A Rich Hop-Growing History In Sangerfield And Waterville
During the 1800s and early 1900s, the Town Of Sangerfield and specifically Waterville were considered one of the major hop-growing regions in the country. Due to that fact, a number of local breweries were located in the nearby Utica area.
According to sangerfieldny.com:
“While dairy farming has been the mainstay throughout its history, the introduction of hops in the 1830’s proved to be a boon to the area and Waterville and the surrounding area was considered the ‘Hops Capital of the World.” The development of railway service through the Town of Sangerfield made the area a major shipping point for hops-related cargo. Waterville was the ‘exchange center for hops’ for the entire nation at hop growing’s peak in the 1880’s and generated significant wealth to the area.”
Hops are still grown in the area, and for the past three years, the F.X. Matt Brewing Company has conducted a hop harvest at the Wrobel Farm in Bridegwater. After the harvest, they brewed a special farm-to-tap Saranac Fresh Hop IPA using those local hops picked.