Author Topic: First Wort Hops Chemistry  (Read 2124 times)

Offline tygo

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First Wort Hops Chemistry
« on: September 22, 2012, 07:02:44 PM »
Awhile back someone posted a description of the chemistry behind what is happening when you FWH.  It was in response to another post about something or another, I'm sure it related to first wort hopping (post subject-wise), but searching around I couldn't find it.

I remember thinking at the time, "That makes perfect sense.  That's the only description of the actual chemistry behind the process that I've heard."  But, of course, I didn't copy it or make a note of where it was.

It was probably a regular here who posted it and, if so, can you explain it again?  And either way, anyone else have any thoughts on the subject?

Clint
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Offline jamminbrew

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Re: First Wort Hops Chemistry
« Reply #1 on: September 22, 2012, 11:12:49 PM »
My understanding is that there is some charecteristics of the hops that don't get boiled off when you do FWH. The oils bind with the proteins in the wort and remain there to give more flavor components to the finished beer then just a 60 min addition. I heard this in a podcast, I think in Beersmith with Brad Smith... Unfortunately I don't remember the specific episode...
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Offline Kaiser

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Re: First Wort Hops Chemistry
« Reply #2 on: September 23, 2012, 06:51:07 AM »
It's my understanding that it is an oxidation process odd the aroma hop compounds. They have more time on the FW before they would be boiled off. The oxidized compounds survive the boil and will be present in the beer.

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Offline hubie

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Re: First Wort Hops Chemistry
« Reply #3 on: September 24, 2012, 06:52:58 AM »
It's my understanding that it is an oxidation process odd the aroma hop compounds. They have more time on the FW before they would be boiled off. The oxidized compounds survive the boil and will be present in the beer.

I don't hear a lot of people advocating mash hopping.  How would the chemistry be different?  Is it that all the interesting chemistry happens between 170F and boiling?

Offline james

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Re: First Wort Hops Chemistry
« Reply #4 on: September 24, 2012, 10:03:32 AM »
I heard this from Matt Cole from Fat Head Brewery as well as read in the recent IPA book.

From IPA by Mitch Steele.
Regarding Mash hopping:
"The theory is that the higher pH in the mash and the presence of oxygen allow the volatile compounds in the hops to form oxidation products with components in the malt.  The resulting compounds are not volatile and remain in the wort throughout the lautering and kettle boil process, and lend a "more rounded" depth of hop flavor to the beer"

Regarding FWH:
"In addition, the hops' longer contact time with the wort at the higher pH increases utilization, which results in higher bitterness levels."

Maybe the future book "For the Love of Hops" by Stan Hieronymus will expound upon these topics.