Tuatara – Wilderbrew Wild Hopped Pale Ale

If you’re a New Zealander and haven’t yet seen the latest Taika Watiti film Hunt for the Wilderpeople then you’re one of the very few. It’s currently the country’s second highest-grossing movie with only Waititi’s Boy from 2010 ahead of it.
Based on the popular 1986 book Wild Pork and Watercress by Barry Crump, Hunt for the Wilderpeople has been adapted for a modern audience while retaining the down-to-earth Kiwi charm of the original, and in quite a modern fashion Tuatara have produced a cheeky little brew to celebrate the event.

There is a good yarn behind this beer too according to the brewer. A portion of the hops used were gathered from a secret location ‘hidden deep in the leafy grottos of the Waikanae River’ where they grow wild and free. Check out the promo vid.

So, does the brew match the movie hype?

It pours a clear deep golden colour with a sweet floral hoppy aroma. The hops give it a bitter edge not unlike that of the Iti Pale Ale but here it is balanced to better effect with an earthy, grapefruityness that tangles nicely with the bite.
The result is a slightly unusual but very drinkable take on a NZ Pale Ale.

It was an elusive beast to track down as there was obviously a limited supply but I’m glad I did and I’ll be keeping an eye out around this time next year to see if Tuatara uses these ‘wild hops’ again in another brew… or perhaps it was all just a clever marketing ruse…

I even donated a bottle to my beer comrade over at bestbeerhq.com as he was having no joy tracking the brew down himself. Here’s what he thought of it.

Brew(er) info:

5% ABV

Hops: Pacific Jade, Columbus, Cascade & Wild Fresh Hops.

Malt: NZ Pilsner, Wheat, Light Crystal.

IBUs: 25

Music choice:

Here’s the very catchy ‘Ricky Baker’ theme song Trifecta by Taika’s old mates The Phoenix Foundation.

3 thoughts on “Tuatara – Wilderbrew Wild Hopped Pale Ale

  1. I’m a bit scared to say this, and I really love our NZ cousins, but as much as I wanted to like this film my review sadly concludes “This film would be ‘great family fun’ if you are a Kiwi. For everyone else however, even their closest Aussie cousins, this film is little more than a spectacular tourism advertisement for the rugged landscapes and mountainous lakes and gorges that are scattered across beautiful New Zealand.”


    1. You may be right about the film finding an audience outside of NZ. There are a number of in-jokes and Kiwi specific references that could leave some viewers scratching their heads. However, as a family friendly romp I think the themes are broad enough for many non-NZers to appreciate it for what it is. The film is soon to screen in the US so it will be interesting to see what sort of reception it gets there. One thing is for sure, Kiwis LOVE it!

      Liked by 1 person

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