Indie Hops Breeding: Developing the Next Great Hop

pressed hops

Last week I organized a panel of respected beer connoisseurs Brian Yaeger, Charles Culp and “SNOB” Ritch Marvin to go along with myself to the Indie Hops offices and evaluate new test hop varietals bred at Oregon State University. It’s not often the public or even media get a first hand chance to taste and more importantly smell new hops in development and the opportunity was thanks to Jim Solberg co-owner of Indie Hops.

In case you did not know Oregon is the 2nd largest farming region for hops next to the Washington’s Yakima Valley. We also have Oregon State University which in addition to having one of the only fermentation sciences programs in the country also does quite a bit of hop research and breeding.

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14 Craft Beers You Need to Try


  • Blue Mountain Dark Hollow – Afton, VA

    Learn more about Blue Mountain Brewery

    This imperial stout aged in oak bourbon barrels has an interesting aroma, reminiscent of coffee grinds and a hint of chili pepper.  The velvety smooth beer is 10 percent alcohol by volume (ABV), but you wouldn’t know it by its taste; and that’s a good thing.  We’d enjoy this as a nightcapper beer.  It’s a bit rich for more than one or two glasses, with its chocolate flavor, but it’s got a nice, not-too-sweet, dry finish.

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7venth Sun Brewing: Tour & Interview (Dunedin, Florida)


Being a mid-west native, I really didn’t know what to expect from Florida Craft Beer. I had heard of Cigar City (see interview/tour #1), but that’s about it. So you can imagine my thrill when I was able to touch base with 7venth Sun brewing in beautiful Dunedin, Florida.

It was 11am and I had maybe 4 hours of sleep the night before, but as we pulled up to 7venth Sun, I was immediately jolted with the awesome fact that I would be spending my day, experiencing some of the best craft beer that Florida has to offer. As I gazed upon the home of 7venth Sun, I wasn’t sure if I was looking at the brewery, or possibly a nearby coffee shop (and I dig coffee shops). When we entered the brewery, we were greeted by Co-Owner and Founder, Devon Kreps. This woman is as warm as the entire state; welcoming, funny, a bright soul that knows a TON about beer. While tasting the diverse selection of original brews, Devon and I discussed the growing industry of craft beer in Florida, what it takes to run a nano brewery, Umphrey’s McGee, sweet potato beers, and why 7venth Sun kicks so much ass (my words).

The Beginning – Now:

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