Press Release from Otter Creek/Wolavers
Friday, May 23, 2008
Middlebury, VT – The winner of a National Organic Homebrew Competition will collect on his prize this Saturday when he brews a batch of beer at Otter Creek Brewing and Wolaver’s organic ales in Middlebury, VT. Richard Lawrence of North Falmouth, MA won the 2007 competition sponsored by Seven Bridges Cooperative of Santa Cruz, CA. Seven Bridges (breworganic.com) is a leading supplier of organic brewing ingredients for both homebrewers and the craft brew industry.
The contest was designed to raise awareness of the huge increase in consumption of organic foods, and especially organic beers. Brewers nationwide submitted organic homebrew recipes accompanied by samples for judging. Two winners were chosen, one for the east coast and one for the west. As Wolaver’s was a sponsor of the contest, Richard Lawrence, the winner for the east coast, was awarded the opportunity to brew a batch of organic beer with Brewmaster Steve Parkes at the Middlebury brewery.
Lawrence and Parkes will be brewing a new beer called Wolaver’s organic All-American2. This certified organic ale will use All-American ingredients – a rare feat in the world of organic brewing, where most organic hops must be shipped in from New Zealand or other far away countries. Morgan Wolaver has been working with hop farmers in Oregon to produce more organic hops here in the US, and this will be the second batch brewed to celebrate their harvest.
“The first batch of All-American Ale was a great success,” said Wolaver. “It sold out more quickly than we had anticipated and we are glad to be brewing up another batch to celebrate this crop of organic American hops.” Both All-American Ale releases have been on a limited basis, available only on draft or in growlers from the brewery itself, but Wolaver looks forward to the day when more – if not all – of Wolaver’s organic ales will be brewed with American organic hops.
The brewery works with local farmers whenever possible, including Ben Gleason in Bridport, Vermont. Forty percent of the ingredients of Wolaver’s organic summer seasonal wit bier is organic raw wheat from Gleason Grains. Not only does this cut down on carbon emissions and the economic costs of long distance shipping, it also keeps money in Vermont and helps keep Vermont’s famous open fields and agricultural vistas.
“We’re also looking for local sources for barley,” says Wolaver. “With the largest number of breweries per capita in the country, and a shortage of good local sources of malting barley, partnering with Vermont barley growers would be a significant step toward reducing carbon emissions and supporting Vermont agriculture!”