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When to add hops?

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cyclejones

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I'm wondering if anybody has any experience with adding hops to mead? I've got a 5 gallon batch of wildflower going that i would like to add cascade hops too but i'm looking for input on how much/how long/when in production i should add it to the brew? was planning on dry hopping in secondary with 1lb for a few weeks or to taste.

any thoughts?
 

fatbloke

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Hops ? An unusual ingredient.

Aren't hops a bittering agent ?

Surely, unless you're making a braggot in a "beer like" style, aren't they a counter-intuitive ingredient ?

Well, I was under the impression that they're normally added to a wort at the boil stage ? One of the beer makers will have to correct me if that's wrong, so I'd guess that if you just happen to like the taste that they impart, then either secondary or tertiary/post-ferment would be the time as it would be easier to judge how much flavour has been extracted by tasting or possibly search for info about the Ethiopian honey brew called "Tej" as that uses a bittering agent (not hops). That might give you some ideas or pointers...
 

DNSDies

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Hops are added at different times, depending on how bitter, or what character you want in the beer.

From my experience with beer brewing, I'd say either add it to the must/wort when mixing your honey (or boiling it, if you prefer old school mead making) and filter it out after racking primary.
Boil the hops in the water going into your mead. 60 minutes for bitterness, 20-30 for floral flavor (do you really need more of this in a mead?), and 10 minutes for aroma.
This will add the hop flavor.

If you want to, you could also try adding them during the secondary to impart aroma and a little less flavor, then stain them out during your next racking.
 

ChemEMc

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not a mead guy (yet), but 1 lb cascade in a 5 lb batch?!?! 2 oz in 5 gal of beer usually gives a good dry hop aroma, since this is mead I am assuming you'd want a more subdued hop presence, so i'd say start with ~0.5 oz cascade in secondary for a week, you can always add more if that is not enough, but I would certainly not add more than 2 oz unless you want the cascade to kick you in the face.
 

biochemedic

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If you've already brewed, your only option is dry hopping, and you're only essentially going to get aroma/flavor....not that this is a bad thing, I think it could be quite good!

I'd tend to agree with ChemEMc that 1 POUND is probably too much, although I think you could certainly do a couple of ounces

Check out this thread, which has a lot of good discussion on hop metheglins. Maybe it will inspire a future batch for you where you can add some hops for bittering as well as for flavor/aroma.
 
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cyclejones

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update: racked to tertiary today, two notes:

1: Perle hops imparts all of the bitter and very little of the aroma that is shows as a dry hop. will not be using it again, tastes like a brittish ale, not the IPA hoppyness i was expecting. not terrible, but not one to show off...

2: Cascade hops was perfect!

and yeah, two ounces was the right amount for 5 gallons, thanks ChemEMc!
 
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