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Old 05-03-2009, 02:53 PM   #1
scoots
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Default Hop Palate

I am looking for (cheap) ideas to refine my hop (and later grain) palate. I have already found 2 micro brew IPA that are single hopped. That gave me a really nice chance to sample Cascade and Centennial. Would preparing 1 gallon batches be best, or should I continue to look for single hop IPAs?

What about grains? Is there a good way to get to know the flavor of different grains?



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Old 05-03-2009, 03:10 PM   #2
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Make some smaller SMASH batches... it's the best way in my opinion. (Single Malt and Single Hop)



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Old 05-03-2009, 03:31 PM   #3
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I was thinking that way. Does it matter what Malt I use to start? Could I use malt extract to make the process simple? What ratio of Malt to hop is used?

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Old 05-03-2009, 05:17 PM   #4
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SMASH is probably the way to go for hops.

For grains, I'm currently putting myself through "grain school". I'm making a series of preplanned batches, starting with a simple base recipe I knew I'd like and adding or substituting one grain from the original with each new batch.

My theory is that if I start with a beer I like, I should at least get palatable batches out of the rest with such small changes. So far so good.

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Old 05-03-2009, 05:20 PM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by scoots View Post
I am looking for (cheap) ideas to refine my hop (and later grain) palate. I have already found 2 micro brew IPA that are single hopped. That gave me a really nice chance to sample Cascade and Centennial. Would preparing 1 gallon batches be best, or should I continue to look for single hop IPAs?

What about grains? Is there a good way to get to know the flavor of different grains?
I have been working on this too, and so far I've been exploring differences between hops that are similar or are used in similar beers - for example, summit, amarillo, centennial and cascade all have citrus characteristics, but are subtly different from eachother (not so subtly in AA's though), while williamette, Fuggles and East Kent Goldings are all somewhat earthy, floral english style hops, but again with smaller differences between them......

The best way to sample different hops (and grains...and yeast) is just to try different beer styles. My first big brewing obsession was with english style ales, and I got to know the characteristics of the different hops and grains usually asociated with those styles (both similarities and differences).... lately I have been exploring (and enjoying) wheat and rye beers....and I have to keep a stock of american pales, ambers and IPA's at all times, so those have been intermittently brewed throughout my other explorations, giving me a chance to discover that, for example, I really like amarillo and summit as much or more than centennial and cascade, the more popular widespread hops.

In short, just explore and take a few chances on styles you've never tried...you'll learn faster.


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