March 16, 2011 by Crafty Pint
Across the southern states, hop farmers, commercial brewers, their friends and home brewers have been busy picking this year’s harvest of hops in the past week or two, many of which will go into specialty, limited release beers. There’s going to be an article on harvest beers in Epicure in a couple of weeks so we won’t cover any ground that’s going to feature there on Crafty. But we did think it might be a good idea to compile a list of who’s making them, what they’re using and anything else people might be doing with this year’s fresh batch.
Once they’re released, you’ll be able to find out all about them – what they’re like and where to get hold of them – on our SPECIAL BEERS page as usual, unless they’re from a brewery not yet listed on Crafty, in which case we’ll add details to this article.
Cascade First Harvest
The daddy of them all, the Tassie brewery’s annual release featuring three new hop varieties that may or may not become commercially available. For an excellent article from a beer writer who attended this year’s harvest, head here.
Bridge Road Harvest Ale
Ben Kraus is promising to cram more hops than ever into the third iteration of this seasonal beer. Here’s hoping it hits the heights of 2009 – one of the best Aussie beers released that year
Bright Brewery Topaz Lager
Using Topaz hops collected from the hop farm on the day of the brew, which the Bright crew unexpectedly chose to use in a lager
Otway Estate / Prickly Moses – more than one
There will be one featuring wild hops they hunted down in the Otway Ranges, plus a return of the Nugget-y Anzac Ale. Possibly more
BrewBoys – Harvest Ale
Using Nugget hops grown at the brewery/cellardoor on a 50l full mash pilot brewery. They usually produce three or four each harvest that disappear the night they’re tapped. Usually around 5 to 6%, 60 to 100 IBU (that’s bitterness units, folks) in an APA / IPA style. For more, see the comments below
Hawthorn Brewing Company – Special Pale
They’re dry-hopping their next batch of Pale Ale with homegrown Fuggles and Cascade hops
Paddy’s Brewery – two beers
At the brewery’s inaugural Hop Harvest Festival, where breweries in attendance are asked to bring a beer using new hops, Paddy’s brewer Gerard Meares is debuting a beer made with fresh hops picked in Vic in the morning and taken back to the brewery in Sydney that same day, plus pouring his Pale through a hopinator filled with homegrown hop varieties
Two Metres Tall (TAS) – Derwent Real Ale
As many as seven varieties of hops grown on their farm go into the Derwent Real Ale
The hopinator at Holgate Brewhouse) has also been stuffed with freshly harvested hops. We’ll be adding more to the list over time.