Monday, August 26, 2013

Pictures from the Big Hop Pickin' 2013 at Bells Bend Farms

Hops ready to be picked!

The hop poles looking a little barren now, with the hop vines gone...

Now for the hard part!  Hand picking cones off 150 vines!

The hops safely in cold storage overnight...

Pouring the hops into our lauter tun, used as a hop back for this special batch!

Hops in the lauter, about to be steeped in the hot wort for an hour...

Hot work, getting the spent hops out of the lauter...

The spent hops, with all their flavor and aroma now in the beer!

Tuesday, August 20, 2013

Big Hop Picking Party this Thursday, August 22

Our Mystery hops are ready to be picked out at Bell Bend!  I love this time of year!  We'll be picking them out at Sulphur Creek Farm, just north of the intersection of Ashland City Hwy and Old Hickory Blvd.  We have about 150 vines to cut down and pick this year, about three times as many last year.  So we are looking for volunteers who want to come out, drink some fresh hop beer (from the Cascade variety we picked three weeks ago), and get your hands sticky and green from all the hops.  It's a fun time, and it's a great way to get back to nature and see what actually goes into making a good beer.  If you would like to volunteer to help, please email Linus at and he'll get you hooked up.

Hop Project #74, first batch out 08/19/13

We bottled our next batch of Hop Project, #74, yesterday on 8/19/13.  Ivan took a turn with this one, and here is his description of the beer:

"I brewed batch 74 to honor my dear ole’ Grandad’s birthday. He grew up in Surrey county, England, right next to Kent. So in this batch we used mostly East Kent Goldings and Progress hops, both from the UK. To give it an American twist (Grandad now lives in the States), I used some Cascade for flavor and a touch of Chinook for a stronger bitterness. For his birthday I sent him a case. Cheers, Grandad!


I like it.  The English hops give it a nice lemony, green tea aroma, and the bitterness is more restrained than with American hops.  Look for this one in all of our distribution areas, including most of Tennessee, Mississippi, and northern Alabama.