If you’re not yet familiar with the much anticipated fresh hops season that has already begun, here’s the scoop. We are fortunate to be in an area where hops are grown (nearly 75% of all US hops are grown in the Pacific NW!) and amazing craft breweries abound, so many fresh hop beers are available to us specifically because of where we live. Another feather in our cap!
What is different about fresh hop beers? August and September are the harvest season for hops. Instead of kiln drying the hops to use later which is how the majority are processed and what is used for most beers, these whole hops are rushed to the brewery within 24 hours of harvest and added to the brewing process during this short window of ultimate freshness. Because fresh hops’ flavors are less concentrated, significantly more are needed — four to six times what is used in the dry hop method. Dried hops are what lend more of a bitter flavor that is associated with IPAs and other hop heavy beers, while fresh hop beers are grassier, greener and more plant forward in taste.
We have already had a few fresh hop tap handles rotate through and more are on the way. It’s a short season so don’t miss your opportunity to get ‘em while they’re fresh! You can keep up on the latest and greatest offerings at RCC through untapped, Instagram and Facebook!