Meet the brewer: John Allen, BrewDog

Meet John Allen, Senior Brewer at Scottish craft brewery BrewDog.

John spent time at Fuller Smith and Turner as a Junior Brewer and Quality Control Technician before cutting his teeth at Little Creatures. Now, he’s back in the Northern hemisphere, this time in Scotland, working as a senior member of the BrewDog team.

Having travelled our shores, we feel John’s got a good handle of what Aussie hops are like, but he hadn’t seen them take off until the Galaxy® craze started a few years back. “It’s been a defining move for the image of Australian hops and really helped put them on the radar of craft brewers everywhere.”

“UK drinkers went mad for Galaxy® when it first came out. Aussie hops have a tendency to deliver juicy passionfruit and zesty tangerine-style notes that give a good bite – they’re unlike a lot of other international varieties. The Vic Secret™ IPA is a new beer from BrewDog that will hit the market in the next few weeks; which has come out beautifully. It’s showing notes of tropical fruit and passionfruit flavours with a good resinous back bone and stone fruit sweetness.”

“We might have underestimated the capacity of this hop, which we used through all elements of the brewing process; start and end of boil, in the whirlpool and dry hopped. Heavy dry hopping gave a slight spicy and earthy after taste while maintaining a good hop punch – but dialling it back a little will allow the more delicate flavours to shine.”

“The craft beer revolution has taken hold in the UK and now more than ever UK drinkers are looking for something different. We are known for crafting beers that make you think – “how do they make it taste like that?” So it’s good to find an international hops grower that allows you to be creative but still make a great tasting, commercially viable beer.”

“The brewing industry is a big community. No matter where you’re from, everyone’s really collaborative and we all serve to educate and test one another. There are some brewers who bring out beers and you just think ‘I wish I brewed it’. In my fridge at the moment are the Beergeek Breakfast, Mikkeller’s I Beat You and a big bottle of Lost Abbey Red Barn Ale. Also have a couple of BrewDog legends in there like Tokyo, Alice Porter and Dead Pony Club.”

“Unfortunately being based in Scotland we don’t have access to many Aussie beers but favourites include Stone & Wood Pacific Ale out of Byron Bay and Hop Hog from Feral in WA.”

If you’re in the UK or popping over for a visit make sure you visit John and get a taste of BrewDog’s Vic Secret™ IPA.


Join our mailing list and be among the first to know when we have big news to share about our range of Aussie, international and innovative hop products.

Plus, we’ll connect you with a local sales rep so you can get your hands on the hops you need to make awesome beers ASAP.

Your Privacy: By providing us with your personal information you authorise Hop Products Australia (HPA or us) to collect, use, store, dispose and manage that information in accordance with the Privacy Act 1988 and its principles as set out in our Privacy Policy (please refer to the detail at In particular, we use your personal information and you consent to us using your personal information for the purposes of responding to your query. Generally, we only use or disclose personal information about you for the purposes for which it was collected and where it is sensitive its use will be strictly confined to the purpose of its collection. HPA does not sell, or otherwise trade, your personal information. Our Privacy Policy explains how you may access and correct your personal information, how you can lodge a complaint regarding the handling of your personal information and how HPA will handle any complaint.

Sign up for our Green Hop Program

Sign up for virtual harvest updates