Last Night's Drink – Brothers Beer

March 07, 2017
Photography by Ashley Ropati.
Last Night's Drink – Brothers Beer

Orakei Bay Village has a brand new watering hole that you need to get acquainted with.

For the craft beer purveyor, Brothers is a name many are already familiar with.

Founded by brew-lovers Anthony Browne and Andrew Larsen, Brothers' newest site, tucked away in Auckland's newly minted Orakei Bay Village, is a fitting extension of the laid-back, casual-cool craft beer vibe the local brewers have become renowned for.

Housed within an old gin distillery with stunning west-facing harbour views and high, studded ceilings, Brothers' co-owner Anthony says that while the team weren't actively looking for a new location, they couldn't help themselves.

“We weren’t planning on opening a new location, but as soon as we saw the incredible warehouse style site with the view through the pohutukawa over Hobson Bay, we knew that it was perfect for Brothers," he says. 

The Remuera locale is Brothers' third Auckland post, with the family-orientated Mt Eden and City Works Depot sites already reputable locals. With 18 different craft beers on tap, punters who come for a drink will be pleasantly surprised by the spot's new surrounds and plentiful food offerings. 

“Getting the atmosphere right for our bars has always been the most important thing for us," says Anthony. "Pairing the industrial feel with the comfortable furniture and the amazing natural light makes it feel warm and welcoming.”

Upon entry, your gaze is drawn overhead, to the 1960s grand chandelier that previously held pride of place in Auckland's Hyatt ballroom. The space is dotted with retro, repurposed furniture, acquired from different op shops around the country and long-forgotten Trade Me listings. The signature Brothers' wooden table tops – crafted using panels recovered from homes devasted during the Christchurch earthquakes – reaffirm what this brewery is about. This is a place to unwind, enjoy a beer and grab a burger.

In keeping with the production behind that unmatched craft beer taste, Brothers Orakei will continue the brand's on-site ageing process with The Barrel Wall. Boasting hand-picked old wine barrels purchased from Dog Point Vineyard, brewery owner Andrew and his team will be ageing some of their ales to create unique brews through modern methodology. 

“Barrel ageing presents the opportunity to make beers with complex and unique flavours which would otherwise be impossible to create," he says.

“White wine barrels can be used to create zingy, tart and complex sour beers, ideal for summer drinking. Whereas red wine and bourbon barrels can create rich, layered sours, stouts and darker beers for winter days. There’s more to it than that, but you’re going to see some really exciting experiments coming out of the Orakei facility.” 

Chef Sara Simpson, who has created menus for the likes of Clooney, The Tasting Shed, Terrôir at Craggy Range, Juke Joint and The Botanist, has well and truly refined the burger and bar menu here. Warm, golden brioche buns are doused with lashings of homemade tartare sauce, juicy pickles and crunchy fish fillets. The hearty ⅓ pounder, flavoursome chicken parma and pork and mussel burgers, offer options otherwise unseen on your standard, grease-laden pub menu.

The best part? There's no wilted lettuce in sight. It's safe to say that Brothers have well and truly elevated the bar when it comes to delivering hearty, feel-good pub fare. As for the beer? That's just as good as ever.

Brother's Beer, Orakei Bay Village,
Address: 232 Orakei Rd, Remuera,
Auckland, 1050
Opening hours: 12pm – 10pm, Tuesday – Sunday