« on: December 05, 2013, 07:41:46 PM »
One of the whole reasons I got into homebrewing in the first place was to experiment with hops. One of my philosophies is that I'm not really looking to produce something that I can just get at the store, so I've started to gravitate towards a lot of the newer varieties that you don't see in a lot of commercial beers.
Here are my current favorites:
Nelson Sauvin - I get a big Cascade-like white grapefruit note, paired with a white wine character that I really enjoy. This has become a standard in my IPA's. A nice sub for Cascade or Centennial if you're looking for something in the same ballpark but different.
Apollo - another new standard in my IPA's. I know some people get onion/sulfur from it, but I never have. I get a cross between Amarillo and Columbus - a lot of tangerine balanced with a bit of dank.
Motueka - A Saaz derivative that has a great lime zest/lemongrass character along with noble-like herbal character. It's not potent enough to stand up to oilier hops in an IPA, but it's great for something like a lager, saison, American wheat, etc. where you want an interesting hop note without going full-on hop bomb.
Meridian - I get flavors that remind me of sweeter stone fruits like apricots or nectarines, but without a lot of citrus. Great in combination with hops with more of a citrus character.
Caliente - I get a lot of stone fruit with this as well, but it's more like ripe red plums to me. It has some citrus character to it as well. Not as "sweet" as Meridian. Flavor has some Fugglish earthiness. It's really nice in ESB's, and it's amazing paired with WY3864 (Unibroue) in a hoppy Belgian beer.