing Company: Tuatara Range

Morton Coutts Trophy for Innovation James (Jim) Pollitt

Brewers Guild New Zealand Beer Writer of the Year 2012 Phil Cook