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Festival Event

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The Hopfather – Most of this Actually Happened

Sunday 14 May 2023, 1:00 PM – 2:00 PM, Waimarie/RSA. $15

As the enormously talented author of Beer Nation: The Art and Heart of Kiwi Beer, The Big Book of Home Brew: A Kiwi Guide, and editor of The Pursuit of Hoppiness, Michael Donaldson is one of the few authors who can say they literally wrote the book on modern brewing in New Zealand.

With his biography The Hopfather, Michael tells the story of one of our pre-eminent brewers, a trailblazer often lauded as the godfather of craft beer in New Zealand: Richard Emerson.

Born profoundly deaf in 1960s Dunedin, Emerson triumphed against all odds to launch Emerson’s Brewery in 1992. He went on to create a string of unique, award-winning beers, spark a cult-following, attract global recognition, and become a millionaire – all from doing something he loved.

Welcome Michael and Richard to Featherston and hear from the man who built the modern beer scene in New Zealand and what it took for Michael to get that all down on the page. And why is this beer called “Bookbinder”?

Moderated by Ryan McArthur, Manager of Beervana, New Zealand's largest and iconic beer festival.

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