Providing the only opportunity of the year to check out all the brewers of the region within the one venue, the High Country Hops Festival is quickly becoming a notable calendar inclusion for beer lovers.
Held on the 24th and 25th of March at Bridge Road Brewery, this year the festival will be launching a range of unique products that are a must for any craft beer lover to try.
To get the most out of the day, below are some of the highlights at The High Country Hops Festival that are sure to entice and surprise those familiar with the craft beer market in Victoria.
Dry Hopped Gin
Sure to be a hit with guests is the dry hopped gin, a creative collaboration between Bridge Road Brewers and Reed & Co Distillery. Named ‘Lupugin,’ the product is juniper driven with a double serve of galaxy hops, dessert lime & Mt pepper distilled with Australian grain spirit. Expect to taste those hop notes familiar to the beer know-it-all.
The Harvest by Bridge Road Brewers
Bridge Road Brewers will be bringing their wet hop beer ‘The Harvest’ to the festival this year. Harnessing the fact that wet hops bypass the usual drying and pelletizing processes, expect The Harvest to have a fuller flavour than a normal craft beer, with added citrus aromas for that summer touch.
Hop Trial Bar
Love to try something new? Then make sure to head to the Hop Trial Bar to taste four unique beers made exclusively for the festival. Each of the beers are made using the same recipe, and are identical except for the hop variety used. Guests have the chance to vote on their favourite hop variety and provide their own flavour descriptors and thoughts about each one!
Who’s Ros & Trevor North East Ale
Though not quite ready for this year’s festival, Blizzard Brewing Co will be launching their new hop beer made exclusively with freshly harvested wet galaxy hops from the Rostrevor Hop Gardens in Ovens. The local provenance of these ingredients highlights the freshness of the hops and make it one of the company’s fastest selling brews.
King River Brewing ChinookSMaSH IPA
In celebration of the annual hop harvest, King River Brewing has collaborated with their local artisan hop farmer to release a very special wet hopped Chinook SMaSH IPA (Single Malt, Single Hop). This beer can only be made at this time of year, with the hops being picked in the morning of the brew day and used only an hour later.
Haven’t quite got your beer fix yet? Never fear, as the High Country Hops Festival will also play host to Gundowing’s beer flavoured Ice Cream and a beer washed rind Milawa cheese.
General Admission to the fourth annual High Country Hops Festival is free, for detailed information please visit the event page .
There also are tickets available for paid tours and beer tastings, which can be purchased online here.
The Bridge Road Brewery is located in Beechworth, a 3-hour drive north of Melbourne.