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In 1991 Billy and Akaisha Kaderli retired at the age of 38. Now, into their 3rd decade of this financially independent lifestyle, they invite you to take advantage of their wisdom and experience.

SPEIGHT'S BREWERY

THE PRIDE OF THE SOUTH

Billy and Akaisha Kaderli

Continuing on our Magic Bus Tour, we arrived in Dunedin, on the southern island of New Zealand. The drizzly afternoon made perfect weather for a brewery tour. We took the seven minute walk from our hostel to Speight's Brewery, still on the original site it occupied in 1876.

Unique as a gravity fed brewery with lots of local history, we looked forward to the one hour fully-guided tour, complete with a visit to the Heritage Brewery Bar.

SPEIGHT'S PRIZE WINNING ALE

The tour began, featuring the beginnings of beer from Babylon in 6,000 BC where beer was made from a liquid called "bouza". In the mid 1700's, Captain Cook made a brew from rimu foliage, molasses and yeast preventing his crew from contracting scurvy. A good idea, no?

 

Next we met a life-size replica of James Speight, a Yorkshire businessman, his partners Charles Greenslade ( a maltster) and William Dawson (a brewer) who seized the moment of the nearby Central Otago gold rush to create a business enterprise. The company struggled at first, but after their ales won gold medals at international exhibitions, sales increased at a phenomenal rate.

By the early 1890's Speight's had become the biggest brewery in New Zealand, and become known as the "Pride of the South", Speight's Brewery. This enlightening historical perspective complete with audiovisual and interactive displays, led to the eighth floor of the gravity fed brewery to view the actual making of the beer.

SPEIGHT'S BREWERY AND ALE HOUSE RESTAURANT

As the term suggests, the raw materials are taken to the top of the brewery and the finished beer is ready at the ground floor level. The tour included lively and detailed explanations of the brewing process (see below).

Starting to work up a thirst by this time, we were ushered into a small theater to witness one last passionate and patriotic presentation of the culture of the Southern Man, and his "Pride of the South" beverage.

Goosebumps on our arms and wiping a tear from our eyes as a response to the cinema, we sauntered into the Heritage Bar for the promised tasting. Our minds had been prepared for these samplings as we learned of the four places on our tongue where we taste beer, and how 85% of this taste comes through the nose and the appreciation of the beer's bouquet.

AKAISHA DRAWING BEER...TOUR GUIDE LOOKING ON

However, we were unready for the excellence and distingushing flavors of Speight's Gold Medal Ale, Old Dark, the Distinction Ale, or the Pale Ale. This first class informative and entertaining tour was over, but not our plans for the evening. With big smiles of satisfaction on our faces, we meandered next door to Speight's Alehouse and ordered a pint of Distinction Ale, and one of Pale Ale.

 

Perusing the menu, again we were impressed at the variety and quality of entrees and salads. We ordered one grilled lamb salad, and one roasted lamb with fresh vegetables. Undoubtedly the most tender lamb we have ever eaten, it was exquisitely seasoned and presented.

DINING AT SPEIGHT'S ALEHOUSE

This could well be described as a New Zealand version of heaven; locally raised lamb, freshly grown vegetables, and a famous and historical brew to accompany the meal. The restaurant was full of patrons, and their cordial conversations warmed us on this still cool, drippy evening. Meal concluded, and completely content, we waddled back to our hostel for the night.

While visiting Dunedin, the Speights Brewery Tour is a highly recommended outing.

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Billy and Akaisha Kaderli are recognized retirement experts and internationally published authors on topics of finance and world travel. With the wealth of information they share on their popular website RetireEarlyLifestyle.com, they have been helping people achieve their own retirement dreams since 1991. They wrote the popular books, The Adventurerís Guide to Early Retirement and Your Retirement Dream IS Possible.

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The brewing process at Speight's:

COPPER KETTLES

MILLING- the malted, kiln dried barley is crushed through a mill, and emptied into a large copper vessel. The MASH MIXER, is where the crushed malt (grist) is mixed with water, stirred and heated. It is during this process, that the starch from the malt is converted to fermentable sugars (maltose). Next, a large filter, LAUTER, is where dissolved sugars called the wort are separated from the malt husks. The wort collected from the lauter is boiled in a KETTLE, to develop color, flavor and extract the bitter compounds from the added hops. In the WHIRLPOOL, the boiling water is pumped and unwanted protein flocs formed in the kettle settle out. The WORT COOLER, receives hot wort from the whirlpool and cools it to 10-15*C on its way to the fermentation stage. Yeast is added to the cooled wort in the fermentation vessel, and then starts fermenting, or converting the dissolved sugars into alcohol and carbon dioxide. Now the LAGERING process begins.  This stage allows the raw or green beer to clarify and smooth-out flavors. Finally, the green beer, is FILTERED, or clarified prior to being put into tankers, kegs, cans or bottles, all with the brew date clearly marked.

Speight's Brewery tours offered 7 days a week.  Adult NZ$12, Children NZ$4.  Special rates for Seniors, Families and Groups.  Email:  tours@speights.co.nz  website:  www.speights.co.nz

Billy and Akaisha continue to journal and photograph their world travels.

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