Get to know this kiwi born, world-acclaimed brewery

Those long summer days are inching closer, which means sun-soaked backyard brews are calling. In the lead up to the season, we shine a spotlight on New Zealand’s purveyors in craft beer, Deep Creek Brewing Company.

A journey born in 2011 from a love of good beer, adventure and camaraderie, the premier beer connoisseurs have raised the bar amongst the world of craft beers. The key mission since the first unique tap pour was always to produce the best quality beers possible, optimising creative flavour profiles to construct distinctive brews suited to any palate. With a continued exploration and experimentation of world-class natural ingredients, harnessed from the finest grain, there’s no wonder the brewery has attracted attention overseas. 

Whether you fancy a Haiku Hazy Double IPA, which resembles a juicy tropical fruit salad, a Wildwood Roeselare, or a barrel-aged Flanders Red, there’s something for everyone to say bottoms up to. Remix sat down for a quick chat with Kerry Gray, Lead Brewer at Deep Creek Brewing.

How long have you been in the brewing industry?

This is my 9th year! I thought I was late to the game, but so much has changed and grown in the last 9 years, it still feels like it's in its youth in Aotearoa. In that time I have started my own brand, built a successful brewery & bar, relocated to India to work for the biggest brewery in the world and now I am back in Aotearoa as Lead Brewer at Deep Creek Brewing Co.

Why did you decide to get into the brewing industry?

Brewing was a great hobby and I became obsessed. It is an amazing outlet to be creative as well as learning a seemingly endless amount of knowledge. There was also a void in the market for experimental and fun beers at the time, which was the focus of my homebrewing. I did not have a passion for my current job at the time so decided to forge my own way and make a career out of beer. A colleague offered to team up and help fund a few contract brews, and from there it turned into a career. Everyone should have the goal of their career is their passion.

What’s the weirdest ingredient you’ve ever put in beer?

I’ve experimented with crazy ingredient combinations including Peanut Butter and Raspberry Ale, but one of my favourites would have to be my collaboration with one of Aotearoa’s top brewers, Kelly Ryan - A Pinot Noir and Kina Ale. The fresh Pinot Noir grape from Martinborough and freshly caught Kina roe from Wellington Coast made a rich, creamy and delightful brew, different from standard modern craft beers!

What’s your favourite beer from Deep Creek?

My personal favourite has to be the Misty Miyagi Hazy IPA full of tropical hop flavours and aromas. Since we’re slowly creeping into the warmer months, Undercurrent Pilsner is perfect for days in the sun, as it’s easily a light refreshment.

What’s your advice for aspiring future pro brewers?

I always say you cannot make great beer without drinking great beer. Training your palate and understanding flavour will help you to learn and understand the flavour combinations that you should strive for. Fortunately, training your palate is all about trying as many styles of beer as possible, which is a huge perk!