Paraparaumu, New Zealand

Carl Vasta, an engineer with the tastebuds of a wine critic, was named after it. There's a degree of loose talk in New Zealand about "kiei ingenuity", most of it from people who'd struggle to change a tyre, but Carl Vasta – an engineer with the tastebuds of a wine critic – is the living, breathing epitome of that noble philosophy. If he needed a shed or a bottler or a tank, he'd just go ahead and build one. The brewery began as a backyard operation in the hills above Waikanae and before too long, Carl managed to brew a superb range of ales, porters and pilsners for his friends under the name Tuatara.

To say that Tuatara Brewery has taken off in the last few years is an understatement. They've been propelled into orbit. The local demand for good beer is insatiab;e and with volumes running at about a million litres a year, Tuatara has became one of the leading lights in the New Zealand craft industry. Tuatara brews true to style, so wherever possible, the brewers go direct to the source and use the ingredients that have made that style famous. Their brewing philosophy is so simple, it works. By the way, it's pronouced TOO-AH-TAR-RAH and it's the name of a reptile unique to New Zealand.

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