As Spring seems to have finally sprung, I thought I’d take the opportunity to check on my Brixton Beer hop plant on Sunday and I’m happy to report the stalks are stirring for a second year of supping glory!
For anyone who hasn’t heard about the Brixton Beer Company yet, here’s a quick re-cap…the Brixton Beer Company was masterminded by City Farmers who wanted to encourage the local community to grow & harvest hops which would then be used to brew in to a beer.
On Saturday 17th March 2012 a group of local residents collected their hop growing starter kits from Helen Steer & Ann Bodkin at Stockwell Spring Green Fair and on a grey and rainy afternoon we dug a small deep hole in our back yard and planted the root. We were given a pack of seaweed and gravel and a nice smelly bag of manure to encourage the initial growth.
Day 1 (above) laying some serious roots down…
Three months later (above) the hops are starting to climb the walls until six months on (pic below) they’re in full bloom.
After a lot of rain, a little sun & six months of love & attention the hops were ready to pick & pass on to Peter Haydon at The Florence Brew Pub on Tuesday 11th September. Peter added the local hops to the brew on the Herne Hill premises that evening.
The beer itself was a pale ale called Prima Donna (named after the variety of hops everyone had grown) and it made its debut at the East Dulwich Beer Festival on Saturday 6th October.
The ale was on tap in three East Dulwich pubs – The Bishop, East Dulwich Tavern & The Drafthouse. We drunk all three establishments dry before the night was through and everyone agreed it was a great pint of beer!
Now in year two & with more local growers on board, the Brixton hop harvest should be even more plentiful this autumn, meaning there should be more beer at the end of it!
The photo at the top & bottom of this page is used courtesy of our sister blog Urban 75.