COOPERSTOWN, NY — Brewery Ommegang, located in Brew Central, is once again shining the spotlight on local hop farmers with its 2016 edition of Hopstate NY, an all-NYS hops beer. Brewed in tribute and to raise awareness for local hop farmers breathing life back into the state’s hop industry, this year’s Hopstate NY is an American amber ale brewed with rye, and of course, a healthy amount of hops exclusively sourced from Empire State farmers. The beer will be available on draft and in six-packs, starting in early July.
The release of the new brew will be supported through tastings at farmer’s markets around the state, and the second annual Ommegang RV Tour, set to visit cities from Buffalo to Syracuse and Albany to NYC during the month. Just as in 2015, there will also be educational seminars and presentations on the New York State hops initiative across the region and as far as Washington D.C. – at Savor, a national beer and food celebration put on annually by the Brewer’s Association. These are conducted in collaboration with the Cornell Cooperative Extension and their hop advisers who counsel farmers across the state on best practices and manage a varietal research yard at Ommegang.
“Hopstate NY is a beer everyone at the brewery is extraordinarily passionate about,” says Ommegang’s Innovation Manager Justin Forsythe, who developed this year’s recipe. “For me personally, it is very special as our 2016 version is a vastly different take on showcasing New York hops. It’s an American amber ale by style, but breaking from tradition and expectation, we added copious amounts of the finest NY State Cascade, Chinook, and Nugget hops we could find. I think people are really going to enjoy our take – it’s citrusy and spicy, while being very refreshing.”
The hop industry has deep roots in NY which was the epicenter of hops production in the United States in the 1800s, producing 80% of the country’s hops. Last fall, Ommegang, which is located on the former Lynes Hop Farm in Cooperstown, NY, purchased one ton of New York State-grown and processed hops. The hops were used to brew not only Hopstate NY but were also used in Fleur de Houblon, Ommegang’s summer ale. This is the second year in which Ommegang has purchased local hops for both experimental brews, and local and nationwide releases.
At 5.6% ABV, Hopstate NY pours a deep amber hue with a persistent white head. The hopping is almost entirely late-addition, and with two rounds of dry-hopping in fermentation, the beer has bright aromas of citrus and melon. The flavor is citrusy with a bit of sweet honey and caramel from the malt. Moderate bitterness of the taste is of citrus and tangerine with a slight pine resin presence. The finish is a pleasantly lingering resinous hop finish with a touch of sweet malt. Hopstate NY pairs well with grilled, fried, or roast chicken, spicy foods, pizza, and burgers.
This year, Hopstate NY will only be available in New York but as the local hop industry grows, Hopstate NY may expand to new states, symbolizing its rebirth and vitality. Hopstate NY will be available next month in 12oz. six-packs for the suggested retail price of $13.99. Ommegang’s website offers a beer finder for locating retailers by zip code.
Brewery Ommegang opened in 1997 to craft-brew fine Belgian-style ales. Ommegang brews eight ales year-round, as well as an extensive and imaginative range of seasonal and specialty ales. The beers have won a national following by connoisseurs of fine beer and are distributed in 45 states and internationally. Ommegang is located on a 136-acre farmstead in Cooperstown, New York and offers free daily tours and inexpensive tastings as well as a 100-seat café, a well-stocked brewery store, and an annual calendar of public events. Ommegang is open every day of the year except for Thanksgiving, Christmas Day, and New Year’s Day. For more information, contact firstname.lastname@example.org, call 1-800-544-1809, or visit www.ommegang.com. Ommegang is a member of the Duvel family of fine beers. Follow Ommegang on Twitter: @BreweryOmmegang, Facebook.com/Ommegang, and Instagram: @BreweryOmmegang