it doesn't always start so simple
Our story begins 14 years ago. Noah was working at Soergels greenhouses, and as he was rooting through the previous years perennial pots he came across some hops plants. As a naïve 20 year old punk, who didn't event drink mind you, all it took was the short description label on the pots to tell that this was something different and special. With the go ahead of his boss, Randy Soergel, and not an ounce of research, they were planted in the ground. It wasn't long before he came to the realization that these now large plants needed trellised, and not a standard run of the mill one either. August soon came and he picked the few hops the plants were able to hold on to that year for Soergel Orchards annual farm to fork dinner, so folks could "fresh hop" their beers. That was that.
A couple years and a few beers later, Noah turned those few plants into 1/4 acre, with the blessing of Reed Soergel. Soon after, that turned into 1/2 acre, and eventually, turned into moving all the hop production up to Reed's farm in Prospect, PA.
It was a bit of a shaky start for the first few seasons, with sub par harvests and make shift processing. Over time, however, we've been able to make improvements and partnerships to bring higher yields and streamline harvest and processing.
We are very excited for the future of our hop farm by bringing recognition to our western Pennsylvania terroir and to contribute to our amazing local craft breweries!
We are still a small farm, but everybody starts somewhere. It has taken years to get to a point where we can grow a great crop year in and year out, and although we may not always be perfect, we are getting closer and closer. One major hurdle was variety selection. It's sad, but not every variety you know by name and want to grow does well on your soil. Finding that just right mix of the best varieties for us, while still growing what's demanded certainly has been a chore. We are focused on the future here at Hazy Daze, and for us, that means being able to take in more orders and expand our operation to be the best we can be. Pittsburgh, and western Pennsylvania as a whole, has an amazing food and drink industry and it has been our amazing privilege to be able to help grow and maintain that culture over our short lives.