Great Hops

Posted: 03 February 2011

Every year for the past 7 or 8 years I have been asked to be a judge for the IBD English Hop competition. The hop judging itself took place on 20th December organised by Botanix in Paddock Wood. The competition was well supported with plenty of good hops on show in various classes including "best high alpha", "best aroma", "best fuggle" and a more recent class "best dwarf. The prizes for the best samples are magnificent silver trophies which have been donated over the years by kind sponsors and last Thursday the trophies were presented by Simon Jackson executive director of the IBD at a celebration lunch at the Hook Norton brewery visitor centre.".

There was a great turn out by the growers and brewers to see the overall champions award going to Tony Redsell for a sample of East Kent Goldings. These hops are some of the finest aroma hops to be found anywhere in the world and are grown within walking distance from the brewery here in Faversham. Well done Tony and congratulations to his farm managers Pat and Mat. Some of these hops have been bought by us here at Shepherd Neame and will be used this year in Spitfire and Bishops Finger.

The mood at the meeting was generally upbeat with reasonable grop yield, good sales and acceptable prices. The growers outnumbered the brewers by a fair margin and the hope is that next year more brewers would use the event as a networking opportunity.


David Holmes - Head Brewer

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