Bridge Road Brewers have partnered with Australia’s largest hop grower (HPA) to debut a first-of-its kind collaboration at the annual High Country Hop. With the harvest in full swing, Bridge Road Brewers joins forces with renowned brewers from Mountain Culture and Garage Project, carefully producing two new beers in a creative endeavour to express the unique regions they call home.
First up is Hazy Harvest, an IPA made with Mountain Culture. The recipe was developed in conjunction with Australia’s foremost crafter of hazy beers, DJ Mcready from Mountain Culture. This year’s beer sees the introduction of a higher level of protein from malted oats and chit malt, and Bridge Road’s first use of yeast from Bluestone yeast in Melbourne.
Dark Harvest comes in next as an IPA made with Garage Project. 2022’s Dark Harvest was designed together with Joss and Pete from New Zealand’s famed Garage Project. It’s a subtle but punchy Black IPA, thanks to a big malt base and generous hop regime. Both beers are bursting with the unique flavours of freshly harvested local hops from HPA’s Rostrevor Hop Garden. The 2022 vintage uses fresh Galaxy hop cones, picked and added to the beer within 6 hours.
Owen Johnston from HPA says “Aussie brewers are making great beer year-round, but there’s something special about fresh hop beers. They’re only available once a year for a limited time, and beer drinkers should be jumping at the chance to try them.
“In an industry where most brewers are pumping out one or two top sellers’ week in week out, it’s great to give Aussie brewers the excuse to slow down, do something different and test their skills”.
Alongside hosts Bridge Road Brewers and special guests, Garage Project (NZ) and Mountain Culture (Katoomba) are much-loved regional Victorian breweries; Sailors Grave (Orbost), Dollar Bill Brewing (Ballarat) and Love Shack (Castelmaine). Representing the High Country will be Bright Brewery, Mitta Mitta Brewing Co., King River Brewing and Billson’s Brewery.
Separate to the exciting collaboration with Bridge Road Brewers, Garage Project will bring along ‘Chance, Luck & Magic’, a spontaneous brew that can only be made in Wellington. Situated in the heart of the city, the team produces a base wort, puts it in the coolship and opens the windows, letting the microbes in the air and wild yeast work their magic. The brewery will also pour the hop-heavy ‘Dry Haze’, showcasing Yakima Chief’s Sabro hops from the legendary Perrault Farm. Dry Haze is designed with a lighter body and dry hazy brew, bursting with a blend of tropical fruit, citrus, tangerine, and coconut.
Mountain Culture hops along with ‘Status Quo’ in tow, the highest rated Pale Ale in Australia as ruled by Untappd. Accompanying the super hoppy, fruity, hazy pale ale will be ‘Oat Cream IPA- Autopilot’. The all-American hopped Oat Cream combines six of their favourite American hops, pushing it to all sorts of limits.
The exceptional Sailors Grave joins the line up with their unique, nuanced and subtle layers of complexity. The Orbost brewers make hand crafted, artisanal beers with a diverse array of farmed and foraged ingredients, showcasing the “terroir” of the Snowy Mountains.
Ballarat-based Dollar Bill is working hard to bring a mash hopped barrel fermented Saison to the table, undoubtedly inspired by their fruity, Belgian influences.
The High Country Hop is the perfect way to see out the festival season, punters can join a killer line-up of beers and tunes with Australia’s high country as their backdrop.