January 25th, 2011 by Crafty Pint
A man walks into a bar. And spots a great big towering Hopinator. In Hobart. Crammed with hops and malt. On the bar. For $4.50 a pot. Seriously, who needs a punchline in a situation like that? Not The Crafty Pint, that’s for sure. Why would you when you’ve got further evidence of the growing love for good beer in all its many forms staring you right in the face?
So take a bow, New Sydney Hotel, home of Tassie’s first “glass tower with which to add last minute characteristics to beer before it’s poured”, aka a Hopinator.
“Richard [from Wig & Pen] was here five years ago and brought his with him,” says owner Al. “I told him we wanted one and put in the order straight away but it took this long to get hold of one.”
Not that Al’s wasted any time putting it to good use use. In the five days since it was installed, Moo Brew’s Hefeweizen has been poured through coriander, mint and lemongrass, Cooper’s has been given a big, grainy work over thanks to crystal malt and Saaz hops, while Ironhouse’s Porter is due to get the lavender and Cassia bark treatment any day now.
If this all sounds a little odd, don’t worry, chances are a Hopinator’s coming your way soon. They’re glass cylinders of various shapes and forms through which beer can be diverted on its merry way from keg to tap to glass. They’re designed to hold whatever a brewer or barman thinks would add to / alter / screw up their beer to change the taste for the drinker. And, as one of the enthusiastic, knowledgeable staff points out, they’re a great way to educate the punter about what does what in beer.
The New Sydney has Tasmania’s first, they’re being creative with it and they know what they’re talking about when it comes to beer. What’s more, if you’ve never been before, they’ve got 18 taps, which include a handful of local standards of the Boag’s / Cascade variety, but are for the main part rotated and dedicated to Aussie micros from both around the corner (Ironhouse, Seven Sheds, Moo, Van Dieman as available) and further afield. And really, what more could you ask for?