We have launched a unique seasonal ale made with the three varieties of hop grown at the brewery’s own hop garden.
Home Harvest Ale has been brewed with Fuggles and English Cascade hops harvested from our garden at the brewery in Tongham, near Farnham, as well as the classic Farnham White Bine variety, grown exclusively by Hogs Back. The hops were picked on 21 and 22 September, dried just three miles away in Puttenham, and then returned and used in the brew on 27 September.
Fuggles were added at the beginning of the boil for bittering, with Farnham White Bine and English Cascade added at the end for aroma. The result is a 4.0% ABV amber cask ale brewed in the traditional Hogs Back house style, while having its own distinctive character, with a great balance between sweetness and bitterness with a light hop aroma.
Rupert Thompson, owner of Hogs Back Brewery, said, “We think Home Harvest Ale is a first for British brewing; a beer made with three varieties of hops grown just 100 yards from the brewhouse. It makes us a genuinely local brewer in far more than just name.
“Both Fuggles and White Bine, which is part of the Goldings family, are classic English ale hops, while Cascade is a more aromatic hop from North America that is starting to be grown in the UK with very encouraging results.
“This year marked our second harvest and we’re delighted with the quality of the hops. It will be interesting to see if Farnham-grown Fuggles and Cascade develop a different character over the years, which would support the idea that hops respond to micro climates and soil in the same way as grapes - what the French call the influence of 'terroir'.
“Home Harvest Ale isn’t a highly-hopped US-style beer, it’s a classic, well-balanced British ale, and we‘re sure that beer lovers from Surrey and well beyond will be raising a glass to celebrate the harvest.”
Hogs Back Brewery and its successful revival of the Farnham White Bine were featured on BBC Countryfile at the start of October. The programme is available on iPlayer until 2 November at www.bbc.co.uk/iplayer/episode/b07yjcqq/countryfile-surrey
Home Harvest Ale is on sale in a number of pubs across Hogs Back’s Surrey heartland and further afield, including:
• Shepherd and Flock, Farnham
• Duke of Cambridge, Farnham
• Swan Inn, Chiddingfold
• Leather Bottle, Hook