Author Topic: Muslin Hop bags hinder utilization?  (Read 2283 times)

Offline pliskadm

  • 1st Kit
  • *
  • Posts: 10
    • View Profile
Muslin Hop bags hinder utilization?
« on: June 22, 2010, 12:58:19 PM »
I brewed yesterday using muslin hop bags with hop pellets.  I noticed that the bag was pretty stiff after I tied a knot and thought that this may end up hurting my hop aroma, flavor etc since the surface area of the hops is drastically reduced when bundling them up in a bag like that.  This technique is used in cooking alot as well, where one will use cheese cloth and create what is called a sachet bag filled with herbs and spices and throw it into the stock pot to boil or simmer with the rest of the ingredients.  However I always felt this was doing the same thing, of reducing the efficiency of flavor extraction.  What is the general opinion about hop bag usage?

Offline Malticulous

  • Brewer
  • ****
  • Posts: 361
    • View Profile
Re: Muslin Hop bags hinder utilization?
« Reply #1 on: June 22, 2010, 06:09:25 PM »
I seldom use them and only in low hoped beers. Normally I dump the whole boil into the fermenter and there is a difference in hop flavor and aroma from the bagged brews. Most of what I like has hop flavor and aroma so I don't use the hop bags much. If I want to keep the hop flavor and aroma low a bag can help.


Offline denny

  • Administrator
  • I must live here
  • *****
  • Posts: 11706
  • Noti OR [1991.4, 287.6deg] AR
    • View Profile
    • Dennybrew
Re: Muslin Hop bags hinder utilization?
« Reply #2 on: June 23, 2010, 08:27:51 AM »
I think if you use so many hops or such a small bag that the hops are stuffed in so tightly you can't get good wort flow, it could reduce utilization.  I use large bags and a different bag for each addition so that the hops pretty much float freely in the bag.  I haven't noticed a decrease in utilization doing that.
Life begins at 60.....1.060, that is!

www.dennybrew.com

The best, sharpest, funniest, weirdest and most knowledgable minds in home brewing contribute on the AHA forum. - Alewyfe

Offline tubercle

  • Senior Brewmaster
  • ******
  • Posts: 1639
  • Sweet Caroline
    • View Profile
Re: Muslin Hop bags hinder utilization?
« Reply #3 on: June 23, 2010, 09:11:45 AM »
Just go to Blow's or Home Creepo or your local hardware store and get a pack of 5 gallon paint strainer bags for 2 or 3 bucks. I've got some I have been using for about 5 years and there is plenty of room for any hop amount. Easy clean up too, just rinse and hang up.

   Cheap and easy, just like Denny taught us. ;D
Sweet Caroline where the Sun rises over the deep blue sea and sets somewhere beyond Tennessee

Offline bluesman

  • Global Moderator
  • I must live here
  • *****
  • Posts: 8689
  • Delaware
    • View Profile
Re: Muslin Hop bags hinder utilization?
« Reply #4 on: June 23, 2010, 09:26:55 AM »
I think if you use so many hops or such a small bag that the hops are stuffed in so tightly you can't get good wort flow, it could reduce utilization.  I use large bags and a different bag for each addition so that the hops pretty much float freely in the bag.  I haven't noticed a decrease in utilization doing that.

This is my belief as well. I also use separate bags for each addition.
Ron Price

Offline dak0415

  • Brewer
  • ****
  • Posts: 489
  • Winston-Salem, NC
    • View Profile
Re: Muslin Hop bags hinder utilization?
« Reply #5 on: June 23, 2010, 09:46:37 AM »
Do you guys weight the hop bags to the bottom of the kettle or just free range 'em.

Dave
Dave Koenig
Anything worth doing - is worth overdoing!

Offline bluesman

  • Global Moderator
  • I must live here
  • *****
  • Posts: 8689
  • Delaware
    • View Profile
Re: Muslin Hop bags hinder utilization?
« Reply #6 on: June 23, 2010, 10:01:32 AM »
Do you guys weight the hop bags to the bottom of the kettle or just free range 'em.

Dave

Great question.

Initially I push them under with a spoon to saturate them and then randomly push them under the wort to keep them movin' and groovin' .   Eventually they will sink into the wort when they become "wort logged".
Ron Price

Offline denny

  • Administrator
  • I must live here
  • *****
  • Posts: 11706
  • Noti OR [1991.4, 287.6deg] AR
    • View Profile
    • Dennybrew
Re: Muslin Hop bags hinder utilization?
« Reply #7 on: June 23, 2010, 10:02:11 AM »
I lay a long spoon/rod/whatever across the top of the kettle and hang the bags from it.  That makes it easy to retrieve them, but they pretty much float free.
Life begins at 60.....1.060, that is!

www.dennybrew.com

The best, sharpest, funniest, weirdest and most knowledgable minds in home brewing contribute on the AHA forum. - Alewyfe

Offline dak0415

  • Brewer
  • ****
  • Posts: 489
  • Winston-Salem, NC
    • View Profile
Re: Muslin Hop bags hinder utilization?
« Reply #8 on: June 23, 2010, 10:24:42 AM »
Do you use pellets, whole, or combination?
Dave Koenig
Anything worth doing - is worth overdoing!

Offline denny

  • Administrator
  • I must live here
  • *****
  • Posts: 11706
  • Noti OR [1991.4, 287.6deg] AR
    • View Profile
    • Dennybrew
Re: Muslin Hop bags hinder utilization?
« Reply #9 on: June 23, 2010, 10:34:57 AM »
Whatever I need to use.  Sometimes all hole, sometimes all pellets (although I seldom bag those), sometimes some of each.
Life begins at 60.....1.060, that is!

www.dennybrew.com

The best, sharpest, funniest, weirdest and most knowledgable minds in home brewing contribute on the AHA forum. - Alewyfe

Offline bluesman

  • Global Moderator
  • I must live here
  • *****
  • Posts: 8689
  • Delaware
    • View Profile
Re: Muslin Hop bags hinder utilization?
« Reply #10 on: June 23, 2010, 11:07:10 AM »
Whatever I need to use.  Sometimes all hole, sometimes all pellets (although I seldom bag those), sometimes some of each.

+1

I prefer whole if they're fresh, but pellets are just fine.   It's all about the freshness.  ;)
Ron Price