Monthly Archives: September, 2016

China Travels – First Event in Beijing

September 27th, 2016 Posted by Uncategorized No Comment yet

If you read the post from yesterday titled “How Google Translate turned Luke into a God”, you know how it can be a little tricky to get some of the finer points of what’s happening at the events that Luke is attending on his trip around China. Regardless, it is easy to see that there are a lot of people in China that love our beer – and Luke!

Luke’s first event soon after arriving in Beijing was at Drunk Restaurant, where a group had the opportunity to taste Hop Zombie and Lupulingus and discuss the intricacies of the beer, and no doubt, the importance of the hops in them. Epic fans even had the opportunity to purchase a bottle of the Epic 10/1000 Celebration Ale, an Epic T-shirt, and even get them both signed by Luke himself.

Have a read of the original article here – CHINA CHOICE.

Here are some of Luke’s images from the night.


One of Luke’s Beijing Fans




The serious stuff – discussing the beers.


The custom logo made by imbeer.


Collector’s item?



Another Luke fan…



Stay tuned to follow the rest of Luke’s Journey.


How Google Translate turned Luke into a God.

September 26th, 2016 Posted by Uncategorized 1 comment

Some of you may have seen the WeChat link to an event that Luke will be attending in Changsha. The original article is obviously written in Chinese, so to understand it I had to get a little bit of help from Google Translate.

This is what I got…

Acacia know what day meet God –Epic grade tasting, Luke will meet with

Each master in his field to accomplish something, and when I saw their names will always let me have physiological responses.

For example, see Essay master Mr. Blan name, my mouth will not stop streaming down; see Yang Zhichun name will laugh, like someone pull my armpits, I could not help laughing; when I see when to Cang teacher’s name, I can not help but blush.

And see Luke Nicholas name, not just me, you certainly can smell the aroma from hops aroma mixed with mango, guava and other tropical fruits. Because he is a hops to play to the extreme beer master.


Luke is New Zealand’s top craft breweries EPIC owner and chief winemaker.

EPIC winery is one of the world’s top ten by media authority judges wineries, top-ranked New Zealand winery, the following is part of the honor winery obtained is sufficient to prove the “top” is the word.

BEST of IPA 2016 – New World Beer Awards
2016 BEST PALE the ALE – New World Beer Awards

BEST of IPA, 2015 – NZBeer Awards, 2015 BEST of IPA – International’s Australian Beer Awards, 2015 BEST of IPA, Stockholm Beer & Whiskey Festival

Luke is the beginning of Steaming Brewing Winery most talented winemakers by his leading products are brewed in 1999, 2001 and 2006, won the gold medal in New Zealand’s largest local beer. In 2007, when the winery EPIC brand sold their chief winemaker Luke, and continue to help Luke production.


Luke is internationally recognized New Zealand’s first beer winemaker, and has been invited to participate as judges in 2006 WBC, as well as the 2009 British JD Wetherspoons International Real Ale Festival, New Zealand became the first person to promote the development of craft beer.


Luke and Dogfish head winery boss Sam join the “Discovery” program “craft beer guru”

Luke believes in the New World beer war, “it is the source of all hops” It was his theory, according to his theory produced “Hop Zombie” per 355ml wine on the addition of 50 units of measurement hops. Hops in New Zealand is very unique and little production, Luke is personally go hops park visits and park package under five hop varieties and batches, to ensure its own production.


This is the first visit to Changsha Luke, he will bring his level of God to the big guy a beer tasting, this level of master himself to lead our tasting, this grade level in Changsha and is unique, no more words, September 27 Kazakh number TAPROOM see.

Do check out the original post – Hopefully you can get a better translation than I did. Regardless, it’s awesome to see that our beers and Luke are  really well received in China.


Introducing Epic Gods of War IPA

September 20th, 2016 Posted by New Beer, Uncategorized 4 comments


Following the shock and awe of Armageddon, the world was ignited with hop hysteria.

Relentless cloning, cross pollenating and genetic modification still continues today as the Gods of War battle to the top of the hop mountain.

Launch Events:
Friday 23 September – Vultures Lane 3rd Birthday

Beer Style:
India Pale Ale (funnily enough)

More about the beer:
ABV: 6.7%
IBU: 55
First in the IPA Hysteria series, this IPA showcases American Chinook and Simcoe hops.

Where and when you can get it:
As mentioned above, the first exclusive release will be to help celebrate Vultures Lane’s 3rd Birthday party. All updates will be posted here first.

New Zealand
Australia – dates TBC


US Hop Harvest 2016 – What actually happens.

September 6th, 2016 Posted by Hops, News, Uncategorized 1 comment

One question I was asked recently is what do you do while you are in Yakima during hop harvest?

The short answer is I visit hop farms and meet with the hop growers and select my hops for the year.

This year I am visiting the following hop farms, from which I selected some of my varieties from last year’s harvest.

Van Horn FarmsColumbus

Black Star Farms – Mosaic

C&C FarmsCentennial

Perrault Farms – to visit the hop breeding plot.

What does a hop farm visit entail?

It is a chance to meet up with the hop farmer and have a walk amongst the bines to see how they are looking, have a chat about how things are going for the current harvest and how the weather and growing season has gone. We’ll discuss what this means for yields and quality of this seasons hops. It is also a chance to ask about what the future holds; What varieties will be planted out next season, what varieties might be reduced.

Luke in the hopsAfter a walk through the hops and rubbing and smelling them, I’ll go through the processing plant where you get to see the harvested bines arriving. The bines are hooked up and run through the pickers that strip off all the delicate hop flowers. The flowers are separated from the leaves and stalks and conveyed to the drying room. The drying room receives the hops onto a big bed with a false floor that hot air is pushed up through. After 6-8 hours, the hops are dried then moved on to get baled up. The bales are all checked for temperature and moisture (if bales contain too much moisture, things can get ugly – fire ugly) then the bales are loaded onto trucks.

Hop Bales On TruckThe truck with hop bales are delivered to YCH Hops. After being checked and stored a brewers cut will be taken from the lot that has arrived from the farm.

After the farm visits there will be an afternoon of hop selection where several lots for each variety are presented. The samples are taken from the bales; The brewers cuts. After ranking and selecting the lot I want, its time for a beer.

Since hop harvest only runs for a few weeks of the year, you can guarantee you will bump into many brewers while you are in the area. It is always fun to have a beer with the other like minded brewers who have travelled to this special spot on the planet to oversee the harvesting of the magical flowers that gift our beery creations with their aromatic essence.

It is a fun time, meeting growers, seeing the hops, bumping into brewing friends, and having a couple pints. I look forward to going each year. Can’t wait to get there again soon.

Here’s some footage from Luke’s previous US hop harvest trips.