The new beer is from Double Vision Brewing – a fledgling Wellington brewing company. Double Vision is run by Evarn Flaunty, Harry Henriksen, Mario Lanz and Warren Drahota​, four real life workmates and also four real life mates, who have a pilot brewery in Brooklyn and now contract brew their commercial offerings.

Despite being a professional beer writer and commentator, this brewery had utterly slipped under my radar. I knew so little about them that I had to conduct a proper, almost journalistic interview [2] with Mario Lanz – the self-acknowledged “beer geek” of the company which began two years ago with 120 litre kit in a garage in the hills of Wellington.

Here is what Mario had to say:

“We are just four lads from Auckland, Lower Hutt, Queenstown, and Fort Collins (USA). We all come from varied backgrounds but connected at our day job [making children’s goods] in Newtown. We just became friends – it is quite a social job.

Then we started thinking about what shall we do for a bit of fun. I was doing a little project which involved making a bit of beer. I got to learn something about beer and thought it was just the thing to bring us together. We love all aspects of the beer business – some of us are science geeks, some have jobs in marketing, others are sketchers. We do pretty much everything – when we have time.

Double Vision – before it was a proper company – started brewing in a garage up in the hills of Wellington. It was a tiny little place, a tiny little shoe box really, but we all

hung out there making beer. In the middle of winter, we would be frying up a few sausages on the BBQ in the corner while brewing up a few batches of beer on the side every weekend. It was cold as!

Unfortunately, we had a couple of spilled fermenters on the ground. The garage had a wooden floor so the lost beer leaked onto the storage underneath. There we go – it is twelve o’clock on a school night and you realise that you are going to have to go downstairs and spend an hour cleaning up.

In terms of Double Vision, we are still in development. We are definitely still the new kids on the block. [3] The four of us are just trying to have fun and pay homage to people who have supported us, particularly the breweries who contract for us. We have been with Karl Hayes at Te Aro Brewing who have also supplied us with all our kit, and doing a couple of contracts with Kieran Haslett-Moore at North End in Kapiti.

The Hunt for the Red October is quite a new event around Wellington. We are supplying a few kegs to Malthouse and they wanted a new beer – not a beer you have been producing for a while.

Our red IPA is the original beer that we love the most. Even on our pilot brewery we have brewed it so many times – it is our year-round beer. It is that kind of sweet nectar which gets you through the winter. The brew is very refreshing and ours is very hop-forward which kind of balances the malt out. A modified version is going into Red October though we modified it quite late.” [4]

Asked about the Malthouse and whether the Double Vision crew go there even when not working, Mario said:

“Certainly – there have been a couple of pretty big sessions there! Malthouse is somewhere that you just come to love and love the characters behind it. The hospitality industry is a very hospitable kind of environment. [5] The Malthouse staff are just naturally nice – not in it to just make a buck or get through the day’s work – they are in it to work hard and have a good time. We found that the Malthouse characters are always sharing what they know about beer and brewing and it really opens your mind up.

That sharing of knowledge is something which we certainly appreciate, not being in the game for so long. It is huge for us. Obviously too we love the good beer – there are so many good breweries in New Zealand which means you can never really go wrong. The only problem is that there are only so many taps!”

The Double Vision Red October beer – whatever it is called – is on tap now.

Coming up soon is an exclusive and amazing beer & cheese event at Malty. Noted British Beer and Food Writer Melissa Cole will be running a one-off beer and food tasting night using Fork Brewing beers and local cheeses. She is an informed and entertaining presenter and we are lucky to have her for this event. There are (literally) only 25 places available at $50 per person. Punters should book in advance (email or phone) because there will not be door sales.

Next time, we drink to Arie William Roskam (Ari) – taken from us this week far too soon. RIP big guy.

[1] I have gained the distinct impression from Ciaran, the loquacious, lolly-gagging and lovable Malthouse Unit Manager, that the actual correct time for this announcement was about two days ago.

[2] I know – I was scared too.

[3] This is the inspiration behind the blog title – not, as some would have you believe, my record collection. I actually have no NKOTB.

[4] So late that neither the interviewee nor the interviewer knows what the modified beer is actually called.

[5] Unfortunately not all the hospitality industry is hospitable – but the vast majority is.


Neil Miller

Beer Writer

Beer and Brewer Magazine

Cuisine Magazine

TheShout Magazine


Double Vision Brewery webpage –

Double Vision Brewery Facebook –

Beer and Cheese event –

Melissa Cole Blog –

Malthouse Facebook –

Malthouse Twitter –!/malthouse

Malthouse Taps on Twitter –!/MalthouseTaps

Neil Miller on Twitter –!/beerlytweeting