View Full Version : Reducing hop usage

11-05-2007, 05:55 PM
How are you modifying your recipes to use less hops with minimal flavor impact?

Some things I plan to try:

No hops boiled in the shorter-than-60 min, longer than 10 min range. For example, I have a few recipes calling for 30 min. additions. Not great for utilization and won't impart much flavor either. I plan to move these either to the start of the boil for better util and possibly move a fraction (5%) to the last 10 min to get a bit of flavor similar to what I'd get from a 30 min addition. I could get the same IBU and similar flavor with less total hop usage.

Another thought I'm tossing around is to do more first wort hopping to boost utilization.

What else are others doing?

11-06-2007, 03:35 PM
Right on. I've gone to all first-wort hopping, and also killed my whirlpool additions in favor of whole-leaf additions in my post mash-out, CIPed, Sanied mash tun as a hop back (seems a lot more mini-bales of the varieties I want are available than pellets). Working great, but cleaning out and CIPing the mash tun twice SUCKS!

11-07-2007, 05:35 AM
How much more utilization would one typically get with FWH as opposed to 60 minute hopping during a 75 minute boil?

11-07-2007, 06:49 AM
Opinions vary. Depending on your system, maybe 10% more than you would if you boiled the whole 75 min. I find that it also reduces my need for antifoam.

11-07-2007, 08:31 AM
In addition to reducing our hop drops, I'm investigating brewing without hops altogether, using other herbs in place. I'm running into some interesting convolutions with the TTB. They define beer as brewed with a standard of seven pounds of hops per 100 bbl. So without hops, it's not "beer". Don't know what they would classify it as then. If it's not beer, do I still pay excise tax on it or is this the mythical tax loophole? :D Our state D.O.R. defines beer as brewed "with or without hops" so apparently no problem at the state level.
Just wonderin'