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Old 09-30-2007, 09:24 PM   #1
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Default What is 'Beta' in hops?

All the hops I ahve seen have the AA% on the package. In Brewsmith there is also a "Beta" percentage. I don't know where to find that info so I can change it to see if I am supposed to change my hops additions for bitterness. I am assuming just changing the alpha is enough, but my curiousity got the best of me....

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Old 09-30-2007, 09:47 PM   #2
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The beta acids also contribute to bittering. Some feel they add a smoother bittering (or maybe it was harsher...) but typically they are felt to add such a neglegable amount of bittering since they don't isomerize in the boil (or maybe they boiled off, I don't remember well, it's before 7 and I haven't had coffee yet). The Beersmith people probably added it in there expecting it to be one of the next things people care about.
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Old 10-01-2007, 09:05 PM   #3
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I don't have it handy, but there was a good explaination in the original Papazian book. According to Wikipedia, though:

"Beta acids do not isomerise during the boil of wort, and have a negligible effect on beer flavour. Instead they contribute to beer's bitter aroma, and high beta acid hop varieties are often added at the end of the wort boil for aroma. Beta acids oxidize and oxidized beta acids form sulfur compounds such as DMS (dimethyl sulfide) that can give beer off-flavours of rotten vegetables or cooked corn."
Hope that helps

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