Thursday, August 11, 2016

Hop Harvest Season On Center Stage In Pair Of Unique Beer Tours

Written by  Paul Starr
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hop head farms article

Late August and early September mark the peak of summer and the peak of the hop harvest season.
Of the four main ingredients in craft beer, none of them boast the rabid following of humulus lupulus, or hops. West Michigan Beer Tours, in collaboration with Hop Head Farms, of Hickory Corners, will offer two unique tours into the exciting season with our Hop Harvest Beer Tour, to be held Aug. 27 and Sept. 3.

The Hop Harvest Beer Tour on Aug. 27 will be based out of Grand Rapids, while the Sept. 3 tour will be based out of Kalamazoo. The tours will escort groups to Hop Head Farms, a 30­acre farm in Hickory Corners outside of Kalamazoo that provides hops for breweries all over the country, as well as internationally. Several Michigan breweries will provide samples of their beer using hops from Hop Head Farms to be tasted as part of the unique tour of the hop fields and processing equipment.

“What we work for all year comes down to these few short weeks. Very few people who aren’t in the brewing industry get to see and smell the action of harvest. There is nothing like it. Jeff (Steinman) and the crew really have the whole process down to an art. I love to get to share a piece of this special (and crazy) time with the groups from West Michigan Beer Tours, and highlight how Michigan hops are being used by brewers today,” co­founder Bonnie Steinman.

After farm visit, the bus will visit breweries that work close with Hop Head Farms ­­Founders Brewing Co. and Walldorff Brewpub & Bistro (Aug. 27) and Territorial Brewing Co. and Tibbs Brewing Co. (Sept. 3), respectively.

Tickets for the tour are on sale now. They start at $75 and includes samples or a pint at each location. Premium tickets are also available for both tours. For more information, go to www.westmichiganbeertours.com/tour.

August 27 

  • Origination:​ jdek at JW Marriott Grand Rapids, noon­1 p.m.
  • Stop 1:​ Hop Head Farms, samples, tour, 2­3:30 p.m.
  • Stop 2:​ Walldorff Brewpub & Bistro, pint/samples, tour, 4­5 p.m.
  • Stop 3:​ Founders Brewing Co., tour, pint, 6­7:30 p.m.
  • Termination:​ JW Marriott, 7:45 p.m.

September 3

  • Origination:​ Shakespeare’s Pub, noon­1 p.m.
  • Stop 1:​ Hop Head Farms, samples, tour, 1:30­3 p.m.
  • Stop 2:​ Territorial Brewing Co., meet­and­greet, samples, 3:30­4:30 p.m.
  • Stop 3:​ Tibbs Brewing Co., tour, samples or pint, 5­6 p.m.
  • Termination:​ Shakespeare’s Pub, 6:15 p.m.
Paul Starr

Paul Starr

Paul Starr is the creator of the I'm a Beer Hound and one of the organizer and the driving force behind Art & Craft Beerfest, Lansing Beer Fest, Beerfest at the Ballpark Spring & Fall. When he's not working on Beer Hound he's probably watching the Lions, Tigers or Red Wings. Being a recent new Dad of twins, he doesn't have much extra time these days for mischief.