It’s unusu­al­ly cold at Ris­ing Tide today. Prob­a­bly because a wall and part of the roof are miss­ing. But it’s for a good cause. They’re mak­ing room for more beer.


I wrote last year about the launch of Ris­ing Tide, the eatery owned by (and adja­cent to) Mount Brew­ing Co Brew­ery (Mt Brew), on New­ton Street in The Mount. Now UNO. have sent me back, because excit­ing things are hap­pen­ing. Recent­ly, the glo­ri­ous deck­ing out the front was extend­ed. This prime spot heaves with Fri­day post-work rev­ellers and keen Sun­day ses­sion­ers, not to men­tion the throngs of beer enthu­si­asts every oth­er day of the week. The new deck didn’t need jus­ti­fi­ca­tion, but there’s a real­ly good one. Glenn and Vir­ginia Meik­le of Mt Brew are now shar­ing their digs with Funk Estate: a brew­ery start­ed by three guys, Dylan Shear­er, Jor­dan Evi­son and Shi­geo Tak­agi (Shig­gy).

Dur­ing the move, the show must go on! Head brew­er, Dylan, brews come rain or shine

While study­ing in Welling­ton, Dylan, Jor­dan and Shig­gy formed a bond over beer. They’ve been brew­ing in Auck­land as Funk Estate since 2015, and now they’re head­ed our way. At my bar lean­er today are Ris­ing Tide own­ers, Glenn and Vir­ginia, along with two thirds of Funk Estate, Dylan and Jor­dan. I try to under­stand why two com­peti­tors are join­ing forces to brew their beers under one roof.

G. Craft brew­ing isn’t a com­pe­ti­tion. We are in it for the greater good. It’s about mak­ing bet­ter beer.

Local­ly born and bred, Jor­dan has long-run­ning con­nec­tions with Glenn and his fam­i­ly.

G. Jor­dan and I were catch­ing up over a cold beer. I was moan­ing about our out-of-date equip­ment.

J. I was moan­ing about our premis­es in Auck­land. We were look­ing for a new place to brew.

Mt Brew had the per­fect venue in a killer spot, and Funk Estate had the best ‘stain­less’ (brew­ery lin­go for equip­ment), includ­ing a can­ning machine. Com­pe­ti­tion or not, it was a no brain­er. Cans of beer are big. Their pop­u­lar­i­ty is grow­ing over glass bot­tles.

J. I sug­gest­ed we move pro­duc­tion down here and share the space at Mt Brew – and its pub, The Ris­ing Tide.

Funk Estate began in beer-Mec­ca Welling­ton in 2012. Shig­gy worked at under­ground icon Hashigo Zake. Jor­dan and Dylan drank there, and beer bro­mance ensued. Their fans call them the ‘rebels of the craft beer indus­try.’

D. Haha. I’m not sure about that, but it’s flat­ter­ing! Basi­cal­ly, we make beer we like to drink. Pri­mar­i­ly hop-for­ward beers. Our per­son­al favs are our sour beers, like Jun­gle Boo­gie Blood Orange Sour.

For Jor­dan, the move to the Bay is a bit of a home­com­ing. For Shig­gy and Dylan, it’s a chance to set­tle down some­where new and, sur­prise sur­prise, they’re already falling for the lifestyle.

D. Walk­ing into an already estab­lished bar and out­let is ben­e­fi­cial and it’s what we’ve always want­ed. Being able to slot right into this set-up is fan­tas­tic.

Vir­ginia and Glenn Meik­le of Mount Brew­ing Co Brew­ery

Last year, I asked what Mt Brew had planned for the future. Glenn was hop­ing for one more ket­tle. Now he has a whole new brew­ery. He smiles, shak­ing his head in dis­be­lief. For him, it’s all about the beer and con­stant­ly striv­ing to make it bet­ter.

G. You can’t beat fresh beer, and the biggest prob­lem with flagons is that it los­es its fresh­ness quick­ly. The­se guys have brought down state-of-the-art can­ning equip­ment, so now we can pro­duce stub­bies and cans with a much longer shelf life. We are mak­ing bet­ter beer than ever.

That sun­ny deck just got even bet­ter, with an out­door bar offer­ing 10 addi­tion­al taps to the exist­ing 29 inside. I broach the sub­ject of a spe­cial release beer mash-up between the two labels. Dylan is quick to reply. “I’m 100% sure it’ll hap­pen one day.”

The in-house label-mak­er gives the oppor­tu­ni­ty to make cre­ative beer labels

107 New­ton Street, Mount Manu­ganui

Mon­day — Sun­day, 11 am — 11 pm