8 Wired Brewing is inspired by the legendary Kiwi can-do mentality and fellow craft brewers who have dared to challenge the masses and show us all that beer is no longer “just beer”!
Our story began on Christmas Day, 2005. That was when my future wife, Monique, gave me the classic Coopers homebrew kit. We were living in Perth at the time and I brewed my first “lagers” in the blistering Western Australian summer, without any kind of cooling or knowledge. Needless to say the beers were awful, but I was hooked none the less.
A couple of years later we had moved to New Zealand and I started dabbling more into specialty grains and hops. Before long I was brewing all grain beers and the hobby was talking a stronghold on my life. Somehow Monique and I persuaded ourselves to take the leap to professional brewing and we devised a plan to start a brew pub, preferably at a quiet beach community somewhere I the North Island. To gain some commercial experience I got a job at Renaissance Brewing in Blenheim. The plan was to stay there for 3 months, but we quickly realized that we lacked the capital or experience to start our own brewery. Instead I continued to work for Renaissance and after a year they generously let us rent their equipment and tanks when they were available. Thus 8 Wired Brewing came to life as a contract brewery. We brewed our first beer in October 2009 and things went fast from there. In 2011 we received the highest brewing honour awarded in New Zealand as we were crowned Champion Brewery at the Brewers Guild Awards. The past 4 years we have also been featured on the prestigious Ratebeer.com list of “100 best brewers in the World”, as the only Southern Hemisphere brewery.
After 5 years of contract brewing, eventually at 4 different breweries across New Zealand we now finally have our very own brewery (In Warkworth, North of Auckland) where we brew and package everything.
Our brewing style is mainly focussed on what i would call "New World interpretations of Old World styles". In our permanent line up we have multiple shades of very hoppy IPAs, Saisons, Porters and Stouts but also boast what we believe is the largest collection of barrel aged beers in the southern Hemisphere. Currently we have about two hundred (225 litre) barrels full of beer and have recently aquired 7 "foedres" as well. These are essentially large barrels, ranging from 1500 to 4000 litres each. We are very excited about these as they will help us take the sour beer programme to another level. The vast majority of the barrels are from wineries and they are almost all funky and sour (on purpose!). It takes a long time to make beers like these but they are slowly starting to hit the market. Watch this space.
Søren Eriksen and the rest of our awesome little team