My lovely and talented wife was walking in to work today and encountered a man cutting down hop vines. Her first thought was that he was maybe going to toss them (some people do grow them ornamentally). Nope--he was headed to the Lucky Lab with them. He had "three or four" varieties, and he's long forgotten what the were or which is which. But he did know that the Lab will be making a fresh hop beer called The Mutt, and he was prepping his contribution.
Quite a scene. Sally says the result of his labor lay on the sidewalk in a pile ("tall as a haystack"), hop cones still attached to the vines. He plans to drop them off, knowing that there's a hop shortage, always willing to help. Now, normally I'd assume the brewery would thank him and toss these in a compost bin, but maybe not. It is The Mutt, and this is the Lab, and so maybe they'll pass vines out to patrons on the back porch to harvest. They'd do it, you know.
Only in Portland--
Update: Yep, tonight was the night. They got 75 pounds of hops last year, and 125 this year. Pics from the night.
This guy handed us a nice sprig of hops (which you can see in the foreground), thus the name.
Update 9/18: Bill, who's apparently in the pic above, has a write up and far better pictures than these here (from my cell phone) over at It's Pub Night.