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Oast House Hop Farm has its biggest harvest yet of the Columbus, Chinook, Cascade and Nugget cones.

Beau Byrtus, one of Oast House’s founders, gives a rundown in the video.

What you should take away from Oast House is not so much that it’s a working hop farm.

No, there’s a bigger take away: Oast House, with its annual harvest gathering of friends, is building on New Jersey’s craft beer culture.

You can easily imagine the harvests becoming, over time, like a small fair, with homebrewing demonstrations, a beer tent, and vendors selling Jersey fall produce and pies.

Or at least that’s the potential. Town hall and the state may think otherwise (this is where you should start looking at Oast House as a working farm, given some of the privileges the state allows for farms).

Two breweries are using Oast’s Jersey hops this year, and it’s a safe bet there will be loads of beer drinkers looking to see what Kane and Triumph Brewing did with fresh-from-the-farm cones.

It’s not just hops that Oast House is growing; it’s the Garden State’s craft beer culture, too.

Picking-Hops

 

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Kane-Hops
Teaming up with the Oast House for a third year, Kane Brewing will make a wet-hop brew using Nugget and Cascade cones from the Burlington County hop farm.

The Jersey-grown-hops IPA is on the Ocean Township brewery's production schedule for Tuesday (Aug. 26) for a 20-barrel batch. About 145 pounds of hops were dropped off at the brewery on Monday.

"We're curious. We've never done a 20-barrel all wet-hop (brew)," owner Michael Kane tells Beer-Stained Letter. "When I was a homebrewer, I used to do 10-gallon all wet-hop."

Kane Hops2The beer is expected to finish out around 7.5% ABV. Oast House, located in Wrightstown, is expected to deliver another load of hops in about a week that will be used for dry-hopping.

This summer was the farm’s third growing season. In addition to Cascade and Nugget, Oast House has also grown Chinook, Columbus and Centennial cultivars.

In the two years prior, Kane Brewing has been limited to using Oast House's harvests for dry-hopping, and on a smaller scale. A much larger yield this year has afforded the opportunity to use the hops in the kettle, for bittering, flavor and aroma.

"This year they really ramped up. It's the third year, so the plants are coming in better," Michael says.

 

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