First Look: Urbanaut Brewery

by Kate Richards / 16 May, 2017
ArticleGalleryModule - Urbanaut
If you’ve ever been stuck for a last-minute costume idea then you probably visited First Scene, the huge jumble sale of outfits, accessories and wigs that once inhabited a warehouse space at the Morningside end of New North Rd. The owners had hook-ups to costumes from cancelled TV shows, movies and plays, making the shop incomparably excellent.

Outgrowing their former premises, last year First Scene relocated to Rosebank Rd and three high school friends: Bruce Turner, Thomas Rowe and Simon Watson moved into the abandoned Kingsland warehouse along with their mammoth-sized fermenting tanks, turning the entire upstairs from eclectic junk-yard to sparse, industrial brewery in only a matter of months.

Though the chums grew up together in provincial New Zealand, they’ve all spent a significant portion of their lives travelling, Bruce living in London for an impressive 14 years before returning home. So they’re travelers first, and beer-makers second. That said, there’s a wealth of experience between them; Turner worked in London at Fullers, then Meantime and most recently helped Paraparaumu brewery Tuatara “improve their processes and increase brewing capacity”. The others? Well, they’ve made (and sampled) a few brews in their time. 

Urbanaut is a made-up name meaning urban explorer and is a nod to the friends’ worldly adventures, so each beer will express the flavour of a different suburb from around the world. A detailed map design on each label is a guide for the globe-trotting drinker. There are currently five beers in tank including Auckland’s Kingsland pilsner; Vancouver’s Gastown red IPA; and London’s Brixton pale ale with surprises to come at this weekend’s launch party – along with food by Dixie Barbecue – and several guest taps arriving soon too.

Urbanaut Brewery
2B Western Springs Road

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