Yesterday, our Head Brewer Aaron Blonden, and Co-Owner Nate Reilly, headed out bright and early from our brewery in Olympia, Washington to the fertile soils of Moxee, Washington, to pick up our first batch of fresh hops, which will be of the Strata variety. Once picked and loaded into our refrigerated van today, they will be hurried back over beautiful Highway 410 and the Cascade Mountain Range, where Aaron and his merry band of brewers will get to work on our first fresh hop NA beer!
The image above is from our friend Andy Roy at Roy Hop Farms, our exclusive provider of hops for our first-ever fresh hop Self Care NA beers. These are literally our Strata hops that have been hand-selected for Self Care. Soon enough, they'll be in our equipment, and before too long, in cans and on their way to your refrigerator!
A few details about Strata, and what you might expect about the flavor profile for this beer: While it was born in 2009, it wasn't officially released until 2018. Strata was Indie Hops’ first hop variety to be released out of their breeding program in cooperation with Oregon State University. The Strata hop has many layers of different fruit flavor, dried and fresh, anchored with a dried chili-cannabis-funk. Late hot side additions using Strata bring out layers of rounded-tropical plus bright-fresh fruit flavors; dry hopping yields more grapefruit and cannabis. Other descriptors include passion fruit, strawberry and dank. If you want to learn more about this cool hop, check out more details here.
Continue to follow along as Nate and Aaron post blog updates from their trip this week to the hop capital of the world! Lots more to come, as we share the fresh hop brewing process over the coming weeks!