Each year, we send a select crew from various parts of our business to venture south, to Tasmania’s Bushy Park for the annual Hop Harvest, or what we call 'Tour of the Galaxy'… A prized event on our brewery’s calendar where we pay tribute to the Galaxy Hop – the key ingredient in our flagship beer, Pacific Ale. The crew are able to watch the new season hops be harvested and explore Tassie’s unique beauty…
Read on for one of our crew, Dane’s experience on this year’s Tour of the Galaxy -
To kick things off, we spent a couple of days visiting the incredible attractions that Tassie has on offer, from a whisky tour by the good folks at Lark Distillery to lunch at Willie Smith's family owned and run organic cidery, and a must on the Tassie bucket list, a tour of the mind-blowing MONA museum.
On our third and final day, we piled into the Galaxy mini-bus and hit the winding road to the Bushy Park hop fields. Full of anticipation we couldn’t wait to explore the home of the Galaxy hop, the incredible ingredient that lends our Pacific Ale it’s striking and distinctive fruity aroma.
Greeted by an over powering greenery for as far as our eyes could see, we had arrived at Bushy Park, now knowing that we were in hop country, and that the pinnacle of our annual pilgrimage south was about to begin…
Wandering through the aromatic hop bines, I look to the left of me and could see our brewer Joshy taking in the scenery with a humble expression across his face. Just weeks before our trip, Josh had discovered a newspaper clipping from the early 1970's that his mum had kept. The clipping featured Josh's Grandfather and Great Grandfather in the same hop fields picking and sniffing hops…just as we were doing at that very moment.
"There's a photo I was given out of the local newspaper that my mother had kept from 1973 which had both my Great Grandfather and Grandfather picking and sniffing hops just as we've been doing today"
The historical family story made our Tour of the Galaxy just that bit more special. We wrapped up the memorable trip by exploring the intense harvest process with a tour from our mates at Hop Products Australia (HPA), and when it was time to get back on the Galaxy mini bus, we were filled with a deeper appreciation for the time and effort that goes into producing a beautiful thing called, beer.
Cheers to all of our Tassie mates that made our annual trip such an epic experience. We look forward to doing it all again next year...and a big cheers to the humble Galaxy Hop for allowing us to continue brewing our Original Pacific Ale.
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