Fort George Brewery in Astoria, Oregon, does fresh hops right. Not only does the brewery’s crew rush to the fields to get the uber-fresh and dank mosaics for this IPA within hours of picking; Ft. George is also one of the only breweries packaging a fresh hop beer. This makes the new Fort George Fresh IPA cans a thing of beauty to be savored.
In just 48 hours from harvest, the brewers at Fort George had packed the tanks with wet-hopped beers. Fresh-hopped versions of The Optimist and Suicide Squeeze IPA were bubbling away in the Sweet Virginia pub system. And in the Lovell Brewery, enough Fresh IPA to provide the drinkers of the Pacific Northwest their wet hop fix. Well, at least until this limited batch runs out.
“It’s definitely a lot of work in a very short period of time, brewing a fresh hop beer on this scale,” explains Fort George lead production brewer Mike Frankowicz. “But all of us are excited about how it turned out, and really looking forward to enjoying a few.”
And Mike is excited for you to try a pint as well. So eager, he drove an extra truck filled with Fresh IPA cans to Portland this morning. From vine, to brewery, to beer, to can, and into your hands in just two weeks – that’s how fresh Fresh IPA is.
Also, we missed the news of Fort George’s Squash Buckler pumpkin ale release in 22oz bottles last week because we were in Denver covering the Great American Beer Festival. Bottles of Squash Buckler were released at the pub in Astoria yesterday and should be hitting Oregon bottleshops now.
Squash Buckler begins with the gathering of the fresh crop of sugar pumpkins by Organically Grown Company and their community of local farms, sometime around early September. Whole pumpkins are then sliced and diced, roasted in the Fort George wood-fired oven to caramelize the sugars, and then placed in the boil of this autumn seasonal. There are no additional flavorings or spices. Squash Buckler simply packs rich organic malts and fire-roasted pumpkin into a deep amber ale.
Squash Buckler in 22-oz bottles and draft will be available in Washington, Oregon, and Idaho starting Thursday October 1st. Get it quickly – this small-batch release won’t last long. Fort George beer is distributed only in the Pacific Northwest.