Brewer's top drop nabbed by thieves

Brewer's top drop nabbed by thieves

Thieves have made off with close to $30,000 worth of top-level craft beer made especially for a prestigious international brewing competition.

The beer was stolen from a storage facility belonging to Wellington's Fork Brewing.

With craft beer festival Beervana rolling into town, brewer Kelly Ryan should be celebrating.

But instead 12 kegs of Mr Ryan's speciality beer has been taken from Fork's storage facility in Seaview.

Also stolen was an entire pallet of his Godzone Beat beer - that's about 1000 bottles.

Fork and Brewers' Colin Mallon discovered the theft.

"Most of [Mr Ryan's] hard work has just vanished into smoke," he says.

"Someone's going to have these beers and they won't know what to do with them."

The stolen kegs were small, at only 20 and 30 litres.

But they hold special value, as they were brewed by Mr Ryan as entries for this year's Brewer's Guild Awards.

"We did really well last year - we picked up 12 medals with our beers last year and won the Champion Pale Ale of New Zealand," Mr Ryan says.

"So it's kind of an important competition for a tiny little brew pub in the middle of Wellington."

The storage company has insurance, so there's no monetary loss to Fork and Brewer.

However Mr Ryan's hoping to retrieve the beer and still enter the awards at full strength, having filed a police report earlier today.