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Old 03-11-2009, 03:24 AM   #1
ChickenSoop
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Default designing beer question

I see when you add the hops at the end of the boil, they are for flavor and aroma, but what about the bittering hops at the first of the boil - do these bittering hops give taste, or only bitterness?

What does it matter if you add warrior or centenial or columbus hops for the bittering at the start of the boil, if you are maintaining equal IBUs?

I have nothing really in mind, this is just a general question.

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Old 03-11-2009, 03:34 AM   #2
BigEd
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Viewpoints on this differ but IMO bittering hops do affect the flavor of the beer. The resulting flavor is much more subtle than that from middle and later additions but hops with aggressive flavors might intrude in some circumstances. In general I suggest using bittering hops from the same general hop family as the flavor/aroma hops in the beer. Certain hops known for their neutral flavor profile such as Northern Brewer and Magnum will usually work well for bittering in almost any beer so you can take advantage of their versatility.

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Old 03-11-2009, 05:02 AM   #3
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In my own beers, I've gotten a little bit of flavor from the bittering addition. It's not nearly as much as a later addition, but it's there. I've done lighter beers with only a 60 minute bittering addition, and some of that hop flavor does come through in the finished beer.

Since you do get a little flavor from the bittering hops, I do believe that it matters what hop you choose as a bittering hop. The flavor is part of it, but there are also hops that are more or less harsh in their bittering. Something like Magnum, Horizon or Warrior are quite smooth. Columbus is pretty smooth too, but I think I get a little more "roughness" to it. Something like Chinook is even more rough. I've started using two bittering hops (e.g. 75% Magnum and 25% Chinook) to give a little depth to the bitterness. I like what I've gotten out of it so far.

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Old 03-11-2009, 02:37 PM   #4
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Interesting. thanks. I am just sticking to some popular recipes for now, but once I nail down which type I like best, I'll start designing my own recipe.

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Old 03-11-2009, 02:51 PM   #5
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There is some flavor contribution, but the main consideration in your bittering hops is the humulone/cohumulone ratio.

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