Production of hops increases in Pacific Northwest as craft beers boom

(KPTV)

It's hop harvesting time, and two local companies are teaming up to create a special beer that is available only once a year.

Crosby Hop Farm has been around for more than 100 years down in Woodburn. This year, they are working with BridgePort Brewing Company to make a "fresh-hopped beer."

Crosby Hop Farm, for the first time in Oregon, has grown a variety of hops called Amarillo. This variety is from the Yakima Valley in Washington and has its own unique floral and citrus aroma.

Crosby Hop Farm said this year, the cooler weather when the cones were developing on the hops means this is turning out to be an above average year.

The brewmaster at BridgePort explained to Fox 12 why fresh-hopped beer is unique.

"Generally hops are dried and somehow stored in either bails or pellets for use throughout the year. Once a year they harvest. They harvest for about four to six weeks depending on the farmer, and we're able to come out and get the fresh hops before they're dried, before they lose some of those aromas that they lose in the drying process and we're able to use those in a beer. So that's kind of a once a year opportunity to make a really cool interesting beer out of it," said Jeff Edgerton.

BridgePort said they are making a Red IPA using the Amarillo hops. This is the first time BridgePort has used the Amarillo hops.

The beer should be available for sale in about two weeks, and maybe even sooner in the BridgePort Brewery.

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