Beervana Road to Beervana

Beer is good! And it’s good in ways that go beyond mouthfeel, aromas and hop strength (y’know - general beer goodness). 

This year we are proud to have socially-conscious breweries The Independence Collective and Misfit Brewing Co. joining forces on a shared stand showcasing just what is possible when like-minded people get together to smash stereotypes.

The Independence Collective supports individuals living with intellectual disabilities, with all proceeds going towards helping those living with disabilities become more independent. 

And Misfit Brewing have committed to giving 100% of its future profits toward clean water projects in New Zealand and the wider Pacific - that’s not just a drop in the ocean, so to speak!

So, you see? Drinking beer is good in more ways than one. We chatted to both breweries in the lead up to Beervana….

Brendan Devoy, Founder and Brewer of Misfit Brewery

How did you come up with the concept of Misfit Brewery and why were you so keen to focus on clean water as the charity for your brewery?  

I started brewing beer as a hobby alongside studying business at the University of Auckland in 2014. At that time, the craft beer industry was really starting to ramp up, and I would sit in my lecture theatres being taught business principles, and scribbling down how it could all be applied to beer. It was actually in one of these marketing lectures where I was introduced to the idea of social enterprise, while we were doing a case study on Tom’s shoes. Fascinated by this new idea of business for good, I read their founder Blake Mycoskie’s book Start Something That Matters and was hooked. 

As I continued to brew, I noticed the reliance of clean water in the process, and was shocked to see that on average, 75 litres of water are used to make one glass of beer. Given the importance of clean water in production, it seemed a natural fit to have the funds go towards helping provide clean water to the 845 million people without it.

This is the first time your brewery is attending Beervana - what you most excited about? 

I am very much looking forward to the challenge and the unknown of the event. I have attended as a consumer before, but not as a supplier. The brewing industry is a very cool community, so I’m looking forward to immersing myself a bit in the industry I’m still very much a foreigner in.

How many beers will you have on tap and what can Beervana punters expect from your beers?

We will have three beers on tap: 

WARHOL Pilsner 5.1%

Here’s to Andy Warhol; a pop art pioneer who was prolific in taking what’s familiar and re-stylising it in his own unique and unapologetic style, destroying the borders between high art and popular culture. This beer’s a nod to him, with our re-created version of your classic Pilsner.


Here’s to Jean-Michel Basquiat; a rare example of how an 80s graffiti based and counter-cultural practice could become a fully recognized and critically embraced artistic phenomenon. The punchy tropical and citrus fruit notes, paired against a nice toasty character, makes this NZ IPA our homage to the subtle complexities of his work.

HARING White IPA 6.0%

Here’s to Keith Haring; a cultural icon whose artistic stylings combined playful illustrations with poignant and controversial cultural commentary. A true master in blending unfamiliar territories, his work depicted how serious issues can be lively, with fresh colour and vivid imagery. This White IPA is a fitting tribute to his legacy; blending the citrus and tropical notes of an IPA, with the refreshing and spicy presence of the Belgian Wit.

What beer would you particularly recommend out of your line up?

My particular favourite is our Haring White IPA! It’s a style I really enjoy drinking, and having only been released recently, there was a fair bit of anticipation on my end getting excited for it. 

Who can we expect to meet at the Misfit Brewery stand?  

At the stand will be myself - Brendan Devoy, the Janitor here at Misfit Brewing. Misfit Brewing has been my project since 2016, and I’ve been working full time in this role since I left my corporate job last year. 

Gordon Cumming - The Independence Collective 

How did you come up with the concept of The Independence Collective and what was the reason behind supporting people who live with intellectual disabilities?

The Independence Collective is a group of individuals with varying abilities seeking to gain financial independence. Unable to find employment in a highly competitive job market, we have taken it upon ourselves to create our own opportunities. We have come together as a cooperative, embraced the entrepreneurial spirit and started our own company. 

This is the first time your brewery is attending Beervana - what you most looking forward to?

We are most excited about having reached our goal of presenting our beer at Beervana. It has been an amazing journey to date, and we have met so many incredible people along the way. We will be telling our own unique story and are looking forward to gaining feedback from people who love beer as much as we do. 

We are launching and promoting our life changing rebranded Pale Ale, Change Maker. We are hoping to gain lots of exposure and build anticipation and excitement about both the brand and our beer which has been brewed in partnership by award-winning Duncan's Brewery on the Kapiti Coast. 

How many beers will you have on tap and what can Beervana punters expect from your offering?

We will only be presenting our Pale Ale at Beervana. This is the first of four unique beers, which will all be launched together in partnership with three other award-winning breweries nationally early next year.

There has been no decision as yet to what these beers may be so we are asking the punters at Beervana for their input into what these should be. 

What beer would you particularly recommend out of your line up or which one is your favourite?  

Change Maker. This life changing Pale Ale is a crisp tropical mix of American and New Zealand hops with a clean malt bill.

Who can we expect to meet behind The Independence Collective stand? 

You will be able to meet the four founding members of The Independence Collective, Janie Martin, Neville Pugh, Nathan Martin and Cameron Stichbury and their support crew. Gordon Cumming, the creative force behind our enterprise will also be there.

Don’t forget to grab your tickets to Beervana