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Thread: "Wet hopping"

  1. #1
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    "Wet hopping"

    I'm looking for a little guidance from anyone out there who has brewed with undried fresh hops.

    Where have you used them? Bittering additions, flavor additions, aroma additions, as "dry hopping" hops?

    How much to use compared to standard dried whole hops? I suppose we might get at this by thinking: What's the weight percentage lost when the moisture is removed in the drying process? (So if it takes 20lbs of "wet" hops to dry into 10lbs of "dry" hops, then it's 50%.)

    Any other watch outs, and how did the results turn out?

    Thanks,
    Scott

  2. #2
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    wet hops, I wish

    Cant say I've had the experience with fresh hops, but I was at Rogue Brewery earlier this year and John Maier (sp? sorry john) uses fresh hops often. Im sure you saw the picture of him in a pile of freshly harvested hops in the Celebrator. From the field to the kettle in 4 hours. I recommend calling him. He's a great guy and Im sure would tell you what you need to know.
    Mike

  3. #3
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    Isn't Celebration Ale a Sierra Nevada product featuring fresh hops? I've used fresh hops for aroma in homebrewing. Hopback if you have it. Hard to use too much. Wonderful stuff. Good luck!

  4. #4
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    Every fall I brew a harvest ale with fresh hops. It is a big ESB or small Pale ale. I use pellets in the kettle so I won't clog the heat ex. Then I turn my mash tun into a hop back. I use 50# of fresh Cascades for a ten barrel batch. I don't filter this harvest ale and serve it as soon as the yeast has dropped. I consider it as a brewery's version of a Beaujolais Nouveau, that is only available during harvest time.

    billings

  5. #5
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    Quote Originally Posted by billings
    Every fall I brew a harvest ale with fresh hops. It is a big ESB or small Pale ale. I use pellets in the kettle so I won't clog the heat ex. Then I turn my mash tun into a hop back. I use 50# of fresh Cascades for a ten barrel batch. I don't filter this harvest ale and serve it as soon as the yeast has dropped. I consider it as a brewery's version of a Beaujolais Nouveau, that is only available during harvest time.

    billings

    Interesting procedure using your mash tun as a hop back. I would think you would pump from kettle to mash tun after a whirlpool and stand( as is the case in my procedure), let the hops sit with the high temperature wort for X minutes and then transfer through heat exchanger as normal.

    If this is the procedure you would use, how long do you allow the hops to stay in contact with the whole hops?

    Do you pump in through the bottom of the mash tun,normally the exit for transfer, or through the sparge/re-circulating arm? The second option would see to risk picking up more oxygen. Is their any additional danger of infection going back into the mash tun as long as the wort is at a high enough temperature?
    Cheers,
    Mike Roy
    Brewmaster
    Franklins Restaurant, Brewery & General Store
    5123 Baltimore Ave
    Hyattsville,MD 20781
    301-927-2740

    Franklinsbrewery.com
    @franklinsbrwry
    facebook.com/franklinsbrewery

  6. #6
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    This is my third year doing freshhops. First use the factor of about four or five in weight of wet to weight of dry. The balance is water, so if adding fresh, remember you are adding that many pounds of water to your kettle @8+lb/gal. Then again this factor tells you how much to use to get comparable hop notes compared to dry.
    Kinda think it's a waste to use them for bittering as it is the most volatile components that make the fresh ones special, and this is what gets lost first in boiling. They're fine everywhere else. Or at least for the effort/cost, I am not willing to lose so much to the long boil.
    They are bulky so all the concerns of dry hopping and more come into play such as getting them out drains, keeping them submerged, wort/beer loss entrained in the mass, etc.

  7. #7
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    Wow, thanks Brian. I never would have thought to take into consideration the extra "water addition" that comes with fresh hops. Good to know.

    I was planning to just chuck mine into the kettle and put the exit screen into the kettle bottom (I usually only handle pelletized on this rig). Could be a big mess though. The idea of using the Mash-tun is an interesting one to me, but the downsides I'd see there are (1) possibly more O2 pickup, (I'd stay clear of spraying hot wort, but have a side run-in option in my tun that should do nicely) and (2) a much longer knockout - running my pump at about half the speed due to the gravity-fed grant setup, and maybe risking some DMS, and (3) I'd be limited to a late fresh hop addition only.

    Any more thoughts?

    Many thanks,
    Scott

  8. #8
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    Couldn't you whirlpool in your mash tun? Doesn't seem like that would add much extra time to your schedule. Is your side run-in on the mash tun tangential or radial? Could use a paddle to induce a whirlpool during transfer if its radial. Good luck!

  9. #9
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    An extra screen on the bottom could be just fine. These hops shouldn't pack too tightly as would pellet slop. Pump slowly maybe as a precaution.
    I've posted other times about simple hop separation devices, but if this is a one time deal, (and this is pretty much out on a limb,) how about packing your drain area loosely with big stainless scrubbies? Especially if you ran off slowly with a vari-speed pump, you just might be OK. Then again if it plugged, you'd be up a kettle without a mash stirrer...
    If you wanted to do the mash tun deal, put the hose into the mash tun with a T on it to spread the flow a couple directions, maybe let it siphon some at first to diminish air problem. No need to whirlpool a mash tun. If you late hop, are you sure these puppies wouldn't clog your pump? A nice Waukesha PD pump would work, but that's not something most people have in their spare stuff pile.
    Last edited by Moonlight; 08-30-2005 at 11:42 AM.

  10. #10
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    The exit from the kettle to the pump is the same either way, so screen/scrubbies/fishing them out with a net during whirlpool... the advice applies regardless of my choice - IF I make a kettle addition.

    My Mash tun's entry runs down the side of the tank, so I think O2 pickup is probably minimal via that port. (I was just recommending that folks don't use the sparge ring, as that would be asking for trouble.) And this is a combi mash/lauter so it's got a screened bottom which should separate the solid bits nicely, if in fact I go for the post WP addition over there.

    I'm just not sure how much hop flavor it would provide, or if the aroma would be the only difference from the base beer.

    Brian, I agree with your comments about long boils with these hops - kinda defeats the purpose. So I was wondering, what kind of boil time to you typically expose your fresh hops to? Again, I'm after more than just aroma.

    Sadly, the entire issue may be solved as I may not have a decent source for fresh hops this year. I have a few other phone calls to make though...

    Thanks all,
    Scott

  11. #11
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    Hop bags in boil?

    What are the draw backs to using hop bags in the kettle during the boil to keep the flowers out of the exit ports and the pump head? Is it possible to use several hop bags with a few pounds each to get all the hops in the wort?
    Nicholas Campbell

  12. #12
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    Check with HopUnion, I believe they have overnighted fresh hops. But do it really soon as they are already picking.
    Kettle bags would work as long as there's plenty of movement room within the bag.
    Seems like 25 min to end of boil or less is best. There are some qualities that I don't yet understand in fresh hops to know exactly when to best use them. I'd only be afraid in the case of hopbacking that not all the qualities would be extracted. Kinda think submersion and agitation are key.
    Sad to note some people seem not to be affected by fresh hops as much as others. Seems to be related to exposure of similiar plant compounds.

  13. #13
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    I brewed the harvest ale on Friday. I pump the wort from the kettle to the mash tun through the sparging arm with a hose attached to not cause splashing. I fill the mash tun until the hops are covered. Then I start the knockout. It adds about thirty minutes to the knockout time. The aroma is totally different and very aromatic. It fills the entire brewery.
    It will be ready on the 23. I am trying to get it served at Wynkoop on Wednesday for the brewers party before GABF. I hope this helps.

    Cheers,
    billings

  14. #14
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    wet hopping

    HI ALL:

    I have no experience with wet hopping, but I was told
    that the beer ends up with grassy aftertaste etc.
    I'm interested in your taste notes.

    Fred

  15. #15
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    Hop Union it is - my local growers had nothing for harvest year one, as anticipated. Just a buck a pound (since they tell me it's a 5-1 ratio, that seems somewhat in-line), but even 2nd day UPS for a 50lb shipment across country..... OUCH!

    I'm getting enough to do a double batch if I use them for my flavor addition @ 20 min. I think handling them in the Mash/Lauter Tun would be a piece of cake using the screens, but tend to agree that getting a bit more agitation seems in order to get more grassy goodness out. Maybe I can get a hop loving volunteer to shovel out the kettle that day - which is this Saturday.

    Nothing like experimenting with a full production batch after only having had a pint or two of a beer made like this... which tasted quite delightfully grassy by the way.

    I'll keep ya posted on how it goes and how it comes out.

    Scott

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