A record field of 17 entries took up the brief to create their personal take on the strong, hoppy, India Pale Ale (IPA) beer style so popular on the West Coast of America at this year’s Fifth Annual West Coast IPA Challenge.

Judged by a panel of experts at Malthouse on Friday 13 July 2012 a 9 per cent Double IPA packed with secret American hops won the title. Epic Brewing Company’s Hop Zombie IIPA (no, IIPA is not a typo) was chosen by a panel that included international beer judges Geoff Griggs and Kieran Haslett-Moore, and noted beer blogger Martin Craig.

Second place went to the Tuatara Brewing Company for their Double Trouble Double IPA, another 9 per center bursting with flavour, while third went to a darker 6.5 per cent offering from Yeastie Boys and Liberty Brewing Company called Yakima Raven IPA.

Members of the public, who had packed the Malthouse for hours also cast their votes for the People’s Choice Award – scooped this year by Garage Project Brewery for their 10.1 per cent monster brew by the name of Super Angry Peaches IPA.

The full list of entries (in alphabetical order):

Black Dog Unleashed IPA (Wellington) 5.5%

Brewery Britomart Nessie’s Conundrum (Auckland) 7%

Croucher Patriot Black IPA (Rotorua) 5.5%

Epic Hop Zombie (Auckland) 9%

Epic First Batch (Auckland) 6.6%

Garage Project Super Angry Peaches Amarillo Bomb (Wellington) 10.1%

Hallertau Bro’jolais (Auckland) 10%

Harrington’s Hop Tremor IPA (Christchurch) 7.4%

Invercargill Brewery Chopper (Invercargill) 7%

Mike’s Single American IPA (Urenui) 6.7%

Moa Heptahop Seven Hopped APA (Blenheim) 7%

Townshend Blitzgreig APA (Upper Moutere) 6.7%

Tuatara Double Trouble IIPA (Wellington) 9%

Renaissance San Diego APA (Blenheim) 7%

Liberty Brewing Le Monstre (Spotswood) 7%

Yeastie Boys Motueka Raven (Invercargill) 6.5%

Liberty Brewing Yakima Raven (Invercargill) 6.5%

Malthouse was named Best New Zealand Beer Venue for 2011 and 2012 by Beer and Brewer magazine. Wellington has been crowned Craft Beer Capital of New Zealand.

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