It's often said that there's nothing better than an ice-cold beer on a hot summer day - but what if you could make the beer better? What's more, with the aid of just a few pantry staples?
We've all seen the craft beer explosion, with the resulting flood of styles and labels. Now - in what may be the natural next stage of beer's evolution in New Zealand - bartenders are starting to play with the distinct and varying flavours on offer to create a whole new array of cocktails...
This 'city of opportunity' mentality has spawned a new wave of small bars.
This article is part of our series on the diverse highlights of NZ's Canterbury region, from city to snow. To book your Lake Tekapo trip, visit the 100% Pure New Zealand website.
While those wanting to open bar in Melbourne or Sydney might have to settle for managing one, in Christchurch having your own place is entirely possible. This 'city of opportunity' mentality has spawned a new wave of small bars, each one taking its place in this new cultural landscape of Christchurch. The burgeoning bar culture has been vital to the reinvention of the city, as it will continue to be as it grows, rebuilds and evolves in the years ahead.
From local wine and craft beer on New Regent Street to margaritas and Mexican on the north side of the city, here are our five favourite bars in Christchurch.
It is with great pleasure that we can announce dear ladies and gentlefolk, The Institution now has outdoor seating! Yes, we realise this is a momentous occasion, though the credit for this significant achievement must go to our great leaders - the Council. For without their hard work and paper shuffling for a mere five months to fast track this process we would be without.
A craft beer brewed by students during a university course will be sold on-tap in a Christchurch bar.
Food science students at Lincoln University were tasked with developing a craft beer for their principles of malting and brewing course.
Ryan Gebbie, co-owner of craft beer bar, The Institution, is the head brewer at his own micro-brewery.
Thief Brewing Ltd is a family business still in the early stages. They are putting together experimental 50-litre batches and using their bar patrons as tasting guinea pigs - a mutually beneficial arrangement for the taster and the brewer.
"With Christchurch's latest trend of bite-sized establishments taking off, securing a comfortable seat in a bar is like acquiring prime real estate.
We are right to think we will need luck to score a chair in New Regent St's craft beer and cocktail bar, The Institution. Despite the petite two-storey tavern having a clever design - the bar is upstairs and tables are carefully arranged - it will never cater for the masses. Fortunately, two blokes enjoying a post-work beer are happy to share some space, until we quick-step to a free table for two."
The Institution is a 45-seat, two-level bar featuring five brews on tap, all from New Zealand but with international beers to be rotated.
There are a further 20 bottled beers in the fridge, and "not a Tui in sight".
Six cocktails are on the menu, with six more to be added in coming weeks. Some include beer as a key ingredient.