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Old 09-12-2010, 02:00 PM   #1
TwoWheeler
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Default Edgeumicate Me About Hops...

Being new here, I can stir up a hornet's nest with impunity and then claim it was because I was a n00b and didn't know better.....right?

Here: I don't like IPA's or any really hoppy beers. Beer is water, malt and yeast. Anything else is in there for balance and/or interest.<ducks and runs.....>

No, seriously, my palate doesn't really do "bitter" well. I don't drink coffee or eat dark chocolate, for the same reason. I'm hugely fond of Belgian beers, with German styles a pretty close second. I prefer beers that are BALANCED, not in-your-face with any one thing. Guess that's why I like the Belgian stuff so much - there's usually layers of flavors.

I have been, however, doggedly exploring different styles and have found a few beers that are somewhat aggressively hopped that I don't mind. The biggest surprise was Dogfish 90. THAT, I liked. Not sure why. (Their 120 I liked too, but man, that's "dessert" beer!)

What I'm trying to do is figure out what elements of hop flavor I don't care for to determine what hops and utilization I like and which I don't. I've heard hop flavor described as "grapefruit", "grassy" and "pine-y". I think it's the "pine-y" element I don't care for.

Comments?

<waits for inevitable flaming from hopheads...>


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Old 09-12-2010, 02:05 PM   #2
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I think you hit the nail on the head- you don't like bitter. Those other beers you like tend to be sweeter and/or not bitter. DFH 90 isn't bitter, considering it's an IIPA.

Do you like Rogue's Dead Guy ale? It's a maibock style ale- a malt bomb in my opinion!



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Old 09-12-2010, 03:09 PM   #3
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Yooper_Brew View Post
Those other beers you like tend to be sweeter and/or not bitter. DFH 90 isn't bitter, considering it's an IIPA.
To me, it's like hot sauce - I like heat, to a point, but after a while, heat just obliterates everything else, so what's the point? Same with hops - there seems to sometimes be an almost one-upmanship mentality to it - "How hoppy can you take it?"

Maybe the higher ABV of DFH90 balances the bitterness better? (I also found I like hoppy beers better with food).

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Do you like Rogue's Dead Guy ale? It's a maibock style ale- a malt bomb in my opinion!
Y'know, as many times as I've seen it, I've never tried it. I'll have to add it to my "research". (Oh darn).
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Old 09-12-2010, 04:04 PM   #4
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Might I suggest a Belgian Strong Ale like a Simcoe Smash Recipe ?
I got the idea from drinking a Simcoe Silly from Kuhnhenn's Brewery in Warren Michigan.

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Old 09-12-2010, 04:16 PM   #5
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I can't stand pine hops. I like citrus hops the best, as long as they don't go too grapefruit. Flowery hops are okay. I believe the hop varieties you'd like best are Simcoe and Amarillo. They're both in DFH90, which is one of my faves also. I also really like Willamette hops, and seem to use them in about half my beers.

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Old 09-12-2010, 04:48 PM   #6
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twowheeler I can relate to your dilemna. I can stand hoppy to a point. Too much hoppiness begins tasting like rotten grapefruit to me. Much cheaper to suck on a grapefruit.

As trochiest suggested, the amirrillo or simcoe hop are good ones to start with. I have gone to my local homebrew club tastings to get idea where to start and these two hops were great from home brew tastings.

My taste is where yours is and I just ordered.

Amirillo Ale-Midwest
Jamil's Evil Twin-NB

Both are amirillo hopped based to begin my hop journey.

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Old 09-12-2010, 05:21 PM   #7
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As trochiest suggested, the amirrillo or simcoe hop are good ones to start with.
Of course they are.....that's why I planted Cascade, Willamette, Chinook and Nugget....

I'm just trying to get a better handle on exactly what it is I like and don't like.

Banjoman - my "house" beer is a Belgian Strong Golden. I'm currently using 2oz of Saaz in beginning of the boil and one oz at the end. It's pretty good, balance-wise. This latest batch, I cut it back to one oz in the boil, just for poops and giggles. (I also pulled off one gallon while racking to secondary and I'm going to "oak" it).

Maybe next go-round, I'll play with the hops. I notice in the DFH recipes I have from Sam's book that they use Simcoe in several of their recipes - and I love their beers - so maybe I'll play with trying Simcoe in the next batch.
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Old 09-12-2010, 05:50 PM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by TwoWheeler View Post
Banjoman - my "house" beer is a Belgian Strong Golden. I'm currently using 2oz of Saaz in beginning of the boil and one oz at the end. It's pretty good, balance-wise. This latest batch, I cut it back to one oz in the boil, just for poops and giggles. (I also pulled off one gallon while racking to secondary and I'm going to "oak" it).

Maybe next go-round, I'll play with the hops. I notice in the DFH recipes I have from Sam's book that they use Simcoe in several of their recipes - and I love their beers - so maybe I'll play with trying Simcoe in the next batch.
Wow, yeah, you don't like hops too much if you're using only Saaz lol. I believe the Simcoe/Amarillo combo is supposed to be one of those greater than the sum of its parts deals.
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Old 09-12-2010, 07:41 PM   #9
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I would say that hop bitterness is an acquired taste. After getting my start with amber ales and Sam Adams, the first Sierra Nevada Pale Ale I had was offensively bitter. These days I reach for a SNPA when I'm not in the mood for something bitter!

Same thing with coffee. I used to like flavored coffees, extra cream, extra sugar. Now I take it black, no sugar. Same with dark chocolate.

I've seen the same sort of thing play out with friends. If you care to keep trying well-hopped beers (and you should, there's such a diversity of flavor out there!), I would guess you'll find yourself enjoying hoppy beers more and more.

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Old 09-12-2010, 09:15 PM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Bil View Post
I would say that hop bitterness is an acquired taste. After getting my start with amber ales and Sam Adams, the first Sierra Nevada Pale Ale I had was offensively bitter. These days I reach for a SNPA when I'm not in the mood for something bitter!

Same thing with coffee. I used to like flavored coffees, extra cream, extra sugar. Now I take it black, no sugar. Same with dark chocolate.

I've seen the same sort of thing play out with friends. If you care to keep trying well-hopped beers (and you should, there's such a diversity of flavor out there!), I would guess you'll find yourself enjoying hoppy beers more and more.
That's how it went for me as well. I went for sweeter maltier beers. Now I'm on the other side of the spectrum with IPAs as my favorite style.


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