Tuesday 11 July 2017


Years ago my friend's nephew seemed to have called a pet rabbit "Hop-Steve". Sadly someone had misunderheard him and the rabbit was called "Hopsie". Last week I talked about a brewery hiring a hop-genealogist and wondered how many of them there are (I'd now guess that they make up about a quarter of the population). This week, completely randomly, my sister introduced me to "Hop-John" a retired hop farmer, breeder, and genealogist.

He's charmingly eccentric, bewilderingly upper-class and incredibly knowledgeable on beer and brewing. He dismissed the Hog's Back Brewery's re-introduction of the Farnham-Whitebine and "mainly a PR exercise". He works with one of my most local breweries and urged me to re-evaluate the slop that they produce saying it is "much improved of late".

In a couple of weeks I've got a man-date in North Dartmoor with a hop genealogist!

Richard "meet in a public place, tell a friend where you're going." B

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