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Fresh.  This is our freshest, most locally-sourced beer to-date.  Based (loosely) on our popular Sesh recipe, this is an even more sessionable (is that even a word?) IPA… or APA (okay, let’s not go down that rabbit hole again).

What is a Green-Hopped (session) IPA?

It’s no secret that we love hops here at Gert Lush.  So you shouldn’t be surprised to know that we have a few hop bines growing about 1km upstream from the brewery, on the river Sheppey.  We’ve had particular success with Cascade and Chinook (both US varieties) as well as Goldings.  So, once a year, when it’s time to harvest the hops, why would we want to crush/freeze/dry them and loose those heady aromatics of fresh hops?  Good question.  So we don’t.  We bung them in a dedicated batch of beer – our green hopped beer that year (yeah, just the one batch I’m afraid).

The difference in flavour is remarkable (at least to an experienced pallet).  In particular, the Chinook stands out (we put about 1kg per 100 litres of it in!) with the almost Tanqueray-like punch of zesty grapefruit and something else… just indescribably aromatic.  The Cascade add a broader citrus flavour profile and Goldings are there for a quintessentially English floral edge, tinged with fresh pine.

Green-hopping is risky business though.  We don’t pasturise/blanch/bleach or sanitise the hops.  The beer is (just) acidic and alcoholic enough to knock out any nasties, but takes a slight influence from the wild yeasts that gather on the hop petals.  It doesn’t always go quite to plan, but this year’s (2022) batch is pretty spectacular.

With just one batch making it to only one pub (yeah… The Sheppey, of course), it’s not going to be around for long – try some before it’s gone!

What’s in Fresh?

Fresh is a pale ale, brewed mainly with Organic Maris Otter pale malt with a hint of Vienna malt and a few other grains.  The hops are predominantly organically-grown (no… not certified… we just don’t use any pesticide/fertaliser/etc.) just up-river in Somerset, as mentioned above.  There’s a small addition of Citra to bump up the passionfruit profile of the flavour too.

Fresh is brewed at 66 degrees and fermented around 18 degrees – giving a sweetness to balance the hop intensity.  It’s best served chilled, but will develop a chill-haze (it’s unfiltered and has some oats in the grain bill).

Food Pairing Suggestions?

Like our ever-popular Sesh, this is an all-day, every-day session beer, so goes well with most foods.  Saltier and spicier dishes will balance against the intense hops delightfully, but this is a rare batch so try a pint (or two) on a clean pallet to pick up those high aromatics.

Sesh Cans - Gert Lush Beer
That's a LOT of fresh hops!
Fermenting away with Chinook, Cascade and Goldings hops