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Old 06-28-2009, 12:40 AM   #1
Ksosh
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Default WTF is a Continental hop?

Hi all,
So I'm trying to brew a 12C Porter in line with the BJCP guidelines, and in the ingredients it clearly states "Continental hops." period, no explanation.

So my question is: is 'Continental hops' only those hops grown in the continental UK? (I assume it's a broad category and not a specific type of hop.)

My recipe (a Finnish Porter) calls for:
Northern Brewer
German Hallertau Hersbrucker
Czech Saaz

...am I going to have a problem with the BJCP guidelines when it comes to judging?

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Old 06-28-2009, 12:47 AM   #2
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I don't think that you'll have a problem when it comes to judging at all.

Typically you want to stick with hops from the region of the beer that you are brewing (ie, continental). I'm not aware of any scandanavian hop varieties though, so something British (EKG, Fuggles), Polish (Lublin), Czech (Saaz) or German (Hallertau, Gersbrusker, etc.) and you'll be fine.

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Old 06-28-2009, 01:02 AM   #3
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Thanks. Any idea what a 'continental hop' is?

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Old 06-28-2009, 01:06 AM   #5
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In this context, I'm pretty sure continental = european, minus UK

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Old 06-28-2009, 01:13 AM   #6
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Agree with FlyingHorse, continental = Europe - United Kingdom.

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Old 06-28-2009, 01:34 AM   #7
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Ahh, got it. Thanks.

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Old 06-28-2009, 03:37 AM   #8
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Got derailed, sorry for the late reply. The 2009 Style guide, at least my copy, doesn't have 12C and 8Aand so on.

I double checked my 2008 copy of the BJCP Style Guide, 12C is indeed a Baltic Porter, I copy and paste: -doh-BRB

Quote:
Originally Posted by 2008BJCPStyleGuide
12C. Baltic Porter
Aroma: Rich malty sweetness often containing caramel, toffee, nutty to deep toast, and/or licorice notes. Complex alcohol and ester profile of moderate strength, and reminiscent of plums, prunes, raisins, cherries or currants, occasionally with a vinous Port-like quality. Some darker malt character that is deep chocolate, coffee or molasses but never burnt. No hops. No sourness. Very smooth.
Appearance: Dark reddish copper to opaque dark brown (not black). Thick, persistent tan-colored head. Clear, although darker versions can be opaque.
Flavor: As with aroma, has a rich malty sweetness with a complex blend of deep malt, dried fruit esters, and alcohol. Has a prominent yet smooth schwarzbier-like roasted flavor that stops short of burnt. Mouth-filling and very smooth. Clean lager character; no diacetyl. Starts sweet but darker malt flavors quickly dominates and persists through finish. Just a touch dry with a hint of roast coffee or licorice in the finish. Malt can have a caramel, toffee, nutty, molasses and/or licorice complexity. Light hints of black currant and dark fruits. Medium-low to medium bitterness from malt and hops, just to provide balance. Hop flavor from slightly spicy hops (Lublin or Saaz types) ranges from none to medium-low.
To me the Blatic Porters are just like Export (ale) stouts, only with lager yeast and lagering rather than ale temps and ale process. My personal fave is the Alaskan Baltic Porter from Alaskan Brewery in Juneau, AK. Awesome. When I get my lagering process down I will clone that over and over and over.

The Baltic States were competing with the English and the Scots for market share at the Imperial Russian court with these, so English hops would certainly be out of style, though possibly quite tasty.
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Old 06-28-2009, 01:19 PM   #9
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Also, don't let the BJCP description saying "Continental hop." dictate that you have to use hops from Europe only. They are simply giving a historical context for how the classic examples are brewed. There are many really nice European hops or hybrids that are grown in the US that would work very well possibly better if they are fresher and treated better. And, in a beer like a Baltic Porter, I think it would be hard or impossible to tell the difference.

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Old 06-28-2009, 01:26 PM   #10
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Just stay away from the citrus hops, they would definitely be a flaw by BJCP. The key words in the hop descriptions would be 'noble' and 'earthy'.

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