If you’re crazy about hazy or on the scout for stout, here’s where to find the best craft beer in Ōtautahi Christchurch.

The South Island produces world-renowned hops, so it follows that it also produces award-winning craft beer. And Christchurch, the South Island’s largest city, is right at the bustling and unconventional heart of it all. So, whether you’re a beer sceptic or a beer believer, it time to join Ōtautahi Christchurch’s craft revolution.

Canterbury Brewers Collective

Christchurch - Canterbury
Two Thumbs Beer Fest, Christchurch - Canterbury

At less than eight square metres, the Canterbury Brewers Collective(opens in new window) is Christchurch’s smallest tavern. But what it lacks in size, it makes up in clout. The revolving beer menu features only independent local brewers, many of whom are just starting out and looking for a foothold in a highly competitive market.

Cassels

Christchurch - Canterbury
Enjoy beer and food at Cassels', Christchurch - Canterbury

This family-run business hasn’t been around for long, but it has already won three World Beer Awards – two for its milk stout and one for its American pale ale. Not bad for a small company that’s competing against some of the world’s biggest beer producers. To see how your opinion stacks up with the judges, sample their award-winning beverages at the Cassel’s Brewery Bar & Restaurant(opens in new window), located in the iconic Tannery shopping district. 

Three Boys Brewery 

Christchurch - Canterbury
Three Boys Brewery, Christchurch - Canterbury

When scientist-turned-brewer Ralph Bungard started Three Boys Brewery(opens in new window) in 2004, it was a very small, humble operation. Today, it is one of Aotearoa New Zealand’s most awarded breweries. Their Oyster Stout yes, it is made from oysters – and their citrus-infused wheat beer are legendary. Stock up with a visit to their cellar door and fillery. Note, they’ll fill any type of container if it is clean!  

Great Kiwi Beer Festival

New Zealand might seem sparsely populated, until you go to the Great Kiwi Beer Festival(opens in new window). Then it suddenly becomes crowded. Like all good festivals there’s live music and a jovial atmosphere, but this festival also has a serious side. Not only does it showcase the country’s leading craft breweries (there are 300 beers on tap, no less), but it also has a rigorous schedule of workshops and seminars. So, whether you’re serious about beer or merely curious, you’ll find something to enjoy at this festival. It takes place each January in the centre of Christchurch for one day only.  

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