Claiming its spot as the first fresh hop style brew released in Seattle, Two Beers Brewing is proud to announce the arrival of its 2011 Fresh Hop. Hop-enthusiasts can enjoy their first taste of this long-awaited beer beginning September 2 at the Two Beers Brewing tasting room, with Fresh Hop hitting shelves in 22-ounce bottles and appearing on tap across the Pacific Northwest beginning September 5. Accompanying Fresh Hop 2011 as Two Beers Brewing’s seasonal offerings are its Heart of Darkness Imperial CDA and Pumpkin Spice Ale.
“This is our favorite time of year,” said Joel VandenBrink, Two Beers Brewing founder and head brewer. “There’s nothing like the flavors of fall and what better way to welcome in the season than with a delicious, handcrafted local beer.”
First brewed in 2009, Fresh Hop enters its third season on the brewery’s fall lineup. This Northwest-inspired brew’s strong citrus aroma – featuring hints of grapefruit and passion fruit – can be attributed to the freshly picked, Yakima Valley-grown Centennial hops used to create it, harvested from Puterbaugh Farms, the family hop farm of Assistant Brewer Tyler Pickel. Copper in color with deep caramel malt tones, Fresh Hop 2011 settles in at 6.2 percent ABV resembling an aggressively dry-hopped mid-range IPA, but packing the punch only fresh hops can deliver. In addition to Centennial hops, this beer features locally grown Amarillo, Simcoe, Nugget and Columbus hops, helping this popular beer achieve its bright and delightfully bitter flavor.
“The creation of this beer is an annual tradition for the Two Beers Brewing team. We get a call that the hops are ready and by that night, we’re in the field pulling the vines down ourselves,” laughed VandenBrink. “We enjoy the work that goes into this beer, as well as the tribute it pays to Washington-grown hops and their important role in our industry.”
“This is an exciting time of year for consumers and pub owners because it’s when you get to experience beer at its best,” said Bob Brenlin, part-owner of Latona Pub, Fiddler’s Inn and Hopvine Pub, all known for their outstanding craft beer selection. “The aromas and flavors created by using freshly picked hops are like none other and the Two Beers Brewing Fresh Hop really delivers – so flavorful and aromatic, it’s as if there are hops just floating in your beer.”
Also joining the Two Beer Brewing tap list in September is the highly anticipated Heart of Darkness Imperial Cascadian Dark Ale (CDA). First brewed this spring as a limited release with help from the crew at LOT No. 3 – a Bellevue-based restaurant owned by the Heavy Restaurant Group – the Heart of Darkness Imperial CDA will be available on tap only at the Two Beers Brewing tasting room and in 22-ounce bottles at select retailers. An imperial version of the emerging “Black IPA” style, the Heart of Darkness Imperial CDA mixes dark roasted specialty malts with highly citrus and floral hops, and is then dry-hopped with Columbus hops for a smooth finish. Flavors of molasses, dark cherry, oak and chocolate will grace the palate of all those that enjoy this unique, handcrafted brew.
Last but not least is the brewery’s popular Pumpkin Spice Ale, expected to hit taps throughout the Northwest beginning October 1. This perfectly spiced, deep copper colored ale – brewed with cinnamon, ginger, nutmeg, cloves and allspice – was met with great interest for its complex flavors and aroma during its first run in fall of 2009. Malt forward with a nutmeg and clove aroma, drinkers of this fall-focused brew will enjoy cinnamon and ginger lingering on the tongue, with allspice rounding out the back end of the palate.
Two Beers Brewing will continue to distribute its five year-round offerings this fall, as well as a host of packaged products. In addition to Fresh Hop 2011 and Heart of Darkness Imperial CDA, craft beer enthusiasts can pick up Persnickety Pale Ale and Evo. IPA in 22-ounce bottles. Also available are Two Beers Brewing’s new 12-ounce cans – sold in six-packs at select retailers including Whole Foods and Central Markets – featuring Panorama Wheat, Evo. IPA and Trailhead ISA.
Offering twelve beers – including five year-round, seven seasonal and a host of intricate infusions – Two Beers Brewing also offers pints, growlers and kegs-to-go in its 4,800-square-foot SoDo brewery and tasting room, in addition to being available on tap in more than 300 restaurants and bars in Washington and Idaho. For more information, be sure to follow Two Beers Brewing on Facebook or visit www.twobeersbrewery.com.