Author Topic: fastest and easiest way to carry out hop experiments  (Read 1154 times)

Offline homoeccentricus

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fastest and easiest way to carry out hop experiments
« on: September 14, 2015, 11:42:22 AM »
I have a bunch of new hops I want to try out. What would be the fastest and easiest way to brew - say - 1 or 2 gallon batches? I would like to have it done in as little time as possible, so I can do it at night. All my brewing equipment is in the basement, and the less I need to carry upstairs the better. Would a simple combination of dry extract and C40 (and maybe some carapils) at - say 1060 be a good base? I could then bulk mill the C40 in advance and maybe store it in the freezer? Then I would steep the cara malts and boil it with the extract and some bittering hops, and add the new hops in the whirlpool & dry hop.  Any suggestions to standardize, and optimize the procedure, and still obtain the best possible beer within the limits of this procedure? Ah, and how about brewing salts? Can anything be added when one uses dry extract?

Thanks in advance. You guys are always helpful.
Frank P.

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Offline 69franx

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Re: fastest and easiest way to carry out hop experiments
« Reply #1 on: September 14, 2015, 11:46:45 AM »
I think the recommendation is usually to not use any salts when using extract as the manufacturer already treated their water when making the extract.  You could try a standard 5G batch and split into several smaller batches post boil and experiment with different dry hop schedules for the separate batches. Bitter the batch with a known quantity and try out your new hops simultaneously across the smaller batches. Just a thought
Frank L.
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Offline HoosierBrew

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Re: fastest and easiest way to carry out hop experiments
« Reply #2 on: September 14, 2015, 11:51:44 AM »
+1.  For hop trials I use DME + 2 oz C40 in 1 gallon batches to hit 1.050 OG. As mentioned, no water salts. They're already in the DME.
Jon H.

Offline homoeccentricus

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Re: fastest and easiest way to carry out hop experiments
« Reply #3 on: September 14, 2015, 12:38:37 PM »
+1.  For hop trials I use DME + 2 oz C40 in 1 gallon batches to hit 1.050 OG. As mentioned, no water salts. They're already in the DME.

Yes, that would work. I would then use 500 gr LME, 50 gr C40, 5 gr Warrior for 1.048 & 45 IBU in a 4 liter batch. I have these 2 oz packages of hops from Yakima valley, so I could whirlpool with 1 oz and dry hop with 1 oz.
Frank P.

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Offline Stevie

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Re: fastest and easiest way to carry out hop experiments
« Reply #4 on: September 14, 2015, 01:54:03 PM »
Eric has a 15 min all extract recipe he uses for hop experiments. You can look back and see many of his reviews from the past few years.

Offline hangdog10

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Re: fastest and easiest way to carry out hop experiments
« Reply #5 on: September 14, 2015, 02:08:58 PM »
If you are just looking for a flavor / aroma profile, I've heard of adding pellets to bottles of Bud Light and recapping. Some breweries do this when they get experimental hops to try.

Offline erockrph

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Re: fastest and easiest way to carry out hop experiments
« Reply #6 on: September 14, 2015, 03:07:41 PM »
Eric has a 15 min all extract recipe he uses for hop experiments. You can look back and see many of his reviews from the past few years.
Here is my post where I go into the most detail about my procedure:
https://www.homebrewersassociation.org/forum/index.php?topic=13485.0

I also went into a bit more specifics on my blog as well:
http://hopwhisperer.blogspot.com/2013/12/single-hop-beers-part-1.html
http://hopwhisperer.blogspot.com/2013/12/single-hop-beers-part-2.html

I've cranked out as many as 8 batches in the time span of a typical all-grain brewday. You can steep some crystal instead of the Munich LME if you'd like, but I find things work more quickly with the LME.
Eric B.

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Offline homoeccentricus

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Re: fastest and easiest way to carry out hop experiments
« Reply #7 on: September 14, 2015, 03:24:10 PM »
Eric has a 15 min all extract recipe he uses for hop experiments. You can look back and see many of his reviews from the past few years.
Here is my post where I go into the most detail about my procedure:
https://www.homebrewersassociation.org/forum/index.php?topic=13485.0

I also went into a bit more specifics on my blog as well:
http://hopwhisperer.blogspot.com/2013/12/single-hop-beers-part-1.html
http://hopwhisperer.blogspot.com/2013/12/single-hop-beers-part-2.html

I've cranked out as many as 8 batches in the time span of a typical all-grain brewday. You can steep some crystal instead of the Munich LME if you'd like, but I find things work more quickly with the LME.

Thanks, Eric. I can't find the munich LME, we only have the "amber" variety. https://www.brouwland.com/en/our-products/brewing/malt-extracts/malt-extract-liquid/malt-extract-liquid-muntons/d/maltextract-liquid-muntons-amber-1-5-kg (also in DME). Around 18 EBC. Not sure whether I would want to use that as it is not munich but crystal based...
Frank P.

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Offline dmtaylor

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Re: fastest and easiest way to carry out hop experiments
« Reply #8 on: September 14, 2015, 03:27:26 PM »
On my last IPA, I did a traditional all-grain mash but then divided it into several soup kettles and boiled them simultaneously on my stovetop.  If you've got several good sized kettles in your kitchen, you can do the same.  You could split a 3-gallon batch into two 1.5-gallons, or a 5-gallon batch into 3 or 4 small batches.  Depends on how many kettles and how good your stove is I guess.

One key thing to keep in mind when using multiple kettles -- due to greater surface area of the boiling wort, you'll want to add at least a quart of distilled water to each kettle at the beginning of the boil because otherwise you'll end up with a very small amount of high gravity worts.  Boiloff rate is crazy, around 30-35% over the course of an hour with small batches, compared to the typical 15% for 5-gallons.  The distilled water you add will keep things at a more level playing field with the total volume you are used to seeing post-boil.
Dave

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Offline homoeccentricus

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Re: fastest and easiest way to carry out hop experiments
« Reply #9 on: September 14, 2015, 03:38:24 PM »
On my last IPA, I did a traditional all-grain mash but then divided it into several soup kettles and boiled them simultaneously on my stovetop.  If you've got several good sized kettles in your kitchen, you can do the same.  You could split a 3-gallon batch into two 1.5-gallons, or a 5-gallon batch into 3 or 4 small batches.  Depends on how many kettles and how good your stove is I guess.

One key thing to keep in mind when using multiple kettles -- due to greater surface area of the boiling wort, you'll want to add at least a quart of distilled water to each kettle at the beginning of the boil because otherwise you'll end up with a very small amount of high gravity worts.  Boiloff rate is crazy, around 30-35% over the course of an hour with small batches, compared to the typical 15% for 5-gallons.  The distilled water you add will keep things at a more level playing field with the total volume you are used to seeing post-boil.

Yes, you are right. I was planning to do a test boil anyway because I have a new wok burner on the stove.
Frank P.

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Offline HoosierBrew

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Re: fastest and easiest way to carry out hop experiments
« Reply #10 on: September 14, 2015, 03:43:54 PM »
Eric has a 15 min all extract recipe he uses for hop experiments. You can look back and see many of his reviews from the past few years.
Here is my post where I go into the most detail about my procedure:
https://www.homebrewersassociation.org/forum/index.php?topic=13485.0

I also went into a bit more specifics on my blog as well:
http://hopwhisperer.blogspot.com/2013/12/single-hop-beers-part-1.html
http://hopwhisperer.blogspot.com/2013/12/single-hop-beers-part-2.html

I've cranked out as many as 8 batches in the time span of a typical all-grain brewday. You can steep some crystal instead of the Munich LME if you'd like, but I find things work more quickly with the LME.

Thanks, Eric. I can't find the munich LME, we only have the "amber" variety. https://www.brouwland.com/en/our-products/brewing/malt-extracts/malt-extract-liquid/malt-extract-liquid-muntons/d/maltextract-liquid-muntons-amber-1-5-kg (also in DME). Around 18 EBC. Not sure whether I would want to use that as it is not munich but crystal based...

FWIW, I always have C40 on hand, so that's why I just throw a couple oz in a muslin bag, into the water as it heats, and pull it as the water hits 165F or so. It's enough to give the wort a little color and malty sweetness. No time lost.
Jon H.

Offline brewcrew7

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Re: fastest and easiest way to carry out hop experiments
« Reply #11 on: September 16, 2015, 01:40:45 PM »
If you are just looking for a flavor / aroma profile, I've heard of adding pellets to bottles of Bud Light and recapping. Some breweries do this when they get experimental hops to try.

While this can be done, the time I did this with 6 different pellet varieties (from EKG to Citra) yielded a very similar, out-in-front grassy/vegetal character to the beers. Couple that with the trouble of recapping and the sludge I got from the hops, I'd recommend Eric's method hands down.

Offline homoeccentricus

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Re: fastest and easiest way to carry out hop experiments
« Reply #12 on: September 16, 2015, 07:55:34 PM »
If you are just looking for a flavor / aroma profile, I've heard of adding pellets to bottles of Bud Light and recapping. Some breweries do this when they get experimental hops to try.

While this can be done, the time I did this with 6 different pellet varieties (from EKG to Citra) yielded a very similar, out-in-front grassy/vegetal character to the beers. Couple that with the trouble of recapping and the sludge I got from the hops, I'd recommend Eric's method hands down.

I tried that once but didn't like the results, esp. the hop grits in my mouth.
Frank P.

Staggering on the shoulders of giant dwarfs.

Offline homoeccentricus

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Re: fastest and easiest way to carry out hop experiments
« Reply #13 on: September 17, 2015, 02:21:45 PM »
So this is what I would standardize upon for my hop experiments. I love the metric system!

Recipe: New World Hop Experiment
Brewer: Homo Eccentricus
Asst Brewer:
Style: American Pale Ale
TYPE: All Grain
Taste: (30.0)

Recipe Specifications
--------------------------
Boil Size: 4.63 l
Post Boil Volume: 4.16 l
Batch Size (fermenter): 4.00 l   
Bottling Volume: 3.50 l
Estimated OG: 1.048 SG
Estimated Color: 16.6 EBC
Estimated IBU: 50.8 IBUs
Brewhouse Efficiency: 72.00 %
Est Mash Efficiency: 72.0 %
Boil Time: 15 Minutes

Ingredients:
------------
Amt                   Name                                     Type          #        %/IBU         
0.05 kg               Caramel/Crystal Malt - 40L (78.8 EBC)    Grain         1        9.1 %         
0.50 kg               Light Dry Extract (15.8 EBC)             Dry Extract   2        90.9 %       
10.00 g               Warrior [15.00 %] - Boil 15.0 min        Hop           3        50.8 IBUs     
1.0 pkg               Safale American  (DCL/Fermentis #US-05)  Yeast         4        -             

And for each experiment add one or more hops in fwh and/or flameout and/or whirlpool and/or dryhopping. Only question is how much. Suggestions?
Frank P.

Staggering on the shoulders of giant dwarfs.

Offline HoosierBrew

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Re: fastest and easiest way to carry out hop experiments
« Reply #14 on: September 17, 2015, 02:33:32 PM »
In a gallon of 1.050 I'm adding 1 oz in a 20 minute steep and 1 oz dry hop. Basically equates to a hoppy APA, which is a good base to assess the hop character IMO.

EDIT - I also add 40 IBU in the boil to bitter.
« Last Edit: September 17, 2015, 02:36:03 PM by HoosierBrew »
Jon H.