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Messages - b-hoppy

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Ingredients / Re: Beer in France?
« on: February 02, 2016, 07:15:12 PM »

Simon is the godfather to one of our kids, actually - and I am quite familiar with your hop candy, they're great!

Wow, that's just nuts?  Small world~

Hop Growing / Re: Best source for hop rhizomes in Washington state
« on: February 02, 2016, 07:04:24 PM »
Ralph sells some quality rhizomes here:

Ingredients / Re: Beer in France?
« on: February 02, 2016, 11:28:29 AM »

I'm the founder (I used to say president, but we've never had elections and I'm not as active as I used to be) of the Paris Homebrewers Club. I've seen the French beer scene explode over the last six years, with pretty decent (although not quite "American" numbers), growing from 200 to more than 600 breweries over the last ten years, with a very large portion of that growth over the last four years. Quality used to be an issue, and understanding that volume is important (do not spend 6 hours brewing 5 hectoliters when you could spend 6 hours brewing 50 hectoliters) is still an issue, but there are some truly great beers here.

I could go on for a long time about the craft scene here, but it'd be better to just show you - are you going to be in Paris at all next week?

Cool!  I have a big box of hop candy headed to la cave a bulles (today or tomorrow) and should be there by next week.  Tell Simon your first piece is on me, haha! 

Like you mentioned, most of the varieties that fit your description are proprietary and most likely won't be available to the general public to grow for quite a while.  Your best bet is to stick a few different varieties in the ground and judge for yourself. 

Hops are pretty interesting in that they tend to produce a unique oil package depending on where they're grown.  The differences can be pretty dramatic or subtle depending on the environment/soils . . . "terroir".  My first exposure to this phenomenon was quite a few years ago after harvesting my Chinook which leaned pretty hard toward spearmint here in NEOhio.  Last year I picked up a pound of Chinook from some grower friends I know up in Michigan and theirs had a very pronounced pineapple character.  So stick a few in the ground and take good notes!

Ingredients / Re: Acorn beer
« on: December 27, 2015, 08:50:02 AM »

Ha! Now that's funny. I don't think I have ever consumed an acorn myself.

If you've ever tried chewing on a hop pellet and found it to be a less than pleasurable experience, you certainly won't want to chew on an acorn . . . unless you're into that sort of thing.  I've done the hop pellet thing a few times but only once with an acorn, haha.

Here's a little more info on the subject from a well qualified source:

Hop Growing / Re: Cover Hops Plants for Winter?
« on: November 22, 2015, 10:35:07 PM »
One of the things you have to be aware of is that desiccation can create some problems with lots of plants.  If the soil freezes solid and there's no form of protection for the buds on the upper part of the crown and you get a really windy winter, those buds can lose enough moisture to burn right off.  Yes, hops are pretty resilient but it can happen.  Even if you don't have access to a suitable mulch, some of the surrounding soil can be mounded up to help them make it through a windy winter . . . or hope you get some good snow cover.  It's kind of a long shot but it never hurts to err on the safe side!

Ingredients / Re: Effects of craft beer going global
« on: October 04, 2015, 03:41:24 PM »

Could be, but I'd be surprised.

Don't be, money talks. 

Hop Growing / Re: Winter storage of hops planted in container
« on: October 02, 2015, 07:44:28 AM »
Best way honestly is to take them out of the bucket and put them one inch underground. ...

Exactly!  Although, a few years ago I'd seen this question asked and decided to see for myself.  I planted 3 or 4 5 gal buckets with rhizomes in the spring and left them out over the following winter, no additional protection/mulch, just sitting out in the open.  That winter gave us a few spells where it went down to about 0F for about a week and they came back fine once the weather broke. 

You may get a little more brutal weather so if you don't have the opportunity to stick them in the ground you may want to try to protect them with some sort of mulch or move the bucket near the house to break the wind.  You may have to cut some roots as I've had them grow some serious ones through the  bottom of the bucket into the ground as that's where they'd like to be.  Either way, you'll  be fine.  Hoppy Trails~

Ingredients / Re: Hop pellet density
« on: September 17, 2015, 07:13:56 PM »
I think it's a neat picture, but I am also skeptical about what this means in the real world. Once the pellets break up, hop bits are hop bits, right? Plus this would only conceivably be a concern during dry hopping. In the boil pellets break up almost instantly and are caught up in the motion of the boil.

"hop bits are hop bits" is very true, but think about how the hops became bits in the first place.  At an event in Yakima a month or so ago,  few folks from the industry expressed their displeasure at the increasing number of brewers requesting special density standards for their pellets.  I never got into it with them but am assuming that it has to do with the force that the hammer mill delivers, how fast the material is fed, the diameter of the dye used etc..  Here's one take on the idea: 

I rarely use pellets, but last year I got some from Crosby for doing a little dry-hopping in the carboy.  When I racked and kegged the beer, there were entire bracts (in tact) in the residue.  It was like they managed to run whole hops through the dye?  Really happy with that operation.

Ingredients / Re: Harvest Hops & Aphids
« on: September 10, 2015, 09:45:03 PM »
Many, if not most, of the bugs will leave during the drying process.  As long as the cones don't look too bad, you should be fine using them.  One way to determine if it was aphids doing the deed, just peel back some of the bracts and take a peek in towards the strig and you'll usually find some tiny  black dots on them.  That's a sure sign that it was aphids.  If they look like the ones here:, I'd probably get rid of them.  A little more info:

Hop Growing / Re: oast vs dehydrator
« on: August 28, 2015, 10:00:31 PM »
Commercially, hops are dried at 120-130F.  The faster the better as long as they don't get too hot.  I get far superior results using a dehydrator set to those temps than drying them more slowly.

Denny, at the event out there earlier in August, I think I remember hearing  Perrault Farms mention they were at about 135F and a grower down near Woodburn, OR said they were trying to stay around 130F.  It's hard for them to go any lower due to the increased time it takes to get them dried coupled with the additional acreage that has to be dried.  Adding drying capacity is a really hefty investment but it'll have to be done if acreage continues to increase like it has recently.

Hop Growing / Re: oast vs dehydrator
« on: August 28, 2015, 03:41:42 PM »
Breaking the cones open and rubbing/sniffing is the way to do it.  If the lupulin glands are in tact (unbroken), you really shouldn't smell a whole lot.  Mash them up in between your hands and you'll get a good idea of what they hold.

Hop Growing / Re: oast vs dehydrator
« on: August 27, 2015, 11:04:18 PM »
I think either way you'll be fine and highly doubt that at 95F you'll cause any appreciable damage to them but they'll finish drying up a little quicker.  If I  had the option I'd dry half of them with the dehydrator and the other half with the fan to see for yourself!

Hop Growing / Re: IV International Humulus Symposium Yakima, WA.
« on: August 16, 2015, 12:20:02 PM »
Right on.  I most likely wouldn't have attended if it wasn't business related, cool event none the less.

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