Taralga Pub has grown four hop varieties

There is a new plant species blooming beside traditional varieties at the Taralga Pub – hops.

Owner Phil Anderson planted four different hop species six or seven months ago. They will eventually be used in the brewing process to flavour the beer that is sold at the bar.​

Green thumb: Taralga Pub owner Phil Anderson tends to the young hops. Photo: Clare McCabe

Green thumb: Taralga Pub owner Phil Anderson tends to the young hops. Photo: Clare McCabe

“We were a bit worried the frost had killed them but then they popped up their heads.”

Mr Anderson and mother, Mary Anderson purchased the pub on July 7, 2017, and they have since established what is the beginning of a garden oasis at the back of the venue.

The garden is alive with saplings, natives and jasmine, a three-tier vegetable patch, a camellia bush surrounded by roses, and a fruit and nut orchard; cherries, apples, pears, walnuts, and hazelnuts – a few of the new species. 

It will provide a natural screen used for privacy from the neighbouring aged care home, encourage native wildlife to the area, and flavour beer.

Mr Anderson plans to open both a brewhouse and a bakery.

The Blacksmith’s Cottage will be renovated and restored, and this would eventually encompass the brewhouse and baking ovens. 

The brewhouse will practice the traditional method of brewing and the yeast would be pitched in both the bread and the beer, said Mr Anderson.

However, the brewery and bakery remain around four years away, to provide enough time for the hops to mature.

In the first year, the plants are ground cover, in the second a six-foot trellis will be installed for the hops to grow on, in the third year the hops will bud, and in the fourth, they would be mature enough to harvest.

The varietals that have been planted are; Australian hop Tasmanian Cascade, Hersbruker, Challenger and Hallertau. 

Mr Anderson is no stranger to the burgeoning independent craft brewery industry he also owns Sneaky Possum bar in Chippendale, worked for brewery Little Creatures prior to the Lion Nathan takeover, and Holgate Brewing.

When the time comes, he plans on brewing something along the lines of a mid-strength Australian Ale, he said.

“I’ll use a bit of wheat, to make it fruity, and some Victoria Secret.”

A brewery and band event is planned for November 10, and independently owned breweries Lord Nelson Brewery, Rocks Brewing Co and Frenchies Bistro & Brewery have been announced as three of the breweries that will be slinging beers, with more to be announced.