Springfield, OR - This will be the first in I hope another series of beers focused more on the region and less on its regional availability. This time around we are discussing Hop Valley Brewing, from Springfield, OR and their Alphadelic India Pale Ale. Brewed with two row and munich malts, this beer is hopped with Simcoe, Cascade, Cluster, and Palisades.
As with all of our beers we like to review the history of a beer prior to diving in. This is important for two reasons, the first being that it allows us to understand the style and the brewer's thoughts. The second reason is by understanding the style we are allowed the opportunity to better identify it in a general application, such as the bar or restaurant. No one wants to walk into a place and ask for an India Pale Ale for the first time and get something that comes closer to tasting like Sierra Nevada Pale Ale (not that there is anything wrong with SNPA).
Historically, the India Pale Ale get’s its influences from the United Kingdom and far off India, during a time when beer was as valued as water itself. Known for their English Pale Ales, the British Troops would expect ships carrying this ale to the shores of the Indian Colonies. Unfortunately beer was hard to transport and often did not last the trip, until the discovery of hops as a preservative. Today what you have in front of you is decades of American modification which results in a IPA style which is unique to the region.
While this beer sounds like a complex, mid-range IPA, we were curious none-the less.
Hop Valley Alphadelic, is a copper and opaque brew that pours an initially strong inch thick foamy head, that recedes over time leaving only minor reminders of lace inside the glass.
As one sips on this beer they are greeted by the same grapefruit and lemon citrus, minor spiciness, and caramel, creating an already enjoyed balance. At 6.50% Alcohol By Volume, this beer has an overall medium weight to it and would suit anyone looking for some sticky hop juice, to drink the gray weather away.
A true NW IPA, with an orange-copper hue, & enough malt to back it up. Details Great Western two row and Munich malts. Simcoe, Cascade, Cluster, and Palisade hops. 16 Plato, 90+IBU, 6.50% ABV
Hops were a large agricultural crop in the Willamette Valley in the late 1800’s through the early 1900’s and were eventually replaced by other crops only as Prohibition wiped out the demand.
At that time the confluence of the McKenzie and Willamette Rivers were home to some of the largest hop farms in the USA. In fact, Seavey’s Hop Farm was located near where the brewery sits and extended south, east and north on both sides of the McKenzie River.
Several other large hop farms were located nearby in Santa Clara, Crow, Coburg and the Goshen area. Deadman’s Ferry just a mile or so from here, transported the crops over the river before any bridges were built.
It is from this heritage, that Hop Valley Brewing Company has sprung. Fresh, local hops are an important part of our brewing process, along with grains and yeasts, also grown right here in Oregon and the Northwest. [more] -source, Hop Valley Brewing Co.
Should Try, at 6.50% this is a surprisingly well presented Northwest India Pale and definitely not one to pass up if you find it on the shelf, in a pint or at the brewery. If you find yourself ordering take out, we might suggest some Thai, or pairing this with sharp cheese (blue, gouda, cheddar), and meats like seafood, or pork.
About the photos’ author
Paul “Fruit Trees” Orchard, is an amateur craft beer enthusiast and amateur photographer. Throughout the many years in craft beer he is always carrying a camera (smartphone, digital, traditional) and is invites you to see that beer can also be exciting even if you can’t drink the photo.
In accordance with new FTC regulations regarding bloggers and endorsements, the aforementioned company has not provided me a free sample was used for research, prior to writing this review. The following sample was purchased at Belmont Station on 4500 S.E. Stark Street Portland, OR 97215.