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Author Topic: Wild Hops  (Read 2158 times)

Offline pmallory

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Wild Hops
« on: March 29, 2011, 08:12:58 pm »
A few years ago I found some wild hops in northern New Mexico. I returned last spring when they were first coming up and cut out 6 rhizomes and took them back to my garden. I built a raised bed and mixed in some great soil and harvested them. I've had them stored for a while now and am going to brew with them. I got about 9 ounces for this first year and I want to brew a 10 gallon batch using only these hops. I am trying to think of what kind of recipe to use for this. I am guessing the alpha acid is low, around 4, but who knows. Also, it seems like a waste to use these as bittering hops, but I really do want a beer that uses only this hop. I'd like to do a pale ale, but for the hopping schedule, I haven't decided yet. Let me know if you have any ideas how to emphasize the hop.

Offline Kirk

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  • Sparks, NV
Re: Wild Hops
« Reply #1 on: March 29, 2011, 08:45:00 pm »
Wow, I didn't know one could find wild hops. 
But to the OP, I would make a tea with them, and sweeten it with sugar or agave or something.  I would taste them unboiled, like regular tea, then another batch boiled for a few minutes, then boiled for longer simulating bittering.  I think that would give you a good idea how they will taste in beer, and how they compare to other varieties.  Once you know that, you should know how to use them.
Kirk Howell

Offline tschmidlin

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  • Redmond, WA
Re: Wild Hops
« Reply #2 on: March 29, 2011, 11:12:36 pm »
In addition to what kecfic said, you could do the same bittering test with some hops of known AA% for comparison.  That means you'll have to weigh them carefully and assume (unless you can ballpark it) they have the same moisture content, but it's better than nothing.

Are you sure you got only female plants?  If all of the plants in the area are female then it seems likely that they are leftover from some old farm and if you research the area you might be able to guess what they were growing.  Or not, we see that a lot around here but we're not in NM.
Tom Schmidlin

Offline jeffy

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  • Tampa, Fl
Re: Wild Hops
« Reply #3 on: March 30, 2011, 05:07:05 am »
There's a brewer on the ProBrewer forum who is growing native New Mexico hops.  Look for posts by wildcrafter here:
What kind of aromas do your hops have?
Jeff Gladish, Tampa (989.3, 175.1 Apparent Rennarian)
Homebrewing since 1990
AHA member since 1991, now a lifetime member
BJCP judge since 1995