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General Category => Ingredients => Topic started by: blatz on February 26, 2013, 02:27:43 PM

Title: My Recent Experience with Citra
Post by: blatz on February 26, 2013, 02:27:43 PM
So I've never made a Citra focused beer before - its always been a small component of a large hop bill.  Recently, I have been trying to develop hop profiles that are significantly different across my IPA, APA, Amber and Am Brown, so I decided a few weeks ago to make an APA that is Citra dominant.

Basically, Flavor, Whirlpool and Dryhopping are all 50% Citra, 25% Centennial, 25% Cascade.

It seems to me that DOMINANT is the word.  I just took a sample of one of the kegs that is carbing and it is intense tangerine and mango aroma, and it seems to have no other hop profile than the Citra - I can't pick up any of the expected aromatics or flavor of the other two hops.  I expected more pine and grapefruit and general citric aromas to at least be present. 

Is this abnormal or is this what you guys experience?  I'm thinking I'm going to be a little less heavy handed with Citra in the future - I like it in the background, but its a bit overpowering for me as a feature hop.
Title: Re: My Recent Experience with Citra
Post by: HoosierBrew on February 26, 2013, 02:40:28 PM
+1.  The tangerine /orange is very intense.  I like it but not always at its level of intensity.  I will say that the pungency and pine of Chinook did come through against Citra in my last IPA.
Title: Re: My Recent Experience with Citra
Post by: dmtaylor on February 26, 2013, 03:28:07 PM
Citra is indeed a very intense hop.  A friend of mine recently blended 50/50 Citra and Centennial in an APA/IPA.  There's no telling there was any Centennial in that beer -- it tastes exactly the same as his 100% Citra APA.

I do believe that it might blend okay with very strong hops such as Simcoe and Mosaic, maybe Columbus.  But otherwise, take it easy on the Citra or it will indeed overpower everything else.
Title: Re: My Recent Experience with Citra
Post by: hopfenundmalz on February 26, 2013, 04:27:56 PM
My hops have essential oils of about 1%. Citra can be as high as 3%. They can dominate.
Title: Re: My Recent Experience with Citra
Post by: a10t2 on February 26, 2013, 04:30:03 PM
Are these 2012 crop? I found the 2011s to be fairly delicate with the mango/guava-ish thing dominant and very little citrus. I haven't brewed with 2012s yet.
Title: Re: My Recent Experience with Citra
Post by: denny on February 26, 2013, 04:42:58 PM
I was at a local brewpub last night and ordered and IPA that had 7 different hops, although they didn't list any of them.  On the first sip, Citra overwhelmed everything else in there.  Kinda like it was the only hop. 
Title: Re: My Recent Experience with Citra
Post by: kylekohlmorgen on February 26, 2013, 04:44:18 PM
I put Citra and Chinook in the same category of intensity (Simcoe is also close). If I'm using these hops with less-intense varieties, I back off of my normal equal percentage hop mix. Usually 1.5-2 to 1 paired with a hop like Cascade or Centennial.

I LOVE Citra, though. What a great hop.
Title: Re: My Recent Experience with Citra
Post by: bboy9000 on February 26, 2013, 05:32:39 PM
A friend of mine brewed a Nelson IPA and the Nelson Sauvin gave it a powerful orange aroma.  I'd like to try a wheat with either Nelson or Citra.  Tallgrass Brewing makes their Halycon Wheat with Citra and it isn't overpowering but I can definitely taste the Citra.  I'm not a fan of pitting fruit in beer but a hoppy wheat with Citra would be fun to try.
Title: Re: My Recent Experience with Citra
Post by: majorvices on February 26, 2013, 06:46:12 PM
I just can't resist the urge to post my hate for this hop .... just don't like citra at all. Perhaps in the tiniest amounts it blends well, but as a dominant hop I just can't enjoy it in a beer.
Title: Re: My Recent Experience with Citra
Post by: blatz on February 26, 2013, 06:46:59 PM
Are these 2012 crop?

Yeah - first run with the 2012 pellets.  I like Citra, I just really don't like the dominance - its too fruity for me.

Kyle - I hear you though I would say that Citra is more dominant that either Chinook or Simcoe, though the latter two are also quite dominant, Citra is head and shoulders above in that aspect.

Interesting comments Jeff and Denny - guess it ain't just me.
Title: Re: My Recent Experience with Citra
Post by: hopfenundmalz on February 26, 2013, 06:51:20 PM
I just can't resist the urge to post my hate for this hop .... just don't like citra at all. Perhaps in the tiniest amounts it blends well, but as a dominant hop I just can't enjoy it in a beer.
That is the way I feel about Nelson. I like Citra.
Title: Re: My Recent Experience with Citra
Post by: denny on February 26, 2013, 06:54:27 PM
I just can't resist the urge to post my hate for this hop .... just don't like citra at all. Perhaps in the tiniest amounts it blends well, but as a dominant hop I just can't enjoy it in a beer.

I'm with you, Keith.  Just way too tropical fruity for me.
Title: Re: My Recent Experience with Citra
Post by: blatz on February 26, 2013, 06:56:21 PM
I just can't resist the urge to post my hate for this hop .... just don't like citra at all. Perhaps in the tiniest amounts it blends well, but as a dominant hop I just can't enjoy it in a beer.

I'm with you, Keith.  Just way too tropical fruity for me.

I'm sort of leaning this way too - I'm glad half the batch was brewed for my teammates at the Tough Mudder this weekend - at least it will go fast so I can brew something else...
Title: Re: My Recent Experience with Citra
Post by: majorvices on February 26, 2013, 07:16:12 PM
I just can't resist the urge to post my hate for this hop .... just don't like citra at all. Perhaps in the tiniest amounts it blends well, but as a dominant hop I just can't enjoy it in a beer.
That is the way I feel about Nelson. I like Citra.

I have not gotten around to trying it yet but have been thinking about using in in a saison.
Title: Re: My Recent Experience with Citra
Post by: davidgzach on February 26, 2013, 07:57:34 PM
A friend of mine brewed a Nelson IPA and the Nelson Sauvin gave it a powerful orange aroma.  I'd like to try a wheat with either Nelson or Citra.  Tallgrass Brewing makes their Halycon Wheat with Citra and it isn't overpowering but I can definitely taste the Citra.  I'm not a fan of pitting fruit in beer but a hoppy wheat with Citra would be fun to try.

I've been shying away from Citra, but using it in a wheat sounds like a good idea.  But, like they say, you gotta try it to like it!

Dave
Title: Re: My Recent Experience with Citra
Post by: mabrungard on February 26, 2013, 08:05:16 PM
Oh come on! All things in moderation.  This was just a learning experience.  A data point that helps dial in the proper dosage. 

Now if that beer is unpalatable for you, I suggest that you plan on blending it with another less hoppy beer and enjoy it that way.  That may also help to define what the amount of a particular hop you can tolerate or enjoy.  I find Sorachi Ace the same way, pleasant in very restrained doses and easily overdosed. 
Title: Re: My Recent Experience with Citra
Post by: blatz on February 26, 2013, 08:49:32 PM
Oh come on! All things in moderation.  This was just a learning experience.  A data point that helps dial in the proper dosage. 

 

absolutely - don't get me wrong- I will gladly drink it - its still very good, and better than most or all of what I can buy in the store, but its just not my bag - I'm just glad that 5 of the 10gal will be enjoyed by others so I can move on to the next learning/brewing experience!
Title: Re: My Recent Experience with Citra
Post by: erockrph on February 26, 2013, 09:10:16 PM
I think we're going to find more of this with the newer varieties of hops that are starting to be bred for their oil content. We currently adjust hop bitterness based on AA%, and we're probably going to have to start taking oil concentration into account with some of the newer varieties. I recently used Polaris (over 4ml/100g oil content) at my normal IPA levels in a brew and it totally overpowered all the other hops. Not only that, but the beer has that saturated hop-oil/resin character that I generally only get from over-the-top IIPA's.

I've seen Nelson dominate a hop blend as well, but that just may be that the vinous character is so distinct (as opposed to oil content). I do tend to back off on Citra if I want other hops to hold their own against it in a blend, but I really like the flavor (especially when paired with hops like Amarillo and Simcoe). I will often hop them at the same rate as the other hops, knowing that they may take the lead a bit. Or I'll just add more of a lower-oil hop so it stands up to the Citra better.
Title: Re: My Recent Experience with Citra
Post by: kylekohlmorgen on February 26, 2013, 09:26:28 PM
Are these 2012 crop?

Kyle - I hear you though I would say that Citra is more dominant that either Chinook or Simcoe, though the latter two are also quite dominant, Citra is head and shoulders above in that aspect.


I could go with you on that...

As stated above, I could also throw Nelson in that list. Mosaic was also pretty dominant in my last pale ale, using just 2 oz for dryhops (so much so that I called it a Mosaic Pale).
Title: Re: My Recent Experience with Citra
Post by: blatz on February 26, 2013, 09:30:34 PM
Not only that, but the beer has that saturated hop-oil/resin character that I generally only get from over-the-top IIPA's.


its really interesting you mention that - in my last whirlpooled IPA I noticed this really 'hop oily' mouthfeel that I didn't really care for - sort of detracted a bit - I used a lot of the newer breed hops in it and I guess that is the culprit.

I noticed the same in this Citra APA, but I was starting to assume it was the whirlpooling, but i guess its the nature of the hops.

Title: Re: My Recent Experience with Citra
Post by: kylekohlmorgen on February 26, 2013, 09:34:42 PM

...Not only that, but the beer has that saturated hop-oil/resin character that I generally only get from over-the-top IIPA's...


One of the best food experiences in the world (IMO). As long as the flavor isn't grassy/vegetal.

I'm leaving work early to grab a pint of IPA now...
Title: Re: My Recent Experience with Citra
Post by: BrewingRover on February 26, 2013, 10:12:29 PM
Interesting to see others' impressions of Citra. I like them, but my wife had one pint of Three Floyd's all-Citra Zombie Dust APA and told me I must brew something similar. I've brewed a couple of batches using 2011 crop, so I'll be curious if the flavors change when I start in on my 2012 supply.
Title: Re: My Recent Experience with Citra
Post by: blatz on March 06, 2013, 07:20:17 PM
so the keg of APA was a huge hit at the tough mudder this weekend. the intensity of the citra settled down a bit, and while I know I will tone it down considerably next time, it was actually enjoyable to me as well - I am looking forward to tapping the other keg I have at home.

could also have been the 12 mile/24 obstacle race that heightened our thirst but every one seemed to enjoy it - some people were even asking me if there was real lemon and orange in there.

Title: Re: My Recent Experience with Citra
Post by: kylekohlmorgen on March 06, 2013, 09:00:48 PM
...my wife had one pint of Three Floyd's all-Citra Zombie Dust APA and told me I must brew something similar...

I. LOVE. THIS. BEER. In a small enough place, you can smell it before the bartender sets it on the bar.

Maybe its because its ALWAYS fresh, but they're doing some special things with hops at 3F.
Title: Re: My Recent Experience with Citra
Post by: yso191 on March 07, 2013, 12:10:38 AM
I have yet to taste an IPA with too much Citra in it, as long as it minimized the bittering/60 minute additions and focused on the flavor/aroma additions.  I can't get enough of those tropical fruit flavors.  Yes, I will readily accede to my taste being out of the mainstream  ;)

On the last IPA I brewed I used a half-pound of Citra (as well as 4 ounces of Zythos) in a 5 gal. Batch,  and it still wasn't enough.

I am a sucker for any big, multilayered flavor profile - food or drink.  Sake is not for me!
Title: Re: My Recent Experience with Citra
Post by: brewsumore on March 07, 2013, 07:35:46 AM
I have made 20 gallons (2 batches) of a Zombie Dust clone (citra was the only hop) using two different sources of 2011 hops, and both were very enjoyable.  The FreshHops leaf hops made the best batch.  I recently tried a local brewery Belgian IPA dry-hopped with 2012 Citra, and as I told the brewer it tasted like "fruit salad..., in a good way" and it is their best seller.

It was much more expressive of the fruity flavors than I got out of either of my batches made from the 2011 crop.

I definitely need to buy some 2012 citra and brew another citra APA, well after the next two brews on deck. 
Title: Re: My Recent Experience with Citra
Post by: AmandaK on March 07, 2013, 12:50:05 PM
Another data point:

Took a gravity reading/taste test of my Snow Day APA - it smells and tastes like 98% Citra and 2% "possible" Simcoe.

2012 Citra, btw.

Hop bill:
20 minute addition:
0.5 oz Simcoe
1/3 oz each of Mosaic, Centennial, Cascade & Citra
45 minute whirlpool addition:
0.5 oz Simcoe
2/3 oz each of Mosaic, Centennial, Cascade & Citra

I'm not really complaining, but I wanted more of a blend than just total Citra - I think I may force carb, bottle a few, then keg hop with Zythos, Simcoe & Mosaic and leave the Citra out of it.
Title: Re: My Recent Experience with Citra
Post by: jackhorzempa on March 07, 2013, 06:00:37 PM
I made an all Citra hopped IPA a few years ago (my attempt to ‘clone’ a Hill Farmstead Citra IPA). Citra hops are the most potent hops that I have ever brewed with! I only used 1.5 ounces for dry hopping and after 2 weeks of bottle conditioning I had a hard time drinking the beer; it was just too ‘in your face’ intense. An additional 1-2 weeks of conditioning permitted the hop aroma/flavor to mellow a bit and that beer was delicious. It had nice, enjoyable tropical fruit flavors to my palate. Some friends while drinking that beer noted an aroma/flavor of cat pee but they asked for seconds so I guess they like cat pee? I have read that Citra hops have a high amount of a compound 4MMP which some people perceive as being cat pee (apparently a higher incidence of this in women).

I brewed a Citra/Simcoe IPA where I bittered with Warrior and used a 50/50 blend of Citra/Simcoe for flavor, end of boil and dry hop additions. I thought this beer turned out great; I think that Citra and Simcoe complement each other.

Cheers!
Title: Re: My Recent Experience with Citra
Post by: gymrat on March 07, 2013, 06:30:47 PM
I used 1 oz of Citra in my white wheat wonder. .25oz for 60 minutes, .5oz for 10 minutes, and .25oz for 5 minutes. Just one ounce gave this beer a very strong hop presence. I didn't like the Citra IPA I made last year but I actually find the taste of this white wheat beer quite pleasant. It absolutely has the citra aroma. I would describe it as balanced leaning toward hoppy.