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Old 10-24-2012, 03:13 AM   #1
ThreeDogsNE
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Default Is there any use for as-yet unharvested brown hops?

I have what must be several ounces of Chinooks that I intended to harvest, but a cold snap beat me to the weekend, and the bines and the cones on them all turned brown. Is there any use for these cones, besides improving the smell of the trash can? I understand Belgian brewers like to use aged hops; could these brown cones be used for brewing a quasi-Belgian beer? I know, Chinooks are not the quintessential hops for Belgian beers, but they would just be the bittering hops anyway. They still smell like Chinooks, without the garlic or cheese smells I read about, thought without the grassy character of fresh green hops.

I searched, and could not find an answer to whether there is a value in harvesting these now, or if I should just write them off as a lesson learned.

TIA


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Old 10-25-2012, 07:55 PM   #2
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Yes, your hops are now perfect for reapplication to your garden. In other words, compost them.

Brewers that want to make a malty Belgian will sometimes take a perfectly good hop and let it age to degrade the alpha acids so they derive less bittering from them. When hops age on the bine, they are rotting. Sorry.

I am serious about putting them back into the garden. Three years ago, I had a grower bring me about 200 lbs of hops that were not properly dried. So I threw them on my garden. There is so much nitrogen in those, my garden exploded. I can 20 jars of tomatoes from just 6 plants. My red salad potatoes grow larger than softballs. They are awesome fertilizer.
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Old 10-26-2012, 04:16 AM   #3
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I was afraid that would be the case. Thanks for the info, Dan. They can feed next year's crop.
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