just that one word is like p0rn to brewers. It's the legendary home of modern American hop growing. An immense region near Seattle in the state of Washington. There are and were other places in the US, that grow hops – but none compare to the vastness and density of the Yakima valley for it's celebrated green gold.
Hops, themselves are the spices of beer. Each unique variety, whether they come from Germany, here in Kent, the gardens of Slovenia, the super exciting fields of Australia, or New Zealand – brings something different to the brewers spice cabinet. The progressive growing undertaken in the US and Australia has lead to the development of immense fruit forward “aroma hops”. The nature of the terroir of the growing regions, lends so much to the character as much as the selection.
Much like wines, whilst different – a Shiraz from the Rhone (Syrah) or Australia, or US, are all different. This, in terms of Hops, gives us the brewer, so much to opportunity to be creative.
We're hop heads. Ok, we love yeast too, but to stand up and announce you love yeast, isn't the coolest. Hell, we love Malt, and we've been dorking out on water too! But Hops, wow, so much fun! We've brewed with heavy hands when it comes to hops. Many of the beers that came from BrewWharf were regarded as, crazy. Probably normal now. Getting an insight to what's coming down the line, from their experimental farms, from John I. Haas – is going to be a huge factor for a couple of our beers. We're small. We're independent. We can do what we bloody well like.
Yakima is where the good and the great, migrate to in September to select, to see what's happening and meet fellow brewers. Little else happens, other times in the year. Harvest in Yakima is electric.
This year, we'll be there. I've been to all (except Australia), and this is the big one!
Colour me excited.
I can't wait.