Author Topic: grassy flavors and dry hopping  (Read 2182 times)

Offline alcaponejunior

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grassy flavors and dry hopping
« on: March 21, 2012, 07:06:51 AM »
To avoid a derail, I'm starting a new thread on this with a quote from another thread:

excessive dry hopping (grassy or unpleasant vegetal taste).

Which isn't necessarily a flaw, per the guidelines.

Just as a curiosity, how much dry hops would you need to get a grassy aroma/taste.  Suppose a pretty standard APA recipe, extract or all-grain, with a 1oz dry hop addition of cascade after a week in the fermenter, with another week till bottling/kegging.  How much more would you need to get the "grassy" taste?  Rough estimate fine, obviously it's not a precise question.  ETA: 5.5 gallon batch

I'm just curious, BTW.  I don't have any plan to over dry-hop an APA on purpose.  But I do tend to like beers that I describe as having grassy flavors (especially light colored beers like pilsners, APAs etc), so I wonder if you can intentionally bring out these flavors in a balanced way, without ruining the beer. 

If so, can you discuss how to do this with dry hopping or other techniques?  And link to recipes and/or give commercial examples? 

Thanks!

Offline gymrat

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Re: grassy flavors and dry hopping
« Reply #1 on: March 21, 2012, 07:21:53 AM »
I routinely use 2 ounces of fuggels to dry hop my red ales. I have never gotten grassy flavors from that. So it will definitely take more than that. I am going to take a stab at 3 to 4 ounces.
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Offline erockrph

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Re: grassy flavors and dry hopping
« Reply #2 on: March 21, 2012, 08:03:43 AM »
Just conjecture here, as I've never run into it in my limited experience but I think things like time, alcohol content and conditioning temp are way more important factors than quantity of hops. I've gone close to 2 weeks of dry hopping  with a ounce of loose leaf hops in a 3 gallon batch with no grassiness at all. Now I'd say that an IIPA dryhopping at warmer temps for 3 weeks or more may be where I would expect to see some grassiness for example. At that point I would think the amount of hops would affect the level of grassiness but not whether it gets grassy in the first place.

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Offline morticaixavier

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Re: grassy flavors and dry hopping
« Reply #3 on: March 21, 2012, 09:48:31 AM »
If you switch up your bittering hops with a low alpha hop (and therefore use a lot more) you can get that classic british grassy/vegetal character pretty well.
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Offline mabrungard

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Re: grassy flavors and dry hopping
« Reply #4 on: March 21, 2012, 01:32:25 PM »
If you switch up your bittering hops with a low alpha hop (and therefore use a lot more) you can get that classic british grassy/vegetal character pretty well.

That is a good point.  The total load of vegetative matter is going to influence the grassiness.  Consider that in many cases, dry-hopped beers are well bittered.  That bittering charge can easily be adding to the perception of grassiness when the mass of hop is high due to using lower alpha hops for bittering.  If brewing a bitter beer, using a little super-alpha hopping for bittering can really reduce that vegetation load in the beer.

I find that extended dry hopping duration creates grassiness, although I've heard many say they leave their dry hops on the beer for weeks and months.  I try to keep it to 4 to 6 days.  I've used 2 oz in 5 gal batches with no grassiness in that case.
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Offline morticaixavier

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Re: grassy flavors and dry hopping
« Reply #5 on: March 21, 2012, 02:25:53 PM »
If you switch up your bittering hops with a low alpha hop (and therefore use a lot more) you can get that classic british grassy/vegetal character pretty well.

That is a good point.  The total load of vegetative matter is going to influence the grassiness.  Consider that in many cases, dry-hopped beers are well bittered.  That bittering charge can easily be adding to the perception of grassiness when the mass of hop is high due to using lower alpha hops for bittering.  If brewing a bitter beer, using a little super-alpha hopping for bittering can really reduce that vegetation load in the beer.

I find that extended dry hopping duration creates grassiness, although I've heard many say they leave their dry hops on the beer for weeks and months.  I try to keep it to 4 to 6 days.  I've used 2 oz in 5 gal batches with no grassiness in that case.

Awesome! I got props from Martin.  8)
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Offline alcaponejunior

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Re: grassy flavors and dry hopping
« Reply #6 on: March 21, 2012, 07:00:24 PM »
Thanks for the replies everybody.

I have done a batch with two ounces dry hops and it came out fine, albeit not very grassy.  I have another conditioning that I also used two ounces on.  I will try some of the stuff you guys talked about to see what kinds of flavors I can bring out in future batches.