On August 16, the brew crew headed down to Jasper, Indiana in Dubois County to White River Hops to harvest hops for the fall release of Harvest Ale. White River Hops was established in 2015 by Kurt and Dean Vonderheide to grow and supply high -quality desired hops for the mircobreweries around the state.
Last year, brewer Patrick Lynch drove up to Hickory Corners, Michigan to collect the hops and headed straight back to the brewery to add Centennial whole hops, along with Palisade and Cascade to the whirlpool. This was for the draught-only batch available at Upland locations.
This year’s draught-only Harvest Ale will feature Chinook and Cascade whole hops from White River Hops. The gang arrived at the farm to enjoy some lunch and share a beer before heading out to bines to harvest 170 pounds total of hops.
You can’t get much fresher than this. These hops went from farm to beer in less than 6 hours. This batch also included Chinook pellets from White River Hops that were harvested, pelletized, and added to the beer within 7 days. That means our first batch of Harvest Ale is made entirely of local Indiana hops!
The harvest machine wasn’t working properly when the crew first arrived, so it was a manual process for a while. This would have taken most of the day to pick hops off the bine by hand, but once the harvest machine was up and running, 170 pounds of hops were harvested within a couple hours.
Pete Batule, head of brewery operations, loads Cascade hops into the harvester.
Patrick is adding the Chinook and Cascade hops within 6 hours of harvesting. This batch will is available only on draught at Upland locations from now until it runs out and is meant to be enjoyed fresh, so get it while you can. The bottled Harvest Ale will include fresh hops from Yakima, Washington that are harvested and shipped to the brewery within 48 hours. Citra whole hops will be wet-hopped and the dry hops will be Centennial, Simcoe, and Citra pellets.
Bottled Harvest Ale will be available at the end of September. Happy Harvest, everyone!