It’s that time of year.
The temperatures are beginning to drop, the leaves are beginning to change and the crops are beginning to be harvested. While autumn won’t officially start until Sept. 22, fall is in the air.
For many this means apple picking, but for beer lovers it means hop picking! And while pumpkin may be the preferred fall flavor, for hop lovers it’s fresh hops.
On Saturday, Lift Bridge Brewing Company embraced the change of seasons with its 8th annual Pickin’ and Grinnin’ party.
From 12 to 7 p.m. guests of all ages were invited to come help harvest hops from Hippity Hops Farms in Forest Lake, Minn. The hops were then used to create Lift Bridge’s fresh hopped beer – Harvestör.
For $5, guests 21 years and older were give a free beer to enjoy while harvesting. Those under 21, or who weren’t drinking, were given two root beers.
There was also live music from the Dang Ol’ Tri’ole, Harbor Drive Hookup, Kind Country and The Burbillies, as well as food from Leo’s.
From 7 to 10 p.m., guests that were 21 years or older were able to enjoy all the libations the tap room offered.
Fresh hopped, also known as wet hopped, beer is only available when the hops are harvested. This is the autumn season for us up north. Normally dried, hops are used for bitterness and aroma in beer. However, when used fresh they are more mellow and add an earthy flavor to the beer.
Lift Bridge is one a of a few Minnesota breweries that make a fresh hopped brew. Harvestör is expected to be available at the end of September.