Amarillo aroma hopsIn 1997, workers stumbled upon a new variety of aroma hop growing in the fertile fields of the Virgil Gamache Farm. The Gamache family immediately knew they were onto something special. The family named the new variety “VGXP01,” in honor of then 84 year old family patriarch and founder, Virgil W. Gamache. The VGXP01 variety is unique for a number of reasons. For one, it is one of only four hop varieties where flavor matches aroma. It tastes just as it smells. And the flavors are amazing in quality and diversity. That inherent flavor variety quickly became a new secret weapon for craft brewer creativity.     


So how do VGXP01 hops become Amarillo® brand hops? Let’s start with careful cultivation of patented VGXP01 hops. Next, select only the best VGXPo1 hops during the optimal harvesting time for processing and sale as Amarillo® brand hops.

We mentioned flavor diversity. Many veteran craft brewers talk about “Classic Amarillo®,” But “classic” is likely the particular style of Amarillo® to which the brewer was introduced in his or her formative brewing years. Amarillo® hops actually have a great flavor diversity beyond “classic.”

Specifically, the diverse flavors are shaped during production through selective harvesting within one of three harvest windows. For example, early harvest produces an Amarillo® with flavors of candy and lemon. Middle harvest offers classic grapefruit, orange, floral and tropical fruit notes. Late harvest yields a mixture of garlic and onion, for a “dank” attitude, popular with West Coast IPA’s. So now we understand how the versatile Amarillo® brand VGXP01 hops, under skilled cultivation and harvesting,  unleash new levels of creativity for today’s craft brewers.    

In summary, the power of Amarillo® brand hops has the attention of craft brewers around the world. Accordingly, Amarillo® brand’s popularity continues to grow.  The scale is really something. One shipment of Amarillo aroma hops from Virgil Gamache Farms contains 167 bales. That is enough to flavor 90,000 kegs or one million bottles of quality brew. Over the course of a year Virgil Gamache, Inc. ships enough aroma hops to flavor over 4.5 million barrels of craft beer! That’s our commitment of quality hops for quality brewers.