Less hops when I expected more...

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tstevado

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Looking for some feedback as a new brewer. I brewed a dry-hop sour recipe which I bought as an all grain kit and was very happy with the first time around. I wanted to repeat the recipe and this time I ordered the ingredients individually from a local supply store and I had to choose a different lacto strain because the one I used originally wasn't available. Grains, yeast and hops I was able to get all the same.

The first version was a good level of hoppiness, but I wanted to see if I could extract a bit more hoppy flavour and aroma so this time around I did a few things different:

1. The first hop addition was supposed to be at flameout but instead I did a 20 minute whirlpool hoping I'd draw out and retain more hop oils
2. The first time I did the flameout addition directly into the wort and I'm sure some of that made it into the fermenter (I didn't strain or screen the wort). This time I used a hop bag and so none of the hop material (or at least very little) went into the fermenter.
3. The first time I did a split batch in two PET fermenters (and split the dry hops between each), this time I did a full batch in my Anvil brew kettle with the ferment-in-a-kettle kit - not sure if this matters at all but figured it was worth mentioning.

I followed the same dry hop schedule and quantities, but the new batch doesn't have nearly the hoppiness - both smell and flavour - as the original recipe.

I'm confused as I thought the changes I did would increase hop flavour but I got the opposite. I would love if someone had any insight on what I might have done wrong and what I should try next time.
Thanks in advance!
 
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tstevado

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Lacto plantarum the second time... Escapement labs lacto blend the first time
 

HM-2

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A few thoughts:

I wanted to repeat the recipe and this time I ordered the ingredients individually from a local supply store and I had to choose a different lacto strain because the one I used originally wasn't available. Grains, yeast and hops I was able to get all the same.
You say the hops were the same...including their Alpha Acid percentage? What hops did you use?

1. The first hop addition was supposed to be at flameout but instead I did a 20 minute whirlpool hoping I'd draw out and retain more hop oils
Did you balance the lower bittering extraction from a whirlpool rather than a flameout addition by adding more bittering hops in the boil?

This time I used a hop bag and so none of the hop material (or at least very little) went into the fermenter.
This will generally decrease your hop extraction by about 10-15%.

It might be worth posting your hopping routine.
 
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tstevado

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I used Mosaic and El Dorado hops. They were bought from two different suppliers and I didn't think to check the Alpha Acid percentage. I guess I assumed they would be mostly the same across the same variety of hops.

I didn't add any other bittering hops.

Post-souring I brought the wort to a boil for 60 minutes, then I turned the flame off and cooled it to 170F. Then I gave the wort a good stir and dumped 1oz each of Mosaic and El Dorado, held in a muslin bag. After 20 minutes I re-started the cooling and dropped it down to my pitching temps. I removed the hop bag, aerated and pitched the yeast and then moved it to a cool location.

After 5 days I added another 1oz Mosaic and 1oz El Dorado to the fermenter in a muslin bag. (the first time I fermented in Fermonsters, and put the hops in the mini mesh bags that fit into those fermenters).

The main reason I used a bag this time was because I was fermenting in my kettle and not transferring to another fermenter, so I felt like leaving the hop compounds in the kettle for the duration of fermentation would contribute undesirable flavours. First time I did this recipe I transferred to the Fermonsters and I left a lot of the hop material behind in the kettle.

So if I am reading between the lines of what you are saying - without a bittering addition I'm not balancing the sweetness which I'm guessing may mask some of the hop flavour, and because I used a bag I probably lost anything I thought I might have gained by doing a whirlpool?
 
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