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rodwha

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I’ve only ever made standardish sized batches, if they were a bit big or strong I’d just make my starter slightly bigger. But this is much different. I just wanted to make sure that starters are linear.

I like to use just enough hops to hit about 12-20 IBUs for bittering and would often split a 1/2 oz pack of Warrior. What low AA hops have a nice “clean” bittering that would easily split in half, especially if found in 1/2 oz packaging (seems like I noticed Cascade offered such)?
 

aceluby

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It scales pretty linearly, but depending on the size of the batch, you may be able to skip a starter completely. I do a lot of one gallon beers and 1/2 package of either liquid or dry yeast has been plenty for what I throw at it (9-10% max is all I've really tried though). Hops also scales pretty linearly. so if you're using 1/2oz total in a 5 gallon brew, you're probably only using 2.8-3g on a 1 gallon.
 
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rodwha

rodwha

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Are there any hops people would steer clear of for bittering?
 

hotbeer

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Are there any hops people would steer clear of for bittering?
You typically look at the alpha acids for each hop. The higher the alpha, the better for bittering. But that doesn't mean you don't do a consideration for cost of that hop. Or for the flavor and aromas it brings with it if you want to do a single hop beer or just economize how many different hops you have to get for your particular beer.

This is just the first thing I found with a quick google that might explain things to you. There might be better articles.


So I guess to answer the question, steer clear of low alpha hops for bittering. Unless they are very inexpensive and you plan to use a lot of them.
 

CascadesBrewer

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Are there any hops people would steer clear of for bittering?

What types of beers are you brewing? I tend to think that the minor flavor differences from a 60 minute addition matter some in a beer like an American Lager, but not really in an IPA or Porter where the flavors of the beer will overpower the hops. I am not fully convinced of the harsh vs clean bittering labels that get tied to certain hops, but I tend to use Columbus/CTZ or Warrior for much of my bittering. Also German Northern Brewer in my Belgians. Magnum has a good reputation as a bittering hop. I probably should buy try Magnum at some point.

How often do you brew? Rather than working recipes around something like "half a pack of Cascade", I find it is easier to pick up an 8 oz resealable bag of bittering hops and then use whatever amount I need to hit my target IBU level. As long as you keep them stored frozen, and use them up in a year or so, I find that strategy works well for me. In the long run, a 6% aa hop like Cascade will cost you twice vs a similar priced hop that is 12% aa.
 
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rodwha

rodwha

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I used to brew all sorts of types of beers, but my wife and I generally always want an IPA or hoppy pale ale, but I have a few beers that I’ll still be brewing. I also used to brew 5.25 or 5.5 gal batches but will be downsizing to 2-2.5 gals, which is where I’m at now wondering about such small bittering additions. I’ve never liked opened hops in the freezer, but have a few times. Unfortunately sometimes the months have just gone by leaving those opened hops ruined.

For virtually all of my beers I shoot for 12-20 IBUs for bittering and use them as a first wort addition.

I’m not sure how often I’ll brew but I’m guessing once a month for now.
 

CascadesBrewer

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I used to brew all sorts of types of beers, but my wife and I generally always want an IPA or hoppy pale ale, but I have a few beers that I’ll still be brewing. I also used to brew 5.25 or 5.5 gal batches but will be downsizing to 2-2.5 gals, which is where I’m at now wondering about such small bittering additions. I’ve never liked opened hops in the freezer, but have a few times. Unfortunately sometimes the months have just gone by leaving those opened hops ruined.

For virtually all of my beers I shoot for 12-20 IBUs for bittering and use them as a first wort addition.

I’m not sure how often I’ll brew but I’m guessing once a month for now.

I see your other thread asking about hop storage. I have had good luck storing hops in the original packaging. With resealable ones, I squeeze out as much air as I can and seal. With others I will fold them over several time and tape the package shut. I then store a few of those smaller packages together in a ziploc bag in my freezer. I kinda feel that some hops that I purchased that came in vacuum sealed bags (the clear plastic) might not have stored as well as ones that I get in the mylar bags (but I don't have enough data points there to say for sure).

Just using the same hops that you are using in your recipe for an IPA or Pale Ale would work as well. Depending on where you buy your hops, the per oz price for Cascade and Columbus might be about the same as hops like Citra or Simcoe. Also, so many hops are high aa% these days, I tend to get most of my bittering from late boil, or even just from Whirlpool additions.
 

balrog

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I've used resealable bags from Yakima Valley Hops, fridge not freezer, for well over a year. while I know Alpha Acids are decaying some in strength over time at 40F vs 0F of a freezer, I have not noticed any substantial drop off in bitterness, making same recipe again and again. I use Magnum at 60 for many beer styles. I use my nose to tell me if the hops have "gone" so if they smell like hops, I use them. I would hesitate to be so cavalier for aroma hops, but I have had good experience with Azacca, Mosaic and Citra, kept for several months sealed, press the air out, just in a fridge. After a year+ I do notice less aroma from those however in a repeat recipe. But I also find beer making process is far more detrimental to outcome than fridge vs freezer and open hop bags. (Cold side O2, I'm looking at you).
 

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If it relates, I've started working my IPA's backwards. That is to say that first I figure IBU's from whirlpool, flame-out, final 10 or 20 minutes of boil, etc. After that, I throw some Magnum in the boil to boost the IBU's if and when it's needed. Sometimes it isn't.

I squish some air out of the bags and then put packing tape over the opening, toss them back in the freezer. With fairly high AA it means I don't need much, and I'm not counting on getting any flavor from them anyhow.
 
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rodwha

rodwha

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If it relates, I've started working my IPA's backwards. That is to say that first I figure IBU's from whirlpool, flame-out, final 10 or 20 minutes of boil, etc. After that, I throw some Magnum in the boil to boost the IBU's if and when it's needed. Sometimes it isn't.

I squish some air out of the bags and then put packing tape over the opening, toss them back in the freezer. With fairly high AA it means I don't need much, and I'm not counting on getting any flavor from them anyhow.
I once made an IPA without any bittering hops and it was a peculiar beer. These days I start with bittering to achieve about 12-20 IBUs and work from there. I’ve been giving them the full treatment, bittering, flavoring, and aroma additions with a large whirlpool and dry hop reaching for a very high IBU number close to 100, it’s what I’ve found replicates those super hop flavored beers. I don’t mind painting outside of the lines with some things…
 

mashpaddled

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Are there any hops people would steer clear of for bittering?

It depends on what you're brewing. For beers with higher bitterness (west coast IPA, high gravity beers) you want to use higher alpha hops and avoid lower alpha hops to avoid putting in too much hop matter which will suck up wort and risks getting a more vegetal flavor and tannins out of the cone matter. (This is why hop extracts became popular for bittering.) Some lager styles benefit from using low alpha hops for bittering because the light tannin extraction helps add texture to the beer.

For the most beers, people opt for higher alpha hops for bittering just because it allows you to use less hop matter which reduces storage space and wort loss to absorption by the hop cones/pellets. That said, I tend to bitter most of my beers with mid-range alpha hops like cascade because I don't brew extremely bitter beers and I don't have to worry about buying some hops for bittering and some for flavor/aroma.
 
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