|  Meantime


It’s that time of year again, when we round up the troops and head down to our Hop Farm to check out the juicy hops which have been thriving down there since March. Our little slice of home grown hop heaven is on some seriously prime real estate, round the corner from our brewery, here on the Greenwich Peninsula tucked in next to the O2 on the banks of the Thames. Last year was the first time we tried growing hops down here which we then harvested to create our first green-hopped beer available for our fans. Grown, brewed and enjoyed all within a one mile radius – it doesn’t get more local than that. The hops thrived this summer with lashings of sunshine and some seriously good watering from above, and the bines have trebled in size from last year.

We’re brewing a fresh-hopped beer with our home grown ingredients at the micro-brewery in The Old Brewery as we speak. Resident brewer and Beer Sommelier of the Year, Rod and brewer Gareth are manually brewing the beer which will be ready in around 6 weeks’ time, once it’s had the ideal amount of time to mature.

The hop plant is perennial and grows back from the rootstock every year. Harvesting here in the UK usually starts around early September, but depending the on the hop variety, it may stretch into early October. Tall hops are harvested by cutting the whole bine, and although ours aren’t considered ‘tall’ we cut the whole lot down so the cones are easier to pick off and sort. Usually the hops would then be transferred to a kiln for drying – hops contain about 80% of moisture, so to preserve them for use down the track, they’re dried to around 10% moisture before being bailed, vacuum packed and then stored ready for distribution. The whole point of a fresh-hop beer is that the hops are not dried, but instead added straight in to the brew – ideally within 24 short hours so they don’t spoil.

We drove ours from the Hop Farm straight down to the Old Brewery for picking, then into the brew. Because they haven’t been dried, the flavours of fresh hopped beers are more punchy, with fresher brighter flavours than traditionally dry-hopped brews. Stay tuned for the full tasting notes and release of our home grown fresh-hopped beer coming to you soon! It’ll be available in bottle exclusively in our shop at the Tasting Rooms at the brewery and on our Estore.

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