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Old 01-30-2009, 10:50 AM   #1
Pelikan
 
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Are there any detriments to using hops traditionally regarded as "aroma" for bittering purposes? For example, Cascade or Goldings?

I'm unfamiliar with the various acid concentrations in hops and how they impact the brew. My first thought was using these types of hops would not present a problem.

...but then I wondered if using, for example, four ounces of 6% Cascade in place of two ounces of 12% Centennial would present an issue in terms of a buildup in undesirable compounds and acids. Of course, the flavor would be somewhat different, but for the sake of argument...
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Old 01-30-2009, 11:06 AM   #2

Your logic is correct; you'll need to use more of a lower AA% hop to achieve the same level of bitterness as a smaller amount of higher AA% hop. Ostensibly, a large amount of hops could lend a raw vegetal, grassy character, but I find this to be more the case with dry-hopping when the hops are in contact with the beer for too long. Boiling eliminates this possibility.

But, the reasoning for using higher AA% when possible is both economic and practical; more hops yield more sediment and, if you are using whole leaf, you'll lose quite a bit of wort to absorption by the hops. This will ultimately mean less beer ready for packaging. Using higher AA% hops stretches your ingredient dollar.

I often use lower AA% hops for bittering when the style calls for a minimal hop presence; for example, my mild is bittered with Goldings only and my smoked porter with just over an ounce of Challenger.


 
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Old 01-30-2009, 01:34 PM   #3

To a further point, Daniels points out that even the bittering addition will contribute some flavor so you are best served by using the cleanest bittering hop available to you when substituting hops. Flavor contributions notwithstanding, I'd much rather save those delicate, wonderfully aromatic and flavorful hops for applications where their characteristics would really shine.

 
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Old 01-30-2009, 01:39 PM   #4
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There is an ALL Cascade APA out there that many of us brew and it is phenominal. There is no problem using aroma or noble hops for bittering... My Hugh Heffe uses Hallertau for bitting, which is a noble hop variety. There are a lot of recipes that use them as bittering additions.

 
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Old 01-30-2009, 01:48 PM   #5

Quote:
My Hugh Heffe uses Hallertau for bitting, which is a noble hop variety. There are a lot of recipes that use them as bittering additions.
True, there's nothing inherently wrong with using noble or aroma hops as bittering; but, this is dictated largely by style with regards to hop presence. I use EKG for bittering in my March Brown Mild but I surely wouldn't use Cascade or Centennial there. Likewise, a C hop in my smoked porter would unduly clash with the smoke character.

Can you imagine how many ounces of mid-to-low AA% aroma hops you'd have to use for an IIPA to acheive the same level of bitterness as Warrior or Summit?

 
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Old 01-30-2009, 03:13 PM   #6
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20 years ago 6% Cascades would have been considered a bittering hop. The High AA hops we use today are, for the most part, products of programs like OSU's High AA Hop breeding.

There are a few aroma hops I wouldn't try to use for bittering, only because of the massive amounts that would be required. And there are a few clean bittering hops, that would add very little flavor or aroma.
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Old 01-30-2009, 05:35 PM   #7
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Cool. I ask because I'm going to start a little hop garden this summer, and know that between two plants (probably Cascade and Goldings), I'm eventually going to have enough hops so that the two can serve dual duty (bittering/aroma) without regard for the quantities used.

Indeed, if they yield anything like I'm told they might, I'd almost have to use them dual duty -- either that, or get into hop selling.
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Old 01-30-2009, 05:37 PM   #8
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Read this... Late Hopping

I made a version of that brew, and it's awesome.
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Old 02-02-2009, 04:33 PM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by BarleyWater View Post
Read this... Late Hopping

I made a version of that brew, and it's awesome.
Good article, and I intend on making a version of that brew as well.

 
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Old 02-02-2009, 05:23 PM   #10
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If you're going to do two plants for your garden, make one of them Magnum. They come in at about 12%-14% and they are super clean.

You can bitter with these without screwing with the hop flavor/aroma.
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