Beer writer Jules van Costello has introduced a Michelin-type rating system for New Zealand brewers.
The three-star ratings were announced today in van Costello's Brewed (second edition). The updated beer and brewery guidebook rates 166 breweries with tasting notes on more than 450 beers.
Van Costello awards star ratings to about 75 of the breweries, with just eight getting the top-tier three-star rating:
- 8 Wired
- Galbraith's Ale House
- North End
Jules describes a three-star brewer as "world class. Consistently produces exceptional beer in a variety of styles and is recognised as producing beers at an international level".
"Because these ratings are designed for consumers, there is more emphasis on core range beers as opposed to specials, seasonals, collaborations or other one-off beers. However, prolific breweries are less likely to garner three stars as it is difficult to maintain 'exceptional' quality when producing more experimental beers. Likewise, because the two- and three-star ratings assess beers across a variety of styles, some very specialist beer producers are only ever able to earn one or two stars."