Most of the world’s hops are grown between the 35th and 55th parallels, with Germany and the Pacific Northwest leading global hop production. But Australia and New Zealand are proving themselves to be a force to be reckon with, gradually increasing acreage in the past decade.
The hop yield is smaller, but just as bright as it is here in the Northwest. The Southern Hemisphere brings wild, tropical and overwhelming bright, fruity characteristics forward that break normality and in result, usher a wave of curious craft beer consumers. The two countries are working to plant more acreage year after year to keep up with demand – their products are globally coveted and are limited to source here in the United States. In fact, Australia has increased their acreage by 16 percent between 2016 and 2017, increasingly influencing the current hop market.
The good news is you can get your hands on a few pints focused on these hops here in the Northwest. Skip the passport and take a trip “down under” with these beers from your local producers.
Double Infinity | Superflux Beer | Vancouver, BC | Exploratory homebrewers turned up-and-coming gypsy brewing duo, Superflux Beer lives for bold, hop-forward brews and has eye-catching design to boot. Their latest Southern Hemi-inspired brew is Double Infinity, hopped exclusively with Galaxy hops, undoubtedly Australia’s most sought-after and internationally recognized hop variety. If you’re in the Vancouver area, act fast: Superflux beers are known move quickly.
Irreplaceable | Cloudburst Brewing | Seattle | The Northern and Southern Hemispheres collide with Cloudburst’s “Irreplaceable,” brewed with Citra and two newer Australian varieties: Vic Secret and Enigma. Vic Secret hops showcase flavors of clean pineapple and passion fruit, whereas the Enigma hop lives up to its name, with complex layers of flavors from raspberries to Pinot Gris. The Seattle-based brewery rarely repeats batches, so get your hands on a pint while you still can.
Galaxy Quest | Fort George Brewery | Astoria, OR | Fort George’s exclusive small-batch lineup — the Sweet Virginia Series — features Galaxy Quest for its early summer release, closely following the finish of the Australian hop harvest. Galaxy hops marry well with loads of apricots and peaches, bringing the hops’ peach and passion fruit flavors to the front line and making for a juicy, galactic experience. The truly “fruit-forward” IPA is fermented with a London ale strain resulting in a bold, fuller finish.
Momo | Great Notion Brewing | Portland | One of Great Notion’s tributes to the Southern Hemisphere is with Momo, a hazy IPA dry-hopped with loads of Motueka hops. Motueka hails from New Zealand, bred and developed from New Zealand’s Plant and Food Research program. Though carries notes of citrus and tropical fruit, Motueka is dearly recognized for its bright lime, mojito and key lime pie characteristics. The Portland brewery shares a lot of love for its southern neighbors, exploring more hop varieties with the Over-Ripe IPA and the Raspberry Dream.
Not of this World | Wandering Hop Brewery | Yakima, WA | The new Yakima brewery adds to the current “haze craze” with Not of this World, an unfiltered, New-England style IPA that upholds Galaxy’s notoriety as a real juice-bomb. Its inviting disposition is reminiscent of real fruit juice, eminent from late additions to the boil and generous dry-hopping. Wandering Hops’ Southern Hemi brew suits the Northwest’s hop capital, and is fitting to its overall theme of wanderlust.
Down Under IPA | pFriem Family Brewers | Hood River, OR | Both Australian and New Zealand hops enrich pFriem’s Down Under IPA, brewed with Ella, Topaz, Motueka and the sought-after Nelson Sauvin. The hops mingle together to create a multi-layered flavor experience. The clean copper brew boasts flavors of strawberry jam, kiwi and passion fruit, finishing with a touch of resin and orange peel.