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General Category => General Homebrew Discussion => Topic started by: gymrat on October 24, 2012, 02:41:28 PM

Title: FWH question
Post by: gymrat on October 24, 2012, 02:41:28 PM
Just exactly what does First Wort Hopping do? Does it add a tad bit of hop flavor to the beer?
Title: Re: FWH question
Post by: morticaixavier on October 24, 2012, 02:44:14 PM
What is claimed is that it adds some flavour and a softer bitterness, although with a higher IBU in comparison with a 60 minute addition.
Title: Re: FWH question
Post by: davidgzach on October 24, 2012, 02:50:28 PM
Can also help with boilovers.

Dave
Title: Re: FWH question
Post by: mihalybaci on October 24, 2012, 02:50:47 PM
What is claimed is that it adds some flavour and a softer bitterness, although with a higher IBU in comparison with a 60 minute addition.

What he said. Some references say that you can estimate FWH by assuming its a 60 min addition plus a 20 min addition in one dose.
Title: Re: FWH question
Post by: ibru on October 24, 2012, 02:51:42 PM
I tried it for the first time last month and brewed a very nice pale ale with all cascades. I'll definitely do more of it in the future. Like Mort said, it softens the bittering effect.

Bruce
Title: Re: FWH question
Post by: kylekohlmorgen on October 24, 2012, 04:04:48 PM
What is claimed is that it adds some flavour and a softer bitterness, although with a higher IBU in comparison with a 60 minute addition.

What he said. Some references say that you can estimate FWH by assuming its a 60 min addition plus a 20 min addition in one dose.

Agreed - to a point. IME FWH utilize small amounts of hops more efficiently because you can extract 15 min addition-type flavor from a bittering hop. But you cant just move all your flavoring additions to FWH.

I use FWH mostly to reduce total hop mass in the kettle without sacrificing bitterness or flavor. I've changed my IPA recipes, taking a portion of my higher alpha hops from the 15-20 min addition and adding to FWH, normally in place of the 60 min addition. I'll use a small amount of super high alpha hops at 60 min if I can't get the desired IBU with 1/2-1/3 of the flavoring hops as FWH.

Do a side-by-side with a Pale/IPA. You can never have enough of it around the house anyway.
Title: Re: FWH question
Post by: denny on October 24, 2012, 04:30:00 PM
What is claimed is that it adds some flavour and a softer bitterness, although with a higher IBU in comparison with a 60 minute addition.

What he said. Some references say that you can estimate FWH by assuming its a 60 min addition plus a 20 min addition in one dose.

I count is as a 20 min,. addition because that what it seems like to me in terms of flavor and bittering.  Although it actually measures as more IBU when the beer is analyzed, it tastes like less.  Since we generally taste our beer rather than measure it, that works for me.  I did an experiment with FWH and the results are here starting on pg. 29...

http://www.ahaconference.org/wp-content/uploads/presentations/2008/DennyConn.pdf
Title: Re: FWH question
Post by: gymrat on October 24, 2012, 05:36:31 PM
I am going to do the recipe of the week this Sunday. The Brown Eye Women. I think I will do the FWH thing. After reading Denny's research on it I don't see where it will change the recipe much if any. But it will avoid the boil over thing and possibly give me a bit of flavor from the hops.
Title: Re: FWH question
Post by: denny on October 24, 2012, 05:39:24 PM
But it will avoid the boil over thing

I haven't found that to be the case.
Title: Re: FWH question
Post by: blatz on October 24, 2012, 05:44:55 PM
But it will avoid the boil over thing

I haven't found that to be the case.

yeah - on my keg kettle system, it actually makes things a bit more tentative, since I usually am filled darn close to the brim with wort - a layer of hops on top usually puts it almost over the edge.
Title: Re: FWH question
Post by: dzlater on October 24, 2012, 08:54:47 PM
When you do this do you leave the hops in for 60 min.? Or take them out when you reach a boil?
Title: Re: FWH question
Post by: blatz on October 24, 2012, 08:55:25 PM
When you do this do you leave the hops in for 60 min.? Or take them out when you reach a boil?

they stay in the whole time.
Title: Re: FWH question
Post by: hubie on October 24, 2012, 09:48:00 PM
I count is as a 20 min,. addition because that what it seems like to me in terms of flavor and bittering.

Bear with me as I can be a bit dense, but are you saying that if you want to FWH a recipe that has only a 60-min addition, you can take the total IBUs and break them into a 60 minute charge and a 20 minute charge that ends up with the same IBUs?
Title: Re: FWH question
Post by: weithman5 on October 24, 2012, 10:11:30 PM
I count is as a 20 min,. addition because that what it seems like to me in terms of flavor and bittering.

Bear with me as I can be a bit dense, but are you saying that if you want to FWH a recipe that has only a 60-min addition, you can take the total IBUs and break them into a 60 minute charge and a 20 minute charge that ends up with the same IBUs?

i dont think so.  when you design a recipe using FWH you estimate the ibu from that addition as though it were a 20 minute addition
Title: Re: FWH question
Post by: gymrat on October 24, 2012, 11:07:54 PM
Beersmith has a FWH option when you are filling in your hop additions. I assume the math I need is all figured into that.
Title: Re: FWH question
Post by: tschmidlin on October 25, 2012, 05:32:39 AM
Beersmith has a FWH option when you are filling in your hop additions. I assume the math I need is all figured into that.
It does and it doesn't.  The FWH option in beersmith estimates ~10% more bitterness from a FWH addition than a 60 min addition.  If your cool with that, no problem.  Denny uses different numbers, so that wouldn't work for him.  It may be possible to change the math somewhere in beersmith, but if there is it's not obvious to me.
Title: Re: FWH question
Post by: erockrph on October 25, 2012, 01:13:45 PM
FWIW, Brewer's Friend calculates IBUs from FWH as a 20 minute addition. It may not be the most accurate estimate of what a lab would report for IBUs, but for recipe formulation it's pretty close to how my palate perceives it.
Title: Re: FWH question
Post by: weithman5 on October 25, 2012, 02:15:30 PM
Beersmith has a FWH option when you are filling in your hop additions. I assume the math I need is all figured into that.
It does and it doesn't.  The FWH option in beersmith estimates ~10% more bitterness from a FWH addition than a 60 min addition.  If your cool with that, no problem.  Denny uses different numbers, so that wouldn't work for him.  It may be possible to change the math somewhere in beersmith, but if there is it's not obvious to me.

i brewmaster comes up with about 10% more bitterness as well
Title: Re: FWH question
Post by: denny on October 25, 2012, 03:44:18 PM
FWIW, Brewer's Friend calculates IBUs from FWH as a 20 minute addition. It may not be the most accurate estimate of what a lab would report for IBUs, but for recipe formulation it's pretty close to how my palate perceives it.

That's the point I keep trying to make.  It doesn't matter how many IBUs you estimate or measure, really.  What matters is what it tastes like.
Title: FWH question
Post by: bluesman on October 25, 2012, 07:42:02 PM
I am going to do the recipe of the week this Sunday. The Brown Eye Women. I think I will do the FWH thing. After reading Denny's research on it I don't see where it will change the recipe much if any. But it will avoid the boil over thing and possibly give me a bit of flavor from the hops.

I think you'll get a more pronounced hop flavor with a FWH addition than you would with the same amount of hops added at 60min during the boil, at least in my experience that has been the case. I've heard varying opinions on this, but my experience has been very positive with FWH additions. Just be sure to calculate your IBU's using FWH's as a 20min addition and I think you'll be happy with the results.
Title: Re: FWH question
Post by: dzlater on October 25, 2012, 09:19:18 PM
OK now I am really confused.
If FWH give you between 10% and 20% more IBU's then a 60 minute addition , how can it equal a 20 minute addition ?
You get less IBU's from a 20 minute addition then 60 minute.
Title: Re: FWH question
Post by: udubdawg on October 25, 2012, 09:23:08 PM
OK now I am really confused.
If FWH give you between 10% and 20% more IBU's then a 60 minute addition , how can it equal a 20 minute addition ?
You get less IBU's from a 20 minute addition then 60 minute.

check out Denny's last post.
Yes, lab equipment will say the IBUs are higher.  However what really matters is how bitter it tastes.  Perception is reality basically.  Your tongue doesn't care what the actual IBU level is, and your tongue says it tastes similar to a 20 minute addition. 

does that help any?

cheers--
--Michael
Title: Re: FWH question
Post by: tschmidlin on October 26, 2012, 07:02:49 AM
Your tongue doesn't care what the actual IBU level is, and your tongue says it tastes similar to a 20 minute addition. 
Well, Denny's tongue says that not everyone agrees.
Title: Re: FWH question
Post by: tygo on October 26, 2012, 10:45:06 AM
If you want to get a feel for what FWH taste like in beer, both in terms of flavor and bitterness, make a batch with all FWH.  I've done this a couple of times and it was educational.  It worked well for a kolsch.  For an ESB the bitterness (or the perception of the bitterness) wasn't enough for the style, at least in the amount I used.
Title: Re: FWH question
Post by: udubdawg on October 26, 2012, 12:31:12 PM
Wait, the fact that I agree with Denny doesn't completely validate it?

huh.   ;D

...fair enough Tom.

cheers--
--Michael
Title: Re: FWH question
Post by: blatz on October 26, 2012, 02:00:43 PM
Your tongue doesn't care what the actual IBU level is, and your tongue says it tastes similar to a 20 minute addition. 
Well, Denny's tongue says that not everyone agrees.

ding ding ding.

 ;D
Title: Re: FWH question
Post by: hubie on October 26, 2012, 03:07:35 PM

check out Denny's last post.
Yes, lab equipment will say the IBUs are higher.  However what really matters is how bitter it tastes.  Perception is reality basically.  Your tongue doesn't care what the actual IBU level is, and your tongue says it tastes similar to a 20 minute addition. 


That's the part that makes it hard to get my head wrapped around.  Thinking just from an IBU standpoint lets say I'm brewing a Kolsch and I normally would only add one ounce of hops at 60 minutes to get me something like 22 IBUs.  If I were to brew the same recipe and wanted the same IBUs, but I wanted to add all my hops at 20 minutes instead, I would need about 1.7 ounces.  However, if I took those same 1.7 ounces and added them all as FWH, I would end up with something like 42 IBUs.  There has to be some interesting chemistry going on if I double my IBUs but can't taste any significant extra bitterness.

I find the whole topic of FWH interesting because I've seen other people besides Denny talk about it as a 20-minute equivalent; people with much better palates than mine.
Title: Re: FWH question
Post by: bluesman on October 26, 2012, 04:33:46 PM
Your tongue doesn't care what the actual IBU level is, and your tongue says it tastes similar to a 20 minute addition. 
Well, Denny's tongue says that not everyone agrees.

Maybe we should call it "The Denny Effect". :)
Title: Re: FWH question
Post by: tschmidlin on October 26, 2012, 04:58:29 PM
Perceived IBUs and measured IBUs are two totally different things.  Perceiving is pretty simple, we just taste and decide how bitter it seems.

Measuring IBUs (with a spec) involves extracting compounds with solvents and measuring the transmittance of light through the liquid.  You measure a blank solution with no bitterness, you measure the sample from the beer, you determine the difference and apply some factor to determine how many "IBUs" are in the beer.  The problem with the method is that there may be other things in the solution that affect the transmittance but that are not bitter, or not as bitter, or may be even more bitter than the standard "IBU".

In the case of FWH, it is possible (and maybe likely) that the extended time or different temps may create compounds that are different enough from the iso-humulone compounds to be perceived differently but not be measured differently.
Title: Re: FWH question
Post by: weithman5 on October 26, 2012, 05:27:29 PM
The only issue i have is the computer and recipe generation.  i can enter things as a 20minute addition so that i can compare the taste but the recipe has a glitch if you will because then it doesn't show up as FWH or vice versa.  no big deal for my own use, putting notes in and such but when the recipe is shared there may be. i guess just not optimal unless i can modify it in the computer
Title: FWH question
Post by: denny on October 26, 2012, 05:35:42 PM
Your tongue doesn't care what the actual IBU level is, and your tongue says it tastes similar to a 20 minute addition. 
Well, Denny's tongue says that not everyone agrees.

Yeah, lots of people are wrong about lots of things....;)


Sent from my iPad using Tapatalk HD
Title: Re: FWH question
Post by: malzig on October 31, 2012, 11:24:01 AM
OK now I am really confused.
If FWH give you between 10% and 20% more IBU's then a 60 minute addition , how can it equal a 20 minute addition ?
You get less IBU's from a 20 minute addition then 60 minute.
A similar example would be to make the same beer with a 60' addition of Chinook and a 60' addition of Magnum to the same IBU level.  The Magnum bittered beer will taste less bitter in a way similar to the way FWH tastes less bitter.
Title: Re: FWH question
Post by: gymrat on November 20, 2012, 03:20:09 PM
But it will avoid the boil over thing

I haven't found that to be the case.

Yep Denny, it did foam up and boil over. I really wish I had bought a bigger kettle. An 8 gallon kettle just isn't big enough for 5 gallon brews.

BTW My 1 week in the bottle sample of this beer was terrific.
Title: Re: FWH question
Post by: blatz on November 20, 2012, 03:51:48 PM
But it will avoid the boil over thing

I haven't found that to be the case.

Yep Denny, it did foam up and boil over. I really wish I had bought a bigger kettle. An 8 gallon kettle just isn't big enough for 5 gallon brews.

BTW My 1 week in the bottle sample of this beer was terrific.

before I got a bigger kettle, I used fermcap and it usually helped prevent boilovers
Title: Re: FWH question
Post by: gymrat on November 20, 2012, 06:26:04 PM
Thankyou for the tip :D
Title: FWH question
Post by: denny on November 20, 2012, 06:32:05 PM
But it will avoid the boil over thing

I haven't found that to be the case.

Yep Denny, it did foam up and boil over. I really wish I had bought a bigger kettle. An 8 gallon kettle just isn't big enough for 5 gallon brews.

BTW My 1 week in the bottle sample of this beer was terrific.

before I got a bigger kettle, I used fermcap and it usually helped prevent boilovers

Before I used Fermcap, I used a spray bottle which was very effective.  Due to some concerns about Fermcap, I've gone back to that.
Title: Re: FWH question
Post by: blatz on November 20, 2012, 07:21:07 PM
well, in reality, so long as you give yourself a little room below the brim,  keep your eye on the boil and your hand close to the throttle on your heat source, you can avoid a boilover.
Title: Re: FWH question
Post by: gymrat on November 23, 2012, 03:45:35 PM
I use a spray bottle and give my grip one heck of a workout. I would love to buy a 10 gallon kettle but just can't justify it when the kettle I have works. It is just a lot of extra work.
Title: Re: FWH question
Post by: mmitchem on November 23, 2012, 05:03:53 PM
Due to some concerns about Fermcap, I've gone back to that.

Denny, what sort of concerns do you have with Fermcap? I use it often, but don't want to if it has an adverse effect.
Title: Re: FWH question
Post by: denny on November 23, 2012, 05:19:31 PM
Due to some concerns about Fermcap, I've gone back to that.

Denny, what sort of concerns do you have with Fermcap? I use it often, but don't want to if it has an adverse effect.

From what I've been able to discern, it's really meant to be filtered out before the beer is consumed.  There are concerns about kidney blockage.  Admittedly, at the amounts we use it seems unlikely to be a problem, but I have enough medical issues already that I'd just as soon limit its use as much as possible.  I've pretty much stopped using it in the kettle, whereas previously I would add a fair amount to every boil.  With a bit of vigilance I can control the boil with the valve and a spray bottle.   I also don't add it to fermenters as a matter of course as I used to.  If I can't control the fermentation some other way, I'll add the least amount I can get away with when I need it.  PLease understand that I'm not trying to tell anybody what they should do.  This is simply my own decision.
Title: Re: FWH question
Post by: mmitchem on November 23, 2012, 05:46:33 PM
From what I've been able to discern, it's really meant to be filtered out before the beer is consumed.  There are concerns about kidney blockage.  Admittedly, at the amounts we use it seems unlikely to be a problem, but I have enough medical issues already that I'd just as soon limit its use as much as possible.  I've pretty much stopped using it in the kettle, whereas previously I would add a fair amount to every boil.  With a bit of vigilance I can control the boil with the valve and a spray bottle.   I also don't add it to fermenters as a matter of course as I used to.  If I can't control the fermentation some other way, I'll add the least amount I can get away with when I need it.  PLease understand that I'm not trying to tell anybody what they should do.  This is simply my own decision.
That is good information Denny. Why risk it if it a possibility? I am usually brewing only 5-10 gallon batches in a 15 gallon BK, so boilover is rarely an issue, but I have heard that Fermcap aids in head retention as well. I haven't seen any data regarding this, but the report comes from a reputable brewer that I trust.
With that being said, I really don't think awesome head retention is worth potential kidney issues such as blockage. At the end of the day, if the beer is good that is all that matters. If the beer is in competition, Appearance is only worth 3 points max, right? ;)
Title: Re: FWH question
Post by: malzig on November 24, 2012, 08:49:49 PM
Due to some concerns about Fermcap, I've gone back to that.
Denny, what sort of concerns do you have with Fermcap? I use it often, but don't want to if it has an adverse effect.
From what I've been able to discern, it's really meant to be filtered out before the beer is consumed.  There are concerns about kidney blockage.
Liver damage, as well.