Author Topic: Hop Harvest  (Read 1252 times)

Offline Nettles

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Hop Harvest
« on: August 12, 2012, 06:48:46 AM »
So my hops are looking ready for harvest, and as with all things brewing, everyone's got a different theory on the best/most cost-efficient method of drying them at home. Is there a comprehensive thread on the subject I'm missing in my searches, or can we get a discussion going?

I can start with my embarrassingly ineffective method from last year - laid them out in a cardboard box, cut holes in the side for air flow, and tied them to the window A/C unit in my house, rotating twice daily. Took about 5 days to dry, which doesn't seem very efficient, and lost a lot of lupulin to the box in agitation, but moreover, I think I've got far too many cones this year (2nd year of growth) to do all at once with this method anyway.

So what do you do?

Offline hopfenundmalz

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Re: Hop Harvest
« Reply #1 on: August 12, 2012, 08:17:33 AM »
Some left over window screen is laid out over some 2x4s on saw horsed in the garage. The hops are spread out on the screen, not too thick, and are dry in 3 days or a little less.
Jeff Rankert
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Offline denny

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Re: Hop Harvest
« Reply #2 on: August 12, 2012, 09:10:50 AM »
I do what Jeff describes above sometimes.  I also use a food dehydrator, but it holds considerably less than I can get on a screen.
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Offline Alewyfe

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Re: Hop Harvest
« Reply #3 on: August 12, 2012, 09:51:23 AM »
I do what Jeff describes above sometimes.  I also use a food dehydrator, but it holds considerably less than I can get on a screen.

I do the same thing as Jeff, only outside. Covered the screens full of hops with cheese cloth or tuille so they wouldn't blow away and just put them out on my deck. The warm days and good airflow dry them in a hurry.
Make raisins from grapes the same way.
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Offline hopfenundmalz

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Re: Hop Harvest
« Reply #4 on: August 12, 2012, 01:51:25 PM »
I do what Jeff describes above sometimes.  I also use a food dehydrator, but it holds considerably less than I can get on a screen.

I do the same thing as Jeff, only outside. Covered the screens full of hops with cheese cloth or tuille so they wouldn't blow away and just put them out on my deck. The warm days and good airflow dry them in a hurry.
Make raisins from grapes the same way.

That would be nice, but we will are starting to have more variable weather, and some heavy morning dews.
Jeff Rankert
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Home-brewing, not just a hobby, it is a lifestyle!

Offline Nettles

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Re: Hop Harvest
« Reply #5 on: August 13, 2012, 07:57:35 AM »
Thanks, folks. My garage is where the lawnmower is living, and as such has something of a gasoline musk to it. Otherwise, should be perfect with a fan to promote airflow. What are the odds of this smell getting into the hops?

As for outside, isn't there a degree of sun spoiling or pest vulnerability once the cones are picked? I feel like that's what the books told me...

Offline micsager

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Re: Hop Harvest
« Reply #6 on: August 13, 2012, 07:58:16 AM »
I actually take the screeen door off of my sliding glass doors, and lay it between two sawhorses in the garage.  Put a box fan to blow underneath.  2-3 days.......   

Offline kramerog

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Re: Hop Harvest
« Reply #7 on: August 13, 2012, 08:55:44 AM »
I do the window screens in the garage.  The geek in me also likes to put the hops in paper bags in the attic and then to weight the hops every day or so.  Putting the hops in bags is more work because I have to  mix the hops every day or so to better expose the wet hops.

Also I like to freeze some of the hops wet for fresher hops.  These hops are grassier but the grassiness goes away.
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