Monday, October 04, 2010

When Fringe Fest ends downtown, Lupulin Land Harvest Hopcoming begins uptown. Here's the preview.

Trellis succulence: Hops (and duck fat) make life better.

Lupulin Land Harvest Hopcoming, NABC’s annual paean to the magical hop cone, will begin on Tuesday, October 12, 2010, as we begin tapping kegs at the NABC Pizzeria & Public House (3312 Plaza Drive, New Albany).

In a break from previous practice, we’ll bring drafts on line throughout the week rather than debut them on a Friday. Most of them are American, some are strong, others mild, but one all-embracing ethos unites the lineup: Lupulus Eroticus.

Henceforth, we’ll be inviting like-minded fellow craft brewing companies to share the bill during Lupulin Land Harvest Hopcoming, and our featured co-conspirator for 2010 is Founders Brewing Company of Grand Rapids, Michigan. Thanks to John Host of Founders for making available a rare firkin of Harvest Ale, which will be tapped on 3:00 p.m. on Tuesday, October 19.

To know what’s on, what’s gone, and other Lupulin Land Harvest Hopcoming news, follow NABC on Facebook and Twitter.

Our usual hoppy boilerplate: Hoppiness beats watery flaccidity any day.

Contrary to persistent rumors - probably spread by the same people who insist that Bock beer is the result of brewing vats being cleaned once a year in springtime - beer is not “made” from hops.

Beer is “made” from barley, and sometimes wheat and oats and rye. In short, beer is brewed from grain. The body and color of beer derives from these grains, and the alcohol is the wonderful calling card left by yeast, which happily snack on sugars in the malt.

Hops act as the spice of beer. Hops balance the inherent, malty sweetness. Hops provide the seasoning. Hops cleanse the palate and leave you begging for more. Hops make it interesting, and perhaps healthy as well: According to researchers, isohumulones, agents of bittering in hops, may help curb the development of fat in the human body.

Misconceptions about hops are annoying, persistent and entirely understandable. If one is to judge by the non-flavor profile of America’s best-selling mainstream lagers, it is certain that the majority of beer drinkers in our purportedly great nation are suffering from severe lupulin deprivation. Hoppy beers reverse the trend, and add bitterness, aroma and flavor to the olfactory conversation.

See the Hop. Taste the Hop. Be the Hop

The American Heritage dictionary defines lupulin as the “minute yellowish-brown hairs obtained from the strobili of the hop plant, formerly used in medicine as a sedative.” The word lupulin is derived from the new Latin lupulus (hop species, a diminutive of the Latin lupus, hop plant, from lupus, wolf). Credit Pliny the Elder, and if you ever visit Russian River Brewing Co. in California, drink the beer named for him.

Here’s the list. Foraging persists, and there may be more.

It’s always difficult to predict which of the beers described herein will pour and when, as typically the juggling of late arrivals and handling of always temperamental firkins require last-minute improvisation. However, here’s the list of what we believe will be featured at various times during Lupulin Land 2010.


Founders Brewing Company

Founder's Centennial
Founder's Devil Dancer
Founder's Harvest Ale (firkin)
Founder's Red's Rye

New Albanian Brewing Company

NABC VIII Anniversary Ale
Cask-conditioned, dry-hopped with hops from the eight Single Hop series releases: Warrior, Summit, Simcoe, Chinook, Centennial, Amarillo, Nugget, and Cascade
8% abv, 80 IBU

NABC Saison de Houblon
Dry-hopped Saison featuring Saaz and Styrian Goldings.
7% abv, 41 IBU

Cask-conditioned, dry-hopped with Simcoe and Amarillo.
7.5% abv, 130 IBU

Wait, there’s more …

Goose Island Harvest Ale
American-style Extra Special Bitter with Cascade hops.
5.7% abv, 35 IBU

Great Divide Fresh Hop Pale Ale
Pacific Northwest “wet” hops shipped to Denver for the batch.
6.1% abv

Great Divide Rumble Oak-Aged IPA
American IPA aged on French and American oak.
7.1% abv

Hitachino Nest Japanese Classic Ale
Japan IPA: Chinook, Challenger & East Kent Goldings, aged in cedar casks.
7% abv

Left Hand Chainsaw
“Double” ESB: Magnum, US Goldings and Cascade.

Left Hand Twin Sisters
Double IPA, named for Twin Sisters Peaks in Colorado.
9% abv

Sierra Nevada Estate Homegrown Ale
Formerly “Chico Estate,” still brewed with malt and hops grown by the brewery on its grounds.
6.7% abv

Sierra Nevada Northern Hemisphere Harvest Ale
Formerly “Harvest Ale,” still brewed “wet” with Centennial and Cascades.
6.7% abv

Stone 14th Anniversary Emperial IPA
All English ingredients this year (except the water).
8.9% abv, 100 IBU

Stone Double Bastard 2008
Another stashed vintage of heightened Arrogant Bastard.
10.5%, 100 IBU

Two Brothers Hop Juice
Dry hopped with a pound of hops per barrel
9.9% ABV, 100.1 IBU's

WinterCoat Double Hop
A cask-conditioned firkin of English-influenced Imperial IPA, but from Denmark.
8.2% abv


Doctor Tarr said...

When I worked in Milwaukee a couple of people told me they could "smell the hops" from the Miller brewery around town.

The smell of the mash did often travel a good distance, but there wasn't a hint of hop.

Scott said...

3 Floyds' Broo Doo should be released soon. Is there any chance of you getting a keg of that for the Harvest? That's some tasty stuff!

The New Albanian said...

I'll certainly try.