It’s fitting that in what is now the largest hop growing region in the world, Yakima, Washington hosts a Fresh Hop Beer Week. In 2015, the United States surpassed Germany with growing the most hops in the world and around 77% of the U.S. grown hops are from the Yakima Valley, just a three-hour drive from Portland.
The 2nd Annual Fresh Hop Beer Week kicks off on Tuesday, September 27 and will take place over the course of six days. Each day there are events that lead up to the 14th Annual Fresh Hop Ale Festival that will be held on Saturday, October 1st from 5:00 to 10:00pm in Yakima’s Millennium Plaza located in the heart of downtown Yakima.
This year’s Fresh Hop Ale Festival will feature over 40 breweries pouring approximately 100 beers. After attending last year’s festival, it is nice being able to sample various Washington brewed fresh hop beers that don’t venture far from the brewery. Some highlights last year were fresh hop beers from Bale Breaker, Stoup Brewing, Reuben’s Brews, Kulshan Brewing and more. And for fans of Barley Brown’s fresh hop beers, Yakima was one of the few festivals that Tyler Brown served his highly sought after fresh hop beers.
VIP Tickets are now sold out but General Admission Tickets are currently on sale at $35.00 each that includes $15 worth of beer scrip. Tickets can be purchased in advance here. Admission allows access to over 40 breweries, along with a few wineries and cideries, a collectable pint glass, and special beers that roam the festival being poured from the Beer Bike. Live music at this year’s Yakima Fresh Hop Ale Festival will be The Dip from Seattle and Marshal McLean Band from Spokane.
Here’s a rundown of many of the events taking place in Yakima during the 2nd Annual Fresh Hop Beer Week.
Tuesday, September 27th: Cowiche Canyon Kitchen & Ice House Bar Featuring Fremont Brewing: Beer inspired brewer’s dinner with the release of Fremont’s fresh hop beer. Event will be held in the Green Room.
Wednesday, September 28th: Bron Yr Aur Brewing Co. Movie On The Patio: Come watch the Jungle Book at this Family friendly event featuring pizza, popcorn and the release of Bron Yr Brewing’s fresh hop beer. Win Fresh Hop swag and tickets. Movie starts at dusk.
Yakima Craft Brewing Co.: Enjoy a three-course dinner with beer pairings. Event to be held at their downtown tasting room at 6:00pm and its $35 per person.
Thursday, September 29th: The Beer Shoppe 99 Bottles of Beer on the Wall: Come share in the tasting of hard to find beers. Also featuring the tap release of many of your favorite breweries’ fresh hop beers. Food truck (Chronic Foods) on site for this event. 6:00pm and $2/taste.
2nd Street Grill & Hop Nation Brewing Company: Fresh hop beer inspired brewers’ dinner at 7:00pm.
Bale Breaker Brewing Company, Yakima Chief Hop Union & Crafted Gastropub: Crab feed and oyster bar with beer specials, brewery tours and Fresh Hop prizes given away throughout the night. Event starts at 5:00pm.
Friday, September 30th: Apple Tree Golf Course 9 Hole, 2 Man Scramble including Beer & Lunch: Join Apple Tree as they host brewers from around the NW for a tasting and golf experience like no other. $75/person Registration starts at 11:00am and Shotgun start at 1:00pm will begin a 9-hole, 3 club, 2 person scramble golf tournament on Apple Tree’s back nine. A beer station will be present at each hole, with a different craft beer for you to try. Each golfer will get a free stainless steel beer glass and nine beer script, compliments of McCown Crafted. Space is extremely limited. Entry fee includes, round, cart, beer, lunch, range balls, and stainless steel glass. Contact Apple Tree and reserve your tee time today at 509-965- 5877.
Hopsteiner Field To Glass Ranch Tour: Hop on the party bus/Limo for an entertaining ride to Hopsteiner’s newest ranch in Mabton, WA. You’ll walk the field to learn about hop breeding, growing and harvesting, followed by a guided tour of the picking machine and kilns. Finally, you’ll participate in hop sensory evaluation by examining new and experimental varieties. Relax and enjoy tasty brews, dinner and yard games for the rest of the evening. Hopsteiner is one of the largest hop breeding, growing, trading and processing firms in the world. This is an exclusive field-to-glass experience that you won’t want to miss. Space is extremely limited. $65/person. 5:30 – 10:00pm
Yakima Sports Center Brewery Party: Come mingle with brewers and craft beer industry folks from Deschutes, Firestone Walker, HUB, New Belgium, Sierra Nevada, and Two Beers while enjoying the tap release of many fresh hop beers. Win Fresh Hop Ale Festival tickets and swag. 7:00 – 10:00pm.
Yakima Valley Hops & Chinook Fest Fresh Hop Party: Featuring live music from Rust on the Rails and Hillstomp. Mingle with growers and brewers and enjoy 8+ fresh hop beers, food truck on site. Win Yakima Valley Hop swag and Fresh Hop Ale Festival tickets. $10/presale, $15/door. 5:00pm.
Saturday, October 1st: Yakima Fresh Hop Ale Festival: The 14th Annual Fresh Hop Ale Festival will take place in downtown Yakima at Millennium Plaza from 5:00 to 10:00pm. Tickets are on sale now for $35.00 each and can be purchased here.
Sunday, October 2nd: 2nd Street Grill Morning After Brunch: Bloody Mary Bar, and Bacon Cheeseburger Bloody Mary’s. Brunch at 9:00am, NFL games at 10:00am.
D.J. is a Portland, Oregon based writer that spent his formative years in the Midwest. With over 20 years under his belt of drinking beer at festivals across America and the world, he has developed a strong appreciation and understanding of craft beer and the industry that surrounds it. He can be found in any of the great breweries or beer bars that make Portland the best beer city in the world. His writing can also be found in Northwest Brewing News and can be followed on Twitter at @hopapalooza.