This time of year in Washington state brings juicy plums, the smell of boiling Dungeness crab and pumpkin spice lattes. But for beer drinkers, it means wet hop beers. One of the most seasonally specific styles that a brewery can make, wet-hop (or fresh-hop) beers are brewed with just-harvested whole-cone hops rushed from farms to brew kettles to capture the most vibrant flavors and aromas of these pungent flowers before they begin to fade. This limits the brewing period to the very short hops harvest season every September, with the bounty arriving now, at least this year. Today, Peaks and Pints presents another round of new wet hop beers to our cooler, and thus a good reason to offer a flight of them, too. Enjoy Peaks and Pints Pilot Program: Wet Hop Beer Flight.
Matchless Fresh Bois
You know Matchless Brewing’s Crispy Bois. It’s the American light lager with the tropical hop character of a hazy IPA. Well, Matchless brewed a fresh batch with Mosaic, Chinook, and El Dorado hops and finished with a heaping dry hopping of fresh Citra hop cones from CLS Farms. It’s super citrusy with notes of honeydew, mango, and fresh cut grass.
A hyper seasonal, Two Beers Brewing’s Fresh Hop IPA is known for its intense hop flavor and unique brewing process, which involves a same-day round trip drive to Yakima, four hours of picking fresh hops off the vines, a community effort to pick the cones off the bines, and a 24-hour brewing process. This year, Two beer’s Fresh Hop IPA is brewed with fresh El Dorado hops from Hops Direct for notes of tropical fruit, pear, watermelon, and stone fruit.
6.9% ABV, 50 IBU
For this year’s Pert Near Fresh Hop IPA Crux Fermentation Project brewed this early harvest IPA using the brand-new McKenzie hop developed by West Coast Hop Breeding. Exclusive to the Willamette Valley, the dank McKenzie hop, formerly known as C-148 Experimental Hop, brings jammy berry notes to the party alongside big tropical flavors and floral aromas.